The Grounds

The Hall has over 13 acres of gardens, fields and woods. In the summer, we have Hereford cattle from the lowlands to graze and fatten on our lush pastures.

Self-sufficiency was essential, and not just a lifestyle choice, in days gone by. The Hall still has the original walled garden, which would have provided fresh produce for all the household - today, guests can enjoy fruit and vegetables from it, according to the season. The high walls kept out rabbits and foxes, and also provided a benign microclimate to help things grow.

The house also had a dovecote, to provide meat and eggs, and an ice house - preserving food by chilling is not a new idea, and before electricity and fridges came to Holywell, ice was collected and stored in the winter, to be used in iceboxes throughout the summer.

The gardens and grounds are free for guests to explore, but we do ask you to take care to avoid disturbing any livestock.

The past residents of The Hall had to be a little more hardy than we are today - as witnessed by the original outdoor privies which were still here when we moved in! Quite how 'privy' they actually were is debatable, however, as they seated up to five occupants at one time! The niceties of hierarchy were properly respected, too - there was a separate privy for the servants, no doubt with slightly rougher wood for the seats!