Wednesday, June 20, 2012

A Childhood Memory ~ Allerton Park

Yesterday I added a venue onto Crystal Velvet Weddings that brought memories flooding back.

As a child, I went to Acomb Baptist Church  in York and our Church used to have family away days.  I remember trips to Marske beach, but my favourite memories were of visits to Allerton Park (now known as Allerton Castle).

Seeing the elaborate interiors, far more elaborate than I remember, I decided to look into the history and find out more.
It turns out that at the time I went there, the house was under lease to a Christian Charity that disbanded in 1999.  Victory Mount Trust provided holidays, breaks and comfort for those who were with out funds.
When we went to Allerton Park, the first bit of the day was a short service in a room to the left of the main door.  I know that as children we couldn't wait for it to finish before we were allowed out.  Once out of the meetings, we were given full reign of the house.  we could explore all the rooms and discovered servants stair cases etc.  I know that now a days, more structured events would be provided, but the excitement of exploring the big house was so much fun.
The grounds were beautiful.  Not ornamental and kept, but wild meadows.  We would walk down from the house to the huge parkland tree and see the lake, walk in the woods and gaze up towards the folly.
In 1983 the house was sold to a Doctor Rolph and then in 1986, restoration started to bring it up to the amazing standard of design it now boasts.
In 2005 a fire ripped through parts of the castle destroying it.
You can read all about the restoration work on the web site.
Allerton Castle has been used for many film and TV programmes, but my favourite has to be the Secret Garden.  I felt that like Mary, a young girl taken into the huge house, I understood the awe and wonder that she felt as she explored the corridors and rooms.

1 comment:

CarolC1 said...

Talk about memories, As a child I lived in a house like that. It was towards the end of the war and my stepfather worked on MOS so travelled around the Country teaching. We ended up at Braunston House as sit was then, in a ground floor flat but had the run of the house. I remember we rollerskated around the Billiards table that was set up in the Ballroom. Ah. Those were the days. I could write a book of our exploits in that house.

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