Stevie Carroll (stevie_carroll) wrote,
Stevie Carroll
stevie_carroll

Christmas through history at the Weald and Downland Open Air Museum

Unlike most of us, the folk at the Weald and Downland Open Air Museum decorate their houses for the period from Boxing Day to New Year's Day. I was there on Friday, taking advantage of a mostly dry day in amongst all that rain we've been having. Not all the houses were decorated, but some had gained additional furnishings since the last time I photographed them properly. Most of these were taken with the camera's flash, and so the colours are more obvious on the pictures than they were to the eye.

We begin at the early 19th Century Toll house

Tea is on the side-table, greenery has been brought in to decorate the room, and a fire is blazing:
Weald and Downland 281212 (1) Tollhouse

Weald and Downland 281212 (2) Tollhouse Weald and Downland 281212 (5) Tollhouse Weald and Downland 281212 (3) Tollhouse


Next, the 15th to 17th Century Walderton house, where the musicians have taken a break to stretch their legs and stoke the fire

Weald and Downland 281212 (7) Walderton Weald and Downland 281212 (8) Walderton

Look closely at the first picture, and you might just spot where sections of the wall differ between the two eras of construction:
Weald and Downland 281212 (9)  Walderton Weald and Downland 281212 (12)  Walderton


The parlour in Whittaker's Cottages was set up to represent a working class Christmas in around 1860

Weald and Downland 281212 (13) Whittakers Cottages Weald and Downland 281212 (16) Whittakers Cottages

The bedrooms upstairs were very cramped, but also rather pretty
Weald and Downland 281212 (20) Whittakers Cottages Weald and Downland 281212 (21) Whittakers Cottages


The 18th Century single-room school had only a few hints of Christmas
Weald and Downland 281212 (24) School Weald and Downland 281212 (25) School


While in the mid 17th Century Poplar Cottage, Christmas had been cancelled
Weald and Downland 281212 (30) Poplar Weald and Downland 281212 (33)  Poplar


A fine spread was laid out in the early 15th Century Bayleaf farmhouse
Weald and Downland 281212 (38) Bayleaf Weald and Downland 281212 (44) Bayleaf

Weald and Downland 281212 (46)  Bayleaf Weald and Downland 281212 (47) Bayleaf


And in the early 17th Century Pendean farmhouse, the family appeared to have finished their feast and left the Yule log burning in the hearth
Weald and Downland 281212 (58) Pendean Weald and Downland 281212 (59) Pendean

Weald and Downland 281212 (60) Pendean Weald and Downland 281212 (61) Pendean


Finally, I'll leave you with a view of the market square and the contents of the medieval shop
Weald and Downland 281212 (66) Market Place Weald and Downland 281212 (67) Medieval shop


I'll be back there later in the year, for the opening of the newest house to be re-erected, Tindall's cottage, if not before.
Tags: out and about, photos, real life, truth stranger than fiction
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