Another Wolverhampton historic gem.
Set in the outskirts of the city, Wightwick Manor is another 'blink and you miss it' National Trust site that has a lot going for it.
Ample parking leads you to the entrance where the staff are very welcoming and informative – handing out maps and details to assist your visit.
From here you head to the house itself which, probably by design, just pops out from behind beautifully manicured hedgerows.
Built in the Arts & Crafts style in 1887 by the local Mander industrialist family, Wightwick Manor is a relatively 'new' property compared to a lot of National Trust sites.
The house itself was built in two main sections, the second finished in 1897, and was fully furnished and decorated in a style drawing heavily on the influence of William Morris
There are formal gardens and orchards to amble around and a lovely, if short, woodland walk leading to some very picturesque seating areas overlooking duck ponds.
The 'Great Parlour' is a beautiful space with stunning glass and an interior that has to be seen to take it all in.
With the standard coffee shop and site shop, Wightwick Manir has everything you could want for a quick day out.
A lovely site in a lovely location and definitely worth the admission.
A story of love, not hate.
Ever since books have been in print and images have been shown on screen there have been ‘Dog v Cat’ stories.
Natural enemies. Nature or Nurture?
Of the last three dogs we’ve had, none have been ‘taught’ that cats are the enemy and so, obviously, they do not see them as such.
Parents teach to their kids who pass it on and so it goes on, needlessly.
Cats, naturally being more safety conscious tend to shy away from dogs, especially if they’ve had a bad experience and this can set the dogs on edge. One feeds the other and so the problem persists.
But start them off on the right foot and make it a good, friendly experience and you get a different outcome.
Spread love, not hate.
So, Gentle George is now 6 months old and progressing nicely towards becoming a lovely dog.
After flying through house training and basic puppy commands, he started puppy school a few weeks ago.
Now, George is doing well but there seems to be a little creeping trait coming in.
Going through some basic commands recently, I noticed a little reluctance to do as asked. Nothing major but it did require a firmer tone to get compliance.
It is likely nothing to be concerned about and chatting to my wife about it we wonder if it is just him growing up. Getting a little more confident and his personality showing through.
We certainly wouldn’t be looking to stamp out personally traits in the lad but it’s interesting to see him develop.
We’ll keep an eye on him and ensure he knows where he stands but he does need to know his place in the pecking order.
A local National Trust site, small but friendly.
Situated just outside Wolverhampton, Moseley Old Hall is somewhere I have been past many times but never got around to visiting.
Described as ‘An atmospheric Elizabethan farmhouse that saved a King’ I did a bit of digging before visiting finding that it had been used as a hiding place for the retreating King at the end of the English Civil War and includes a ‘Priest Hole’ actually used by the King to avoid his pursuers.
Being a dog, I’m not allowed in the house itself so have to be content with the outside and what an outside to enjoy!
The (recreated) 17th century gardens are quite small but in keeping with the house itself, extending around three sides to include a seating area for picnics.
There are facilities on site, a souvenir ship, second hand book shop, plant sale area and a little tea room (which boasts the best scones in the world), but we just brought our own little picnic and coffee.
As you wander around the grounds there is a ‘Kings Walk’ through the tree to a tree house and pond.
It is a lot smaller than some better know. National Trust sites but this is reflected in entry price for non-members being smaller.
All in all, a nice little venue which is easy to visit just off J2 M54 (it can be noisy in parts as it is next door)
The life of a hermit is more likely one chosen than enforced. People need to be with others, even if it’s for short periods. People need people.
It’s the same with dogs.
If your dog doesn’t go out, doesn’t get walked, has no contact with other dogs, how is it supposed to react when it sees another dog? That’s probably the second question your dog will ask itself on seeing another dog. Right after ‘WTF?’
So, to have the most balanced dog, it needs experiences, good and bad, of other dogs so that it learns how it feels when other dogs are about. If they don’t get this, how can you expect you dog to improve its social skills?
You can’t keep your dog locked away and then shout at it for losing its self control on seeing other dogs – it’s a natural reaction for the dog.
George has been socialised as much as we can from an early age, with people too, not just dogs and cats.
As such, he is a joy to take out. He is genuinely interested and excited to meet others and I can be confident he poses no threat to any of them.
This confidence only comes from testing and knowing your dog. If you don’t help your dog – you’ll reap what you sow.
You dog loves being social so, please, give it every chance you can. 🐾
Dog training and problem pups.
George started his puppy training last Friday.
A week off six months old, he was one of the oldest in his group but we chose to wait to rejoin a training school we trusted.
Training is fine but it is always interesting learning something about your dog and parallels with humans.
George is already good at the ‘sit’ & ‘down’. His recall is quite good too but tonight, there was a dog there and the owner had NO control over this pet.
She was an older lady with a beautiful dog, completely out of her depth. At 4 months, this dog was massive and a ball of chaos.
George found him facinating. Sat next dog along, he had a front row seat of this problem pooch.
George also though that he could also start to behave like him, something I hadn’t seen him do before.
It was like when you were at school and in your class was ‘that’ kid who was always playing up and in trouble. Impossible to ignore and a bit of a magnet to the easily led.
And that’s what I learnt about my George. He won’t walk to heel and often ignores commands but he is easily lead and, by that, I don’t mean on a leash. 😏
A National Trust day trip gem.
Set in beautiful Worcestershire, Croome was secret wartime airbase which has been turned into a lovely place to visit.
We went in a group, with my friends, Elsa, Pip and Bob.
Dogs are welcome in the gardens and grounds but not in the house so we had a good run out there instead.
Only allowed in the gardens? Not a problem when you have garden designed by ‘Capability’ Brown – his first commission.
The restored parkland is a joy to walk around and, having been designed so well it has an interesting layout with some great views.
On the day we visited, in between sporadic showers that had us darting for cover, we took advantage of the deckchairs set out around the lake, positioned to take in the best views whilst waiting for our picnic to turn up!
Overall, a lovely site to visit, my first visit to a National Trust location, and one I’ll look to return to. After I’ve had a rest!
Well worth a visit. 🐾🐶❤️