Strathpeffer, Strathspey

The old bird table in the back garden sat next to an equally old tangle of honeysuckle with an overgrown field, weeds flattened by winter, and impenetrable holly trees beyond. The tall limes stood to the north and hence did not cast their shade on the sunny, small house sheltered from the road by a thick beech hedge.Continue reading “Strathpeffer, Strathspey”

Teynham, Oare thereabouts

Teynham’s rich brown brick earth was where the first cherry orchards sprang, planted by command of Henry VIII. As I walked under another Spring blue sky accompanied as ever by a razor sharp wind from the northwest, I could find no sign of old manor or other tell-tale history apart from the church on the low hillContinue reading “Teynham, Oare thereabouts”

Eastling Spring

I found the village hidden deep in downland hills, quiet in its solitude.  By virtue of its geography, remote from Watling Street to the north, the village was little grown, with only a few recent cul-de-sacs and closes tacked on to those that had been standing for centuries and not much more than recorded at Domesday.  The Carpenters Arms wasContinue reading “Eastling Spring”

A Murder in Reculver

Yesterday, I drove the A2 east under clear skies to the hamlet of Reculver, located on the flat coast not far from Margate and parked next to the pub beneath the remnant twin towers of the 12th century church.   Admiring its fearful symmetry and outstanding location, I reckoned this would never get planning permission today. The stark, stoneContinue reading “A Murder in Reculver”

Raspberry Hill to Bedlams Bottom

On Thursday, I walked north-west from Swale railway station across the grazing marshes that fringe the Medway to the west of Sheppey.   I endured a wild arctic wind but under the brightest of blue skies. Keeping to the lee of flood banks helped.  I hoped to explore Ferry Marshes but had to contain myself toContinue reading “Raspberry Hill to Bedlams Bottom”

Higham and Cliffe Marshes

Yesterday, I walked from Higham railway station to St Mary’s Church on the edge of the grazing marshes. The old church with its short spire and overgrown graveyard had the appearance of Magwitch’s hideaway but that apparently is nearby St James’ in Cooling.  I walked on under a grey sky across flooded fields.   HorsesContinue reading “Higham and Cliffe Marshes”