Opening to the Public

@p1kef1sh (45638)
October 14, 2008 4:58pm CST
Those that know me here will know that from time to time I talk about the stately pile that is P1ke Towers. The ancestral home of the P1kef1sh family located deep in the English countryside. Like many such ancient edifices we have our tales of majesty, terror and pestilence. P1ke Towers costs a great deal to run. The family were successful tea merchants until an unfortunate accident in Boston Harbour on 16 December 1773 when in an attempt to make the World's largest cup of tea, our whole tea consignment to the colonies was accidently sunk. In a typical act of British bureaucracy the message to send out fresh supplies was wrongly interpreted as the Americans refusing to retrieve the spilled tea and war was declared. Our family fortunes have never recovered and I am now in the sad position of wondering what I can do to keep the old girl standing. The guttering has fallen. Slates are missing. The brickwork requires re-pointing and the windows leak. I thought that we had dry rot but apparently it is Creakly, our faithful family retainer for well over 100 years, attempt at a mushroom farm. To this end I am considering allowing the public to access the old house and gardens in return for a small fee. I have some reservations about this though. To whit: Muddy feet Greasy Fingers Light fingers Tour guides (I am one and know what a threat they can be with their umbrellas or sticks waving wildly over their heads) Food Drink Lack of toilets There may well be other problems that I've not thought of. My question is simple. Faced with a similar problem. Would you allow public access to your home?
12 people like this
22 responses
@guybrush (4660)
• Australia
14 Oct 08
Would I allow public access to my home ... BWAAHAHAHHAAA! Some days I'm hesitant to allow the residents access to my home! It would be a very short tour. There are no floorboards, you can see the heavens through the missing roof and sadly, we don't have a faithful retainer growing fungal omelette fillings for us. We have to crawl over Council's 'Condemned' tape every time we come home - and there hasn't been electrickery or water connected for years. We do have a Macca's up the road, so the Food, Drink, Toilets problem would be sorted, at least. Hopefully now you'll feel much more cheerful about the state of affairs you face - P1ke Towers is a palace compared to Casa Shambolic. Hold your head high, wave your brolly and Let 'Em In!
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45638)
14 Oct 08
Those wind up computers are a real boon to those without electrickery. P1ke Towers does have running water. Many's the time I've spent happily fishing for the trout that inhabit what we laughingly call "The Shower". In reality a waterfall. But I may well let them in. All this for a tenner. Or if you are Italian. A tenor!
1 person likes this
@guybrush (4660)
• Australia
15 Oct 08
... or if I were French, a tenoir? I'm very glad you have running water. My tourists would need to be running ... to get water! A disadvantage of running water, however, is that it will make people want to pee. And the need to pee necessitates the need for toilets. And the need for toilets multiplied by several hundred marauding stickybeaks means you're going to have soggy shrubberies and rancid rockeries ... and all the neighbourhood dogs wondering why their territory has already been marked!
1 person likes this
@guybrush (4660)
• Australia
2 Feb 09
Thank you very much for the best response, P1ke ... do you know, I can't even remember writing this response? Or even this thank you! What's the world coming to? Menopause, that's wot ...
@Munchkin547 (2778)
15 Oct 08
Never ever ever in a million years!! hehe I wouldn't do it for the reasons you said as well as people being nosey - and what if they were smelly, it would linger in my house! hehe I never knew you had such a colourful family history p1ke!!! :-) xxx
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45638)
15 Oct 08
It's amazing what you can make up young Munchbunch. Are you recovered from the festivities?
1 person likes this
15 Oct 08
it truly is amazing!! am pretty much recovered, had a lazy day today, although i managed to fall over before i even got there, which was v ery embarrassing and also left me with a lovely reminder up my arm in the form of a huge unsightly bruise!! am just about seeing the funny side now, although my friends managed to see it straight away!! hehe xxx
@dawnald (84070)
• Shingle Springs, California
14 Oct 08
How much can I get out of it? :-)
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45638)
14 Oct 08
As much as you can.
2 people like this
@dawnald (84070)
• Shingle Springs, California
14 Oct 08
I would have to make enough to pay for a maid and a tour guide. Maybe I'll just forget the whole thing.
1 person likes this
@nannacroc (4049)
14 Oct 08
Left to my own devices I would not even allow family access to my home but the upper crust, of which you are so obviously one, will do anything for money so go for it but keep them out of the loos and make sure they leave their gamps in the stand.
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45638)
14 Oct 08
I have often invaded your home. Weekly in fact. A most accommodating and pleasant estate in which to wile away an our or two on a sabbath eve. You offer good advice and I shall heed it. I'm not sure why one would want to leave grandparents in the hat stand. Oh, you mean umbrellas!
1 person likes this
@nannacroc (4049)
15 Oct 08
Yes dear, I said gamps not gramps. Of course my home is not a patch on yours but I'm glad you'll take my advice.
1 person likes this
@RenoMan (90)
• Togo
14 Oct 08
A Brit with a no money to maintain the stately pile? What is England coming to?:) I'd make all comers strip, tie their hands behind their backs for the duration of the tour and on the way out charge them an exhorbident fee for tea in the garden. Or I could just send you my wife. She's learned a lot about reno work on the cheap being married to me, and I'm dying to get rid of her.:)
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45638)
14 Oct 08
I think that what the Queen does when people visit Buckingham Palace in the Summer. Send her over with her hammer. Will she work for cups of tea?
2 people like this
• Togo
14 Oct 08
She'll work for nails for my coffin. Keep her away from the Queen. She has a thing about old ladies in big hats.
1 person likes this
@laglen (19779)
• United States
15 Oct 08
I think I would do what it takes. But you can also put restrictios down too right? Liek closing off parts. I would definately keep my living space seperate. But if it is a way to make the money you need to keep her standing. I think I would.
@p1kef1sh (45638)
15 Oct 08
I would want to keep our private apartments off limits. But they're welcome, for a pice, to the rest!
• India
15 Oct 08
I wouldn't allow anybody public access to the house I am living in now. Are you living in this family castle? From the information you have provided, I gather that you are not living there. In other words, the thing is just a while elephant isn't it? Why not earn some money out of it? It sounds like a lovely historical building. I guess you could even sell it to the state to make a museum or something out of it. You will find this difficult if you are very much attached to this house. I wouldn't sell or allow public access to anything I have a sentimental attachment to. What you do with it is entirely up to you and what you feel about it. I feel it is a great idea to allow the public to enjoy the beauty and quaint charm of an old English manor if you are not living there and find it difficult to maintain it. Your family home sounds lovely; I have read about such things only in English novels. Do you read P.G Wodehouse? Remember Blandings Castle and Lord Emsworth? Cheers and happy Mylotting
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45638)
15 Oct 08
I have read almost every word of Wodehouse that I can find. I do indeed remember Blandings. Our own piece of English history is not quite as grand as that. However, it has its features. Mostly ones that need repair. The stable block, which I prefer to call the garage, needs considerable work. Perhaps if I made that the entry point I could get artisan members of the public to all do a little brick laying, carpentry etc! We do live here too. Of course our private quarters will be off limits to all but the most desperately in need of the toilet visitor.
1 person likes this
@Opal26 (17690)
• United States
15 Oct 08
Sounds like an interesting plan pikey! I do agree that maybe you should just stick to the garden tour, might be a bit easier on the family and loo! Would I open my apartment for a tour? It would be an extremely boring short tour! Not much of interest here! It's cute and all and will be even cuter after I finish the re-decorate, but for touring, no not much! Will leave that to the pros, like you pikey! Think where you live is alot more of interest than where I live! I don't even live in the "Big Apple", I'm 45 minutes on the outside of it!
@p1kef1sh (45638)
15 Oct 08
But is the peel not what attracts us to the Apple in the first place Opal? Your apartment sounds charming.
1 person likes this
@suehan1 (4355)
• Australia
14 Oct 08
well p1ke i would allow the public to view my home if it were a heritage building.firstly you must place a no food an drink sign up.make them take their shoes off,give them some disposable gloves.as for the loos hire a portable loo and stick it behind a bush,or better still get a few old half drums and build a old shack to house the loos,make them feel like they are going back in time when they had outhouses.cheers sue
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45638)
15 Oct 08
That all sounds so rustic Sue. Loos are a vital feature, especially for the ladies. Perhaps a few upturned oil drums will be exactly suited to their needs!
1 person likes this
@Rosekitty (19398)
• San Marcos, Texas
14 Oct 08
P1ke...I think i would open my house up for a few dollars since there are so many nice things i could do to fix my place up also..like put in a door for my broom..lovely gardens to sit and watch allday..and guest beds for those who want to come and visit
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45638)
14 Oct 08
Let's talk guest beds Rosie. Big enough for two. Snug enough to cuddle.......... Quiet enough to make sweet passionate love..........
1 person likes this
@myklj999 (31671)
• Olney, Illinois
14 Oct 08
Yeah, I'd do it. One question though: What kind of admission price should I charge for a two-minute tour of my RV?
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45638)
14 Oct 08
I suggest that you have them exit direct into the bar. That way you can charge $10 entry and by the time that they realise that they may have paid a little too much; they'll be well on their way to oblivion.
1 person likes this
@twoey68 (13651)
• United States
17 Oct 08
I think I would but I'd limit the access and remove things of easy picking up and removal (small items that can be stolen). I wouldn't allow any food or drink and a certain amount of the proceeds would have to go towards keeping up the carpets and such. If having a tour guide is in the plans perhaps they could let the patrons know that stick waving or umbrella waving is forbidden. I'd try it with a small group once or twice and see how it works out. [b]~~IN SEARCH OF PEACE WITHIN~~ **AGAINST THE STORMS, I WILL STAND STRONG** [/b]
@p1kef1sh (45638)
18 Oct 08
That's a great idea Twoey to try it out with one of two groups first. A sort of tester. I must give that some thought! Thank you.
@twoey68 (13651)
• United States
18 Oct 08
At least that way, if it doesn't work out your not locked into anything. I think it'd be great to live in this type of home...sounds alot like a castle...maybe you could post some pics sometime...I'd love to see it. [b]~~IN SEARCH OF PEACE WITHIN~~ **AGAINST THE STORMS, I WILL STAND STRONG** [/b]
@p1kef1sh (45638)
18 Oct 08
I am afraid that you would be so disappointed. LOL.
@ellie333 (21018)
15 Oct 08
Hi Pikef1sh, No absolutely not. I will only allow close friends and family through my door these days, gone are the days of open house to all, been got by the tourists in the past LOL. My home is my castle (if it really were one I may consider it)and my safe haven away from the outside world. I would have to get my slates fixed another way. Huggles. Ellie :D
@p1kef1sh (45638)
15 Oct 08
LOL. I know exactly what you mean Ellie. But it's a way to make a few quid!
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45638)
15 Oct 08
I had a fantastic day. They are both so lovely. I did take some pics but they are en route to the ladies to see if they approve. We nattered from 12.30 to 6pm!! Longer in fact. I'm afraid that I rather hogged the conversation. Nothing new there then. Didn't get my mouth soaped either!! We need to arrange something in Devon now.
@mtdewgurl74 (18118)
• United States
27 Jan 09
I would hate to but if need to I guess I would have no choice really. It would be a historical place and I am sure a pretty penny could be made from tours. But you have to watch those grubby sticky hands that seem to make things disappear suddenly in a blink. I would pay for toilet use..and make sure they were supplied with alot of fluids..lol
@p1kef1sh (45638)
27 Jan 09
The toilets are in the car park Becky. I didn't want any poor aiming on my bathroom floor!
@mtdewgurl74 (18118)
• United States
27 Jan 09
Yeah I agree, I guess cute signs don't actually work If you tinkle winkle on the seaty be a sweety and wipe the seaty. I really should start to enforce that rule in my house..lol.
18 Oct 08
Your home sounds perfectly normal to me Pike,and I am sure that it is indeed your castle as mine is mine.Home is somewhere where you can do as you please,if you want interior design and you feel that you have no need to sit down at any time,that is because you have white leather sofas,and a minimalist approach that borders on the extreme of houseproud then that is your prerogative.I myself prefer a homely house,one with lots of cushions,and footstools and the kettle is constantly on the biol.the dog and the cat share the armchair,and if your knees feel cold there is a rug to hand.That is my idea of heaven,we can all dream of how it would be if we lived in a palace,but where would we put our feet up?whatever you keep your greasy marks on the walls and the fingermarks on the gloss paint,the muddy feet marks ,they are part of comfort my boy.
@p1kef1sh (45638)
18 Oct 08
Sounds like you've already moved in Ella. Your description fits our house to a Tee.
1 person likes this
18 Oct 08
Ahhh home sweet home
15 Oct 08
Hi p1key, All around the P1ke Towers, there'll be many tea levers(light fingers) hehe, I couldn't let the public let loose in my home, it'll be like trying to put an elephant in a match box. Your friend, Tamara
@p1kef1sh (45638)
15 Oct 08
LOL. How do you know if an elephant has been in the fridge? Footprints in the butter! (Groan) I wouldn't mind a few light fingered visitors. Perhaps they can take some of the junk!
1 person likes this
16 Oct 08
Hi p1key, Perhaps I could make a trunk call? hehe. Your friend. Tamara
18 Oct 08
Yet again I feel I must get in before anyone else does.I know a good company that will be able to print you some tickets at a discounted price,if you have any ideas what you would like printed on the tickets ,let me know,maybe a tower with a fish popping its head out of the top,and the fish could wear a crown?I have taken a good look around Ebay and have managed to locate a retired clippy,who is willing to part with her beloved ticket machine,it will come at a cost,but the entrance charges must be set at a level to cover all costs.I am thinking souvenirs,now tea towels are popular,or you could pop off to Wilton carpet factory and see if they could do you a deal on some Pike towers doormats.I could see them rushing off of the shelves.The toilets,no problem,there is a Portaloo hire firm not too far from you.Will you be needing the florist to sprinkle the ancestral pile with floral elegance?if so I have Jane Packer in mind.Tour guides.I advise you not to take any of the help offered by the guides at Salisbury catherdral ,it is a well known fact that they are slightly(dodgy)but I know a man who can.Cream teas,well in comes the wonderful Mrs Pike ,I am sure that she could knock up a few sultana scones,and your daughter could don her pinny and her little hat.Please do not leave it too long before thinking about it,or these offers may not be available to you.
@p1kef1sh (45638)
18 Oct 08
LOL. I think that I need a project manager. Hmmmmm. Wonder who I might employ? The Boss is a very good cook but I'm not sure that she has much experience of mass catering. I'll have to ask her. But thank you Ella. I hadn't realised that here was so much to think about.
@dragon54u (31645)
• United States
18 Oct 08
Why not rent out a room or two? That would bring in some money. You could get a second job or an internet job. I write articles and make money that way, in addition to my full time job. It's fun most of the time. Would you be interested in doing something like that? We could use a few more writers!
@p1kef1sh (45638)
18 Oct 08
I get the impression that the internet has too many writers. LOL. I have been told that I should write so many times, and I have occasionally, but I don't have any faith in my writing and only have to read a "better" piece and go and hide for weeks. LOL. I've looked at Helium, AC etc and they seem so competitive. I did have an article published in a UK magazine once - my first attempt - but I've not tried really since. As for renting a room. So long as the tenant doesn't mind the shower created by the holes in the roof! LOL.
@gabs8513 (48712)
• United Kingdom
16 Oct 08
I guess that I would lol I am considering opening it up for People to come and see Gissi lol as a lot of People in the Village fuss him and think he is unique lol is he ever today he has been like a naughty child when I have been taking him out sigh But yes I guess I would and just put Gissi on Guard
@p1kef1sh (45638)
16 Oct 08
Gissi Guardog. He'll want a new collar of course. LOL. Still he'll enjoy the attention, just watch the treats! LOL.
• United States
16 Oct 08
ROFLMAO! Only if said public was intending to become a cleaning crew! In seriousness, I'd have to think about it. I think probably not, but there might be good points to it, too. On the other hand, I tend to do the "stash and dash" for company...then forget where I dashed the stash off to...And the sink is usually full. But that didn't stop my husband's ex-wife from showing her former "new" boyfriend all over MY house...including the piled up dishes and laundry. Cretin. So maybe! Depends on how much income we're talking, because I now have massive student loans to repay! Deferred until this time next year, but still, they'll be due in time, so...let me know how P1ke Towers fares, and I'll get back to you on opening my franchise.
@p1kef1sh (45638)
16 Oct 08
Student loans. That's an idea! I'll convert pat of the house to a college. Not sure what the students would study though. But I could charge them and then, if I was really clever, I could have them paying for years afterwards as they struggle to pay back their "loans"!! Fantastic Faerie. Dishes in the sink is character. Although Hubby's ex-wife sounds like a character too far to me.