We have just become members of The National Trust, so last week we eagerly visited two stately homes in quick succession: Belton House and Hardwick Hall. The Renaissance-style Hardwick Hall was built for Bess of Hardwick in the late 16th century. At the time Bess was the richest woman in England after Queen Elizabeth I, just as JK Rowling is today after Queen Elizabeth II. The photos below, however, are of the ruined and roofless Hardwick Old Hall, which stands next to the New Hall. This building is older and, in my opinion, a lot more atmospheric. The Old Hall is cared for by English Heritage.
|Interesting colours and textures. As well as the roof, the floors are missing too.|
|The imagination can really run wild in this architectural emblem of the picturesque.|
|Blinded by the light: The Solitary Walker in penitential mood.|
|Inside looking out.|