An afternoon at Hidcote
It's a challenge finding a National Trust property [in the South West region] we haven't visited before, especially during the Winter months when a large number are closed, but one recent sunny/wet/windy (because, England) afternoon we visited Hidcote with the boys and though the sun was shining, I'm glad we'd packed our coats, wellies and gloves because we were about to experience every type of weather possible within the couple of hours we were there.
The downsides to Hidcote were there weren't many children or families (as we're used to on most of our visits, it could've been due to the erratic weather) and there we got an overriding feeling from the older visitors that our children should be watching their volume (they weren't being rude or shouting, just excitable young children); it also was smaller than we'd thought and some of the gardens had been cordoned off.
On the plus side, the pink blossom trees were out of this world, the pond was full of newts (the kids excitement was really difficult to hide at this point) and the beautiful greenhouse we took shelter in made us feel as if we were hidden in a tropical rainforest.
It's a shame Hidcote didn't quite live up to our experiences of other properties but I'm glad we were able to visit; I think it'll be beautiful in the middle of Spring when all the flowers have bloomed and there's not a layer of ice sticking to the floor. The important thing is.. "Mummy, there are froggy things! Look, I saw one there, Daddy, over here! This one has legs and a head!!"
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