Travel theme: Ancient. We live at the top of a hill. The road climbs out of Hexham from the west and flattens as it reaches the summit at the school and farm buildings – an earlier post shows the open views looking west. Carry on further east and the road narrows between farm cottages and then descends beneath overhanging trees to the back of Beaufront Castle. In the twilight this can be a sinister place – the first image shows the stone walls lining the lane towards the hamlet of Sandhoe.
The present-day castle dates from 1841 but the earliest records of a tower on this site date from 1451. When the original castle was demolished to make way for the John Dobson designed building, some architectural elements of this ancient monument were reclaimed by the locals. Walk round Sandhoe today and you can still find them. Here are just three: two surprisingly ornate entrances attached to once humble cottages and an elaborate horse trough:
(click on the images to enlarge)