Whilst biding my time in Belfast City Airport, a book by Catherine Bailey, entitled The Secret Rooms, caught my eye.
It is described as non-fiction.
The narrative is described thus:-
A castle filled with intrigue, a plotting duchess and a mysterious death. At 6am in 1940, John, 9th Duke of Rutland, and one of Britain's wealthiest men, ended his days, virtually alone, lying on a makeshift bed in a dank cramped suite of rooms in the servants' quarters of his own home, Belvoir Castle, in Leicestershire.WH Smith were flogging it for its cover price, viz. £9.99. I chose to purchase it from Amazon, at £6.89.
For weeks, as his health deteriorated, his family, his servants - even the King's doctor - pleaded with him to come out, but he refused. After his death, his son and heir, Charles, 10th Duke, ordered that the rooms be locked up and they remained untouched for sixty years. What lay behind this extraordinary set of circumstances?
Today, whilst at Holywood Exchange retail park, I spotted an amusing little mug, with, rather appropriately (!), a crown thereon, in their Sale at £1.50 (originally £3).
Cognizant that I have a bottle of white Pinot Grigio plonk in the cellar (!), I whacked the stuff into the freezer, where it will remain for a minimal period, awaiting due consumption (not the whole bottle!).