Sunday, September 26, 2010

Day 2 ... Callender House ... Falkirk

If you survived, and dare I say enjoyed, Day 1, then here is the second of my days out.

I was staying in this Bed and Breakfast on the outskirts of Falkirk.The house was over 100 years old and still sported the original tiled hall....the view from the steps seemed to change depending on the weather...on a clear day the distant hills glimmered in the sun light. The garden surrounded the house and was divided into little nooks with seats to enjoy the view .... so tranquil ... and the rose hips were the biggest I had ever seen.

Callender House was in fact close by ...a short bus ride ...and unlike the first day out, no hill to climb at the end of the day. lol.
I could not see it from the road as it was hidden by trees but I followed the signs ... my breath was taken away as I came face to face with the imposing structure.In the 14th century the original wooden structure, that had stood on the land for about 400 years, was abandoned and the first stone structure, with walls 8 feet thick and a single room on each floor, appeared. Over the following centuries it was extended but in1651, Cromwell lay siege, killing the 62 defenders and destroying the building. It was the Earl of Callender who on his return in 1660, restored the tower and extended a new mansion eastward. The new owner, William Forbes, in the late 1700's extended it again but it was his son and grandson who, by 1878, created the final appearance that we see now.It is an amazing building packed with history... the exhibition is so interesting to follow. As you wind your way around the parts open to the public, on three of the floors, you learn the history of the house and the area, the social and industrial changes and a great deal more. It is set up like a museum but there are some furnished rooms to see too.

A GEORGIAN KITCHEN with a roaring fire and a lingering smell of Ginger and Cinnamon.

This kitchen was built in 1824 to accommodate the spit which needed a high ceiling and it was so interesting to see the implements used nearly 200 years ago... some things had only changed in my lifetime.
The cook in the photo was there to answer questions and I learnt that around that time there was a tax on male servants to do with the wars and the need for soldiers. French chefs returned to their homeland and so the Head Cook's position would be now given to a woman ... and this kitchen was run by her and with only four female kitchen assistants under her.


The vast grounds looked beautiful but I left a walk around them for another visit ...mainly because I could not see any seats and my back was reminding me that I had already been standing and strolling, for quite some time ... including a small art exhibition. It was of Alan Davie's works ...he is 90 and apparently still painting. His abstract work caught my imagination ... not something that normally happens but I felt the tribal origins in some of the work and saw how his patterns and forms had evolved ....well I'm no expert but I did get enjoyment from standing and absorbing what I saw.

I finished my trip with a visit to the tea rooms that were in the old stable block .... everything was home made ...and a fair price too lol

Hope you managed to get to the end lol
Take Care xx


Jocelyn said...

Oh how I have enjoyed this day with you!!!

Wow that Bed and Breakfast is wonderful....You should see the ones here...they pale in contrast to the one you stayed in.....LOVE IT!!!

I loved hearing about the rebuild of the second what a beautiful place to visit....Look at that kitchen....what goodies could be made there!!!

The grounds are stunning....What I would give to wake up and see that each morning!!!

Thanks again for sharing with made me day!!!! :-)

Ann said...

What a lovely story about the tax on male servants being the only way the female cook got her job! Sounds like one of the interesting stories on your 'Alternative Blog' ;)

Carmen said...

This sounds like one I may have to note down for future visits, I love days out like this where you can lose yourself in the history - really makes history come alive doesn't it?

As for your comments on my fat blog about Quorn - the ones you mentioned taste naughty but you pretty much can't go wrong with Quorn. As long as you aren't frying it (I oven bake those southern fried ones) they are still really healthy and really low fat. Here's a link to a site you might find interesting - the syns might not mean much to you but will give you an idea how healthy they are. On my plan I'm allowed 15 syns a day - and with some of this Quorn stuff, could eat the whole box if I wanted to :) When they say it's 'free' that means you can basically eat as much as you like - the lowest fat varients. Love the stuff -my recipe book arrived today! Yay!

Morning's Minion said...

I came by yesterday to enjoy Day2 of your outing, but was too witlessly tired to leave a comment.
We don't have these huge historic places in the US--"we" haven't been here long enough!
I try to imagine actually living in one of these echoing monstrosities--I think I would feel dwarfed and cold all the time.
The kitchen might be the only place I would feel comfortable!
By the way, thank you for your comment on the photo of my Chester cat---"bemused" fits his style all too well.

craftytrog said...

Sounds like you had a wonderful trip Angie! Lovely photos, thanks for sharing!

Liverpool Lou (Anne) said...

Hi Angie, fabulous pics here and in the previous post. Glad you've been having a wonderful time :-)
Anne xx