Cragside is a fascinating National Trust property near Rothbury in Northumberland.
It was the home of Lord Armstrong a Victorian inventor, innovator and landscape genius. Trained as a lawyer, he only turned to engineering later and was completely visionary. The house was the first to be lit by hydroelectricity and is still crammed full of ingenious gadgets such as a water powered piston lift and all 350 light bulbs in the house are lit by a water powered Archimedes screw.
Having enjoyed a fascinating visit to the house, we emerged to some really grim weather. We’d already braved Alnwick in the morning and had got pretty damp then, so the idea of a soggy walk around the grounds really wan’t that appealing. And then I looked at the information leaflet and realised there was an alternative. The estate is so comprehensive they have established a one way, six mile long ‘estate carriage drive’ which meanders through the entire 1000 acre estate. Perfect. And it was.