Back in May, for my birthday in fact, we had a couple of days away in the Midlands, staying at Hagley which is west of Birmingham and not far from Kidderminster and Bridgnorth in Shropshire. The idea was to spend my birthday actually in Birmingham at the city museum as they have a good collection of Pre-Raphaelite paintings which I was eager to see. In the event I went down with a rotten cold and wasn't up to facing the busy city so we had a day out in the countryside instead, visiting Bridgnorth and a National Trust property - one of those hidden gems nobody much knows about - Wightwick Manor.
The National Trust website is here and worth a quick look as it has a small slide-show of shots of the house, including a couple of the interior. No photos were allowed inside, as some of the contents do not belong to the NT apparently. Which is a shame as the interior is all arts and crafts period and full of Pre-Raphaelite paintings... so I didn't miss out on my paintings after all. The house, which used to be own by the Manders family who were paint manufacturers, is late Victorian and so beautiful from the outside that I thought I would share a few pics with anyone who is interested.
A distance shot from the garden... click on it for a bigger, better view.
Righthandside and lefthandside of the front of the house.
Beautiful stained-glass windows.
Around the side of the house.
Around the back and where, as a visitor to the house, you enter the property. A guide takes you around the first bit, telling you the history of the house and about the paintings, which were stunning. You then tour the rest of the house, that which is open to the public anyway, on your own. The house has a cosy, initmate feel to it. Due in part to all the oak panelling I suspect, but also it's full of fascinating items and has a really friendly feel to it. I would also add how friendly the NT staff are there.
Another shot from by the entrance.
National Trust properties very often have posh loos but these are some of the poshest I've ever come across!
And here's me, on my 60th. birthday (trying not to think about that...) with my favourite bag and hopefully it's hard to tell how completely grotty I was feeling. LOL!
I actually felt that I may have enjoyed visiting Wightwick Manor on my birthday more than I would have going into the city. It was a lovely day, Bridgnorth was such a pretty town (pics of there in a few days) and Wightwick Manor was stunning - I wouldn't have missed it for the world. I must add that the pics are not as good as they might have been if I'd had the energy to walk around a bit more to get better shots. And we never did see much of the garden. Never mind... two good reasons to go back someday!