I first set foot in Bull Manor within the first couple of months of exploring abandoned buildings, practically a complete newbie, we arrived in the house and I stood jaw open for a while in awe that such a place could actually exist, untouched like a moment of history frozen in time. We walked through each of the beautiful rooms in amazement as each one presented different objects all left by the previous owner like a museum of curiosities.
Me and Ian decided to re visit, as he had never been, this time will be my last. It has been one of my favourite explores to date, but for reasons of dangerous floorboards and crumblings ceilings and quite frankly the fear of the bull that guards it and the farmer owner, of whom there is stories of chasing people away with a shot gun was enough to have my heart racing the whole time we were inside.
We got up at 4am to arrive at the manor before dusk, we crept through the field with the bull and didn’t see him as it was pitch black but I had this horrible fear that we would run straight into him. I must say when inside the house my heart slowed down and felt very relived we had made it in one piece. We waited in the hall way till the sun came up, I showed Ian around some of the rooms and it all began to sink in again. I cant really explain the feeling inside the house, it tells a big story of sadness, neglect, something very atmospheric, that I cant put my finger on, but special all the same, like watching a period drama in real life.
In 1945, a family purchased this beautiful Manor House together with 60 acres of land the site, rearing bulls in the land and working on the farm. The story is that in time of financial hardship the house suffered from dry rot and as it slowly took over the house, the family couldn’t rescue it, it slowly ate away and with no money to sort it out, the house slowly rotted away. It is heart wrenchingly sad to view each room with such personal item, photos, a babies pram, a beautiful piano and organ and even the old ladies clothes and blankets still in the cupboards, I could go on forever with a list of the things left. Its like something happened one day and everything just froze in their place. Its a true museum from the era and no one to see how magnificent it is.
It’s strange to think the baby that was in the pram is now an old man or woman and that the last residents are probably dead. Each room presented itself with a different atmosphere and maybe it was my mind running away and having not slept really the night before I started to imagine daily happenings in the house, I could picture the man of the house with his paper in the grand front room by the fire, the light pouring through the window and residing in the library of books.
The lady of the house busy cooking, with the aga cooker, or maybe in a manor house so big she would have servants and she would be brushing her hair in the bedroom, or lounging on the chaise lounge and spending the afternoon painting the beautiful countryside around her.The house in its hey day would have been truly grand, its just a shame that the owner cant get the planning permission to extend his farm to create the revenue to restore it to its former glory. It will be forever etched in my mind and I will always remember my divine brush with the past.
Since writing this blog and saying I would not go again, I dreamed of shooting a model inside and have since been back again to do this, it was a dream come true for me and despite the hard entry the third time, the hauling of dresses across a river in the dark and over razor wire and sleeping in the house for an entire night. It was haunting and truly special to have the sun come up and witness the house in such beautiful light, it was one of the best exploring adventures I have ever had.