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"Greatest Elizabethan house". This is the official heading on tourist leaflets and I'll say it's true. It's surely the greatest, perhaps not in size but in its unrival quality. This fantastic, splendorous building, is a continuous surprise for those who visit it.
Built at XVIth century for William Cecil, Secretary and Treasurer of Queen Elizabeth I, this mansion is simply espectacular due to its unique features, quality and variety. From its fantasy roof details to the genuinely preserved old kitchen, the suntuous rooms, its ornaments, colours and furnitures, the old pictures and some absolutely amazing rooms completely orned with paintings from Antonio Verrio in a 3D visual effect that surrounds you and fools your mind, everything is worthy here. I.e.: when exiting from the state rooms, walking down the stairs you feel like something at your back and, turning over your step you discover you're on the superb Hell's Staircase, walls and ceiling of which are completely painted and covered with figures that try to show the Mouth of Hell. Another show of Verrio's mastership among many other masters inside.
Especial mention for Orangerie's cafe kitchen for I had a pastry dish absolutely tasty while seeing the garden.
Burghley House holds gardens, of course, but not for my taste, really. They're called "Surprise Gardens" and have been renewed with modern sculptures and artifacts intended to create an amusement and surprising effect on people but, being as original as it may be, I really prefer those from Harewod House, Castle Howard or Burghley House that can only be regarded as "Pure Beauty".
Visiting Stamford and having this art-piece house so close turn the visit to this England's corner another must-do undoubtedly.
*Note: No photos inside. Sorry, but it's 100% justified with whole walls full of splendorous paintings.
Updated Oct 8, 2011
This one, the leading church in Stamford, dates from as early as XIth century and has undergone many architectural changes since then. At XVth century, when War of the Roses, Stamford suffered wide destruction and the church was not an exception but, from then on, with increasing local prosperity, it regained splendor and many works were done on it. Rich wool merchants from Browne family were especially related with this change rebuilding and embellishing the place in an English Perpendicular style and they are regarded with some brasses and stone marks in here. It's nor an spectacular building not has such a wonderful tower as St. Mary's but it's a very nice one. Placed in the core of Stamford, it is undoubtedly a must-see when being here due to its quiet beauty and historic importance.
Written Oct 1, 2011
Address: All Saints Place
This beautiful medieval church greets you when crossing the bridge at St. Mary's hill showing an impressive face, especially due to its beautiful tower that rules the skyline. And around, as many other ancient churches, a small cemetery surrounds it. If the first impression is the most important, undoubtedly Stamford is aware of it.
Written Sep 27, 2011
Address: St. Mary's Hill
Film makers have been attracted to Stamford for a long time. There are hardly any buildings in the town centre built after about 1840, and this means film companies have the perfect backdrop for many a 'costume drama' production.
'Middlemarch' and 'Pride and Prejudice' are prime examples. There are walking tours (mainly on particular sundays) based around these productions - ask at Tourist info.
In addition, Burghley house has been used on numerous occasions for production, including recently ' The Da Vinci' code where it doubled for a number of venues in Italy.
Updated Apr 19, 2009
When you live in the county of Lincolnshire you begin to realise that it Mediaeval times the county was one of the wealthiest around. This was due in no small part to the great success of the wool industry. The wool merchants were the 'fat cats' of their day. Instead of spending it all of Champayne, sports cars and high class hookers, the merchants took their community and religious duties seriously : giving huge donations to projects in the town where they made their pile.
Stamford is a good example, the Browne family bestowed much upon the town, including a hospital witha fine chapel. This building (despite Victorian renovations) still remains with some fine Mediaeval features still remaining, such as some very fine stained glass.
The rooms you can see are are only opened at weekens and on Bank holidays, but you can always wander into the courtyard area behind the main building (now private residences) , bedecked in roses and other flowers, it is about as perfect, pretty and quaint as you could imagine.
Written Jun 27, 2006
Address: Broad street , Stamford
Daniel Lambert was not what you would call petite. At one point he weighed about 52 stone !
This famous lard-arse who ate ALL the pies finally ate his last meal in Stamford.
There is more detail about the amazing man on another tip, but this one is for children : if this doesn't gob-smack them, then nothing will.
Go into Stamford Museum in Braod street (it's FREE) and go up to the top floor. Here stand a model of the great man next to Tom Thumb. Their sillouttes also stand by the wall, so you can measure yourself up against them. I could get both my legs comfortably within just one trouser leg of Mr Lamberts.
Guaranteed to amuse children for at least two minutes.
Written Jun 27, 2006
Address: Broad street, Stamford
Burghley house, one of the finest stately homes in the land has other tips to it's name, but I would also strongly advise a visit to the very impressive sculpture park. Modern art is not exactly Sourbugger's bag, but on a summer's day it won me over.
Set in the grounds of the stately home it features a good range of modern art pieces, and they often have a theme for the year.
Best of all, it is FREE to vist from November through to March, and included in the cost of the visit to Burghley at other times. You can also visit the park by itself, for just over three quid in the summer months.
Updated Jun 27, 2006
Address: Burghley house, Stamford
Phone: 01780 752451
Within walking distance (a couple of miles) from the centre of Stamford lies one of the most impressive and magnificent of England's stately homes. Places like Chatsworth, Blenheim or Castle Howard may get more visitors but Burghley is clearly in the 'premier division' of Stately piles.
Burghley was built during the first Elizabethan Age, mostly designed by William Cecil, Lord High Treasurer to Queen Elizabeth I, between 1555 and 1587
The main part of the House has 35 major rooms on the ground and first floors. There are more than 80 lesser rooms and numerous halls, corridors, bathrooms and service areas.
The state rooms are wonderfully grand, but I also like the fact that you can see where the servants worked - the kitchen is (without overstateing it) amazing.
Other Facilities include the Orangery Restaurant, Gift Shop, Sculpture Garden and walks around the historic parkland laid out by Capability Brown and still occupied by a herd of fallow deer.
Written Jan 12, 2006
In 1809, the the heaviest man England , Daniel LAMBERT, came to see the Stamford races He collapsed and died while staying at the Horse and Wagon Inn. At 52 stone (728 pounds) his burial presented somewhat of a challenge !
His coffin was rolled on four wheels into a sloping grave in St Martins churchyard - though They had to remove the window window and part of the wall in his room to get the coffin out. His coffin was then rolled on four wheels into a sloping grave in St Martins churchyard .
General Tom Thumb, the celebrated American midget, was as fascinated as anyone to compare his size with that of Lambert. While visiting Stamford in 1846 he left a suit of his own so that future visitors might make a comparison.
Sites associated with him in the town :
1) The Stamford Museuem has a full-size model of him and of General Tom Thumb
2) The Grave is in St Martin's Churchyard : This is the inscription -
In Remembrance, of
that PRODIGY in NATURE
a Native of LEICESTER
who was possessed of
an exalted and convivial Mind
and in personal Greatness
had no COMPETITOR
He measured three Feet one Inch round the LEG
nine Feet four Inches round the BODY
FIFTY TWO STONE ELEVEN POUNDS!
He departed this Life
on the 21st of June
AGED 39 YEARS
As a Testimony of Respect
this Stone is erected
by his Friends
3) A famous painting of him hangs in the entrance area of 'The George' Hotel (see seperate tip)
Updated Jan 11, 2006
Don't miss the very unusual 'gallows' sign to the George Hotel (see seperate tip).
The huge oak construction bridges the road outside of the hotel across what was the Great North Road from London to Scotland.
The sign acted as great advertising (and still does) for the George, but also as a kind of subtle warning for Highwaymen such as the infamous Dick Turpin.
I have unfortunately been unable to find out if such gentleman were actually executed in this manner on this spot.
Written Jan 11, 2006
Address: Great Noth Road, Stamford.
1 Review and 297 Opinions It would be very difficult to find a hotel in England with any more history. There has been an...
1 Review and 56 Opinions A group of 3 of us went to eat in the restaurant this evening, the food was inedible and shortly...