Tuesday, 19 July 2016

Cliffe Castle Keighley

The one day we moved the car during our week at Howarth was the day we visited Cliffe Castle.  The weather was dreary, and we felt a visit to somewhere indoors would be fine after our days walking on the hill sides around Howarth.  We had seen the leaflet in our appartment, and decided to go for it.

Just on the outskirts of Keighley, this Victorian Mansion was converted into a Museum.  It has some downstairs rooms decorated with lovely furtniture, fireplaces and paintings etc.

As always I am on the look out for Angels, but this one is Cupid reviving Psyche.  This is a Victorian copy of Canova's sculpture.

The silks on the walls, and the curtains, pelmets and ceilings alone are worth a second look.

This Russian malachite and ormolu fireplace had been nearly returned...and guess what?  She who reads and wants to understand everything found a major mistake in the the information boards which had just been put up!  Hopefully now that it has been pointed out, it will be corrected.  This was just made for show, and any fire would destroy the lovely piece.

This is one of a pair of large bronze vases in the Great Drawing Room, but sadly there was no information on them.

Elsewhere there were many gems, and quite honestly one visit is insufficient to take in everything.  I decided skip many areas, and leave them for another time.  

There was an interesting section on glazed pottery, both old and more recent

With all the trials etc and the forthcoming negotiations regarding the EU, I wonder whether the 'Europeans' will remember that the British helped so much with 'their' wars on their soils, and also ordinary people helped with the rebuidling of places. The people of Keighley raised funds and Poix du Nord has a Community Hall which is truely magnificent.    Keighley and Poix du Nord are recorded as being the first towns to enter into a twinning agreement which took place in 1920.

In another area, both Mr S and I were very interested in clog making section, with its tools, examples etc.  There were tool to bend the clog irons which were nailed to the bottom of the wooden clogs.

Some of the buckles are  ornate and very handsome, and I am sure these would have been for the clogs for 'middling' people.  When we saw the little silk shoes in the Bronte Museum, sorry no photography permitted there, but they do have a good website, with a pair of tiny wooden patterns, with a note to say that the Brontes would have worn these..we felt it gave quite the wrong impression.  I am sure the Brontes would have worn boots, or clogs to go on their many walks across the moors, and the patterns would have been to protect their silk shoes when they went to parties or on 'posh' visits to get them from the house to their pony trap or other conveyance.  I did overhear a party discussing the tiny shoes and marvelling at what light footwear people used to wear...As a side note there is still a clog maker not far away at Hebdon Bridge, and on another visit, I think I would love to visit them, and maybe come away with a pair!

Always noticing little bits of needlework, I love this embroidered needle case at Cliffe Castle.

Cliffe Castle also has other collections of minerals, fossils, stained glass etc.

On this visit there was a theme of Alice in Wonderland..I guess to keep the younger visitors interested.  It was well organised, and so interesting that we enjoyed it as it pointed out several interesting links and bits of information.  Just how true is this?  Was Charles Dodgson one of the first to use the innovative dust jacket? I refuse to go down the rabbit hole that is the internet and check on this one!

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