Where to go in DERBYSHIRE

Historic Houses, Castles and Gardens

Bolsover Castle: Bolsover. Standing high on a wooded hilltop Bolsover presents an enchanting spectacle, yet also a contradictory one, for it is not a castle but a 17th century mansion. Though the mansion is partly ruined, there is an impressive 17th century Indoor Riding School which is still occasionally used and a well-preserved folly, the “Little Castle.”

Bolsover castle


Calke Abbey: Ticknall, Derby. This is the house that time forgot, a baroque mansion built in 1701-3 for Sir John Harpur and scarcely altered since the death of the last baronet in 1924. Let the years roll back and be enchanted by the gold and white drawing-room, Sir Vauncey’s childhood bedroom and the unique Caricature Room with its prints stuck on the wall. Outside there are walled gardens and pleasure grounds.

Chatsworth: Bakewell. The original house was built by the formidable Bess of Hardwick who, thanks to four judicious marriages, rose to become one of the richest people in England. She shared Chatsworth with her second husband, Sir William Cavendish, and it has been the home of the Cavendish family, Dukes of Devonshire, ever since. There have been later remodellings of Chatsworth and today it is a treasure house of magnificent 17th century state rooms, with fine painted ceilings by Verrio, Thornhill and Laguerre, many old master paintings and classical sculpture, learn more here. The garden, created by the 6th Duke and Joseph Paxton, has magnificent cascades and fountains.

Eyam Hall: Eyam. Built by the Wright family in 1671 and still their family home, Eyam Hall is cosy and intimate. Features of interest include a tapestry room “wallpapered” with tapestries, the old kitchen and a Jacobean staircase.

Haddon Hall: Bakewell. The most complete surviving medieval manor house in the country displays architecture from the Norman to the Elizabethan era. Since the 12th century, see more about bildings from 12th century at this compare annecy hotels website, it has been the home of the Vernon and Manners families, later Dukes of Rutland. Attractive rose gardens provide a romantic frame to the Hall.

Hardwick Hall: Doe Lea, Chesterfield. “Hardwick Hall, more glass than wall,” ran the popular jingle, for this Elizabethan house pushed to the extreme the contemporary passion for extensive areas of window: glass was expensive and so a symbol of wealth. Hardwick was built by Bess of Hardwick, by then Countess of Shrewsbury, after her fourth marriage and her prodigious wealth is still apparent in the outstanding furniture, tapestries and needlework.

Hardwick Old Hall: Doe Lea, Chester-field. Bess of Hard-wick’s first great house here, completed in 1591. Although a shell, Bess’s innovative planning and decorative plasterwork can still be seen.

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