Archives » Architecture

Auckland Castle (ii)

I posted photos of the exterior of Auckland Castle/Palace and of its chapel here.

Proceeding from the chapel into the Palace proper you come into the impressive Bishop’s Throne Room:-

Bishop's Throne Room, Auckland Castle

Fireplace and painting:-

Fireplace, Bishop's Throne Room, Auckland Castle


Ceiling,  Fireplace, Bishop's Throne Room, Auckland Castle

The Castle/Palace interior has been updated/redecorated over the years and some of the older fixtures and fittings have been kept.

Old wallpaper:-

Old Wallpaper,  Auckland Castle

Fireplace, chairs and table:-

Fireplace + Chair,  Auckland Castle,

Fireplace tiles:-

Fireplace Tiles,  Auckland Castle,

I can’t now remember if this stained glass window was in the chapell or elsewhere:-

Stained Glass, Auckland Castle

Eventually the route through the Castle takes you to the Dining Room where the Zurbaran paintings are kept.

Dining Room:-

Dining Room, Auckland Castle

Dining Room linoleum:-

Auckland Castle, Dining Room Linoleum

Dining Room Ceiling:-

Dining Room Ceiling, Auckland Castle

Zurbarans Information Board:-

Zurbarans Information, Auckland Castle

The last of the rooms accessible to the public is the 1930s study of the then bishop:-

1930s Study, Auckland Castle,

Auckland Castle (i)

Auckland Castle (also known as Auckland Palace) in the town of Bishop Auckland, County Durham, is the former palace of the Prince Bishops of Durham.

It houses a collection of paintings known as the Zurbaráns, which are definitely worth seeing.

The exterior of the Castle/Palace wasn’t at its best when we visited as there was some refurbishment work going on at the side of the Castle nearer the town. That was swathed in plastic. (Our usual luck then.)

Gateway at side:-

Auckland Castle Gateway

Bishop’s quarters:-

Auckland Castle

Visitor’s entrance. This may have been temporary due to the works:-

Auckland Castle

The Castle’s/Palace’s chapel, to the right of the entrance, is impressive.

Altar + stained glass windows:-

Auckland Castle, Chapel Altar

A marble altarpiece sits against the wall:-

Auckland Castle, Marble Altarpiece

The chapel organ is set on the wall above your head where you enter. The organist’s access is via wht looks like a precarious circular staircase whose upper part is seen to the right here:-

Auckland Castle, Organ in Chapel

Ceiling. The ceiling isn’t curved. I stitched two photos to show it as a whole. It is elaborately painted:-

Auckland Castle, Chapel Ceiling

Clerestory detail:-

Auckland Castle, Chapel, Clerestory Detail

Marble pillar:-

Marble Pillar, Auckland Castle, Chapel

Tynemouth Priory and Castle (ii)

We visited Tynemouth again in December 2019 and this time had a look round the Castle and Priory.

Priory ruins from entrance:-

Tynemouth Priory

Tynemouth Castle (entrance to complex) looking back from Priory:-

Tynemouth  Castle

Main structure of Priory:-

Tynemouth  Castle

Tynemouth Priory Ruins

More ruins:-

Tynemouth  Castle  and Priory, Tynemouth, Tyne and Wear

Ruins, Tynemouth Priory

From seaward side:-

Tynemouth  Castle, Tynemouth, Tyne and Wear

Stained glass window on small chapel:-

Stained Glass Window at Tynemouth Priory

The chapel feels quite cosy inside. Stained glass window:-

Tynemouth  Castle, stained glass, Tynemouth, Tyne and Wear

More stained glass:-

Tynemouth  Castle, Tynemoth, Tyne and Wear

Tynemouth Priory and Castle (i)

Tynemouth Priory and Castle are the most prominent (former) buildings in Tynemouth, Tyne and Wear.

It stands on a promontory overlooking the mouth of the River Tyne:-

Tynemouth Priory

On our first visit, in June 2019, we did not enter the premises.

Tynemouth Castle as seen from Tynemouth town. The Priory is unseen behind the castle in this view:-

Tynemouth Priory, from Tynemouth

From northwest, Priory to left:-

Tynemouth Priory from Northwest

Scotland’s Art Deco Heritage 13 (v): Perth Academy Building

In November 2019 we visited Perth Academy to attend its annual Remembrance Service.

Perth Academy’s history goes back to 1696 (or 1542 depending on which part of the text you read in the link above.)

The present building has Art Deco styling – not surprising as work started on it in 1930 and the school moved in in 1932.


Perth Academy Building

The clock tower is a prominent feature of the Academy building and can be seen from many parts of the city:-

Clock Tower, Perth Academy 2

The yellow painting of the windows accentuates the horizontals and verticals, as does the chimney tower:-

Part of Perth Academy

Deco style evident in doors, windows and the columns going off to the right:-

Wing of Perth Academy

Chimney tower and wing of building:-

Perth Academy Wing

Art Deco Building in East Boldon

We have friends who live just north of Sunderland and took the opportunity when travelling back up from Rye (and Ashby de la Zouch) to visit them.

On the way we passed through East Boldon which is part of a group of villages called the Boldons which also includes West Boldon and Boldon Colliery, historically in the County of Durham but now administratively part of South Tyneside.

I spotted this Art Deco building and stopped to photograph it. Rule of three in main windows, plus porthole window:-

Art Deco Building East Boldon

Side of building. Critallish windows. Those at rear have been poked out though:-

Side of Art Deco Building, East Boldon

Frontage. Deco fanlight, Critall windows to left above East Boldon Dental Practice:-

East Boldon, Art Deco

Calke Abbey

Calke Abbey in Derbyshire is not actually an Abbey at all – and never has been. It is in fact a stately home but one of its owners thought that calling it an Abbey would give it a touch of gravitas.

Calke “Abbey” from distance:-

Calke Abbey from distance

It is now run by the National Trust who took it over when the previous owner died. He had lived there more or less on his own for years with hardly any modern amenities and the place had been un”improved” for decades.

Unusually the National Trust decided not to restore the interior and contents but to leave them much as they had been found. This is in a gloriously cluttered and somewhat dilapidated state:-

Cluttered Room, Calke Abbey

Toy room:-

toy room clutter 2 doll's house

Rocking horse:-

toy room, rocking horse, nursery, Calke Abbey

Nursery clutter:-

nursery clutter, old toys, Calke Abbey

Part of library:-

Library, Calke Abbey

Clutter was also common in the larger rooms:-

Calke Abbey, Derbyshire, National Trust

Calke Abbey, Derbyshire, National Trust

At the end of the tour you can go through a tunnel which I think was intended for use by servants to access the stables without being seen by their employers or their guests. It brings you out at said stables:-

Stables, Calke Abbey

Looking towards the Abbey:-

Stables, Calke Abbey

Closer view of Abbey’s rear:-

Calke Abbey From Stables

Ashby de la Zouch Castle (ii)

Castle from its grounds:-

Ashby Castle, Leicestershire

Main tower block:-

Ashby Castle, Leicestershire,

Apparently this is William Lord Hastings’s tower:-

Ashby de la Zouch Castle Information Board

We climbed it. All 23 metres of it via 96 fairly steep steps. Knackering. This is a video of the panorama from the top. (All through our visit those church bells were ringing. It was a Saturday – the bell-ringers must have been practicing):-

Panorama From Tower Ashby de la Zouch

Formal Gardens information board. There was no way to avoid my shadow on it!:-

Shaded Information Board, Ashby de la Zouch Castle

This tower was in one corner of the grounds:-

Corner Tower, Ashby de la Zouch Castle

In its heyday the castle was a centre for “noble” sports:-

Ashby de la Zouch Castle, Information Board

This nearby field is said to be the jousting ground where Walter Scott set his tournament in Ivanhoe:-

Ashby Castle Jousting Grounds (ivanhoe)

Ashby de la Zouch Castle (i)

We had no idea before we went that Ashby de la Zouch had an old ruined castle, but as we were doing the detour round the town required by the street fair blocking the main road we saw a sign pointing to it.

As old castles go it’s one of the better ones.

From entrance:-

Ashby de la Zouch Castle

Welcome Board:-

Ashby Castle Board

First building:-

Castle, Ashby de la Zouch

Ashby Castle

Further portion:-

Part of Castle, Ashby de la Zouch

Picture window:-

Ashby de la Zouch, Part of Castle

The fireplace on the left wall has the remains of shields on it:-

Fireplace, Ashby de la Zouch Castle


Ashby de la Zouch, Castle Interior

The castle was demolished as the result of the Wars of the Three Kingdoms:-

Information Board, Ashby de la Zouch Castle

Art Deco in Ashby de la Zouch?

There were slim pickings for Art Deco in Ashby. The only possibilty was this branch of the National Westminster Bank.

The hints of deco are in the cartouche below the roofline and there is rule of three in the frontage’s arches.

Bank Branch in Ashby de la Zouch

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