Pictures of Staindrop
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It is reputed that King Canute, Viking King of England, Denmark and Norway, and self appointed Emporer of the North, may have ruled his 'Kingdom' from a Mansion and Estate in the vicinity of Staindrop in the 10th-century.
Staindrop is a long, sprawling village. It is strung out along a single main street and has a meticulously kept Village green. The village is strongly associated with the Neville family of nearby Raby Castle. This impressive Castle stands in a magnificent Deer Park and exactly matches the popular conception of what a castle should look like and is known to have been in existance since around 1016. To-day the castle has a very distinctive appearance, owed largely to massive rebuilding in the 14th-century. Inside are fine collections of furniture, paintings and other treasures, and among the chambers is a curious octagnol drawing room. The kitchens hold a display of 14th-century kitchen implements, including a smoke driven spit. Outside, in the stables, you will find
a superb collection of Carraiges that echo a more romantic, long gone era.
The local church was once the family church of the Neville's and contains monuments covering many generations of this illustrious and famous family. The church is of Saxon origin, and carries a tower that was added in the 12th-century. The south aisle, porch and nave, all date from the 15th-century. This is a truly interesting church with much to see and admire and, as with Raby Castle, it is well worth a visit.
This fine area is steeped in ancient history and several of the towns and villages have their roots deep in Saxon times. As you roam the beautiful surrounding countryside, it begins to feel as though you can see the Saxons in their strange garb, marching through the hills. They crossed the sea in longboats bringing with them the rich Celtic influences, still to be seen in the North of England, Scotland and Wales.
There are splendid nearby places of interest to visit - there are Abbey ruins at Egglestone, Rokeby Park is close-by as is Barnard Castle. Bishop Aukland and Darlington, have Museums and Galleries along with a host of modern shopping facilities. In both the towns and in the pleasant countryside you will find plenty of inns and public houses all serving excellent food, ale and wine.
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