We came across Lodge Park many years ago when we were tootling around the narrow Cotswold lanes not far from where we now live. We were admiring the fine drystone walls that line the fields and keep the verdant banks and verges at bay. Suddenly there was a gap in the walls with two small lodges and a pair of large ornamental iron gates. As we passed I caught a quick glimpse of the building, and urged H to stop the car so that we could look. Sitting in the beautiful rolling Cotswold landscape, bereft of church, manor house, village or barns, was this beautiful little building standing quietly and all alone. We could see that it was empty and slightly neglected but that did not detract from its loveliness.
Moving forward several years, and having come to live here ourselves, we discovered that it was now in the hands of the National Trust, and following restoration opened to the public in 1998.
Passing beside the River Coln running through Bibury, which artist/craftsman William Morris called 'the most beautiful village in England'. Its honey-coloured 17th century stone cottages with steeply pitched roofs so typical of the area .
Arlington Row Cottages via wikipedia
The footbridge over the river leading to the cottages.
Driving along the narrow drystone walled lanes until.....
.......we arrived at the entrance gates to Lodge Park.
In the early 1630s John Dutton created a deer course on his Sherborne estate which consisted of a park for containing the deer, a mile-long walled enclosure for the chase and, overlooking the finish, a Grandstand.
So dear blogging friends, the answer to the architectural quiz is that it is a Grandstand for watching deer coursing.
Dutton was a wealthy hard-living squire with a passion for gambling. The point of the deer-coursing was to provide an opportunity for betting and to display the abilities of different dogs. He was often in London as MP for Gloucestershire and was familiar with the latest trends in court architecture. It is thought that his architect was John Webb, and that he modelled the grandstand on Inigo Jones' Banqueting House in London. Inigo Jones was in turn influenced by Palladio.
The Banqueting House, Whitehall, London via wikipedia
The grandstand consisted of two storeys with a flat roof and a basement. The ground floor was the entrance for welcoming guests and the first floor called the Great Room was where guests were entertained to huge banquets. The deer coursing could be observed from the flat roof or from the balcony over the portico. It continued to be used for more than a century until deer-coursing was superseded by racing and fox-hunting.
The Great Hall - the Grandstand was hosting an art exhibition featuring the most innovative contemporary artists at work in London today, as selected by twenty influential individuals in the contemporary art world. I must admit that most of it left us both feeling perplexed.
A white card cutout figure wearing underpants on it's head!!!
A super sized balloon trying to bounce around on the roof!!!
A twinkly YES in the grounds!!!
We did not have the same problems with this lovely drawing.