This is the balcony at Rodmarton Manor in Gloucestershire. The pretty pink climbing rose against the Cotswold stone makes it look so romantic. It’s not too difficult to imagine Romeo crying out “Juliet, Juliet, I’m here!”



Hampton Court Castle in Herefordshire is a 15th century castellated manor house, set in over a thousand acres of parkland, pasture and woodlands. Hampton Court Castle predates Hampton Court Palace by about 80 years. The original manor house was built in 1427 by Sir Rowland Lenthall at the time of his marriage to Margaret Fitzalan a cousin of King Henry IV. In the early 19th century the estate was purchased by Richard Arkwright, son of the man whose inventions were a catalyst for the Industrial Revolution, also called Richard. The Castle was largely remodelled in the 1830s and 1840s, but the Arkwrights lived at Hampton Court until 1912.
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The Exedera

Set in a hidden Cotswold valley, Painswick Rococo Garden is home to one of the best snowdrop displays in Gloucestershire. It was originally the garden of Painswick House which was built in 1735 for Charles Hyett. He died in 1738 and it was his son Benjamin who created the garden in the Rococo style, which was the height of fashion at that time. Rococo gardens incorporated a mix of the formal garden style, mixed with natural landscapes and decorated with ornate follies, temples and other structures. A Rococo garden symbolised decadence and pleasure, a place where the aristocracy could show off and entertain their guests. The Rococo style did not last long and few gardens from the period survived intact.
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Croft Castle, Herefordshire

Croft Castle is located at Yarpole, near Leominster in Herefordshire, close to the Welsh border. It is owned by the National Trust, although members of the Croft family still have apartments there. For this reason we were not permitted to take photographs of the interior of the house, which I was disappointed about, since it does help to remind us of a particular place and whether we would like to return.
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