Finding inspiration in a tomato

Refurbishment of the B1 level of National Trust House in mid-2013 revealed some unexpected items. Just inside the doorway of one of the rooms, a man’s boot was found beneath the floorboards. Construction of this part of the building occurred in 1899 and it is believed the boot was deliberately placed there at the time.

And there was more. The bones of a cat were found beneath the floorboards of an original (1865-66) section of the building. Construction workers of that period commonly placed items in hidden locations in a building to ward off harmful influences.

Agricultural department workers are believed responsible for pieces of paper that have been glued to a north-facing plaster wall of the basement. The wall ‘paperings’ are cut from newspapers and magazines. Some are of agricultural products, others women’s fashion from the 1920s. One worker had an interest in soldiers in action in the First World War, specifically in 1917. A newspaper report on the fate of these men forms part of this strange collage.

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