The work to restore the Rectory to its turn of the twentieth century heyday continues. The Rectory was originally built in 1849, but we are taking it back to when it was lived in by the Rev William Oswald Massingberd. The rendering is currently being taken off the front of the Rectory. We hoped to restore the old brickwork underneath, but unfortunately the bricks are not looking their best and will have to be re-rendered. All the electrical sockets are now in place and the rewiring is in progress. We have started purchasing the period furniture and placing it into storage ready for making in the spring when the finishing touches to make it homely will be taking place.
A portrait of the Rev William Oswald Massingberd
The builders at work taking off the rendering!
The recent weather has given us the first taste of winter this year with the first snowfall. The conditions haven’t stopped the work at the Rectory or the Hall, but they have given us the chance to stop and admire the glorious views across the Parklands and Estate. We must say that the Bluestone Heath Road that runs alongside the Estate was a bit treacherous. One of our team ended up stuck in a ditch and had to be towed out by a local farmer! It has also been very cold in our offices as the glass to the wood burner broke so we were unable to light the fire. Once again, we were rescued by our very helpful locals as David Lindsey Plumbers came and did emergency repairs to get the shivering staff warmed up again.
A snowy view from the Rectory window
A wintery scene over to the Hall!
We did find an alternative way to warm up as we enjoyed a glass of Nyetimber, a sparkling British wine, and a slice of cake as we said farewell to Julie. Julie has worked with us in various roles for over 18 years. It is always sad to part ways, but it was a lovely afternoon and we presented her with some lovely decanters and certainly intend to stay in touch!
Whilst we are missing having the cattle in the park, the pheasants have been keeping us amused and we have even been visited by a Muntjac deer in the garden this week. Obviously not expecting to see such a magnificent animal so close to the Hall, our photographer, Damian Furlong, had to be super quick in getting his camera out. He just managed to catch the deer hiding behind the wooden timber, otherwise we might not have believed he had seen it!
The team saying a fond farewell to Julie
Can you spot the Muntjac deer hiding?
Jacob, our assistant to the Estate Caretaker, has stayed on with us since the summer. He does want to continue his education or pursue an apprenticeship, but currently Jacob is focussing on passing his driving test. He is working a few extra hours each week in order to pay for his lessons and is helping with tasks outside and in. He is going to label all the Solander boxes which contain all the restored and digitally photographed old manuscripts.