web analytics


Today’s Adventures in British Architecture: Chesworth House. It was the childhood home of Henry VIII’s fifth wife, Catherine Howard, but it’s much older than that.

The picture is the banquet hall. I love this about the Medieval great halls: it is simply a continuation of the ancient Viking long hall or Sussex round house. A big open room with a long firepit in the middle (well, it would have had a firepit in the middle) and a high peaked ceiling to draw the smoke away. It’s a design so successful it stretches back to prehistory and didn’t change much until late Tudor times.

The Clergy House in Alfriston is a much smaller house on the same plan. This was the National Trust’s first property, by the way. It was falling to bits and they paid £10 for it. A short but very cool day trip.

It’s also the plan of all the inns and Breezehome, your first house in Skyrim, though game designers didn’t have to worry about where the smoke was going to go so they put a floor directly above the fire.

Badger House was innovative because, you know, chimney. But the mantlepiece is a great beam of wood flush with the wall. They hadn’t figured out they could keep their Christmas cards on it if it stuck out a little.

Anyway, back to Chesworth. It’s a private home. In fact, it’s only Grade II listed – same as Badger House. Last time it was on the market, in 2018, it was up for £6 million. Do have a look around.

The beams! That kitchen!

I’d hate to have to heat the place, but I suppose whoever bought it is a creature made entirely of money.


Comment from Surly Ermine
Time: January 12, 2022, 9:03 pm

Yeah, Sweas you gotta play AC Valhalla. The long houses are fantastic. Plus it’s AC so you can crawl all over stuff like Stonehenge, Old Minster, the hill figures. There is also a no combat Discovery Tour which I avoided for the longest time but it’s actually really informative (dare I say educational) and has a nice story. Skál!

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: January 12, 2022, 10:49 pm

Man, I wish I’d bought that as my Christmas game, Surly.

I bought Red Dead II instead. The landscapes are gorgeous – but I’m not as invested in the cowboy ethos as I might have thought. I’m a little frustrated with it.

I’ll stick with a game until I get my money’s worth, though.

Comment from durnedyankee
Time: January 13, 2022, 3:05 am


Maybe the owners enjoy staggering around the house in layers of clothing topped off by animal furs, with funny fur lined hats on their heads.

Comment from Some Vegetable who has lived in a cold house
Time: January 13, 2022, 4:08 pm

Imagine the luxury of a hot bath in the middle of the winter while the fleas are being smoked out of your clothes! That’s when you really feel rich.

Comment from BJM
Time: January 14, 2022, 2:46 am

@Surly…I like AC Valhalla, I’m still stumbling around gawping… but Unity is my fav. Parkour-ing over the roofs of 18th century Paris was almost magical…and the well-done NPCs and small details make it come alive…and I am not a big fan of modern Paris.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: January 14, 2022, 7:30 pm

I really enjoyed Syndicate. Got a thing about Victorian London.

It’s also the only game where I’ve played as the female character by choice – the modeling on Evie’s character was top notch.

Write a comment

(as if I cared)

(yeah. I'm going to write)

(oooo! you have a website?)

Beware: more than one link in a comment is apt to earn you a trip to the spam filter, where you will remain -- cold, frightened and alone -- until I remember to clean the trap. But, hey, without Akismet, we'd be up to our asses in...well, ass porn, mostly.

<< carry me back to ol' virginny