Continuing our May visit to England.
FRIDAY MAY 16th 2014
Before leaving home in April I made a reservation for a parking spot at Greenway House, the summer home of Agatha Christie. The reservation for the parking spot was for the time between 12:30pm and 4:30pm giving us ample time to drive from Lyme Regis to the village of Galmpton. David took a photograph of me by this 1950s bus, a bus style seen on many of the Miss Marple episodes on TV. The bus is used to shuttle visitors without a parking permit from the neighboring town.
It was a narrow winding road up to the house, with absolutely no roadside parking, so I was glad to have researched the visit ahead of time and secured a parking spot. From the parking area a long driveway, in the Reptonian style and planted with rhododendrons, leads up to the house.
We arrived to find that a tour of the gardens had just started so we hurried to catch up with the group who were in the walled garden.
The magnificent glass houses have been refurbished to their former mid 19 Century glory. Our guide pointed out the fish-scale glazing on this glass house.
|The peach house|
I never did find out the name of this variety of vinca with its unusual star shaped flowers.
We took the trail down through the woods to the River Dart passing by camellias, azaleas and rhododendrons. The same trail that Hercule Poirot took while searching for Ariadne Oliver on a recent episode, Dead Man's Folly. The trail leads to the boat house and battery which were also used to film scenes in that episode.
We arrived at the river to this wonderful scene.
We then returned to the house and to catch a glimpse of how Agatha Christie and her family spent Christmas and summer holidays entertaining their friends. Agatha would read her books to the guests. I wonder if they had mystery dinner parties?
In one of the rooms, behind a glass case, first edition copies of all her mystery novels. I remember being introduced to these books when I was 11years old. I must have read every one.
There was just time to relax on one of the deck chairs on the front lawn before walking back up the long driveway to our car and driving to find our B&B for the night. Believe you me the narrow country lane to Greenway House had nothing on the road down to our B&B, when we eventually found it!
At times the wing mirrors on the car were touching the hedgerows. Eventually buildings came into view and we drove in through the gates of Youngscombe Farm.
Sally brought a welcome tray of tea to the lawn and we were able to enjoy the late summer afternoon sun before it dipped below the hill.
We had arranged to have dinner in and we had chosen lamb roast which Sally served in the dining room. This was followed by apple pie and clotted cream. How glad we were not to have to venture out down the lane to find somewhere for dinner.
After a peaceful nights sleep and the inevitable bacon and egg breakfast, we bid farewell to our hosts Michael and Sally Webb and their dog Hope.
First stop on Saturday was Overbecks and it was another sunny morning.