the 3 cottages that are now open at HODs ~ mine is the top one.
Until the Civic Society Chairman, John Shorter, added the Yard Event to our English Heritage Open Weekend programme, I'd always thought I was living in an interesting old cottage here in Clarks Yard. It was in September 2005 that the public
started to come through my door, and then I had to accept that I had been under a misapprehension.
To be honest, I hadn't intended to let anyone in ~ the place wasn't particularly tidy ~ but somehow I couldn't keep them out.
Oh, please may
we come in ? Can we go upstairs ~ we'll take our shoes off. Oh my, oh just look at this ...
"This is not a cottage," one of them told me. "Cottages do not have such elegantly proportioned rooms ... "
"... nor such high
ceilings ~ any cottage of this age would have low ceilings and exposed beams."
As fast as one lot emerged oohing-and-aahing like mad, another lot which had been sitting out on the steps or my old bench, were ready to come in. "This is not a cottage,"
said another expert, running a hand over the finely moulded sittingroom door frame. "You would not find woodwork of this quality in a cottage."
"This is not a cottage,"announced a rather dishy architectural historian from Manchester University,
"not with such external symmetry, these beautifully proportioned windows and fine glazing bars. What you have here, my dear, is a gem ~ right, a GEM ~ of a modest early Georgian double-fronted town house. I hope you realise
the responsibility this puts upon you to cherish it ~ care for it during your temporary stewardship of it."
I didn't before. But I did then. And I'm doing my best to preserve it ~ this small architectural gem ~
for my children and their children. And future Heritage Open Days visitors. Now that the Yards Event is an established part of Whitby's HOD programme, over the Saturday and Sunday we usually get somewhere around 150 visitors through the cottages
in Clarks Yard ~ mine and two 'real' cottages below me.
This blog might help as well, put it on the map in a small way ! Hope so !