We are members of our local tourist board and are regularly invited to visit local attractions. These visits are a great way to network and to see the places that our own guests may want to visit.
But this is April 2020 and the country is in lockdown due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Everything, it seems, is moving online so why not a virtual tour of Tissington Hall!
Sir Richard Fitzherhert, 9th Baronet, is passionate about his village and estate. He led the virtual tour around the gardens and main hall via his smartphone. Fortunately, only once or twice did the technology fail to keep up.
The weather was beautiful and although too early in the season to see the roses in bloom, we did see lovely displays of tulips in the stone hewn troughs.
Tissington Hall was built in 1609 and it has always been the Fitzherbert family that has lived there.
£200,000 a year will keep a 400 year old, grade II* listed, family mansion ticking over.
But when your normal operations to raise that £200k of weddings, functions and guided tours dries up due to the national lockdown, what do you do?
It’s time for some serious cost cutting!
One of the first spends to go was the three day, £750 a time, window washing exercise. Cleaning the 7,432 panes of window glass is just one of the jobs that will have to wait a while. As will sweeping some of the 48 chimneys in the Hall.
Sir Richard has furloughed the majority of the staff that supports his business. Dust covers are helping to keep cleaning to a minimum.
Hopefully, life will return to a new sort of normal sooner rather later and Sir Richard will be able to follow his passion and watch some cricket.
We’re hoping for a version of normality that will allow us to get out and about again and visiting some of the wonderful buildings in the Peak District.
2020 is obviously not going to be a typical year but normally the Hall is open 28 days of the year for guided tours.
You can find details of Tissington Hall and the Tissington village at www.tissingtonhall.co.uk