Exploring the Neighborhood: We Live By a Castle

Hello. Yes, we are still here. Forgive us for the hiatus. It just means that we have lots of posts to catch up on.

You may remember a couple of weeks ago we mentioned this:

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Luckily, Dan doesn’t work Thursdays and left work early enough on Wednesday to beat the strike. But that still left us with a big question mark about what to do on Thursday, because we didn’t fancy joining queues like this at the bus stops:

So we decided we’d stick around close to the flat; explore the neighborhood a bit. Apparently there’s a huge park right next to our complex. Who knew!?

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We then decided to walk over to Bruce Castle. Yes, there’s a castle. I mean, it’s more of an old estate, really, but they call it a castle. It was pretty cool place, though. There’s a free museum (we love free museums) which basically just showcases the history of the local borough and area (we live in the borough of Haringey and in the Tottenham area).

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So, it’s not really a castle. It is a 16th-century manor house and it’s name comes from “House of Bruce”, who at one point owned a whole bunch of land in the Tottenham area. It had several different owners throughout the centuries and was even a school at one point. Currently it is a museum and the grounds are a public park.

The house is supposedly haunted by Lady Constantia. She was married to Henry Hare and lived in the home. It is said that Henry and Constantia didn’t have the best marriage (that’s probably an understatement, but at least she wasn’t married to Henry VIII). Henry didn’t really like her and eventually locked her in a small room in the attic. One night she committed suicide and jumped from the window. Legend has it that on November nights, if you look up to that window, you can see the ghost of Lady Constantia. Spooky, right?

There was a lot in the museum about the history of the area in the context of WWI and WWII. There was a high number of people in the area who didn’t support the war and were called “conscientious objectors”. They could apply and avoid being drafted into the armed forces. This wasn’t always the best decision though, since they often were then marked and discriminated against for their choices.

There was also a shout-out to leisure. One little section talked about how leisure has changed over the centuries and how people often came to the area for recreational purposes (SEE! Leisure and recreation is real thing that needs to be managed!).

In all, it was nice little way to spend the day avoiding the crowds on public transportation.

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