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Some of our treasures
This was the buttery (kitchen) of the Jacobean house. In the early years of the 19th century it was panelled out and painted off-white. The present scheme may date from the middle of the 19th century.
Some of the stained glass windows in the Great Hall date from the 15th century and some originally came from St Peter Mancroft church in Norwich. The window on the left depicts the crest of the Windham family who lived at Felbrigg Hall. The lion and fetterlock motif can be seen used in various forms throughout the house and on the estate.
See the Dining Room with the table set ready for a grand evening meal. The meal is a recreation of one served here at Felbrigg in the 1860s. The menu was found written in the diary of Rachel Anne Ketton, a member of the family who lived here in the late 1800s. Find out about dining 'a la russe' and why the Victorians tied a ribbon around walnuts.
Known originally as the great parlour, this was the main reception and dining room of late 17th century, panelled in oak and hung with pictures. Remodelled in 1751 by James Paine who retained the original ceiling with its date of 1687 in the plasterwork and its imagery of feasting with game birds, fruit. and flowers reflecting the room's original purpose.
Originally the drawing room of the 1680s wing, it was square and panelled until the bay window was added in 1751. William Windham II remodelled the room as the setting for the Italian pictures acquired on his Grand Tour. These still hang very much as he originally planned.
The Stair Hall
The construction of James Paine's stair hall was begun in the spring of 1752. It occupied much the of the site of the 1680s stairs, but actually achieved fewer and more gradual flights in a smaller space. The Stair Hall was redecorated for Admiral Windham in 1824 by Dixon of Norwich. There is general resemblance to the Dining Room scheme.
Soak up the atmosphere of Felbrigg's outstanding Gothic library. This room was probably the Great Chamber of the Jacobean house and was made into the Library by William Windham II between 1752-5. The collection contains approximately 5,000 books, including a copy of Dr Johnson's famous dictionary. The oldest book dates from 1509 and they've all been read - they weren't bought by the yard.
The book room at Felbrigg is off the library. The current exhibition here is of the women of Felbrigg, the wives and daughters, who are often overlooked. You can see:
- Katherine Windham's book of plays - a well thumbed volume with ink smudges on many of the pages
- Rachel Ketton's diaries - a fascinating insight into the lives of a Norfolk family
- Emily Ketton-Cremer's bee keeping books and wonderful album of postcards
There are also dance cards, scent bottles, stamp boxes and bracelets on display.
Originally 2 rooms, these were united in 1751 when the bay window was built. The wallpaper was ordered through the East India Company and block printed/hand painted in China. A specialist had to be engaged to hang the paper at a cost of 3s6d per day (17.5p) and 6d (2.5p) per mile travelling. William Windham II thought this a 'cursed deal'.
The kitchen has occupied this site since the early eighteenth century but its ceiling was raised probably around 1800 when the two round-headed windows were made in its east wall. The charcoal stove between them is also of this date but it appears that the old range was removed by the last squire who introduced the present Aga.