Inevitably - and understandably - Lord Scarsdale does not necessarily agree with everything that is done at Kedleston, but he has warmly applauded much of the work undertaken there in the last seven years. This includes repairing leaking roofs, overdue conservation work to the contents, redecoration of showrooms and substantial landscape improvements to the park, as well as more mundane matters such as remedying defective drains and installing fire and intruder alarm systems. The repair of the semi- derelict 18th-century Sulphur Bath House in the Park, now nearing completion, is one of a number of projects for which Lord Scarsdale has expressed enthusiastic support.
One of the Trust's problems in acquiring the property was that some of the collection had already been dispersed, making it difficult to retain the layers of family history. The arrangement today is an attempt to make sense of the collection which remained.
This contrasts with nearby Calke Abbey, where the accretion of possessions that demonstrate the personal taste of each generation remains, and has, of course, been kept intact by the National Trust. To compensate for this lack at Kedleston, the Trust is establishing a museum of family memorabilia - hardly a case of ignoring the family history, of which the Trust stands accused.
Leamington Spa, Warwickshire
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