Last week I was in Norfolk again. My usual accommodation was not available (sister had the decorators in) so I booked a B&B just outside Norwich and was delighted when I arrived to find my very own “Hobbit hole” – The Buttery.
I was reminded of The Landmark Trust when I saw this picture of the state of disrepair it had been in just a few years ago. You can see in the top picture that it has been recently re-thatched in places. It was originally built as the dairy for the hall.
“The Buttery is a Victorian brick and knapped flint building with a thatched roof, it was lined with slate shelves used for making butter and cream, and had decorative tiled walls.
In the mid 1950’s the dairy moved elsewhere and the building was used for storing apples and garden tools and as the estate game larder.
By the beginning of this century it was in a rather sorry state. It was decided to completely renovate it and give it a new lease of life, restoring it as sensitively as possible.
The tiles that were salvagable were used, many being hand painted, some of the slates were retained and details copied such as the original pamment floors and the oak acorn finial on the roof. The windows were replaced with oak frames and there is a fine oak front door.” [From the website]
Georgian front of Berry Hall at sunset
The Buttery stands in its own raised grounds which overlook Berry Hall (where the owners live) on one side and a Christmas tree plantation on the other. Each evening I took a walk around the estate on different tracks.
Big Norfolk Skies
Track alongside the River Tud
Neighbouring house – Wisteria Cottage
In addition to the quaint and unusual Buttery the plantation itself is enclosed by a very rare old crinkle-crankle wall.
Also called a serpentine wall, a crinkle-crankle wall is a continuously curving and snaking wall, usually associated with gardens, dating to the late 18th and 19th centuries. These were commonly used for growing fruit.