Chatsworth Christmas Markets

Christmas is possibly my favourite time of year. For me it all kicks off around mid-November with a visit to the Chatsworth Christmas Markets.

We all pile into a car (including the dogs) and take the scenic route into the Peak District. 

If you love period dramas as much as I do you’ll probably recognise the house… 

It’s perhaps most famous for playing ‘Pemberley’ in the film adaptation of Pride and Prejudice (starring Keira Knightley)

We always start our day out either touring the house or exploring the estate. The house is themed differently each Christmas and this year’s theme is Great Expectations

However, on the day we visited the weather was too glorious to spend the morning indoors so we ventured out onto the estate…

Where we attempted to tire this little rascal out…

We climbed up the hill through the ever changing Autumn colours until we reached the folly…

Where we stopped for a while to enjoy the view.

Jacket: New Look
Jeans: Marks and Spencer
Boots: Next (old) similar here
Gloves: North Face

Eventually though it was time for lunch, so we made the somewhat treacherous trip back downhill.

My top tip is to avoid the morning crush on the market. We always have a leisurely lunch in the restaurant, and wait until the sun is setting before setting before heading out to shop.

This year’s markets run until 5th December 2017 and you can find more information here.

Something for the Weekend: Lyme Park

A couple of weeks ago we were blessed with a rare springtime blast of sunshine and warmth (you all know by now how much I love the sunshine!) so I decided to take myself off for the day to Lyme Park. I’ve visited it in the past but I was about 5 at the time and purely there to see Santa – and so understandably I wasn’t so fussed for the gardens or the house.

Lyme Park is pretty recognisable as it’s been used in dozens of films and TV programmes in the past (a rather soggy Colin Firth famously climbed out of the lake here, when he was playing Mr Darcy in the BBC’s adaptation of ‘Pride and Prejudice’) and luckily it’s not too far from where I live.

The house and grounds used to belong to an old aristocratic family but after the second world war it was sold to the National Trust – who now manage and maintain it. The National Trust is a charity I am very proud to support as they do a lot of work maintaining hundreds of sites of historic importance. I was so impressed by their work on my visit that I signed up for a year’s membership – which gives me free entry to all their properties for the very reasonable cost of just £60 (if you are 25 or under it’s just £30 for a year.)

Sadly taking photographs inside the house isn’t allowed – but trust me when I say it is worth seeing. A lot of the artefacts and paintings are on loan from private collections and every room has a fascinating bit of history attached to it.

The last building pictured is known as ‘The Cage’. I didn’t have as much time to explore the grounds and deer park as I’d have liked on my visit so I will no doubt be going back again soon…