In addition to searching for settings to use in future books, we’ve also been on the hunt to discover how those we’ve already used have faired two-hundred years later. Bilston, just south of Wolverhampton, is the seat of the earldom belonging to Gabriel Wellingham, Earl of Trenton. His house, Trenton Manor, is fictional, but we imagined it looked somewhat like Hanbury Hall.
In Bilston, we found the Horse and Jockey. Except for the flags, I t still looks the same.
We then headed to Stretton, Staffordshire, home of The Spread Eagle. That’s the coaching inn where Sarah Cumberbatch was a tavern maid when Gabriel first visited (at the very beginning of The Kiss of a Viscount) and then the manager of in My Fair Groom. Now a gastropub, it’s in excellent shape, has a huge wine list, and serves really good pub food.
Our final stop for the day? Our next accommodations! The Izaac Walton Hotel is located in picturesque Dovedale near Ashbourne. We’ll be spending three nights at this 17th century former country house.
We’ll be touring the Derbyshire countryside for the next few days. Ta-ta for now.