Mrs Seddons ensures the housemaids have clean hands and are ready for the day ahead.
Spring Celebrations in the basement of Ickworth House:
King George’s Silver Jubilee and Empire Day
Work as Usual
In the kitchens Mrs. Finkel, the head cook, Lizzie Cole, a kitchen maid, and Ethel Read, the new scullery maid, are busy preparing pastries for the parties that are being held both upstairs and downstairs
Lord and Lady Bristol have guests arriving and the housemaids are busy preparing the rooms for the visiting servants.
Above: Beatrice cleans the senior servants’ sitting room.
Below: Head Housemaid, Miss Edgeley, observes as Violet dresses the bed for Lord Macclesfield’s valet.
In the servants’ hall John, the hall boy, polishes the footmen’s shoes and Winifred, a lady from the village who comes in to help on particularly busy days, irons and starches the table linen
Mr. Prosser, the estate manager, discusses business with the butler and Mrs. Seddons, the housekeeper, welcomes Miss. Petcher, Lady Summerleyton’s ladies maid.
The house needs to be prepared for the arrival of the Bristol’s guests
Rose dusts the bust of William Pitt in the west corridor and Mrs. Seddons inspects the housemaids’ work in the Library
The table ready for tea in the dining room and the card table littered with the evidence of last night’s game
Excitement brews in the basement
Bunting is draped along the basement corridors
Jim, the odd-man, jokes with Violet
Rose and Beatrice enjoy a break from work
“Hurrah, God Save the King”
Head Housemaid, Miss Edgeley, might seem strict but she looks after her girls. Rose and Beatrice stand with her under the bunting in the servants’ hall just moments before tea is served
Hall Boy, John, finds time to write a letter home
The visiting ladies’ maids gossip over a little light reading
Just one of the cakes served for tea
Some photographs of Ickworth Lives taken during the summer of 2013
Some of the junior servants; from left to right – Florence and Rose, two housemaids, Millie, a scullery maid, Miss Stringer, senior housemaid, and John, the hall boy
Two scullery maids hard at work
Rose and Millie taking a rest on the servants’ stairs
Jim, the odd man, in his workshop
Dinner time in the servants’ hall
Jim tucks into his lunch
Miss Stringer, Rose and the housekeeper, Mrs Seddons
Footman Harry and Rose preparing the table for dinner
Rose, Millie, Miss Stringer and John playing a game of draughts
A ladies maid at her sewing machine
Some of the lovely food prepared in the kitchens this summer…