Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Gibside Chapel

Last week, Todd and I took a trip to Gibside to see Gibside Chapel and the surrounding Bowes estate lands. The chapel was built in the 18th century in a style called “Palladian” that is copied after the style of the ancient buildings of Rome.

Inside the chapel was beautiful with a large three tiered pulpit right in the center.

From this pulpit, a preacher would preach at the top tier and the sounding board over his head would help to project his words. From the second level, the readings would be read and at the bottom a clerk would sit. In front of this pulpit is an altar.

According to Todd, the pulpit would have been constructed in this way to signify the importance of the preached word in a service.

We then ventured out through the Bowes estate, working our way to the “Column to Liberty” that was exactly one mile away from the Chapel. It was not hard to miss it as it stands 150 feet tall.

Here’s a close up photo I found online of the statue on top of the column.

We visited the Orangery built by Mary, the daughter of George Bowes, which was continually heated year round, though its present state is in disrepair and Gibside is hoping to restore it to its original form in the future.

The most interesting thing I remember about Mary Bowes was that she married John Lyon and their children hyphenated their last names to Bowes-Lyon. Elisabeth Bowes-Lyon, the late Queen Mother, is a descendant of this union.

The estate was beautiful and had lovely walking paths and beautiful views. There were rhododendrons everywhere!

It was a rainy day when we went so the pictures don’t really capture the beautiful grounds and he views.

Even with the rain, it was a very beautiful place to spend our Bank Holiday!

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