Beatrix Potter's love of Melford Hall

Whilst Beatrix Potter's beautiful illustrations and stories are most often associated with the Lake District, a rare few were inspired by her time spent here in Suffolk!

Beatrix Potter's stays at Melford Hall

The cousin of Ethel, Lady Hyde Parker, grandmother of Sir Richard Hyde Parker, the present Baronet of Melford Hall, Beatrix visited her relatives often, staying at the hall many times, and it was here that she created numerous watercolour paintings of the house. 

During her stays, she would reside in the West Bedroom, furnished with mid-Victorian furniture, the room also features a turret, which Miss Potter used to keep small animals that she had brought with her on her travels, and to this day, the room remains furnished as it would have been.   

Melford Hall's rare drawings 

In 2016 during house renovations at the Hall, House Manager Josephine Waters found three drawings hidden inside books; featuring chairs, fireplaces and other furniture from the Hall alongside animal characters such as Squirrel Nutkin and the Tailor of Gloucester.

A fourth drawing was also found by Lady Hyde Parker, who lives at Melford Hall with her husband, Sir Richard, where Potter took regular holidays between 1899 and 1916.

The spinning wheel currently in the Blue Drawing Room was the inspiration for a drawing by Beatrix and look out for her friend, the marmalade cat, a Christmas gift to Sir Richard’s sister Elizabeth when the family spent Christmas in the Lake District. 

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