We returned yesterday from a week in the Lake District, staying near Coniston. It’s only a couple of hours drive from home but felt like stepping back in time a few decades. No Internet access and hardly any phone reception. Peace and quiet, glorious views, history and culture – and rain! Anyone expecting wall to wall sunshine for a week in the Lake District is usually going to be disappointed (although that was the case a few weeks ago) and we were a little unlucky in having the remnants of “Tropical Hurricane Bertha” hit us on Sunday evening, but it didn’t affect us really. It was cool for the time of the year and we had to dodge heavy showers from time to time, but it didn’t rain cats and dogs for the whole week and we didn’t let a little rain bother us, fitting in lots of visits and a few easy walks, so plenty to write about.
We stayed in a cottage on the east side of Coniston Water, close to the head of the lake.
It was one of a group of cottages in converted farm buildings associated with Tent Lodge, a large Georgian House overlooking the Lake where Tennyson had stayed for a while during his honeymoon.
The white house in the following picture, shot from across the lake, is Tent Lodge and our cottage can just be glimpsed just to the right of the house amongst the trees.
It appears he visited the house again after this and during one of his stays he was visited by a certain Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, better known by his pen name, Lewis Carroll, who was staying at the nearby Monk Coniston Hall, which was later owned by a certain Beatrix Potter. John Ruskin’s home, Brantwood was a mile and a half south of the cottage, so lots of literary connections within a two mile radius of where we were staying. And great views down towards the lake and the Coniston fells from our garden, with glimpses from the windows.
Peace and quiet, art, literature, history and picturesque scenery. Bliss for a week. Back to the 21st Century today though.