A Walk Around Stourhead Gardens

This weekend Professor Tanya Byron talked about family time in the Saturday Times.  Top of her list were some very basic bonding behaviours such as walking together as a family, chatting and looking at nature.  So our walk around the Stourhead estate in Wiltshire fitted the bill perfectly.  We had intended to marvel at the autumn colours there, but guessed we may be slightly late.  We had also visited and seen the spectacular colours the two previous autumns.  Please pop over to Autumn Colours at Stourhead and Stourhead Revisited to see the stunning autumn vistas.

 

waterwheel Stourhead

 

We started in at the Waterwheel in Turner’s Paddock.  This has recently been restored and dates from the 19th century.  A watermill was recorded on the same site in the Doomsday book. Turner’s paddock is named after the landscape artist JMW Turner, who painted heret in 1799 and you can see why as it is a beautiful spot.

 

Fallen Oak Tree Stourhead

 There must have been some beautiful trees on the site.  This felled tree I think was perhaps an oak and it nearly defeated B in trying to climb it.  its a long time since i have seen such a large trunk.

Cattle grid

 

Then there was the fun of crossing the cattle grid.  I don’t know why all playgrounds don’t contain one of these.  Yes I do, they probably would pass a risk assessment.

 

cottage Stourhead

At the end of the track there was the most idyylic woodland cottage with a curved hedge to die for .  What is it about smoke coming from the chimney that makes everything look and feel so cosy.

Stourhead

Through the woods we stopped several time to find a suitable stick to carry and ocassionally substituted a stick for one which was deemed to be larger or better.  In fact for us a walk without a stick is not a proper walk.

ram Stourhead

We travelled down a steep path and B experimented how deep the years of leaf mold were and how soft the landing was when he inevitably slipped over.  Our trail lead to a lovely coombe called Great Oar Meadow.  This unimproved hay meadow has had no fertilisers added for 14 years and is now a habitat for rare native orchids and other flora. Note to self to visit again in the spring.

The meadow was full of sheep and beef cattle all munching away, except for this rather tired looking, but magnificent, fellow.  After a moment or two we realised the cause of his exhaustion.  The device tied around him was full of yellow dye and every ewe in the field had a yellow-tinted rear.  He’d been a busy boy!

Our walk ended with a quick visit to the landscape gardens and it was interesting to note the difference in the feel.  In a garden you tend to wander and amble whereas as out on the estate we had been striding out and moving freely.  An altogether very different experience.  So pleased that this time we choose the walk and not the wander.

Learning for Life

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

0saves
If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the RSS feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader.

12 Responses to A Walk Around Stourhead Gardens

  1. Charlotte November 23, 2013 at 10:30 am #

    Lovely pictures!! i LOVE that picture of the sheep…. ram?? Not sure… but it’s great 😀 xx

    • Lynda November 30, 2013 at 6:45 am #

      Oh – he was most definately a ram – perfect specimen

  2. Coombe Mill - Fiona November 23, 2013 at 3:17 pm #

    Great photos of an interesting and beautiful walk. As you say a perfect opportunity for some quality family time. Thanks for linking up and sharing with Country Kids.

    • Lynda November 30, 2013 at 6:44 am #

      There is always a different quality of family time when outside than inside. Something about the freedom and space.

  3. Sara (@mumturnedmom) November 23, 2013 at 3:20 pm #

    What a lovely walk, beautiful surroundings. A perfect family day out x #CountryKids

    • Lynda November 30, 2013 at 6:43 am #

      Thanks for stopping by – will catch up with your on #countrykids

  4. Kriss @OverthertoHere November 23, 2013 at 10:46 pm #

    What a beautiful country walk. I agree to that the cottage with the smoke from the chimney evokes cosy images in front of a fire – actually a perfect ending for a walk in the cold weather.
    #countrykids

    • Lynda November 30, 2013 at 6:42 am #

      You are right cottages such as that should be readily supplied at the end of a walk – wouldn’t that be lovely

  5. Pinkoddy November 24, 2013 at 7:35 am #

    Such a beautiful walk and yes sticks are very important for such an occasion :)

    • Lynda November 30, 2013 at 6:41 am #

      I reckon that for my son sticks are the most important thing about a walk

  6. Angela November 24, 2013 at 4:16 pm #

    A lovely family walk, love the pictures, we have a cattle grid at our local park but i think it is used to keep bicycles out of the play area rather than cattle :-)

    • Lynda November 30, 2013 at 6:39 am #

      Thank you. At least your local children can play the tip toe game over the cattle grid