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Hi everyone,

I hope you will enjoy my place and my photos, I am looking forward to visits from friends, old and new.

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Monday, 28 August 2017

Rochester Castle

We visited Rochester Castle on the same day as we visited Rochester Cathedral - a Castle and a Cathedral in one day, wonderful :)

The keep from the Castle Gardens.

Rochester Castle was built in the 12th Century, it holds a strategic position on the River Medway in Kent, with its beautiful keep overlooking the shipping travelling up and down the River. The Keep is the best preserved stone keep in England or France.

Looking down to the lower levels of the building.

Norman arches.

The Castle has been under siege twice since it was built, and a fire in the 13th Century had a great effect on the castle, with many of the buildings in the Bailey not being rebuilt. The Castle went into a long decline, with the Bailey eventually being opened as a Public Garden in 1870.

Looking down...

...and looking up :)

Looking down from roof level, the netting is there probably to stop birds getting inside.

The Keep itself is 125 feet high, built  of Kentish Ragstone, with finely dressed Caen stone window surrounds, and corner stones. The building has been roofless since the 16th Century, Joist holes in the walls show the original floor levels, and remains of fireplaces and internal windows can still be seen.

The Cathedral as seen from the Castle, which shows how close the two buildings are.

One of the roof walkways.

You can see the steeple of the Cathedral in this photo :)

It is thought that the principal state rooms were situated on the 2nd floor, with store rooms below, and private chambers above. 

Looking down on the Castle Gardens with the River Medway in the background.

The Castle Gardens as seen from the roof of the Keep. This area was the Bailey of the original castle, and would have had various buildings on it.

Another view of the River Medway, showing part of the Curtain Wall and maybe some remains of the buildings which once stood on the site.

Monday, 17 July 2017

Rochester Cathedral

Beautiful Rochester Cathedral, as seen from Rochester Castle. The River Medway can be seen behind the Cathedral.

Earlier this year we were lucky enough to win two tickets to visit Rochester Cathedral, as part of the Big Kent Weekend draw. My husband and I were both very pleased to be able to travel to Rochester on a lovely Spring Sunday.

The Norman Great West Door of the Cathedral, showing the wonderful Tympanum above the entrance. 

Rochester Cathedral is the second oldest Cathedral in England, the oldest being Durham Cathedral. Rochester Cathedral was founded in 604 AD by Bishop Justus. As with all of these wonderful buildings there have been many changes over the centuries, with many different examples of architecture to be seen.

Looking East towards the altar, showing the Norman arches, and the wooden roof.

In the photos above and below can be seen the side aisles, built as later additions 

The wonderful organ and organ screen leading into the Quire, and on to the main Altar. Sadly we were unable to visit the area beyond the screen on this occasion, our guide was unable to tell us why, so we will have to visit this beautiful building again another time.

It is always good to look up :D

The Great West Window.

Wonderful stained glass windows.

Remains of painting on the walls.

The newly restored Crypt.

Decorated Norman arch.

More: https://en.advisor.travel/poi/Rochester-Cathedral-18196
A modern Fresco painted in 2004 by Russian icon painter Sergei Fyodorov to celebrate the 1400th anniversary of the Cathedral. 

After visiting this wonderful building we went across the road to Rochester Castle, more of that in the next blog :)

Saturday, 13 May 2017

St Thomas a Becket Church, Fairfield, Kent.

In the middle of a field, surrounded by dykes is Fairfield Church, between Brenzett and Brookland on Walland Marsh, which is part of Romney Marsh in Kent.

Looking towards the Altar, showing the Georgian box pews on either side of the aisle. The two tier pulpit can be seen on the left.

The Altar table.

Looking towards the two tier pulpit again, and a better view of the box pews.

Walland Marsh was reclaimed from the sea centuries ago, the original church dates from c1200, and was at that time intended as a temporary structure, made of wattle and daub, which served the long lost village which was sited there. The original building was encased with bricks in the 18th century. The village and Church are marked as Fayrefelde on a map dated prior to 1595.

Photos of the beautiful roof.

One of the ceiling plaques.

The building was fully renovated in 1912, however the interior was not touched, leaving the wonderful Georgian box pews as they were.

Looking towards the back of the Church, showing the seven sided font.

The door in the centre of this photo is the main entrance to the Church.

This photo and the one above were taken from the two tier pulpit, even though the congregation were in the box pews the Vicar was able to see everyone :)

Although both my husband and I knew of the Church, we were unsure of its exact location, but, although is it a little way off the main road, it is fairly easy to find, and well worth visiting!

The door is not very water tight..

The Church is accessed by a causeway across a field, after collecting the original key from a house nearby.

I love this photo, it seems to capture the feeling of the isolation of the Church. My husband can be seen on the left, walking back to the car across the field, and just out of the photo to the right are the sheep who live here!

A wonderful little Church, I am pleased we visited it :D

Wednesday, 19 April 2017

The Mermaid Inn, Rye, East Sussex, Part 2

The entrance hallway looking down to the Giant's Fireplace Bar.
Entering the Mermaid Inn is like walking into another age, it is a beautiful building and a wonderful place to stay for one night or more. As I said in my last blog we were lucky enough to spend a night in the Inn last month, but the first time we stayed there was in 1979, when we had a few days honeymoon there :)

And looking back to the front door.

There are a number of staircases in the Inn, this is the one that we had to go up to get to our room. You can just see the Dining Room on the left of the photo. 

Rows of bottles in the Giants Fireplace Bar.
This lovely building is steeped in history, you can just imagine the Hawkhurst Gang of Smugglers sitting round the fire in the photo below, plotting their next 'run' of illegal goods whilst enjoying a tankard of ale.

A lovely way to spend a chilly afternoon, just dreaming the hours away with a drink or two. We got really cosy in that corner, and were almost reluctant to move to go and get our dinner.

The Cherubs above the the Giants Fireplace,

....and the fire itself :D

This amazing painting of Elizabeth I is painted on the panelling in the hall just outside the Giants Fireplace Bar.

Dr. Syn's Chamber, named after the famous Dr Syn books by Russell Thorndike, this 'chamber' is a Lounge for the residents.

Two views of Dr Syn's Chamber.

Looking out of the window to the other half of the building, which is used for functions.

Another very comfortable Residents Lounge.

A Mermaid statue in the fireplace of the Linen Fold Restaurant.

Above and below are some photos of the gorgeous Restaurant, the food is excellent here, and it is a real treat to eat in such lovely surroundings.

Paintings on the walls of the Restaurant.

The Linen Fold panelling in the Restaurant.

A hunting scene.

The Mermaid water feature in the tiny central court.

This was our room for our mini break, gorgeous, we had a good nights sleep here :)

The fireplace adorned with a lovely painting.

Our room was at the front of the building, overlooking Mermaid Street, which I loved. 

And finally, just two of the saying which can be found on the walls in various places in the Inn.

If ever you find yourself in Rye, do go and find the Mermaid and treat yourselves to a bar meal in the Giants Fireplace Bar, I think you will thoroughly enjoy the visit.