GREAT BRITAIN: The Stately Coals of England

The Earl of Fitzwilliam's secretary and his estate agent spluttered in angry despair over the "incredible, appalling despoliation." Already 450 acres of the estate surrounding Wentworth Woodhouse, ancestral Fitzwilliams seat in Yorkshire, had been chewed by huge shovels scooping out subsurface coal. A farm, a woodland, a parkland had been dug up. Soon a stud farm, paddocks, fish pond, tree nursery, stately avenues and timbered slopes would also go. The place was a "complete mess."

So far the mansion was unharmed. Longer than a city block, built in 1746, it is a fabulous place. It has 1,000...

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