img_9595Thorpeness is rather odd – a model holiday village started in 1910 by a wealthy barrister called Glencairn Stuart Ogilvie (a veritable pile-up of Scottish signifiers).

It’s very pleasant in a mock-Tudor way and reminds me of Port Sunlight or Snouk van Loosenpark in Enkhuizen – except that Thorpeness didn’t have had any social underpinnings apart from a desire for a good time in pretty surroundings. This is perhaps best illustrated by “the house in the clouds”: the water tower which was topped with a house to disguise the utilitarian tank. So more le Petit Trianon than Bourneville.

Rather than a village pond, Thorpeness has the meare – a silted up former harbour which, this morning, was slightly frozen.


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