Drawing 219: Nab Cottage, Rydal

Drawing 219: Nab Cottage, Rydal

Direction of view: WNW

Notes: The nearest parking is at White Moss.  In AW’s sketch the trees are bare, and they need to be: the cottage is virtually invisible from this viewpoint in summer!  The large tree at right centre in the sketch has been felled (after 1991), and conifers have grown up on the left, obscuring some of the buildings.

Wainwright notes that the date 1702 appears on a tablet over the door.  The house was once home to Thomas de Quincey, and also to Hartley Coleridge.  The only other appearance of this scene in Wainwright’s published works is on page 360 in Westmorland Heritage, where the top and bottom of the original sketch have been edited out.

Comments: I took this picture on slide film on 5th April 1986, a day when I had intended to tackle the snow-clad Coniston fells, but accidentally left my boots at home in Darlington!  So I did a walk from White Moss to Grasmere, up and down Stone Arthur, and after enjoying a break in a Grasmere tea shop, walked round Grasmere and Rydal Water back to the car.

A second picture on slide film was taken in the autumn of 1991, probably on 3rd November, on a day which was concentrated on photography rather than walking. This was almost certainly a day with Peter Messenger, looking for autumn colour.

My visit for the digital project was on Good Friday, 18th April 2014, a simply glorious morning.  Sheelagh Hughes Hallett and I were on our way to an art exhibition in Grasmere village hall, and stopped at White Moss to hurry back for the photo (only the first 20 minutes parking is free!).  This picture was about as good as one can now get, save for a white minibus parked conspicuously on the drive.