The Lamp Room……. A sign of the Times

The Lamp Room

The Lamp Room….

There was a time when the Lamp Room was one of the most important rooms in our large Town and Country Houses.  The heart of those houses was debatably the Kitchens, but like all the other rooms, from Bedroom the Ballroom, Lounge to Library, Nursery to Games Room…. all needed light when the days became darker.  A light switch and electricity were not an option.

So, you can understand why the Lamp Room was so important.  In this room a member of staff was responsible for cleaning the lamps, trimming the wicks, filling with oil….and the distributing them as needed in the house.

Tonight, we have a change in TIME…….  24th October the last day under British Summer Time.  Tomorrow we are back to Greenwich Meantime.

As we gain on hour overnight, as we ‘put our clocks back’ by one hour….  you could say that time, for a short while, stands still.

So, remember to change your watch and also….

Please Remember ….

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

24th October

(C) David Oakes 2020

Mill Pond Reflections….


The Mill Pond, created by a weir on the Derbyshire, River Derwent, is mirror calm.  The Old Mill, at New Bridge Curbar, is no longer a working water powered Mill.  It still manages to create an image of a time and industry long gone

Something else to recall….

Please Remember ….

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

12th October

(C) David Oakes 2020


Escape…… to Church


The roof of a rather fabulous ‘Bird Cage’.  The creation of Ironsmith Robert Bakewell.  Bakewell created this structure in the period between 1706-08. Obviously never a real Bird Cage, purely a fantasy piece for the Gardens


The structure can be found in the Gardens of Melbourne Hall, South Derbyshire and cost the owners of the Hall the grand sum off £120.

From across the Lake it looks grand, but it is only up close that you can admire Robert Bakewell’s iron skill and detailed artistry.


The Bird Cage was perhaps the creation that brought Bakewell’s skill to the attention of a wider audience.  Across Derbyshire, and nearby area, there are many examples of his craftsmanship…  mainly Wrought Iron Gates for place of note, all decorated in similar styles.

But one creation stands out above them all.  It is the Rood Screen at The Cathedral Church of All Saints, Derby.


It was constructed a few years after the Bird Cage and according to the records, cost £157.  I know that was back in the 18th century and inflation has occurred, but it has also been suggested that Bakewell, despite his skills and fame, never made a fortune.  His attention to detail and exacting standards extended the production construction timescale.

As for the Melbourne Hall itself.  It has been a family home for many centuries.  Its most famous resident was William Lamb, later 2nd Viscount Melbourne, Prime Minister, and confidant of Queen Victoria.  Queen Victoria naming the capital of Australia’s State of Victoria after him.


Wherever you are in this World……

Please Remember ….

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

11th October

(C) David Oakes 2020

Morning Calm……


An early autumnal dawn on Lake Coniston in the English Lake District, Cumbria.  Just the occasional ripple over the water to disturb the fragile tranquillity of the morning.

Please Remember ….

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

25th September

(C) David Oakes 2020


A Bridge with Historical Links


Conwy Castle looms large over Conwy Suspension Bridge.  The bridge spans the River Conway as it heads on and into Colwyn Bay.  The famous engineer Thomas Telford was commissioned to design and built the bridge as a replacement for the Ferry river crossing.  It was completed in 1826, has a span of nearly 100 metre’s  and if I remember correctly, at an eye watering (for the time) of £50,000..  For years it carried road traffic.  Progress ensured that a Railway bridge to be constructed (to the left of the image) whilst a ‘new’ road bridge (to the right)  which was opened in 1958.

The Suspension Bridge is a listed Grade 1 structure and now in the care of the National Trust… foot traffic only.  A small fee is charged but worth it for a walk through and too history.

Please Remember ….

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

12th September

(C) David Oakes 2020