Today has been wet and miserable, so we decided to head out to the garden centre to do a quick run out for compost. However we never made it. We’d forgotten garden centres are where people go for bank holidays, so we turned round in the car park and came back the way we’d come. We didn’t head home though we made the decision to go to Wassand Hall.
Wassand Hall is a regency house just outside Hornsea. The mere where we visit regularly is part of its estates, but neither of us have ever been to the hall and gardens. But I’m glad we decided to today. The hall hosts an amazing arboretum with some enormous specimens of trees that have the feel of a Canadian wilderness.
There was a vintage car display on, although neither of us has any interest in cars we were amused by what classes as vintage.
We didn’t pay the extra for entry as it didn’t look great for pram manoeuvring. But it has the look of a setting for a MR James or Caranaki ghost finder story.
The walled garden were restored in 1997 and contain a series of courtyards. They follow standard country house layouts, but done with style. The first courtyard is square shaped with the standard fountain and laburnum arches in the corners, nothing to rival Bodnant Gardens but pretty nonetheless.
The outer wall was covered in honeysuckle. If it had been a sunnier day I imagine this would have been awash with insect life, but the drizzle was keeping it subdued.
The other courtyards comprise a pond, a herb and vegetable patch and the cafe. The greenhouse apparently contains a succulent collection, but didn’t notice this.
After finishing in the walled gardens we went back round to the vintage cars to enjoy a Mr Moos ice cream. I had a rhubarb and ginger, while Amy and Alice enjoyed a raspberry ice cream. Being Mr Moos it was top notch.
Across the field were some of the cows I assume make up chestnut dairies herd, who supply our local milk.
Refreshed with ice cream we left the halls garden to walk along a bridal way away from the hall.
We saw lots of bee activity on the wild flowers.
The pram was going to struggle going any further so we got Alice out to practise her newly discovered skill of walking.
On the way back to the car I spotted a still orange form in the cow field we’d passed on the way to the buttercup field. It was so still we weren’t sure if it wasn’t a sculpture, but as we got closer we saw flickers of movement. I was very excited to see the fox. While I knew they were in the area since moving to Hornsea I haven’t seen any of these lovely creatures. It seems appropriate that on the day people marched in London to keep the ban I’d spot a fox.
We saw it disappear back into the bushes as we went on, but then up ahead further excitement as I spotted a rabbit. A bit too far for a decent photo.
But as went along the path I caught sight again amongst the trees.
An excellent end to a tremendous walk on a day we weren’t sure we’d go out. Wassand Hall was a wonderful hidden gem and I’m sure we’ll revisit.