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Made famous by the poet William Wordsworth who moved here in , Grasmere is an English delight! It offers tourist amenities such as gift shops, and a number of places to eat. We decided to walk around the beautiful lake there, and I managed to take a great shot of the centralised island and reflection against the water. With daylight fading, and our legs lagging we decided to catch the back to Windermere.
Dinner and an early night was on the cards. After all, with the walking out of our systems — we had a Sunday full of archaeology and history to look forward to.
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Sunday morning we said goodbye to our wonderful hosts Denis and Anita at the Archway Guesthouse. It was my birthday and they had very kindly bought and wrapped us a present of chocolates, and written a card. Both myself, and my loyal map keeper, felt so incredibly welcome whilst staying here. Now it was just us and the car — feeling refreshed and hungry for archaeology, we set off for Hawkshead. Hawkshead is a village located on the western side of Lake Windemere.
It is possible to take the ferry across the lake and then walk a couple of miles, but driving by car only took 20 minutes. The first stop was a medieval courthouse building situated just outside the village centre directions are available from the village tourist information point. Originally built in the 13th century, it was once part of a manorial farm which belonged to Furness Abbey. During the medieval period, local monks farmed sheep on the fells here, and established the wool trade in Hawkshead.
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The building itself was rebuilt in the 15th century, and was originally part of a larger quadrangle structure. It consists of two storeys, the lower floor is thought to have been a gatehouse, with the above being used as a courtroom. However, if you want to venture inside then you can arrange this at the National Trust shop in Hawkshead village they hold keys to the building.
Although the site is now a farm building, the first floor is used as an exhibition hall with some original features, including a 13th century fireplace.
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In my opinion this place is well worth a visit — even if to take just a quick photo! The next stop was the Beatrix Potter Gallery also in Hawkshead , but not before we had satisfied our ever-growing cake cravings. If like me, you are a cake lover and find yourself in Hawkshead, then I have three words for you — Sun Cottage Cafe. Gigantic cakes are baked here, and were more than reasonably priced.
We shared one slice between us and were almost defeated. Absolutely fantastic cake and a friendly atmosphere — perfect. With full tummies, we headed to the Beatrix Potter Gallery in the village centre. The interior of the building remains early 20th century in style with original dark wooden furnishings. The property was given to the National Trust by Beatrix Potter on her death in , and left instructions about how it should be shown to the public.
At first glance, the 17th century house, with its English vernacular architecture of stone walls and slate roof did not disappoint.
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Inside the house, we explored the various rooms and studied their contents with interest. It really was a treat to visit and I recommend this to couples, families, and lone rangers who are enthusiastic about vernacular buildings and English and literary history.
What was truly amazing was how much we were able to see and do in just a couple of days. Not only that, it was great to see a number of archaeological and historical sights open at this time of year.
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There were many other places we could have visited, so I guess we shall have to return next year! They say the proof is in the pudding — I say the proof is also in the misty photographs captured by my camera.