Just scarcely over 5 years ago, this May, my great friends Lindsey & Ed got married in excellent Gunthorpe, this rather splendid old English country house below.
The whole thing set in its own estate, amid the countryside of lovely rural Norfolk, and the whole glorious ensemble includes terraced gardens with fountains, a walled herb gardens, croquet lawn, various woods and meadows, a lake, various out-buildings, cottages and courtyards, greenhouses, stables and so on.
to say nothing of the inside of the house, with its billard and drawing & dining rooms, and grand baronial hall, its grand front stairs, and matching (hidden away) back halls and stairs, (the combination of the two giving the whole place a rather mysterious, “Cluedo” sort of feel) – endless bedrooms and corridors, turrets, and endles bathrooms (refitted back in the 1930s in deco style)
This May, Ed & Lindsey in typically big-hearted style invite their friends back to help them celebrate the 5-year anniversary. On my way back from Languedoc in France, back to Dublin, I took an 4 day detour and was lucky enought to be able to join the party, set amid the real life version of Brideshead, or Gosford Park, or Cluedo. Very glad i did.
Of course the whole thing was a sort of reunion for many of the same people who’d been at that wedding 5 years ago, plus a few new friends,. T’was a celebration, an anniversary, and a whole series of other fun events combined, from archery & shooting to walks by the sea to quizes, a talent contest, and a fancy dress ball. Naturally I drew the line at, & avoided taking pictures of the feasting, drinking, dining and costumes, or some of the more outrageous talent-competition offerings. (although I will say my personal favourite was Marlena Dietrich, & the cracking whip)
In fact most of the guests are not even pictured here at all, just the few i happened across in one short wander through the house, late morning or early afternoon, that Saturday. Then the camera went straight back in the bag. No debauchery here. Instead, I offer a few little portraits of much earlier in the day, the calm before the storm so to speak, that first Saturday morning, as Friday hangovers were gently nursed, walks planned, and the sound of violin and cello practice drifted along the echoing corridors, gently through the air.
I suspect… L, V & M in the drawing room, with the teapot.
Or I suspect these two, of murder, in the drawing room, with a book, or rolled up magazine.
I suspect…. Ms Pippa, in the music room, with a violin.
Mr E.S. – almost certainly up to no good.
Apprehended, on the staircase.
Conspirators, skulking about, in a conspiratorial manner.
above and below, lists of further crime sites, and scenes of dastardly happenings.
Ed and Lindsey, I hope you will accept this as my handwritten thank you note. Thank you very much, I’m already looking forward to 5 years from now.