Sunday, 30 May 2010

Scotland Road Trip Day 1 no 40 Scone Palace

Now for the pictures from our trip to Scotland ( the 'our' being my friend Sue and me).

We left in the early hours of Wednesday morning - very early... and headed North as fast as we were legally allowed, and Sue could drive. We really wanted to be in Scotland as dawn broke... 

We crossed the borders just before dawn, and  as the sun rose we were  on our way bypassing Edinburgh and on our way to the Highlands!

We were heading for the wonderful and historic Scone Palace just outside of Perth

 We were greeted as we walked up to the house by a beautiful white peacock....and we were lucky enough to find some large white peacock feathers around the grounds, which we dutifully picked up and brought home...

 Scone Palace was once the place where the Kings of Scotland were crowned -and the rightful home of the celebrated Stone of Scone - also known as the Stone of Destiny.

The last King to be crowned there was John Balliol,  But in 1296 Edward I stripped Scotland of all it's emblems of nationhood and the Stone of Destiny was taken to Westminster Abbey. Where for the next 700 years it was housed in a specially-built coronation chair, on which Kings and Queens of England, then of Great Britain (UK), were crowned.

Then on Christmas Day 1950,  four students from Glasgow University broke into the Abbey and stole it.  However, they broke it into two pieces when they removed it, they took it back to Scotland where it was  repaired by a Glasgow stonemason, and hidden in a tractor repair shed in Scotland. 

Scottish Nationalism was not as fervent as it is now, and  so on 11th August 1951 the stone was left in the ruins of Arbroath Abbey, covered in the Salitre ( the Scottish flag ), and was  returned to Westminster Abbey for the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1952.

The one above is sadly not the orignal, which is still down in Westminster Abbey, but a copy

Sadly we were not actually allowed to take photographs of the inside of the house, so please check  out the web site (the link is just above), but enough to say it was absolutely fantastic, historical and magical ... and a great start to the trip.

However we did manage to sneak a pic of the cafe... were we stopped off for morning tea and of course a cake (they were Gluten Free - it would have been rude not too!!) 

And very nice it was too....

We finished off by taking a further walk around the grounds accompanied by more peacocks - though this time they were the blue ones!!

The graveyard was fascinating ....

 and full of very old graves as you can imagine....

 We finally took our leave and headed off to Pitlochry, to find our first B&B and to drop off our bags!

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