I have been helping out at a historic house in the way of hall stewarding. This has been great fun and very interesting for me to learn about the house itself, the various owning families and the running of it from the staffing point of view. There are basement rooms open now – some are footmens’ bedrooms, another is the Butler’s panty – not just for making the tea and toast – oh no, this one had work spaces allocated for cleaning the silver, storing the china for breakfast trays. There are all manner of little bit an dbobs that would have been found in any working area below stairs. In the gift shop attached to th house they are tring to get together a range of products that really do reflect the house contents and history. Tea sets, coffee sets and tea towels are coming in soon. Just right as a proper reminder.