Derbyshire’s Historic Houses
There are several magnificent historic houses within easy reach of Kiln Croft.
Chatsworth – Arguably the finest of Derbyshire’s historic houses. Chatsworth is one of the great country houses of England, set in superb parklands, it is the home of the Dukes of Devonshire. The house was begun as an Elizabethan mansion by Bess of Hardwick, then rebuilt starting in 1686 to create an opulent ‘statement’ of the family’s wealth and status. Everything at Chatwsorth is on a massive scale, extravagant and designed to impress. The interior is full of fineart and furniture. You can’t run out of superlatives about Chatsworth. The annual country fair is 29th – 31st August 2014. Chatsworth boasts many shops and an excellent farm shop in the village of Pilsley.
Haddon Hall – Another of Derbyshire’s historic houses on Kiln Croft’s doorstep. This superb historic house was begun by Peveril, the illegitimate son of William the Conqueror. The early Hall was heavily altered in the Tudor and Jacobean periods, but the State rooms have remained essentially unaltered since the 18th century. At the centre of the house is the marvellous 14th century Great Hall.
Hardwick Hall – Hardwick Hall is an Elizabethan mansion built in 1590 by Bess of Hardwick, Countess of Shrewsbury. One of the most remarkable women of the Elizabethan age, Bess built an extraordinary house that amazed her contemporaries with its huge expanse of windows. At a time when window glass was extremely expensive, such a show of wealth and extravagance earned Hardwick fame as a popular rhyme suggests: “Hardwick Hall, more glass than wall”. Hardwick is exceptional in that so much of the interior furnishings have remained unchanged since the house was built over 400 years ago. Look for Whiteface Woodland sheep and Longhorn cattle in the country park that surrounds the house, or enjoy a walk through the walled courtyards which enclose formal gardens, an orchard, and a herb garden.