Tantallon Castle: guidebooks

Tantallon_OoW

1937

Tantallon Castle was placed in State Guardianship in 1924. Its first official guidebook was prepared by J.S. Richardson, Inspector of Ancient Monuments for Scotland, and published in 1932 (and reissued in 1937). It was thus one of the earliest of the guides prepared for historic sites in Scotland. The guide starts with a description (pp. 3–11), followed by a history (pp. 12–31). A plan showing the outworks is printed opposite the title page, and a plan and cross-sections are printed on a fold-out sheet inside the back cover. The text is supported by black and white photographs.

Tantallon_MPBW

1950 (2nd ed.; 1966, 7th impress.)

Tantallon_blue

1950 (2nd ed.; 1972, 8th impress.)

Richardson’s guide continued into the 1970s as the blue guide. The format of description followed by history is the same. The fold-out plan continued to be placed inside the back cover. The side headings of the 1930s guide were turned into bold sub-headings.

Tantallon_HS

1994 (rev. ed. 2007)

Chris Tabraham revised the Historic Scotland ‘Official Souvenir Guide’. This contains a guided tour followed by a history. There is a section on the spectacular Bass Rock, home to gannets. There is no plan of the castle, but the guided tour has a number view from the air to help orientate the visitor.

Safety notices at Tantallon Castle

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Tantallon Castle and Bass Rock © David Gill

The battlements at Tantallon Castle provide a wonderful platform for looking out towards Bass Rock and the mouth of the Firth of Forth. There are warning signs not to go to cross the safety fencing.

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Tantallon Castle © David Gill

The lower part of the castle is adjacent to some sheer drops and there are further warning signs.

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Tantallon Castle and Bass Rock © David Gill

Ringlet at Cherryburn

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Ringlet at Cherryburn, 2017 © David Gill

Today, 14 July 2017, marks the start of the Big Butterfly Count. Keep an eye out for butterflies when you are visiting heritage sites.

This ringlet was in the meadow behind NT Cherryburn in Northumberland, the birthplace of Thomas Bewick.

Big Butterfly Count and Heritage Sites

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Small tortoiseshell at Castle Acre © David Gill

The UK Big Butterfly Count started on 15 July and runs until 7 August. On Thursday evening the pits at Grime’s Graves were alive with Meadow Browns.

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Meadow Brown at Grime’s Graves © David Gill

On Saturday there was a particularly fine Small Tortoiseshell in the reconstructed herb garden at Castle Acre.

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Medicinal herb garden at Castle Acre © David Gill

In previous years I spotted a Small White on the lavender in the gardens of Bolsover Castle.

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Small White at Bolsover Castle © David Gill

Why not take a pen and paper (form available) or download the app, and record how many butterflies you spot when you next visit a heritage site? Then upload it to the Big Butterfly Count.

Thorpeness Mere

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Thorpeness mere and boathouse © David Gill

Thorpeness was developed as a Suffolk coastal resort by G.S. Ogilvie in 1909. The mere was created in 1913 although the boathouse, complete with clocktower, had been completed in 1911.

 

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The House in the Clouds, Thorpeness © David Gill

One of the more unusual buildings is the House in the Clouds designed by F. Forbes Glennie and constructed in 1923-24. The watertower is disguised as a cottage.

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Thorpeness © David Gill

The village has associations with J.M. Barrie (Peter Pan, 1904) who was a friend of the Ogilvies.

Wicken Fen

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Wicken Fen © David Gill

Wicken Fen is a major National Trust property in Cambridgeshire, and a National Nature Reserve. The fen is a reminder of what so much of this part of Cambridgeshire would have looked like at the beginning of the twentieth century – and a reminder of what drainage and modern agriculture has done to these former wetland landscapes. There is a huge bio-diversity in the fen that makes it well worth a visit.

Ladybirds at Ickworth

St Mary's church, Ickworth © David Gill

St Mary’s church, Ickworth © David Gill

The ladybirds were gathering in large numbers over the weekend at Ickworth. We were able to count more than 55 on the west end of St Mary’s church (in the grounds), mostly, though not exclusively harlequins. They were clearly looking for cracks and corners as temperatures begin to dip.

The tower of the church dates to 1778. The church is now maintained by the Ickworth Church Conservation Trust.

© David Gill

© David Gill

© David Gill

© David Gill