Dickens at Tissington Hall

Tissington Hall was built in 1609 by Francis FitzHerbert and is still lived in by the FitzHerbert family. The Hall is in the centre of the small village of Tissington just four miles north of Ashbourne. The Tissington Hall is only open to the public twenty eight days a year and is well worth a visit. This Christmas it is being opened with a difference as the hall has been transformed into a Dickensian wonderland.Tissington hall

The idea came from David Westcott Walker who runs the Edward and Vintage sweet shop in the village. He has used scenes from Dickens’ Christmas stories to deck the rooms. Some of the rooms had not been used for years, so even if you have visited Tissington Hall before you will not have previously entered some of these.sweet shop Tissington village

In each of the decorated rooms the appropriate passage from the Dicken’s novel is displayed. When you enter the Main Hall you find yourself in ‘The Gargery’s Parlour’ from Great Expectations.Page fro Dickens at Tissington Hall

main hall

The table is  set for a Christmas meal including the large pork pie.

The amazing library has become ‘Mr Tulkinghorn’s Law Offices’, from Bleak House. Library

One of the most amazing rooms is the recreation of ‘Miss Havisham’s dining room’, from Great Expectations. This was not an easy room to take a photograph of but was truly amazing to enter. Miss Havisham

There is a children’s bedroom and a couple of rooms from A Christmas Carol including ‘Ebenezer Scrooge’s Bedchamber’, in the Turret room. It is reported to be one of the most haunted rooms in the house and the wooden stairs up to the room slant crazily. The house is beautifully decorated and I would recommend visiting it this year. It is open to the public on November 21, 22, 28 and 29 and December 5 and 6.food

After visiting all the incredible rooms you are also allowed to wander in the gardens behind Tissington Hall.back of house


Candlelit Vigil

A candlelit vigil is going to take place in Belper organised by Transition Belper. This is to mark the Paris Environmental talks. I am planning to go and organise an activity in Number 28 on Belper Market place. I feel that this is an issue that everyone needs to think about as what we do now will affect our children and grandchildren. candle2

Here are the details sent to me from the Belper Inner Transition Group.

‘There will be a Candlelit vigil on Sunday November 29th 3.30pm – 7.30pm at Belper Market Place. The event will be part of a world-wide ‘Take to the Streets’ campaign organised by Avaaz, the online campaign group, to mark the beginning of the Paris Environmental summit in December.

The intention is to let world leaders know the extent of public support for conclusive commitments to bring down carbon emissions specifically through promoting 100% renewable energy. But for us, the vigil will also be about bringing local people together at this important time, to share thoughts and ideas and to just to reflect.

We hope that there will be sharing space where people can read inspirational quotes, readings and poems; acoustic music including singing, the opportunity for people to write down their thoughts and ideas, crafts and more. We have the use of No 28 for facilities and possible discussions (more info to follow)

It would be wonderful if you could put this date in your diaries! All are welcome including families. All you need to bring is warm clothing and a candle/ tea light in a jar to be lit when you have arrived plus a reading or song etc if you wish to share. Further information will be posted up on the Belper Inner Transition and Transition Belper Facebook pages. The vigil will also be promoted by Avaaz – go to http://globalclimatemarch.org and look for us on the map!’group of hearts

I will be bringing along some fabric hearts for people to take part in the ‘Heart on Your Sleeve’ activity. Once your heart is made you can tag @craftivists on your social media and get involved with the #fortheloveof conversation. fortheloveof.org.uk,

Climate Change

Is Climate change something we need to worry about?  If so is there anything we can do about it? We live in a beautiful world and I’m sure we would all like to keep it this way.TreesClimate change has been mentioned a lot in the news recently because of COP21 (the 21st Conference of the Parties). This is the annual meeting of world leaders for the UN talks on climate change and sustainable development. This year it is to take place in Paris. The conference is crucial because it is hoped that the outcome will be a new international agreement on how to tackle global warming. It has been agreed for some time that it is important to keep global warming below 2% and we are already half way to this figure at 1%. Here is a good article in The Independent. 

What does climate change mean for us? As the temperature rises it impacts on sea levels, food security and drastically alters habitats. From the food we eat to the extreme weather events that are effecting our world, climate change is already affecting our planet today. Since 1900, every decade has been warmer than the previous one and 2014 was the hottest year on record.

There are events taking place all over the British isles this year to inform the public and to help people show the Government how important they feel this issue is. Last Thursday I attended a meeting at Derby Cathedral where Lord Deben (John Selwyn Gummer) spoke about the importance of governments taking action. He is the chair of the Independent Committee on Climate change. cathedralThere are marches and events taking place all over the world starting on the weekend of November 28th. People are coming together for two weeks of action calling for climate justice and an end to carbon pollution. In this country there are marches in London, Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast. These are called The Peoples Climate March where people can join in to show Government how important they feel the issue is to them. There are also numerous smaller events and details of your nearest can be found here http://globalclimatemarch.org/en/

I decided  I wanted to try to learn a bit more about Climate change so I looked for a TED Talk to listen to. I found one called ‘Climate Change is Simple’ by David Roberts on Youtube  This made me realise that it is an important topic that I needed to think about. I looked for changes I could make and found this article ’10 easy ways you can help stop climate change starting today’. Some of these things are easy and I just need to think about what I am doing on a daily basis. Others are more challenging but worth considering.

One thing I have decided to do is join in with is the Craftivist Collectives campaign ‘Heart onYour Sleeve’. The idea is to embroider a fabric heart with words about the things you love in the world. Once finished I will wear the heart, use it as a talking point and share it on social media with the hashtag #fortheloveofpink heartI have made a couple of hearts and am hoping to get others in my local area to join in with this activity.green heart

Christmas Yarnbomb

When I first wrote about the Christmas Yarnbomb for the Memorial Garden in Belper it was good to find people who were willing to help. After my first post about the Christmas Yarnbomb I received comments and offers of help both on this blog and on my Facebook page.

Things then went a little quiet and I was hoping that this was because knitting needles and crochet hooks were busy. I started to knit some jumpers for trees and hoped that others would make things to be sewn onto these. Continue reading Christmas Yarnbomb

Memorial Garden, Belper

Belper Memorial Garden is located at the top of King Street. It was originally given to the people of Belper by one of the Strutt family. The war memorial stands in the garden which also has beautiful flower beds, trees and several park benches. I visited this afternoon and there were family groups enjoying picnics and children playing on the grass.

The purpose of my visit was to start planning a Christmas Yarn Bomb of the Memorial Garden. Continue reading Memorial Garden, Belper

Mini Beast Hunt

I recently installed a mini beast hunt at Ripley Market Place in Derbyshire. I have organised and been involved with a number of Yarn Bombing installations since 2012. My most recent request was to do something for an event called AmberFest for Amber Valley Borough Council. The council were planning a new Community Showcase to be held in Ripley Market Place on Saturday 18th July 2015. Continue reading Mini Beast Hunt

Abbey Gardens

On a recent visit to the Isles of Scilly I visited the amazing Abbey Gardens on the Island of Tresco. The last time I went there was about thirty years ago. I have been to Tresco more recently but not back to the Abbey Gardens and so I was filled with wonder once again at all the fantastic plants. It is a bit like the tropical gardens at Kew without needing to be in a greenhouse.Abbey Gardens TrescoThe gardens were created by Augustus Smith who came to live on Tresco in 1834 as the new Lord Protector of all the Isles of Scilly. The history of the Abbey Gardens can be found HERE. Four succeeding generations of the Smith family continued to improve the gardens, to make them a sub-tropical paradise which is well worth a visit. The Abbey Gardens section on the Tresco website will give you all the information required for an enjoyable day out. Continue reading Abbey Gardens

Belper Parks Wood

It doesn’t seem possible that it is already a week since we had to take down all the lovely woolly things in Belper Parks Wood. They had been in the woods for the Woollen Woods 2015. When you are busy time passes quickly!

The Woollen Woods in Belper Parks wood was part of Corridor Arts, ‘Here and There’ Art Walk. It was also part of Belper’s Art Festival in May 2015. There were so many amazing things going on in the town suitable for all sorts of tastes and age groups. Continue reading Belper Parks Wood

Woollen Woods

Woollen Woods in Belper starts on Saturday May 23rd at 3.00pm and continues until the evening of Monday may 25th.  Come down to the Belper Parks Woods to discover so many animals ad other things hidden among the trees. Things are displayed in the woods in the area called Great Park Wood. The ‘Woollen Woods’ is an event happening all over the country. Woollen woods was started by Eden Arts in 2013 when they asked people to make items from wool to be displayed in the woods of Acorn Bank NT House. I visited this house in June 2013 and loved all the things I saw. Continue reading Woollen Woods