The wet weather drove us to Penrhyn Castle, the neo-Norman pile designed by Thomas Hopper, a hard-working and eclectic Regency designer in whatever style was suitable for a particular commission and who on this occasion based his design on a mix of Castle Hedingham and Rochester Castle. His client was George Hay Dawkins-Pennant, who had inherited a fortune made from sugar and slate from his father’s cousin, Lord Penrhyn.
The interior ornament and carving is undeniably impressive. This is the Grand Hall:-
Hopper’s oak chairs:-
And the stained glass windows:-
Next door, the library is equally impressive, with its elaborate carved chairs and slate gramophone:-
Most amazing of all is the range of rich carved ornament in the monumental Grand Staircase:-