About Robert Holland

Posts by Robert Holland:

Throapham House Roof Restoration – Delayed

Unfortunately the bad weather over the summer has delayed our plans to restore our roof during August and it now looks at though this will begin during the first week of September. We expect the work to take about 4 – 6 weeks.

As mentioned earlier, we expect little inconvenience to guests although there may be some restrictions on car parking near the house due to the presence of scaffolding.

Lancaster over Throapham

Just when I really needed a camera…

Yesterday afternoon Ann and I were playing cricket in the garden with our grand children when we heard the sound of an aircraft. Soon the unmistakeable outline of a Lancaster Bomber came into few, approaching the house low over the fields from the Brookhouse direction.

The Lancaster from the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight had been to the unveiling of a memorial plaque at the nearby village of Old Edlington.

It came in really very low and passed directly over our house before disappearing from view over Dinnington.


A similar thing happened with the Red Arrows a few years back. I recall I was up an apple tree at the time when they roared low across the house on their way to an event.

University of Sheffield Engineering Alumni Day 2012

I’ve just spent a very enjoyable Saturday afternoon at the University of Sheffield Engineering Alumni day. Having graduated here in 1978 it was a great opportunity for me to catch up with what was happening at the University, including some ambitious plans to turn the old Jessops Hospital site into an ultra modern teaching facility for engineering students of the future. We had the opportunity to view the model of the proposed building at Firth Court. Ann and I were both born at Jessops – as were both of our daughters – so it was a bit of an odd feeling to think of our birthplace disappearing.

We also had a sneak preview of the Formula Student entry which will be heading for Silverstone next weekend. Here’s wishing the team the best of luck.

It was nice to have it confirmed by Professor Iain Todd that many of the students who study at Sheffield decide to settle in the area after graduation. After all, us locals already know that this is a Brilliant Yorkshire Location but having our brightest young people working here will be a great boost for the local economy for many years to come.

It was good for me to meet other graduates of the Faculty of Engineering which is now ranked among the top in the country. Some of these I’ve known professionally for many years but others I met only for the first time today. I’ll certainly be taking away some of the comments made for my work with the Institution of Engineering and Technology.

Many thanks to Ruth Stanley and Amy Jones from Alumni Relations for organising the day and to the other staff members who gave their time this afternoon to make us welcome. I’ll look forward to the next one.

Throapham House makes White Rose Awards 2012 finals

White Rose Awards 2012 Finalist

White Rose Awards 2012 Finalist

Throapham House White Rose Awards 2012

Ann and Robert celebrate being shortlisted for a White Rose Award

Ann and Robert are delighted to announce that we’ve been shortlisted for a Welcome to Yorkshire White Rose Award in the B & B / Guest Accommodation of the Year category.

This is the second year running we’ve made it through to the finals. Having been pipped at the post at last year’s ceremony at Doncaster Racecourse we’re now training hard and looking for an away win at Elland Road in October!

Once again we’re competing with some lovely properties across Yorkshire. Some of these we already know as members of Yorkshire’s Finest Accommodation. We’d like to take this opportunity to wish all this year’s finalists good luck at Leeds.

Press release

PDF Icon Click here to download our White Rose Awards 2012 press release.

Black Lion at Firbeck hits the spot

…and just what we needed after a hard day in the garden

Steak and ale pie

Steak and ale pie

Chicken Chardonnay

Chicken Chardonnay

At last – some sunshine and time to get some jobs done in the garden. After a full day in the sun (in my case up a ladder repairing a leaking summerhouse roof) we didn’t feel like cooking (and by that time I felt I really did deserve another pint of ‘Moonshine’) so we decided to eat at the Black Lion in Firbeck as we’d not been there together for a couple of months.

We were both too tired for a full meal and just went for a main course. Ann had Chicken Chardonnay (£9.95) while I was initially tempted by a salad starter as a main but I recalled listening to “The Life of Pie” on Radio 4 so after much deliberation 🙂 I gave in and plumped for the Home-made Steak and Ale Pie (£8.95).
Both meals were really very good and nicely presented. Also nice to see a steak and ale pie which does not just have a puff pastry top slapped on at the last minute. Our portions were ample and just right for what we wanted.

It was a lovely evening and warm enough to eat outside though getting a bit on the chilly side by the time we left around 9:00pm.

We normally suggest that guests at Throapham House try the Black Lion. Recent visitors have been telling us that the food has been excellent so it’s nice for us to be able to confirm this.

We need good quality pubs and food in the area that we can recommend so please keep up the good work.

(Now, after playing my ‘cello on a Thursday night can I sneak in on the way home to one of the fortnightly jazz sessions… …watch this space!)

BBC4 “The Bridge” and Throapham House

I’ve just finished watching BBC4 crime drama “The Bridge”, which is based on the Øresund Bridge connecting Denmark and Sweden. This and the earlier Great Belt Fixed Link were huge construction projects requiring an awful lot of concrete, all of which had to be mixed to exacting standards.

One of the reasons Ann and I moved to Throapham House in 1993 was to give me more room to continue my research and development work on a range of sensors for the accurate mixing of concrete in my position as Technical Director of Hydronix Ltd. These Hydro Probe sensors were used on both of these construction projects, having been supplied through the Danish distributor Skako.

Prototypes for the current range of sensors were developed at Throapham House and tested in our stable block. Some 50,000 of these have since been supplied around the world.

“The Bridge” series is available on BBC iPlayer. Here is the episodes guide.

Chatsworth House on BBC TV

Last Monday saw the first of three programmes following a year in the life of Chatsworth House. When I watch excellent programmes like this on our great historic houses I’m reminded that Ann and I have a responsibility to future generations to treat our far more modest home with a bit of TLC.

If you missed it you can catch up here BBC iPlayer – Chatsworth House – Episode 1.

As the Duke of Devonshire says, it’s a “most amazing place” and we’ve got to agree!

More from our Guest book

Thank you for your kind comments during April/May 2012 which we much appreciate.

“Thank you so much for a lovely welcome – excellent room & fantastic breakfast.” I G (Herefordshire)

“Lovely people, lovely room & house, lovely breakfast. Thanks.” M G (Ingleby Barwick)

“As ever – superb. Thank you.” L & T (Cambridge)

“Wonderful hosts, superb house, fantastic stay. Will recommend to everyone.” K & D (Hinckley)

“Fantastic stay. Thanks very much guys. Would love to revisit.” K J (Brighton)

“Brilliant!” V F (Buckinghamshire).

“Absolutely wonderful! Fantastic hosts! Thank you!” S, J, A & J (New Zealand and Australia)

“Very comfortable room and delicious breakfast! Thank you.” L G (Colchester)

“Great stay. Will be back. Thank you” L G (Worthing, Sussex)

“So glad our first B&B experience was with Ann & Robert. A very warm welcome & comfort all around.” S & P (Australia).