I can’t believe we live 20 minutes from this little gem and in the nearly 13 years we’ve lived here we’ve never visited until today.
It was a lovely sunny day when we set off, it felt like spring was in the air and we were looking forward to a walk around the grounds in the sunshine. By the time we arrived a fog had descended that brought a chill with it. We were determined not to let it dampen our day though, after all we are from Yorkshire.
The magnificent house stands at the end of a short single track lane and parking to the left was plentiful. It was only a short walk to the entrance and the lady on the till was very pleasant and friendly. Only 3 of us visited today, 2 adults and a child, and it cost us just under £14 entry (the house doesn’t open til April so it was just for stables and grounds). I think Toby was free because of a half term offer, and we were kindly pointed in the direction of some free activities for children.
Toby took part in 2 of the activities, planting a broad bean so he could see it grow, and making a bird feeder using an ice cream cone, margarine and bird seed. The gents that were running these activities were also very friendly and patient. With his bag of goodies we left and headed for the stables which were open, and the sperm whale skeleton.
Sadly, this was a bit of a flop for us (dont let that put you off). I personally loved it but Toby was really creeped out by it for some reason and begged to leave. He didn’t like the sounds and I guess the cold stone rooms just didn’t sit well with him. He was fascinated by the sperm whale skeleton, probably helped somewhat by the fairly recent sad stranding of a number of sperm whales along our stretch of coast. Even after that, it did surprise all of us quite how long the skeleton was close up.
We left to walk around the grounds which was the real purpose of our visit anyway and it didn’t disappoint. They’re very well kept and there were numerous walks to choose from. As anyone walking with a 7 year old will appreciate though, you don’t always get anywhere quickly, and we didn’t actually get to complete a single one which was disappointing. We walked around the house and looked out over the old medieval village which once stood, wondering about the people who once lived there and what their life would have been like. We reached the small play area which is cute but aimed at small kids, and not many of them. There was a garden chess game which was definitely Tobys highlight of the visit. He loves a game of chess and played against his dad, and won of course!
I felt like you can see and feel the history in the grounds, there is still the evidence of the old moat and a tree that is several hundred years old, the stories it could tell.
After some climbing for Toby, and a rest for me and Dad, we walked over to the cafe for some lunch and a hot chocolate. I found it a little pricey but that’s not surprising for the type of place I don’t think, and to be fair the food was lovely with large portions and the staff also very, very friendly and helpful. My old quibble was the lack of seating, with the 3 free tables reserved already. I imagine this would be worse in summer but then I’d be happier to sit outdoors then too, and there was lots of free seating outside today.
We will definitely be back soon, and next time I think we will buy an annual membership as I think we will probably visit numerous times over the year. Dogs are welcome but we didn’t take ours today as she’s a bit of an idiot when she sees other dogs and is quite reactive. She is kept on a lead though and I think now we’ve done the stables we would probably take her in future. It’ll be a nice flat walk for our old girly. If you’re visiting Withernsea or surrounding areas this is a definite must visit!! 10/10 for me.