Although smaller than the majority of National Trust properties, Trerice exudes magnificence, but on a reduced scale. The delightful Cornish Elizabethan manor house is enchanting to visit on a cold winter’s day with its open fire in the great hall.

In addition to admiring the grand fireplace with ornate mantel, I noticed large bowls crafted in different materials on some of the furniture. Undoubtedly used for serving, but a volunteer pointed out that two were called marriage bowls. Later, I found out they would have been presented to husband and wife as a celebration of their union, and I guess that’s why they are more decorative.

Another inspiring feature to mention is the hall’s fairytale window. It is stunning as most of the crystal-like panes are centuries old and twinkle in the light.

The adjoining rooms enjoy a cosy atmosphere, created with soft furnishings, books, and paintings collected by varied owners since the house was constructed by the Arundells; their prosperity gained by serving several monarchs.

Upstairs is light and airy with supreme garden views, and there, the North Wing’s style seems slightly different to the rest of the building, probably because it was rebuilt in the 1950s. Nonetheless, it is full of fascinating articles, together with antique spectacles and a portrait of Molly, wife of John Elton, the tenant responsible for the wing’s renewal. The drawing was presented to the Trust by a descendant of the couple who retold their touching World War Two story.

I’m always intrigued by bathrooms from the past and this one is charming with its pharmacy-type weighing scales and arty wallpaper depicting mythical sea creatures, including a merhorse, a fantasy monster I don’t recollect seeing before. The phrase, ‘You learn something new every day,’ comes to mind.

An Elizabethan landscape wouldn’t be complete without a knot garden, and Trerice’s is an excellent example. The lavender has been pruned back, as it should be at this stage in the year. It makes the design’s lines stronger in a pleasant way and looks fabulous with the stone building in the background.

No one was on the Kayling lawn, which was a shame because it would have been fun watching others taking part in the Cornish skittles game. Mr Word Loft and I haven’t played before, and the rules set out on a notice looked intricate. That’s a poor excuse, I know! But maybe we will have a go another day?

Until next time,
Sue. X