The oval staircase
We actually took a whole, proper day off, with the intention of going to Seaton Delaval Hall. It was the most glorious, sunny day and MrM drove us down by the coastal route, with two very brief stops on the way - one near Warkwork by the river and the second at Cambois beach.
Seaton Delaval Hall was designed by Sir John Vanbrugh and built in the early 1700s but, sadly, much of it was damaged by a huge fire in 1822. Parts have been reconstructed, and the National Trust, which acquired the site some years ago, has launched a massive conservation programme. There's still a lot of the hall to see, including the cellars - it's a fascinating place. The main blip shows the oval staircase (looking up from the bottom) and, if you look carefully, you can just make out the twisted, fire-damaged metal at the top. We spent a while walking through the formal gardens (extra) and bluebell woods before heading back to the car.
Next MrM drove us down to Tynemouth, where we looked around the town, walked by the castle and priory, went up to the Collingwood Monument and, finally, walked to the end of the north pier (quite a distance - it's 899m long). From there we watched the pilot boats guide some large ships, including a large cruise ship, in and out of the Port of Tyne. And a cormorant (extra) kindly posed for a few photos.
To end the day quick visit to the Axminster shop to buy a couple of tools for MrM's workshop, and a meal in Alnwick on the way home...