Monday, 29 April 2013

Hill Top Farm

Hill Top Farm

I have always loved Beatrix Potter and her delightful books and have wanted to visit her Lake District home for some time. We are only about a two hour drive from the Lake District, so my birthday seemed the perfect excuse to fulfil my long-held wish. It was pouring with rain when we left home, but by the time we reached the village of Near Sawrey the sun was shining brightly and we couldn't have asked for a nicer spring day.

Beatrix Potter left Hill Top Farm to the National Trust after her death with instructions that it was to remain exactly as she left it. Her will gave detailed instructions as to what should be displayed and where. Therefore, when you walk into the house at Hill Top, you are seeing it exactly as it was in Beatrix Potter's day. You can only imagine what a thrill this was for me! This was her house, with her things, displayed where she wanted them. It was a simply awe-inspiring experience. Sadly you were not allowed to take photos inside the house, otherwise, I can assure you, you would have been inundated with interior photos! 'The Tale of Samuel Whiskers' is set inside Hill Top House, so go and grab your copy now and look through it to get some ideas of the interior of the house.

Beatrix Potter drew from life, so many of the illustrations in her books were taken from her home and the surrounding area. It was such a thrill to see the actual dresser that Anna-Maria runs past with her stolen dough in 'The Tale of Samuel Whiskers', to see the plaster ham that Hunca Munca tries to cut in 'The Tale of Two Bad Mice' and the oak longcase clock illustrated in 'The Tailor of Gloucester'. Likewise the garden and gates are illustrated in many of her books, so everywhere you look you have delightful reminders of her much-loved stories.

My visit to Hill Top Farm was the best birthday present I could have asked for and was a joy and a delight from start to finish.

The Podlings all enjoyed their visit to Hill Top Farm. The next generation of Beatrix Potter fans! 

To the right of the gate is the rhubarb patch from 'The Tale of Jemima Puddleduck'. You see the gate itself in the illustration...go and read your copy again, you know you want to!

You can't really see them in the photo, but there were a lot of rabbits in this little field opposite the garden which may, or may not, have been related to Peter Rabbit and his friends!

Lily brought her much-loved Jemima Puddleduck toy to Hill Top Farm, so it seemed necessary to take a photo!

A kindly passer-by took our photo, but unfortunately the sun was a bit bright for Tom and Lily

As you look towards the house, the top left window was Beatrix's bedroom, the window above the porch was the little room she used to display her collection of momentos and curios and the top right window was the sitting room. You walk straight into the entrance hall , the window of which you can see on the left. The bottom right window is the parlour. The front door is illustrated in The Tale of Samuel Whiskers. 


Hamlette said...

How wonderful! Thank you so much for sharing photos -- I'm going to go get our copy pf her complete stories and match things up!

Have you ever seen the movie Miss Potter? If so, what did you think of it?

Paula said...

I'm just sorry I wasn't able to take photos inside the house. It was wonderful!

I have seen 'Miss Potter' and I absolutely loved it. I saw it a while ago, but after my visit to Hill Top I plan to dig out my copy and make time to watch it again.

They actually had the movie playing (albeit with the sound off) in the gift shop at Hill Top. Needless to say you could purchase the movie there too.