Whilst there's not many summer days left of 2022 now we head into August, the British Summer decided it still had some of it's best days to share, with a week of glorious Summer Sun (we'll not talk about the uncomfortable sticky nights!).

Back at the beginning of 2020, I had set myself a goal of getting out and about to take more photographs of places I love. January was heavy with work training, February offered some of the wettest days on record, so when March came around I was hopeful I'd finally start working on that goal - well, we all know how the world changed in March 2020, so suffice to say that goal went unmet. So here I am, over 2 years later, finally getting out again with my camera and I'm certainly enjoying it.

Unfortunately, both the Main Hall and the Old Hall are being restored at the moment so couldnt get any photos of those (unless I wanted pictures of scaffolding!), but the gardens were looking particularly beautiful with so much being in bloom, highlighted further by the stunning weather. I loved the Lavender and the huge clump of Agapanthus here, they're both personal favourites that I grow in my garden too.

I really enjoyed the Herb Garden (as I do every time I visit, I love growing many varieties at home) and some of the plants were absolutely teeming with bees - I'd never seen anything quite like it! They seemed to be really enjoying the Marjoram, but I found myself fascinated by the Dwarf Marjoram, I'd never seen it before and looks nothing like the Compact Marjoram I grow at home.

The Herb garden at Hardwick is planted in a more formal ornamental style than you find at some National Trust properties and has lovely stone benches scattered throughout. A lovely place to stop for a moment and take in the fragrance on the air.

As the weather was so wonderful, and most of the gardens at Hardwick are flat underfoot - I wore a lovely linen mix midi dress from Joules, paired with sandals from Next. You don't necessarily need overly sturdy footwear when visiting here unless deciding to do one of the walks that take you through the woodland and wider parkland.

As we wandered past the Mulberry Trees (with some of the fruit tasted along the way - although not by me ha ha), we were met with this beautiful framing of the architecture. It was almost as though the sun lit it up for us to enjoy it's beauty even more.

Before we headed home (and to be honest, out of the intense heat), we took in the tranquility on one of the many benches for a while and I even managed to get a little shot of the Hall (we will just pretend the scaffolding to the left of this picture wasn't there and this framing was entirely purposeful *winks*).

Even the surrounding countryside was looking spectacular - it really is a shame the Old Hall wasn't open. I can imagine I could have captured some even more incredible shots from up high - although these aren't too bad at all. The English countryside really can be breathtaking at times.

Hardwick is one of my favourite places to visit, in all seasons. Hopefully I will be back with my trusty camera again before the year is out. 

Hardwick Hall Website: