Tuesday, 27 November 2012

A Trip to Thorpeness

"The Headlands" built in 1937
Briefly stopping off late in the afternoon at Thorpeness on our Suffolk holiday we took a twirl around the village and of course being coastal dwellers the first stop was the beach coming in past these houses with the perfect sea view
The village of Thorpeness started life as a small fishing village and is reputed to have been the preferred smuggling route into East Anglia but it was about to change early in the 20th century when a Scottish barrister who had made his fortune from the railways bought up a huge tract of land along the coast and in 1910 started to build a holiday village for his friends.  He went on to develop a private fantasy holiday destination building golf course and club house, tennis courts, country club and homes in mock Jacobean and Tudor style sometimes described as 'Romantic Picturesque'
like these from a photograph taken in the 1930s
The Haven houses built c1914
In common with all Suffolk villages Thorpeness has a village sign and this shows its most famous features, the windmill and the House in the Clouds.  The latter was in fact built to hide the water tower whose tank was clad in wood to make it look like a small house on a 5 storey tower.  With mains water installed in the village it was turned into a huge games room and today is a holiday let with I imagine spectacular views and an ideal way to keep fit going up and down its 68 steps.

Three generations of the Ogilvie family owned these village amenities and when the last one dropped dead on the golf course many properties were sold to pay death duties.  Today 400 people live here permanently but the numbers swell to 1,600 in the holiday season
 We sat in the Dolphin Inn beer garden which is situated near the Almshouses built in the 1930s.  We had chosen our holiday weeks well because it encompassed the hottest day of the year just the excuse for a cold beer, if I needed one.
The House in the Clouds was not the only water tower. This is the Westbar a 'Norman' or medieval style building which also hid a water tower.  So there is my ten minute trip around Thorpeness with its countless building styles the last to be built the first of my photographs but there is lots more including a lake with Peter Pan associations but I will have to make a return journey to Suffolk to take pictures of those. 

An entry to ABC Wednesday - a journey through the alphabet which today has stopped on the latter T


Leslie: said...

That looks like a TERRIFIC place to visit and maybe even to live! I love the coloured houses in the first photo!

abcw team

Roger Owen Green said...

what an utterly pleasant place
ROG, ABC Wednesday team

MERYL JAFFE, PhD - parent, psychologist, teacher, author... said...

Looks charming!!! And a beach too.

photowannabe said...

This looks like a delightful place to visit. Nice photos showing us the scenery.

Reader Wil said...

Thanks for taking us on a virtual tour in this town. It looks wonderful and peaceful. I have often been in the UK but never been here. But thanks to you I saw something of it!

Paula Scott said...

I must admit to feeling a bit on the ignorant side with all the towns you've posted. Only because, for the most part, I've never heard of them! It just reminds me of all that there is out there in our world left to see...

Gerald (Hyde DP) said...

Never been to Thorpeness - looks nice - hiding water towers is a great idea - most coastal villages have a tradition of smuggling.

Rajesh said...

Very informative post with wonderful images of architecture of the place.

Chubskulit Rose said...

Such a colorful building structure/housing.

Catching up with all the T entries.

Travels & Wandering
Rose, ABC Wednesday Team

Chris said...

Hi Joy, just stopping by to say how delightful your blog is. Thanks so much for sharing. I have recently found your blog and am now following you, and will visit often. Please stop by my blog and perhaps you would like to follow me also. Have a wonderful day. Hugs, Chris