My blog is mostly about wildlife, particularly birds, walking, days out, all growing things and anything else that comes to mind.
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Sunday, 24 May 2009

A day out in Hampshire

One place I've been meaning to visit for a long time, is the National Trust property Hinton Ampner. However, the route I need to take has been suffering from very major road works at Hindhind over the last year or so. A tunnel is being created to relieve the traffic congestion and this is due to be completed in summer of 2011! So I've been waiting for a combination of a sunny day and one that is likely to be outside of normal weekday traffic. So - today was the day.

However, I did have to queue in a traffic jam for some time and, although I'd allowed extra time, I arrived half an hour later than I'd planned. Hey ho

Hinton Ampner was the brain child of Ralph Dutton (the 8th and final Lord Sherborne). He was born at Hinton in 1898 and inherited the house and garden in 1936.

The house is very pleasant and on Sundays only the ground floor is open to the public. Its dimensions are such you can imagine living in the house - I wish!

The gardens are a mixture of formal layout with informal planting. Dutton tried to create a feeling of tranquillity and in this (notwithstanding all the visitors today) I feel he's succeeded.

From the house and garden the view is over many large fields - these currently being occupied by several lambs and their mums; a lot of bleating was to be heard.

OK - I'll let you wander as I did:


















Someone was creative with the shears!






Within the grounds, but nothing to do with the National Trust, stands the small, but pretty, All Saints Church.
Next to the orchard stands All Saints parish church, which was originally Saxon. The chancel was rebuilt before 1822, and the nave by Ralph Dutton's grandfather in the 1870s, when the French-style bell-tower was also added. Ralph Dutton and many of his ancestors are buried here.
It has two very colourful in interesting stained glass windows which, for once, I've managed to get a reasonable picture of!






The gardens do not have any water and I was surprised at the lack of birds. A few crows flying about and the occasional blackbird. Equally, I presume, because the garden is mostly planted with trees and shrubs, there weren't many butterflies or bees about. I did feel a bit deprived and realised how much I miss seeing the birds and bees et al and also, I like having water about.

Had a quick nip into Painshill as it was on my way home. The two Great Crested Grebes are about but no further signs of nesting. Damselflies were everywhere and a great sight to see.

A pleasant day in some lovely sun - the first summer-like day of the year :D

Not very inspiring pictures today. One of those days when creativity never woke up.

11 comments:

Pete said...

lovely place, made it FINALLY

Warren Baker said...

Hi Tracie,
a lot of these National Trust properties are over manicured and too tidy for wildlife. Lovely to the eye (human eye!) but not of much use if your a whitethroat!

Tricia said...

Yes Pete. It took a while, but I finally got there :D

Helen said...

Interesting. We went to Nymans NT property on Sat and were amazed at the bird song in the wooded area but I know what Warren means about some of the properties being a bit tidy for wildlife.

Tricia said...

Warren - I know exactly what you mean. But there were a great number of trees some of them looked quite old and long established too.

Hi Helen and nice to see you here. Nymans is lovely and full of wildlife - it's a place I often visit and thoroughly enjoy.

mick said...

Lovely photos of a beautiful place. The photos of the stained glass windows in the church are especially beautiful.

Midmarsh John said...

You are doing yourself down Tricia. As you have seen it in the raw you may think of your photos as being uninspiring but for me it has been great to see a place I will probably never visit. Thanks for sharing.

Stained Glass window photos are always a problem, often washed out but you have captures the colours really well. In the pre digital days that used to be one of the subjects I enjoyed photographing.

Places like that are a different world aren't they? As Warren said - manicured; but that was they way of the world for such properties when they were designed. Really they show that we cannot improve on nature.

I don't think your lawn mower would cope there.

holdingmoments said...

Inspired or not Tricia, I thought the pictures were very good. It looks a lovely place to wander, but like you mentioned, a shame about the lack of wildlife.
It certainly was a beautiful day, and top marks for braving traffic and people. I spent a lazy day in the garden on the swing seat, watching the birds. lol

ShySongbird said...

A lovely day out Tricia, and you were braver than me in coping with the Bank Holiday traffic! Lovely photos, especially the stained glass and the flowers.

I missed commenting on your previous post but thought all the photos were stunning with the most beautiful vibrant flower colours and the underwater Swan shot was amazing.

oldcrow61 said...

Enjoyed the photos. You have such wonderful places to visit.

Tricia said...

Mick - thank you. The stained glass windows' colours were amazing.

John - thank you for your very kind words. I'm glad you enjoyed seeing somewhere new and if you're ever down-that-way it's well worth a visit.

And no - my lawn mower would collapse in a heap at the very sight of all that grass :D

Kieth - thank you. Staying at home sounds good to me :D

Jan - I don't know whether I was brave or foolhardy but it was only the one "black" spot.

OC - thank you. Yes - we are very lucky in all the places we have around us.

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