NZ1265 : May blossom, Close House

taken 2 years ago, near to Heddon-on-The-Wall, Northumberland, Great Britain

May blossom, Close House
May blossom, Close House
The Hawthorn or May-tree is the only British plant named after the month in which it blooms NZ1266 : May blossom near Close Lea. The tree became the symbol of May Day itself but more typically usually flowers later in the month. Before revision of the calendar in 1752, May Day was 11 days later in the year.

A biological indicator of climate change, the Spring Index, is calculated from the annual mean observation date of the following four events: first flowering of hawthorn (Crataegus monogyna), first flowering of horse chestnut (Aesculus hippocastanum), first recorded flight of an orange-tip butterfly (Anthocharis cardamines) and first sighting of a swallow (Hirundo rustica). Since 1999, the annual mean observation dates have been around 7 days in advance of the average dates in the first part of the 20th Century.

"At the edge of the hedge is a Hawthorn Tree,
And its blossoms are sweet as sweet can be,
And the bees are humming there all the day,
And these are the words that I hear them say:-
Sweet, sweet is the Hawthorn Tree!"
From 'The Hawthorn Tree' by Nathan Haskell Dole (1895)
Close House

Close House was built in 1779 for the private use of the Bewicke family on the site of an earlier monastic house. The mansion and estate were sold in 1953 and bought for the sum of 13,190 by James Rutherford and Sons who sold it on to Kings College, later the University of Newcastle upon Tyne, in 1960 who had it refurbished in 1994 for 1,000,000.

The University sold the whole Estate to local business man Graham Wylie in 2004 and it reopened as a hotel and golf venue in 2005. LinkExternal link

In March 2014 it was reported that former computing millionaire, Graham Wylie, announced plans to convert Close House Hotel into a private home for his family. He is said to have invested an estimated 50m since buying it from Newcastle University 10 years ago. LinkExternal link
LinkExternal link

There is a brief history here LinkExternal link
Description of house: LinkExternal link Archive LinkExternal link
Description of gardens: LinkExternal link

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NZ1265, 148 images   (more nearby search)
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Date Taken
Sunday, 3 May, 2020   (more nearby)
Monday, 4 May, 2020
Geographical Context
Lowlands  Paths  Wild Animals, Plants and Mushrooms  Country estates  Woodland, Forest 
Primary Subject of Photo
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! NZ 1274 6595 [10m precision]
WGS84: 54:59.2789N 1:48.1462W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! NZ 12744 65947
View Direction
North-northwest (about 337 degrees)
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