Sunday, 6 October 2013

Most imaginative use of a slide ever

Cliveden is a beautiful National Trust property near Maidenhead in Berkshire (well, the gardens and grounds are NT, the house is a hotel).  It has woodland, a lake, play trails, a maze, formal gardens and amazing views over the Thames and surrounding countryside.

It was such a beautiful warm October day so we headed for some fresh air and sunshine.  The kids were excited to do the maze, and it was really good fun.  A boy we talked to through the hedge suggested we take a left every time there was a choice, so Freddie led the way and got us into the centre.

After a picnic we walked around to the house.  There is a very ostentatious clock tower, which is beautiful but looked out of place.  The dovecot looked much more at home.

The house itself is lovely.  We peeked into some of the windows as we passed, and it looks to be a very posh hotel.  The views are fabulous.

The steps from the house to the gardens are in need of renovation.  And some imaginative NT employee came up with the genius idea of putting a big slide in while they do the work.  Brilliant!  They asked for a donation so I paid £2 each and the kids went on it again and again.  They loved it!  Meg needed a grown up to go with her so Rob and I took turns.  I loved it too!

The slide will be there for a couple of months so I think we'll go back before it gets taken down.

Betsy found a 'well' to hide in, and Rob spotted a huge funghi.  Some of the autumn trees were stunning.

Now we're all tired!  It was a really lovely day.

I took some photos of the finished clay items.  Here are Betsy's cup and plate, Meg's autumn pieces, and the candle holder.

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