We visited Snowhill Manor yesterday, a true collector's paradise set in an idyllic Gloucestershire valley in the Cotswolds (UK). It is packed full of the late Charles Paget Wade’s incredible collection of objects, that he amassed over the course of his entire life. Every room offers a completely different experience from the previous one, laid out as a visual feast for the eyes and akin to a continous journey of eccentric discovery.
Even before you get to the front door, the entry ticket - designed in a typical Arts and Crafts-style, hints at the truly personalised visit that awaits.
From oriental furniture to a room full of Samurai soldiers, fine clocks to heraldic shields, musical instruments to early bicycles, thousands of treasures are displayed just as Charles Wade intended.
His passion for collecting began when he was just 7 years old, thanks in part to the influence of his Grandma and her cabinet of curiosities. After inheriting a fortune from his father in 1911, he both purchased and restored Snowhill to house his vast collection in what is a truly amazing setting. Living in the simple cottage next door, he would invite influencial friends and students to visit the house and study the collection. Upon his death in 1956, he left it all to the National Trust, who have done an excellent job in keeping it just as he wished.
Craftsmanship is cited as the overall theme that ties so many amazing and unusual items together. Charles's aim was to preserve these wonderful objects from the past, before the industrial revolution effectively replaced them altogether. We thought it was a truly unique and magical place, and fully intend to visit again soon... as there was just so much to see.
Visit the Snowhill Manor website here
Images © Graham Powell of Obsessionistas