What could be better on a frosty winter’s day than strolling through acres of aconites and snowdrops in the wonderful ancient grounds of Staunton Hall? Explore the woodlands or walk down by the lake, and then warm up with some of the hot refreshments on offer.
Every few years the grounds of Staunton Hall are opened to the public for Snowdrop Sunday, and this year the aim is to raise funds for the repair of St Mary’s Church Tower.
In addition to the beautiful walks there are several exhibitions to see. Tom Drury was the joiner in Staunton for many years and left as part of his legacy to the village his collection of Wheelwright’s Tools and Bygones. His small museum will be open to visitors to see on the day.
Much is known and recorded about Staunton’s civil war connections, and that Colonel William Staunton was away fighting as the Roundheads attempted to shoot through the front door and Mrs Staunton had to flee out of the back of the Hall. But Staunton has other forgotten history, some of which is currently being investigated.
On display will be some of the recently discovered earlier history of the Staunton Estate. This includes the rediscovery of the position of the Medieval Dovecote and Chapel, and part of a Romano British farmstead; the layout of which has just started to appear in a magnetometry survey being carried out on one of the fields. This shows possible remains of settlement as well as paddocks and lanes and although this investigation is only part way through, you can see the results so far as well as some of the fragments of pottery that led the team to investigate this site.
You may also be able to help with a conundrum, and make suggestions for an unusual feature which appears on the front lawn; this feature is beautifully drawn on a Georgian plan but wasn’t labelled, so we don’t quite know what it is!
12 years have passed since Staunton resident Sid Baggaley instigated the investigation into a WW11 bomber crash that he witnessed. The research into this has been updated at several stages but now has almost reached its conclusion. Relatives of all 7 men have now been found and their story made into a new exhibition which shows photos of all the crew. The original memorial has been refurbished and with a grant from N.C.C. a new interpretation board has been installed to tell the background and let visitors learn more about the young men so tragically killed.
In keeping with the WW11 theme, several members of the living history group ‘Summer of ‘44’ will have some original wartime vehicles on display and will be wearing authentic WW11 clothing and uniforms.
Come and learn more about these rediscoveries, along with the rare chance to wander amongst the wonderful display of snowdrops and aconites at Staunton on Sunday 19th February 2012, 11 a.m. - 4 p.m.