Last day in the Lakes

Our final day in the Lakes started as all good days should; with a fry up (thanks Mum!).

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And some hot coffee (not for me).

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The cat wasn’t allowed any. Sorry Midds!

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After breakfast, we got in the car and joined a queue for the car ferry across Lake Windermere. It’s a short crossing, but we made the most of the views.

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Back on dry land, we drove the short distance to Wray Castle, one of the National Trust’s most recently opened properties.

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It’s unusual for a Trust property in that it came with no furniture, so it’s a bit of a shell, although they’ve done a grand job of filling it with things to keep kids us occupied, including a dressing up room, table tennis and a full-sized snooker table. As you can see, the big kids among us found plenty to do…

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The building itself is fantastic, with a varied history including time as a Vodafone training centre and a place for cadets to stay.

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There were even some little critters waiting to be found.

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We left Wray Castle behind and drove into the beautiful village of Grasmere, one of my favourites. It was looking particularly autumnal.

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We stopped off for the obligatory cream tea…

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…before wandering round the various shops and galleries in the village.

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Then we headed up the hill to Allan Bank, another National Trust property (Mum’s membership pretty much paid for itself today I think). Like Wray Castle, it’s pretty new to the Trust’s books, opened in March 2012. Once home to William Wordsworth, the house itself occupies an enviable position with amazing views.

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Inside, they’ve pretty much based the entire property around the premise of the cafe. An excellent idea, in my opinion. Basically, you can buy your tea and cake, and eat it anywhere in the house. None of this ‘don’t sit on the furniture’ stuff here, you can lounge wherever you like and take in the magnificent views.

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There were also things to keep us all occupied.

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Not quite Wordsworth, but still…

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Alex and I had a game of draughts (which he won, annoyingly).

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We were even treated to a musical rendition on the grand piano in the entrance hall.

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We waved goodbye to the beautiful house (bye Pumpkin)…

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…and spent some more time admiring the beautiful views, despite the incessant rain, before heading home.

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As it was our last evening in the Lakes, Mum and Dad treated us to dinner at our favourite Ulverston pub, The Farmer’s Arms. The place is always packed (even on a Tuesday), and the food is delicious. We started (as we always do) with a meat and cheese platter.

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Then Dad and I had the seafood carbonara, which was fantastic, and probably the most amount of pasta I’ve ever seen on one plate. It also came with garlic bread (as if there weren’t enough carbs already…).

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Alex had (you guessed it) the burger, which arrived piled high with onion rings.

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And buried somewhere in all this paper is Mum’s Kleftiko, which I’m assured was fantastic.

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Basically the portions are huge, the food is delicious and the staff are friendly. What more can you want?

We had a delightful trip to the Lakes, and can’t wait to be back at Christmas. In the meantime, we leave the cat carefully guarding the house…

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