Another Sunday road trip and a day out with the boys, this time to Calke Abbey about an hour away from us in Ticknell, Derbyshire. The National Trust describes Calke as an un-stately Stately Home. In brief the house is not an Abbey but was built on the site of Priory, destroyed by Henry the 8th. Owned by the Harpur-Crewe family over numerous generations it was occupied in reducing degrees until eventually in 1984 when it passed into the hands of the National Trust as a way of paying Death Duty. Rarely modernised many of the rooms had been abandoned to entropy whilst filled with the often bizarre and excessive collections (rocks, birds, rabbits, plates) of the owners.
It sits in the middle of a vast country estate that includes a walled garden, extensive stables, a grotto, kitchen gardens, a brew house, service tunnels, its own church and a nature reserve. It’s one of those places you could visit a dozen times and still find something new. It was the day of decent sunshine this weekend and I would love to go back later in the spring / summer when the landscape is a little more colourful.
Rather than refurbishing the house the National Trust have illustrated it as a project of managed decline. They have undertaken many repairs but have avoided any real restoration other than a few rooms and particularly precious artefacts. It’s a photographic goldmine and I took the best part of 100 shots during the 4hrs we spent there, a large number with Hipstamatic as well as roll of 120 Fuji Colour film on a Holga.
This is the Hipstamatic photo stream.
This is a Snapseed edit of a Canon pic of the main facade. We debated column styles. Is this Corinthian?
ADDENDUM (Now with added Holga)
I received the 120 film back today and had them scanned. Other than splitting the roll into four sections these are pretty much as they come. I shot the whole roll partially over layering the images and using intentional motion blur. I really like the random juxtaposition of elements, some in focus, others hidden, as an abstract atmospheric narrative. I could extract any number of sections but quite like the ‘lens to final’ nature of the unedited versions.
Click on the images to see them full screen