Well, Well, Well.

Fans of the Blackadder TV series will be familiar with the Bishop of Bath & Wells as a ruddy-faced sadistic pervert who eats babies!  Whilst there appears to be no historical precedent for this in the roster of clergymen who have filled the role, they do seem to have been an unsettled bunch for the county … Continue reading Well, Well, Well.

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Cultural Imperialism.

When I was a child my family didn't take holidays.  My father owned a business and found it hard to relinquish control, even for a few days, which is why when my friend Derek Taylor told me he was going to Bridlington each year I imagined something exotic. The reality, as I discovered during my … Continue reading Cultural Imperialism.

Save Our Souls

And so to the second of my subjects in the hinterland of Morecambe Bay... once I've told you a little about the bay itself.  This is the largest area of tidal mudflats and sand in the UK, though The Wash was more notorious for much of history after King John's disaster there (which led to … Continue reading Save Our Souls

Arrested Redevelopment

Another work trip.  Another National Trust Property.  Another tale of monastic dissolution and aristocratic excess... though with a slightly unusual outcome. Calke Abbey is not a religious building as you can see, but back in the mid 12th Century there was an Augustinian priory here (never an abbey) and one that remained for over 400 years. … Continue reading Arrested Redevelopment

Reduced Circumstances

Driving through some of the nicer villages of Northamptonshire I came upon a small church on a bend in the road, a small church with no apparent congregation.  Yes there were some buildings nearby, but nothing you call a settlement. This in itself if perhaps not so remarkable; I've encountered churches before where the surrounding … Continue reading Reduced Circumstances

Jervaulx Journey

What links Valentines day, a BBC historical drama based on a Booker Prize winner, and visit to a seemingly remote part of North Yorkshire? The answer is one of the most revolutionary periods of English History; the dissolution of the monasteries.  To simplify things enormously, the love of one of our most iconic monarchs for a … Continue reading Jervaulx Journey

Watering Hole

Note to self; summer solstice long gone, days getting shorter. Considerably, it seems. Worked all day at a new piece of training, fed, watered and out in search of a portrait at 19.52. Sunset time 20.09. With conditions that could only be described as squally, there weren't many options to speak to someone about a … Continue reading Watering Hole