We regularly go to Chatsworth House, only half an hour from the centre of Sheffield. Hayley loved playing in the cascade, a tiered water feature, when she was younger. I took my mum to visit – and she also accompanied us to the Dales and really enjoyed her visit to Bettys Café Tea Rooms in Harrogate, an experience that is really quintessentially English, something that you just can’t find in China. Last year we did a hike around Stanage Edge and recreated the famous Keira Knightley scene from Pride and Prejudice, where she is filmed standing on a distinctive rock that juts out.
Yorebridge House have done a really good job incorporating modern, and even asian, styles into a traditional stone building.
Yorkshire gets a large amount of visitors from China. What do you think it is that appeals to Chinese holidaymakers, which makes them want to see the county? I think mainstream tourists love places such as York, with its centuries of history and the glorious York Minster. Also the Brontë village in Haworth, where I have been several times. Chinese are familiar with the Brontë sisters and find it fascinating to visit the parsonage where they grew up. China has more and more affluent individual travellers, they are the ones who appreciate boutique hotels, fine dining and really special experiences, such as hiking in the Yorkshire Dales. I think those kind of travellers would really enjoy the adventurous side of things. Can you describe a perfect visit to Yorkshire? It is difficult to nominate one place, as part of the appeal of Yorkshire is its variety, it has wild places, countryside, cultural attractions, seaside resorts and cities. One place that holds very fond memories is Whitby, for its fabulous light. I remember sitting by the harbour there once and, in the space of an hour, it went from sunshine, to cloud, to rain and back again. That is the reason the artist J.M.W. Turner found it so captivating. Whitby Abbey is special too. Another spot is Salts Mill, in Saltaire, where there is a fantastic collection of David Hockney paintings. I have never had a proper tour of Castle Howard, which they say is one of the most magnificent stately homes, or visited Fountains Abbey. There are many Yorkshire Dales hikes that we would like to do now that Hayley is older. But I think it is fair to say that I know Yorkshire pretty well, possibly better than any Vogue editor ever has!