29 November, 2009

Compton surrey

A drive around the Surrey Hampshire border country and tea in the tea rooms at the Watts Gallery.

28 November, 2009


A day out in Derby- home to Crown Derby (natch, although Cornish ware comes from Staffs)and the former Midland Railway and current railway research.

It's also a cathedral city

and home to the first ever factory

Who says railway couplings can't be fun?

21 November, 2009

East Grinstead and Oxted

I was told I'd be bored by East Grinstead but really it wasn't that bad. The town is noted for having the longest run of 16th Century buildings in the country and I've no reason to doubt that. It is in the North East corner of West Sussex and the old buildings are well used.

One is the Sackville College an almshouse. We met the Sackvilles at Knole, if you remember, but it was here that they founded their old people's home.

Back in the 1960s the inmates had to wear a uniform - in the museum there was one of the old uniforms - a black dress and a black cloak. In the 1960s the inmates finally rebelled and made a bonfire of the uniforms! I hope they can now wear their own clothes.

The church of St Swithun was rebuilt in the 18th century, unudually in the gothic style. Even inside the church is hard to date. Probably it was rebuilt to be much the same as before.

So I wasn't bored with East Grinstead and might even go back there at some point.

The train back from East Grinstead calles at Oxted also. Now Oxted looked meadieval but I suspected it was all 1930s fakery or maybe 1890s fakery. Certianly most of the housing was of the mid 20th century. Oxted was quite nice with a tudor cinema and the church of St Mary - you can't fake that!

Oxted is also on the meridian.

15 November, 2009

07 November, 2009

Baldock, Letchworth and a brief look at Hitchin.

Hitchin was only a flying visit with a view to going back there one day.

Baldock was quite nice but not much there - rather overshadowed by Letchworth too.
From Travels around London

Ah, now- Letchworth Garden City - First Garden City Limited and that's what it was - the first city (well town really) founded on town planning lines which endeavoured to put the maximum number of people into a high quality environment. The final goal is Freedom and Co-operation (in the sense promoted by the International Coöperative alliance). See Howards Magnets for the full story.
Temperance until the 1960s there was a pub the skittles inn now the settlement.
From Travels around London

This led to the comment that life in Letchworth was all skittles and no beer!

Houses were built in all kinds of styles from garden city modern
From Travels around London

Modified council house
From Travels around London

And edwardian rustic
From Travels around London

Letchworth has apparently a good sense of community, the developer always acting for the public good. It's a nice open community in a pleasant environment. I think the aim has succeeded.

02 November, 2009

A sunny Monday Portslade to Saltdean

A beautiful monday after a wet weekend. A trip to Portslade and Hove. Old Portslade has an ancient church.
From Travels around London
although plain within. Portslade isn't so good but the old village is pleasant.

Above the village is the foredown tower (shut)
From Travels around London

Then it was time to go into Hove and western Brighton which was gorgeous. Another bus ride led me to Rottingdean home of Burne Jones, Rudyard Kipling, Angela Thirkell (mother of Colin McInnes) and Enid Bagnold. Not sure who remembers these authours now although Kipling will be recognised.

There were Burne Jones Windows in the church and a special Kipling Garden on the green.

The final bus ride led me to Saltdean to photograph the lido there
From Travels around London

A good day.

01 November, 2009

Veteran Brighton

A visit in the rain to see the end of the London to Brighton Veteran Car Run.
This commemorates the ending of the Red Flag Act, which was falling into disuse anyway, which meant that any vehicle had to have a man with a red flag walking in front of the vehicle. Members of the Royal Automobile Club tore up a red flag and hared off to Brighton in 1896 creating both the first car park
From Travels around London

and the first traffic jam.
From Travels around London

From Travels around London