All photographs from this visit by kind permission of Ms Trace Jefferson
Thornton Hall is one of the oldest buildings in the Borough of Darlington and is one of only six to be awarded the Grade 1 listing. Many of the windows were blocked up because of the window tax in 1696.
I admit to knowing very little about flowers, but this was one of the first views as we entered the gardens. I loved the explosion of colour and because there was a slight breeze the scents were amazing. The garden was a sensory delight.
We enjoyed meandering around the borders. We didn't recognise all of the flowers, but we appreciated the way some colours toned and others contrasted
The dry garden with the alpines was well laid out, the dark leaved plants in the pots made me imagine mini topiary trees.
The bug house was much grander than I was used to seeing and because it was placed in front of the Hall, I would call it a Bug Hall.
More alpines and succulents, this time all in pots on an ornamental pedestal.
I often took photos of plants that I did not know, because they evoked a thought. I like to read fantasy books and I could imagine this plant as a mini fairy castle.
I liked the carved owls on the garden seat, and the boat added extra interest..
The duck was allowed free rein to nestle among the alpines.
Carved wooden rabbits located among the plants added a lovely naturalistic touch.
We followed the old saying and took time to stop and smell the roses. There were so many different types, it really was a pleasure.
Here, I'm in front of the camera for a change.
There's so much to see. Where should we go next?
And finally, this one made me smile. Was it Bill, or was it Ben? Do you know?