Sunday 26 January 2014

Nineteen Eighy Four

Many of you will recognise the number as being from the book of the same name by George Orwell, his real name was Eric Arthur Blair 
Now like many of you I read the book when I was young as part of my literature for the exam's I would be taking but I never realised he was only buried a few miles away from my home. It was not until my later life I found this out and decided to visit when I had the chance which came about when I decided to take some photos from round Sutton Courtenay which is where his last resting place is.

All Saints Church is Sutton Courtenay

All Saint s church from the churchyard, I would have taken some photos inside but there was a service on, so another day.

Interesting porch this it was built built with money left to the poor of the parish by the 15th-century Bishop Thomas Bekynton of Bath & Wells. The obviously thought that saving the souls of the poor was more important than feeding them.

Walking on into the churchyard at he back you cannot but help noticing this tomb of Herbert Henry Asquith who was  the prime minister of England  from 1908 - 1916 he preferred to be buried here rather than Westminster Abbey
Herbert Henry Asquith, 1st Earl of Oxford and Asquith tomb with the church in the background. Asquith lived nearby in a house which I think is no owned by Helena Bonham Carter  mind you he was her Great-Grandfather.

 It took a while to find Orwell's grave which was only done after I phoned my wife and she told me where to look after looking on the Internet.

As you can see  it is a simple headstone with a rose growing in front.

Behind you can see the grave of his friend David Astor

 Who when he heard his fried was to be buried in the churchyard bought both plots so he could be buried nearby.

The churchyard is well worth looking round  at the old graves which is parts are over grown.

And who knows you may well find some interesting ones there. I will return again to get a few photos of the inside which I will post on here for you to see. I hope you have enjoyed my tour of this churchyard.

Saturday 11 January 2014

Wolvercote Cemetery

This week I happened to be in Oxford again so took the opportunity to visit
Wolvercote Cemetery so those of you who visit from Inspired Sunday my apologies for no interiors this week. It was also the chance to visit the grave of a famous author.
The cemetery was opened in 1889 and has areas for various denominations & religions and quite a few notable people are buried here. There are also 44 Commonwealth War Graves though I admit I did not find that many. There is also a small chapel and an old Mortuary building. It is one of four old cemetery's in Oxford five if you include Botley
In this blog I will endeavour to show some of what I recorded.
October 2023 I added some new photos

The entrance to Wovercote cemetery off the Banbury road

On display as you go in are a couple of awards 

The first burial area you see is the Jewish one 

Where I came across the grave of Fight Sergeant J.L Shaer Navigator Royal Air Force.
The plaque below has the inscription.
In honored memory of Fgt/Sgt Joseph Shaer from his old pals from Brady Boys Club
Also in Memory of his friend and fellow Bradian   P/O David Miller shot down over Germany 22/10/1943
He is buried in Hanover War Cemetery 3.B.7

Walking on by and along the footpath you come to this  broken memorial

The top which was a crucifix is standing against the base
The wording on the other side of the base is hard to make out but the name I could make out was
 Margaret Rebecca Hughes

This is the Children's Remembrance area 

Though the fountain seems to be turned off and not working

Can't find any information  on Princess Bridget Esiri who is buried here

 Some of the more modern graves in the cemetery

I love the verse on the back of this headstone

 Couple of different religions  buried near each other

I just liked the simplicity of these headstones

These are green burials with a tree as a memorial 

 The Russian Orthodox area of the cemetery 

These crosses have been laid over for Health & Safety reasons 
More recent view of the cemetery

 There are some beautiful headstones and graves here

The cemetery chapel  
The entrance which was locked

 This was rather a stunning memorial

An anchor which I forgot the meaning behind, I always thought it was because they were old seafarers 

Some of the older headstones

Various crosses 

Lieutenant C.A.Pittar  MC of the Coldstream Guards another off the 44 commonwealth war graves in the cemetery

I Think this is the old mortuary for the cemetery

 A crucifix memorial which has been laid over for H&S reasons  

More of the cemetery, the memorial of the little girl was that of a child 

Some of the crosses 

Looking towards the chapel

 The main reason I cave to visit was to see this grave which is that of J R R Tolkien

 I felt a bit disappointing as I thought it needed some TLC
My latest visit showed the grave has been tided up 

 You van see the inscription now

One of the taller crosses

Frame holding watering cans used for the flowers on graves
Have a Peaceful Sunday.

Wednesday 8 January 2014

The Holy Rood

Today we are going to jump in the Tardis and go back in time to the 15th century to a church in a village called Woodeaton. Now I happened to be in Oxford again after looking at the map and spotting a couple of likely villages to Visit I looked them up on Wikipedia. Woodeaton was the first one I looked up and the page had photos from this church (which do not do it justice) so I was sold straight away so it was a must to go and visit. I have shown a lot of photos so I hope you enjoy my offering now go get a coffee, sit down and enjoy its quite long.

On getting to the village you see the church on the left through the trees. The building in the distance is the Manor School

I took this from the gate with a wide angle lens, hence the distortion.

A grass path leads through the churchyard

Taking you to this wonderful little porch

A clearer view of the church

and a view of the North side of the church

Not seen a clock like this in a while, as you can guess it was a late addition being as the tower was built in the 14th or 15th century and the clock added in the 1700's

Not far away you can see this preaching cross on the village green which is 13th century

How about this for a welcome as you walk in the porch
Anyway lets go in and go back in time. Walk through the door and this is what you see.

A stone font graces the back of the nave

with home made produce for sale

How about these pews complete with little doors to them.

The walls are paneled and lined with a kneelers which were made by a couple of local ladys.

How about this for a nave with chancel arch and rood screen on the right is a wonderful carved pulpit, though the screened area on the right has me puzzled

Through the rood screen takes you to the chancel

where you can see this simple but beautiful altar 

with a wonderful floral display

Turn round and you can see the  rood screed and choir pews

The pews have some wonderful carved ends on them

The rood screen is 15th or 16th century built into the 13th century chancel arch

Around the nave walls you can see these  heraldic hatchments

On the nave wall is a memorial to Trooper Albert Woodcock 

These memorials can be seen the nave  & chancel

If you look down you can see many of these memorials in the floor dating back to 1673

At the west end of the nave is this gallery which was locked off so I could not go up to get a photo from it

Turn round and look up at the chancel arch, either side are  heraldic hatchments and above you can see medieval wall paintings

Which can also be seen at the west end of the nave

You have to love the floral arrangements in a church

Outside take some time looking round the churchyard  and the church

Where you can see this sundial and if you look a long blocked up doorway

The south side by the porch are many old grave

And a few not so old

but it is worth the effort of spending some time in

The lichen clings to the stone after the words have gone while algae starts to cover another

Have a Peaceful Sunday.
Taking part in Taphophile Tragics & Cemetery Sunday