30 March 2008

Woollie Weekend Part 1 - Falkland

Saturday dawned bright and early, ready for a day outside in the gardens of Falkland Palace with the National Trust for Scotland Conservation Volunteers. Driving from Dundee to Falkland the rain started to fall and I hoped that it was not to be the start of a dreich and miserable day. I think we were lucky, it didn't rain again until 330pm by which point we were almost finished for the day.  

I arrived at the palace gates about 945am and met up with the rest of the group. It's only been 2 months since I was out with them but there were 4 new people - this is unusual because our group has remained fairly constant over the last few years - but it is always nice to meet new people.

Our tasks for the day included laying compost and clearing herbaceous borders, digging, transporting, chopping, piling, raking....... no new skills learned this time but nice to spend the day outdoors. I even managed to give a few knitting tips at lunchtime!

The Royal Burgh of Falkland was a favourite of the Stewart kings (starting with James the First) who enjoyed hunting in the forests surrounding the palace, which was built between 1501 and 1513. The grounds contain the oldest Royal (Real) tennis court in the world, built in 1539 and still used today.  The link above will allow you to see interior shots of the palace, from the King's Bedroom to the Family Chapel, beautifully decorated and definitely worth a visit. The small streets around the village are home to over 28 listed buildings, including the pub and many small workers cottage dating back to the time when weaving was one of the key industries in the area. Several of the older buildings have marriage lintels above the front door, indicating the initials of the bride and groom that lived there and the year that they married. 


Bethany Hissong said...

WOW! I followed your links and the castle is incredible! Do you realize how lucky you are to be able to visit all of this?? What is amazing too is that it's so old. I love the idea of a marriage lintel... I hadn't heard of that before but it would be great to do today!

Karen S said...

Really good pictures! And I like the idea of helping out with conservation and such... you must have a very good consiounce ;-)

Anonymous said...

Thanks for taking me along on your travels!

carolyn said...

Hey...I was there last summer. So fun to see something I recognize!

Melissa said...

fantastic- your travels are so inspiring to me!

Manoute said...

Hi Di! I visited falkland palace several years ago, loved it. You make me want to go again!
See you tomorrow.