Home and away

You might be familiar with Castle Howard either because you’re one of the around 260,000 people who visit it every year or because you may have seen it on the screen. It’s a well-used filming location most famously in Brideshead Revisited – where it was practically a character it was such a feature – and more recently for Bridgerton. It starred in its own series, Castle Howard Through the Seasons, on Channel Four in 2022. Here’s a link if you’re curious.

It’s a magnificent English baroque country house in glorious rolling Yorkshire countryside. It’s also the ancestral home of the Howard Family. The house has a season when it’s open to visitors, and a myriad of events, and then a closed season when it returns to being a family home. This set the brief for the project.   

Signs in or near the house had to be easily removable leaving little trace, easy to put back, robustly storable and reparable and they needed to fit with the overall tone of the country house setting guided by Graphic Thought Facility’s brand refresh.

A project like this calls on our deep, practical understanding of the materials, production specification and functional design that will work best. 

Our approach is always to start with the character and history of the place and to reflect that in any intervention we produce. So, naturally, in Yorkshire we sought out local suppliers and manufacturers. Sandcast aluminium panels are from Sneatonthorpe and cast-iron features formed and crafted in Milton. We wanted to use local English oak from the estate but found we had to go further afield – France in fact. It turns out English oak is just far too knotty for some things.