Category Archives: Photo Journal

Echos of Kent Treble Bob Majors and Terrington St Johns

The village of Terrington St Johns, Norfolk sits between Wisbech in the west and Kings Lynn in the east. Its splendid St John’s Parish Church lies to the north of the village at Peyke’s Cross.

St John The Baptist Church, Terrington St Johns

St John The Baptist Church

I have never seen any reference that links it to the novel by Dorothy. L. Sayers, The Nine Taylors unlike its near neighbour Terrington St Clements, but during a recent visit I was reminded of The Reverend Venables vaulting ambition by a plaque in the church commemorating a peel of bells, although Theodore Venables and his ringers had eight Bells at their disposal where the church at Terrington St Johns has six.

Memorial Plaque Peal of Bells, Terrington St John

Memorial Plaque

“There are, perhaps, a few heavier rings, said the Rector, but I hardly know where you would rival us for fullness and sweetness of tone. Number seven, in particular, is a most noble old bell, and so is the tenor, and the John and Jericho bells are also remarkably fine in fact, the whole ring is most “tuneable and sound”, as the old motto has it.

“It is a full ring of eight”

The Reverend Venables to Lord Peter Wimsey

The Nine Tailors

By Dorothy L. Sayers

Cowlinge, Suffolk

Cowlinge in The County of Suffolk, a few miles south east of Newmarket and a stones throw from the Cambridgeshire border. It is blessed with a fine Public House and once upon a time there was a splendid country house and estate landscaped by Capability Brown, the manor and lands were acquired by the London Lawyer Francis Dickins in 1720 who set about building a new house and was also responsible for the tower on the church of St Margaret of Antioch.

When Francis’s died in 1747 the manor passed to his wife until her death in 1761, the estate then passed to a cousin, Ambrose Dickins who was responsible for hiring Capability Brown which was not without its controversy.

If you are looking for the house that Francis built you will be disappointment as it was demolished around 1959 but you can fined Francis and his wife in all there Scheemakers glory in the chancel of St Margaret of Antioch.

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Peter Scheemakers Memoral of Francis Dickins and His Wife Rachel

The Church of St Margaret of Antioch, Cowlinge, Suffolk

The Church of St Margaret of Antioch, Cowlinge, Suffolk

The Church of St Margaret of Antioch, Cowlinge, Suffolk

The Church of St Margaret of Antioch, Cowlinge, Suffolk

The Church of St Margaret of Antioch, Cowlinge, Suffolk
The Church of St Margaret of Antioch, Cowlinge, Suffolk in the foreground the graves of two Cowlinge soldiers who lost their live in the Great War 
The Church of St Margaret of Antioch, Cowlinge, Suffolk

The Church of St Margaret of Antioch, Cowlinge, Suffolk

The Church of St Margaret of Antioch, Cowlinge, Suffolk

The Church of St Margaret of Antioch, Cowlinge, Suffolk


Interesting Web Links:

Cowlinge One Suffolk

The Three Ways Pub

Lost Heritage Branches Park

Parks and Gardens Branches

Peter Scheemakers

Suffolk Churches Cowlinge

The Golden Earring of Sir John Weller-Poley

This is Sir John Weller-Poley’s monument in The Church of the Holy Trinity, Boxted, Suffolk. As you can see he is sporting a splendid gold frog earring in his left ear.

Now if you think men wearing earrings only dates back to the sixties and seventies you will have to think again as this fine gentleman was born in 1558 and died in 1638. There is also a reference in The Bible referring to “their SONS and daughters earrings.” so it would appear that the custom is older than time itself, and it is probably more than likely that someone somewhere has taken it as a PHD subject: The origins of why the male of the species wears earrings.

The Church of the Holy Trinity, Boxted, Suffolk is well worth a visit for more reasons than an aristocrat’s fine ear decoration so if you are passing this way stop and enjoy you will not be disappointed.

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Holy Trinity Church, Boxted, Suffolk

Weller-Poley's Monument

Weller-Poley’s Monument, Boxted, Suffolk

Boxted Hall, Boxted, Suffolk

Boxted Hall, Boxted, Suffolk

Holy Trinity, Boxted, Suffolk

Holy Trinity, Boxted, Suffolk

A Novel by Anthony Trollope, The Australian Outback and Mepal A Village In The Fens

The village of Mepal sits on the eastern edge of the Hundred Foot Washes, in days gone bye the traffic to and from the City of Ely would trundle through the village passing over the Old and New Bedford Rivers and the Three Pickerels public house.

St Marys Church, Mepal

St Marys Church, Mepal

On the western edge of the Hundred Foot Washes you will find Engine Bank which runs northward along the Counter Drain and The Old Bedford River (River Delph) taking you passed the Mepal Pumping Station and Fortrey’s Hall, onto Welshes Dam and Welney in Norfolk.

Mepal Pumping Station

Mepal Pumping Station

John Fortrey a London merchant built the hall and his son Sir James Fortrey was responsible for extending the building, there is a plaque in the small church of St Marys, Mepal to Sir James commemerating his adventures, the Fortrey Family were heavily involved along with the Duke of Bedford in the drainage of The Fens.

Fortrey's Hall

Fortrey’s Hall

Fortrey Hall and the surrounding area is featured in Anthony Trollope’s novel John Caldigate which was first published 1879, not as well-known as his Barchester Chronicles but can be recommend as good read on a cold winters evening, it takes in places as far apart as the Australian Outback, Newmarket, Cambridge and The Cambridgeshire Fens. The description of the area in the novel in my view is not very flattering and certainly not one in which I agree!

“Folking is not a place having many attractions of its own, beyond the rats. It lies in the middle of the Cambridgeshire fens, between St. Ives, Cambridge, and Ely. In the two parishes of Utterden and Netherden there is no rise of ground which can by any stretch of complaisance be called a hill. The property is bisected by an immense straight dike, which is called the Middle Wash, and which is so sluggish, so straight, so ugly, and so deep, as to impress the mind of a stranger with the ideas of suicide. And there are straight roads and straight dikes, with ugly names on all sides, and passages through the country called droves, also with ugly appellations of their own, which certainly are not worthy of the name of roads. The Folking Causeway possesses a bridge across the Wash, and is said to be the remains of an old Roman Way which ran in a perfectly direct line from St. Neots to Ely. When you have crossed the bridge going northward,—or north-westward,—there is a lodge at your right hand, and a private road running, as straight as a line can be drawn, through pollard poplars, up to Mr. Caldigate’s house.”

From: Anthony Trollope’s John Caldigate, Chapter I: Folking

 

 


Web Sites of Interests:

Parks and Gardens Fortreys Hall

Mepal Parish Web Site

Mepal

Ouse Washes Mepal Pumping Stations

The King of East Anglia and A Tenuous Connection To Ringo Star

Our destination is Emneth, it sits in Norfolk close to the Cambridgeshire border just south of the A47 which runs from Birmingham in the west to Great Yarmouth in the east.

If your approach is from Peterborough along the A47 you will need to turn right away from the town of Wisbech toward Outwell and Downham Market, do not get carried away bear left long before you reach Outwell or you will miss the joys of Emneth completely.

As you approach you will be faced with the imposing presence of the Church of St Edmund’s it cannot be missed. The Reverend W. V. Awdry was vicar of the parish between 1953 and 1965 and many of the Thomas the Tank engine stories were written in the old vicarage at Emneth.

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Church of St Edmund, Emneth, Norfolk.

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Church of St Edmund, Emneth, Norfolk.

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Memorial Window to The Reverend W. V. Awdry


Interesting Web Links:

 

St Edmund The King of East Anglia

St Edmund, Original Patron Saint of England

Thomas the Tank Engine

The Thomas the Tank Engine Man: The Life of Reverend W. Awdry by Brian Sibley

Note: I thought of inserting a link to Ringo but had second thoughts, do not ask me why!

Dorothy L Sayers Childhood Memories, Bluntisham

At the end of 1897, the future great crime novelist and classical scholar Dorothy L Sayers arrived at the railway station of Bluntisham cum Earith in the Fenlands of Huntingdonshire, she was between four and five at the time,  in later life she said that she did not remember the train journey from Oxford to Bluntisham but remembered the walk from the station to the rectory. Her Mother and her Father who had just taken up the living of Bluntisham had arrive a few days earlier.

The rectory where Dorothy spent a lot of her childhood, now called Bluntisham House can still be seen as you travel from St Ives in the west to Ely in the north east. The railway station has now long gone but if if you take a walk along the banks of The Great River Ouse you can still see the pillars that supported the rail tracks across the fenland.

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The Photo shows The Great River Ouse in flood, the pillars that supported the tracks in the foreground and St Marys Church,  Bluntisham in the background.


Web Links of Interest:

The Wry Romance of the Literary Rectory by Deborah Alun-Jones

The Official Site of the renowned English crime writer Dorothy L Sayers

The Last Place God Made

In Search of St Paul’s Church Fenchurch St Paul

Dorothy L Sayers Cambridgeshire Connections

A Lake District Connection Norfolk

Now if you have a fancy for a trip to the Lake District, the last thing you want is to be sitting in a car heading in the direction of Norwich and Diss, but that is where we found ourselves on a hot sunny day in July. The destination was the small village of Forncett St. Peter, Norfolk.

 

If you think I have lost my bearings never mind my sense of direction you may well be right, but I do have an explanation in that the village of Forncett St. Peter has impeccable Lakeland connections. It is where Dorothy Wordsworth lived and worked for around six years and her brother the famous poet William visited while studying at Cambridge.

 

St. Peters Church, Forncett St Peter, Norfolk, England

St. Peters Church, Forncett St Peter, Norfolk, England

Cookson Memorial, The Wordsworth Connection, St. Peters Church, Forncett St Peter, Norfolk, England

Cookson Memorial, The Wordsworth Connection, St. Peters Church

 

The Gates to The Old Rectory, Forncett St. Peter, Norfolk, England


Useful Links:

Treasures of the Wordsworth Trust

Biography of Dorothy-Wordsworth