We took a trip to Kent today to visit Chartwell, an impressive house and estate that was home to Sir Winston Churchill from 1924 until his death in 1965. Churchill loved to escape to Chartwell and spent much of his free time here, often indulging in his love of painting. The Churchills kept many animals but perhaps the most famous was Jock, his beloved marmalade cat. When the Churchill family agreed to the National Trust taking on stewardship of the house one of their stipulations was that there should always be a marmalade cat named Jock, with a white bib and four white socks ‘in comfortable residence’ at Chartwell. The tradition continues to this day and the current feline incumbent is Jock VI, a young cat who only took up residence in March 2014. We were lucky enough to meet him today but sadly I didn't manage to take his photo - he was far more determined to lick up some stray pieces of tuna from visitors' sandwiches to take any interest in me! I did manage to photograph one of the estate's black swans though. There has been a tradition of black swans at Chartwell since 1927, when Sir Philip Sassoon presented Churchill with a pair of these handsome birds. We found the current pair by the lake this morning where one was resting in the sunshine while the other swam with their three adorable fluffy goslings. Rather disappointingly photography wasn't allowed inside the house (apparently because of copyright issues) so I contented myself instead with enjoying the beautiful floral displays in the expansive gardens.
In the footsteps of Churchill
by Helen Hooker May. 26, 2015 3273 views