Sunday 25 May 2014

All Saints Little Sombourne

All Saints in Little Somborne dates back to Saxon times and was recorded in the Domesday Book. I probably would not have gone to the church had it not been for finding out the Tommy Sopwith was buried  here. It was a spur of the moment thing when I walked to the Hamlet after seeing where it was on the map, after I wished I had taken the car. It was one of the quickest look rounds I have done yet.

The photos were taken back in 2012 and done without a tripod so forgive quality as some are a little out of focus.

 The south side of the church

This is the north side which is very similar to the south
The chancel end, you can make out the old chancel arch on the wall
 Inside is very simple and remember back in Saxon times there would have been no pews
 The Altar as you see is very simple and behind you can see the blocked off chancel

Above a shaky shot of the font and one of the graves in the church

These are a couple of the older features of the church apart from the flowers

View down the church from the Altar and one of the roof beams

Outside the churchyard is small with few headstones

Though I did find a more recent one

And Tommy Sopwith who's grave I came to see

Looking across some of the headstones by the church from the south west end

 The church is now looked after by the  Church Conservation Trust so if you happen to be passing stop off and spend a few moments looking round

Sunday 18 May 2014

St Peter and St Paul Kings Somborne

St Peter and St Paul dates back to the 13th Century though there was a church here on the site of one of the ones mentioned in the Domesday Book. I have written a shorter blog in the past on one of the more famous residents Tommy Sopwith but not about the churches I visited in the quest. This is the first. The photos were all taken by hand so could be a little out of focus on some

We will go straight inside today and show the internal views. We start looking down the Nave

Looking into the Chancel

Here we look down on the Chancel
The Altar & Chancel Window, I cheated & used flash

This is the Chancel Window

There is a tomb effigy though I did not check who it was

One of the memorials in the church and the stone font

The Organ neatly stashed away

Like most churches you will find the roll of honour listing the men lost from the village

The pulpit is quite impressive with the carving round the outside

Think this is called the Lady Chapel

The Sopwith Window

Another of the memorials in the church along with a Stained glass window

I thought this was great & took a while to work out but it commemorates
The restoration of the bells and lists the people concerned with the work and is on one of the pillars in the church

Last look at the church then outside
 The entrance porch to St Peter & St Paul

Where you can see some very nice headstops

The west end of the church with the Sopwith Window

The Churchyard does have a lot of headstones worth a look at

Many old & newish ones can be seen
 The odd one like this leaning against the church

And some impressive family chest tombs

Here we look from the North side of the church

Have a peaceful Sunday

Sunday 11 May 2014

Glastonbury Abbey

Glastonbury Abbey first came into being around the 7th century then enlarged in the 10th it was destroyed in 1134 by fire and rebuilt again. By the 14th century it was one of the richest abbeys in the country. Face it the place had to be on the top of you list to make a pilgrimage to with King Arther's tomb there. Strange how the Monks just happened to dig in the right place to find it, even stranger how the plaque they found disappeared as well.  The Abbey closed in 1539 after the last abbot was hung, drawn & quartered on Glastonbury tor along with two monks who were in the wrong place at the wrong time. No doubt their mates decided that being a monk was not their vocation in life and made big strides away from the place.Today the Abbey is a ruin after centuries of neglect and the material being used to build other parts of the town.
I'll start off by showing you the abbey as it was before it was destroyed in its heyday

Ok I know it's a model of what it looked like but they never had cameras then

This can be seen in the Abbey Museum along with other finds round the site.

This is what the abbey looks like now. The building was 220 meters from one end to the other.

Here we look towards the Chancel Arch, if you look at the smaller one on the right you can see a person which gives an idea as to the height of the arch. Bare in mind it was a third again higher than this

 Looking across the cloisters to the chancel the guy in the right hand arch gives an idea as to hight


One side of the chacel arch with a chaple over to the right

This monk (I don't think he really is) took us on a tour of the place and it was well worth it, takes half an hour  is very informative & amusing.

Our monk was telling us about the lady chapel

which was the crypt beneath the Abbey

 The entrance to the walkway across the chapel is through this door

Which if you look up we were told you can see the scenes from the nativity

This is the birth of Christ. Check you can see an angel, the marriage and birth. Mary is giving birth on a bed by the way not a manger 

Right now I'm at the far end of the Abbey just outside the chancel walls looking up at the widows. In reality I'm looking down the Abbey towards the Lady Chapel at the end of the nave. Long way you have to admit.

This is  King Aurthur's Tomb  where the monks buried him in front of the high altar which you can see in the distance. The fenced off section

On the right is the plaque over King Aurthur's Tomb
over on the left is a stone coffin where one of the abbots used to be 

The monks found King Aurthur's grave in this old Saxon graveyard nearby. No doubt finding a body that fitted the description of him and surprise surprise found his wife Guinevere beside him, she turned to dust as soon as the coffin was opened. Whats more they found a plaque with an inscription on saying it was King Aurthur. Wonder which monk carved that out.

Don't feel too sorry for the monks they has their own bedrooms 

and flushing toilets, wonder if the people sat there knew they had their feet in a loo

Not far away is this pond though if it was used for keeping fish in it was just for the Abbot

Who had his own personal Kitchen

Nice little setup don't you think

 Here is a stitched view of the kitchen which had four fireplaces in

The abbot had his own place next door with it's own great hall you can see the outline here.

He also got a nice view of Glastonbury Tor where the last abbot met his grisly end

The Glastonbury Thorn or one grown from the original on Wirrel Hill supposedly a staff planted by Joseph of Arimathea
which sprouted into a bush. He could well have visited as he was a lead merchant and they mined the stuff not far away. The original was badly damaged by some cider thugs a few years ago.

Sigeric who was a 10 century monk from the Abbey, it was monks like him who built the Abbey he became Archbishop of Canterbury

Here we look across the chaperhouse where all the serious work was done to find ways to make more money for the Abbey

If you get the chance to Visit Glastonbury then pay a visit to the Abbey, it is well worth your time and if it is a sunny day take a picnic and enjoy the peaceful surroundings.
Have a great Sunday.