On Wednesday I took a break from preparing Dalesman’s Christmas special edition to dine at the Devonshire at Bolton Abbey in the company of the Dowager Duchess of Devonshire… well, it beats staying in the office and dropping half my sandwich onto the computer keyboard. The charming ninety-year-old hadn’t made the journey from Chatsworth just to see me – the event was part of the promotion of her book Wait for Me… the memoirs of the youngest of the Mitford sisters – but I did have a pleasant chat with her. Now living in a small house on the Chatsworth estate, Her Grace told me how over the years she loved coming to Bolton Abbey. “It always felt like a holiday for us,” she said. “Such beautiful surroundings and the staff here were always so wonderful.” So we have something common then – I feel the same way!

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  1. Paul Booth

    Lunch at the Devonshire, beats a curry in Keighley that’s for sure. Did you ask her ladyship the Duchess if she recalls the would-be fascist leader Sir Oswald Moseley who married her sister. Or was that interesting topic off the menu that day.

  2. Editor

    At the Devonshire she talked of going to tea with Hitler when she was a child but not really remembering much about it. Her sister Unity felt inspired by Nazis; one of her other sisters, Diane, married Moseley. I get the impression she is fed up with having to answer ‘tabloid’ questions about her sisters… her own life has been interesting enough.


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