Lake District

We planned this trip to include a few days of vacation in addition to our work, so on Tuesday, April 6, we went with a tour company by train to the Lake District, which is in northern England, about 45 miles from Scotland. The train trip took two and a half hours, ending at the town of Oxenholme.

This area is the Lake District National Park, which consists of farms and villages that maintain the look of previous times.

The weather was rainy, so my photos aren’t the greatest. On a warm summer day this would be a delightful place to visit – and photograph.

The largest lake is Windemere, very narrow and ten miles long. The countryside has lots of sheep and carefully maintained stone walls, which are skillfully laid without cement.

A point of interest for us was the house and work of Beatrix Potter, author and illustrator of children’s books such as the stories of Peter Rabbit; and also a conservationist.

Hill Top is the name of her farm. We walked through the farmhouse where she lived when she visited this area, but most of the time she lived in London.

Everything in the house is left exactly as it was when she died, including a fire in the grate and fresh flowers at various places.

And here is the kitchen garden, with tools like those that inspired the story of Peter Rabbit.

In the medieval village of Hawkshead we walked through the rain to get to this building.

It includes the office of William Heelis, lawyer, whom Beatrix married, and a gallery of her original illustrations. We were so surprised at the small size of the illustrations, about 4 inches by 4 inches. Obviously, they were the actual size used in the little books.

As a conservationist, Miss Potter wanted to help preserve this area as farmland, so over a period of years she bought 15 farms and then eventually donated them to The National Trust.

Our tour ended with cream tea at a spacious home that Beatrix bought as a place for her mother to live. For those not familiar with English terms, cream tea consists of scones with clotted cream and jam, to accompany the tea. Clotted cream is a thick yellow cream made from unpasteurized milk. You spread it instead of butter on the scone. It has a minimum fat content of 55%. Don’t tell my heart doctor!

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One Response

  1. A great place to take children–makes me want to be a children’s librarian or mother again…or a grandmother!

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