Two NT Houses
Packwood and Baddesley Clinton

The sunny day we had in April could not have been better suited for our visit to these Warwickshire houses. Packwood was a Tudor house that had been altered and enhanced as an ideal “English Country House” for visitors’ enjoyment by the late Graham Baron Ash. In his Memorandum of Wishes he left instructions that fresh flowers be put in every room. Quite unobtrusively, the Trust gave snippets and recollections about the family history and more recent on-going conservation projects written not on the usual notice boards but on many of the everyday items within the rooms; plates, jugs, napkins, cushions and even on the calico drapes of a four post bed. Surrounding the house in a series of formal courtyards was the delightful garden, enthralling many of us with its unusual plantings. The purple drumhead alliums were spectacular! On a far more intimate scale Baddesley Clinton is a hidden gem just two miles along the same lane as Packwood. A moated manor house of catholic intrigue and hidden priest holes! Definitely a place to gently wander at leisure but what will live long in my memory of the day will be the surrounding countryside ablaze with fields of buttercups! Our thanks to Darren our driver for a very smooth journey.

Julia Stacey.