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Dunster Castle

Spring 1999


One cold but crisp Spring weekend Dan and I decided to visit my cousin and his family who live just outside Taunton, Somerset.

We had booked ourselves into a hotel in the small medieval village of Dunster which has a Norman castle and hill walks and seemed a good place to spend a weekend away.
After spending sometime visiting relatives and having lunch we progressed on to Dunster.

 We were to stay in The Yarn Market Hotel which took its name from the original medieval 'Yarn Market' where cloth was bought and sold many years previously. You can see this round building right at the back of this picture of the high street. It has a pointed roof. a bit like a witches hat and small windows in the eaves. It was built in 1609 by a member of the ruling family, George Luttrell. While we were staying there they were undergoing renovations but it was all ok. It just looked messy from the outside with all the scaffolding in place!

 We found some lovely old tea rooms which you can see just on the corner of the high street and we sat and sipped hot chocolate and indulged in a sticky Danish pastry while we decided how we would spend our weekend and what we would see. Firstly we had to decide where to eat that night and as Dan was feeling romantic we decided on a candlelit restaurant which I believe was called Hathaways. It was just what the doctor ordered!

There are a lot of things to see around Dunster. Firstly there is the castle, circa 1066 which belonged to the Luttrell family. Secondly, there is a very old Norman church called St. George's which displays a fabulous rood screen. Outside the church there is a walled garden and Nunnery which was built about five hundred and fifty years ago and there is also a large hill from where you could look down onto the town and take in views over the Quantock Hills in the distance. Well I think that's what they were but it might well have been the beginning of Exmoor as Dunster is right on the border between Somerset and Devon. 
We decided to explore early Sunday morning.
As far as I remember, this is what we saw. 

On our walk we had to climl over a stile.

As you can see I am not good at climbing!

Dan climbed a tree to take this picture.

We could see the church from the top of the hill.

We could also see the castle on the opposite hill..

.Dan wanted to have a closer look at the castle so down we went.

This is a view taken from high up in the castle gardens which are extensive.

This is the walk up to the front of the castle.

The gardens at the top of the castle were lovely.

These were the stables which were very ornate.

Dan found a new use for this wall niche.

Dan relaxes.

We found the lovely old courtyard garden belonging to the Norman church.

Dan ponders about the life of the Normans.

Then he remembers its time for lunch!

Soon its time to go home to the twins.

Dan takes this picture as I drive back to Surrey.

He also gets this shot of 'the henge' as we fly past.

It had been a nice weekend. 
Just the two of us.
 
Perhaps next time we will visit in December when they have 'Dunster by candle-light'. 
Who knows?

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This document maintained by jacquetta@holle.demon.co.uk
Material Copyright 2001 Dan & Jacquetta Holle