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What do the grounds and buildings of Wimpole Hall tell us about the owners?

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Introduction

WHAT DO THE GROUNDS AND BUILDINGS OF WIMPOLE HALL TELL US ABOUT THE OWNERS? The grounds and buildings of Wimpole Hall are all very fashionable and full of nature. There are some religious buildings especially for servants and others just for the owners. What does this tell us about the owners? The impressive classical style front and back walls of the stable block can tell us many things about the owners. It shows us that the owners treasured their horses and were also very rich because they could afford to make even the animals homes look good. The owners have tried to make a big impression on their visitors by showing that they can keep up with the fashions. The stable block has a plain wall which visitors would not have been seen. This could have meant that they were not as rich as most people thought them to be; they were saving money where possible. The stables would have been comfortable for the horses because they were larger than the average stables at the time. The stablehand and animal related servants would have lived above the stables, which would have been extremely uncomfortable for them. They probably would have had straw to sleep on which may have been itchy and smelt. The servants were there to keep watch over the horses because these animals were extremely valuable. It seems that the owners thought more of their horses than of their servants. The outside of the church has four different styles. This tells us that the owners were very keen to keep up with fashion and had the money to enable them to do so. On the other hand, the reason for why there are four different styles could be that the owners could not afford to renovate the whole church at once when a new style became fashionable. ...read more.

Middle

which were much better than shouting their servants. Compared to the servants at Ham House (BBC One Foot in the Past Video) who usually shared a small attic bedroom with three others, the Wimpole Hall servants lived comfortably. In addition, at Ham House the owners would always position themselves above the servants to show how much more important they were compared to them. This is a similar attitude to the owners of Wimpole Hall, although the servants only sat lower in chapel and worked below the family/owners. The owners of Wimpole Hall had a hierarchy of servants; the housekeepers and the butler who were at the top would have better living quarters and a higher salary. This was a similar case at Erdigg according to the 'National Trust Guide Book' Various sources and videos of Chatsworth, Erdigg and Ham House all tell us about the plain walls, bedrooms and shared bedrooms of the servants living quarters. This shows that nearly all estate owners thought that their servants should not have decoration because it would: a) distract them from their work b) they were of lower social status. In conclusion, I think that the various owners of Wimpole Hall treated their servants better that other estate owners. Wimpole Hall servants although treated as lower class people were given free board, food and passed down out of fashion clothes. While most other estate, owners took the cost of damaged items out of servant's pay along with board and food. I believe that the owners of other large estates like Ham House and Erdigg treated their servants with little or no respect and were quite unreasonable and cold-hearted towards them. HOW RELIABLE IS THE FILM 'MANSFIELD PARK' IN TELLING US ABOUT 19TH CENTURY PEOPLE? ...read more.

Conclusion

This extract also tells us how Lady Hardwicke then laughed which shows that the owners could not have been religious if she did not even feel ashamed or reason for the family's absence. The video 'Mansfield Park' tells us that religion was not seen to be important. The women were astonished when a man decided to become a clergyman. They suggested that he should be something more respectable like a lawyer. This evidence can tell us that religious ways were almost disapproved of by the upper classes. Services became more relaxed as time went on. "...attended services every Sunday. But they were more casual than they had been in the past." (COOTES - Britain since 1700). This tells us that religious attitude was becoming almost non-existent. This is similar to the information gathered from other sources. An extract from the Cambridge Chronicle 1843 states a completely different view. Her Majesty and the Prince are said to have a strict routine around the time of the chapel services. In conclusion, I believe that Wimpole Hall is the most useful source to tell us about many aspects of religious attitudes at the time because you can look for yourself and deduce facts by your own interpretations. Wimpole Hall is not useful to find out information like when the services were held and who attended, which could prove helpful in finding out about religious attitudes at the time. With sources out of newspapers and diaries, you can not be sure that the information shown is not biased and you can not look at both sides of the story. The most helpful sources other than Wimpole Hall are books on religion in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries are books written by the National History Trust who are most likely to have accurate information. Stacey Robinson 10C1 ...read more.

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