As becomes a couple of sad old empty nesters, Nigel and I have joined the National Trust
“Look at this one, he says as he peruses the website, “It’s got a knot garden and a Jacobean gallery,”
“But has it got a tea shop?” I ask anxiously.
“…and a corbelled garderobe and gargoyles…”
“What exactly are the opening hours of the café?”
Over the last two weeks I have visited five National Trust properties ranging from the woodland of the Ashridge Estate to the splendidly unchanged Chastleton House, used for filming “Wolf Hall”.
“To think, that lovely Mark Rylance may have stood on this very spot. I should think that he was as disappointed as I am that there isn’t a tea room!”
But the historic property where I had most fun was not National Trust at all. It was the Red Lodge Museum in Bristol, where Perran took me. The fact that there was no tea room there nearly ruined everything, but the day was saved by an unexpected opportunity to play Boogie Woogie harpsichord.