In the footsteps of Churchill

by Helen Hooker May. 26, 2015 3333 views

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.

The gardens were full of spring colour

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Jay Boggess 5 years, 5 months ago

Fabulous photo tour and fascinating historical references!

5 years, 5 months ago Edited
Vivienne Albiston 5 years, 6 months ago

Are these the ribbon feathered swans?

5 years, 6 months ago Edited
Antonio Gil 5 years, 6 months ago

Funny coincidence. Right now, I'm reading "The second world war story" by Winston Churchill, and he is a great writer. The black swan picture is incredibly beautiful.

5 years, 6 months ago Edited
Gillian Parsons 5 years, 6 months ago

Yes visiting Chartwell makes for a Great Day but for me the Swan is a fabulous capture and goes straight to my favs.....

5 years, 6 months ago Edited
Lukesmom 5 years, 6 months ago

The black swan is impressive!! And I especially like #4. What are those flowers called?

5 years, 6 months ago Edited