Sunday 2 October 2011

Autumn at Barrington Court – a bumper crop of apples and books!

According to the Royal Horticultural Society the unusually early colour on trees such as maples, hazels, liquidambar and laburnum is a response to drier soils left over from the spring. Apples and pears are ripening several weeks early, and wild fruits such as hawthorn are also ahead of schedule. Having visited Barrington Court earlier this week I think it’s fair to say autumn has definitely arrived.

The National Trust acquired Barrington Court in 1907 when it was little more than a derelict shell. It was the first major house the trust purchased and the project was almost too ambitious for such a fledgling organisation. It was leased to the Lyle family who provided the means and the vision to create the estate and the Gertrude Jekyll inspired gardens that exist today.

The house was built from locally quarried Ham Stone over a period of 22 years commencing around 1538 by the newly promoted Earl of Bridgewater. By the time the Earl died in 1548, he had fallen from grace and was bankrupt. The house then passed to William Clifton, followed by the Strode family. From around 1745 the property passed through many hands but not much in the way of records remain. 

More recently the property was used as a showroom for reproduction furniture but at the end of 2008 the rooms were emptied and now hold nothing but memories.

Echoes of the past may haunt Barrington Court but the stone-walled kitchen garden still produces a variety of wonderful fruits and vegetables, the old farm buildings host a pottery and woodcarver and the orchards provide apples for cider and apple juice.  The restaurants serve delicious meals and probably the best bit of all is a barn full of second-hand books!  Barrington Court is my idea of heaven.

A post by Claudine at Carry Us Off Books inspired me to go out and enjoy the autumn  -

If there’s Autumn in Singapore, I would enjoy watching leaves turn yellow and red; I would enjoy taking a walk in the crisp cool morning air; I would have the most fun watching stray cats attack falling leaves or leap into a stack of fallen ones. What about you guys? What is it that you and your children love about Autumn? Please tell me more, so I can better picture it in my head.

How about you?  Are you enjoying the autumn?


  1. I love the last picture in this post. When I was a kid I had the complete set of books that are shown on the bookshelf. I caught sight of them in a recent movie and then did some googling and purchased the whole set from Amazon. It gave me a warm, fuzzy feeling to spot them in someone's post.(I love your bog!)

  2. barbaraannefisher3 October 2011 at 07:09

    Hi Stephanie, thanks for calling in and saying you like my blog and pictures. Days like these are heaven for me - gardens and books - perfect!

  3. Such a lovely place to visit. I love all the fruits growing off the kitchen way.

  4. I'm intrigued by the building half-covered with red leaves. It looks very pretty. And you're right, Barbara, the idea of apple juice and second-hand books on an autumn morning sounds heavenly.

  5. Thanks so much for mentioning us again in your lovely blog!

  6. Hi Claudine I love mentioning your blog as I enjoy it so much!

  7. I could not resist commenting. Very well written!

  8. Saved as a favorite, I love your web site!


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Barbara xx