I ventured over the Thames from Essex to Kent this weekend to visit Knole in Sevenoaks, on the first springlike day of 2015 (although leaving my coat in the car turned out to be overambitious).
Knole has passed through generations of the Sackville family and is now looked after by the National Trust, and is surrounded by an enormous deer park. The drive up to the house was the most exciting arrival at a place I’ve experienced in a while, as the winding driveway takes you past groups of actual gambolling deer. I couldn’t wait to get out of the car and start taking some pictures.
There is some major interpretation and conservation work going on at the moment (I think I inhaled and choked on a dust fragment from Charles II’s bed), so you don’t quite get the full effect of everything being on show, but that really makes it a more interesting time to visit as seeing how these places are looked after is, for me anyway, a major part of the fun.
After a look around the house we went for a walk, which was a little confusing as the surrounding park is also a golf course, so you have to make sure you stick to the paths where necessary. Totally worth it for the deer though, I couldn’t believe how many of them there were.
Will definitely be back in the future to see the deer again and to see how the interpretation and conservation project pans out.