Subject: Re: Cornwall, Southern England and gardens
Hi Debra and Ziners,

I can't give you a comparison of the coast between Clovelly and Land's End and the south coast because it is a while since I visited these areas. However, there are a few memorable places in the general area, in Devon and Dorset.

I liked Cotehele House, 14 miles from Plymouth. There is a house mainly built 1485#1627, gardens with a medieval dovecote, a quay on the river and a mill. The house is one of the least altered medieval houses in the country, according to one web site.

http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/scripts/nthandbook.dll?ACTION=PROPERTY&PROPERTYID= 3 http://www.cata.co.uk/cotehele/cotehele.htm

Saltram, another National Trust property is interesting too. Evidently it was used for filming Sense and Sensibility. 18th century Great Kitchen with original utensils and equipment, It is 3 miles from Plymouth.

http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/scripts/nthandbook.dll?ACTION=PROPERTY&PropertyId= 30

Just inland from Plymouth (which as an American you might like to visit), is Dartmoor. Some pretty villages and opportunities for walks.

Much further east, is Lyme Regis. I spent a week (15 years ago) in a cottage rented from the National Trust on the Golden Cap estate near Bridport. You can walk on the cob in Lyme and pretend you are the French Lieutenant's Woman. http://www.westdorset.com/regis.html

The coast is interesting, some of it protected by the National Trust.

We also visited Athelhampton House, near Dorchester, a 15th century manor house with wonderful walled gardens. http://www.touruk.co.uk/houses/housedor_athel.htm http://www.gardenvisit.com/g/ath1.htm http://www.leisurebritain.co.uk/format/detail.cfm?record=122

You might like to visit Thomas Hardy's house. Very prettily located in a village near Dorchester (itself an interesting town - home of Hanging Judge Jeffries and used by Hardy as a setting for his novels). http://www.theheritagetrail.co.uk/notable%20houses/hardys%20cottage.htm Great maps from this site too!

And if you go that far, you can always go to Stourhead, a very romantic garden with grottoes, temples, etc.! It is 9 miles south west of Warminster, 10 miles north west of Shaftesbury. In the village of Stourton http://www.gardenvisit.com/g/stour2.htm http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/scripts/nthandbook.dll?ACTION=PROPERTY&PROPERTYID= 324

It has been 25 years since I have been there, but I enjoyed a week on the Isle of Wight. Queen Victoria's favorite retreat after Albert's death is there (Osborne House). I remember also the pretty thatched villages (Godshill) and the walk on Tennyson Down. There is even a castle (Carisbrooke). Charles I was imprisoned there. http://www.wightonline.co.uk/wight/index.html
>From the web site, it seems that it hasn't changed radically! We took local buses or walked everywhere. Islands are special, at least in my opinion!

This National Trust site gives an overview of their properties in South West England. http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/main/placestovisit/southwest.html See also: http://www.english-heritage.org.uk

Happy planning!

Frances Toronto, Canada