Nothing beats visiting a historic property in person, seeing the artefacts for yourself, chatting to one of our knowledgeable tour guides, and enjoying a cup of coffee afterwards in the café. To give you a taster for what you can expect to experience during your visit, please enjoy the virtual tours provided below.
Tour of the House
As well as a showcase for his personal art collection, Derek Hill’s house was a work of art in itself. From the wallpaper, carpet, and curtains in the William Morris bedroom, to the Wemyss ware in the kitchen, this tour illustrates both the paintings and the rooms that house them.
“Here he created a house and a garden which has been featured in many books as masterpieces of interior and garden design. An older brother, John, was a distinguished decorator and he and Derek discovered, and bought, rolls of original Morris wallpapers, which were being used as drawer-lining paper in an Edinburgh hotel.”
– Grey Gowrie, Obituary for Derek Hill, The Guardian (10th August 2000).
Tour of the Gardens
In the 1960s, Derek Hill wrote an article about his garden at Glebe House, and submitted it to the Royal Horticultural Society Journal. In a later article, he elaborated on how the garden had matured, and compared it to nearby Glenveagh. We present this article here, accompanied with illustrations at relevant intervals, as a tour of the gardens.
“Gardens should reflect the landscape they are in”, I wrote. It would have been a complete mistake to make an ordered, severely laid-out garden on the edge of the lake surrounded by hills where St Columb’s stands. I dislike formal beds planted with regimented flowers of the same height and colour. Perhaps my preference for an almost wild garden, reflecting the natural country around it, coincides with the clutter I seem to enjoy in a house – the collection of a lifetime.”
– Derek Hill (1968).