Georgian

Articles about places, buildings or events from the Georgian era in Britain.  This includes most of the 18th century and the early 19th century.

Ten of the best in the west

Polperro, Cornwall

South West England has two main draw-backs: it is popular and, as it’s on the west, it can suffer from wetness – particularly at its extremities.  Other than that, it has pretty much everything, including mystery, prehistory, history, cuteness, grand vistas, impressive buildings and plenty of things to do.  For an introduction, see A Bit …

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Walking around Oxford

All Souls Oxford

I’m not easily given to hyperbole; I’ve told you that a million times.  But it is genuinely hard to think of a British town that can be quite so achingly beautiful as Oxford. Perhaps I should qualify that by saying that I refer to the few square miles of the city centre where, quite frankly, …

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Clifton, England’s last battle?

Jacobite Gardens, Rebel Tree, Clifton

18 December 1745, and a rebel Jacobite army arrives at the tiny village of Clifton, right at the top of the old county of Westmoreland in the north-west of England.  Maybe four and a half thousand armed men, trudging back to Scotland along rutted, wintry, roads with horses, artillery and baggage.  In November, Bonnie Prince …

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Coleridge’s Cottage

Coleridge's Cottage in Nether Stowey

We went to see Coleridge’s Cottage because it was there.  Apart from driving through Bridgwater it wasn’t a painful experience, though I can’t say it was particularly exciting either. However, it does have what the National Trust accurately describes as “a small, but perfectly formed, tearoom” – and that was splendid. Cakes and tea everywhere, …

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Is this Britain’s finest Baroque church?

Great Witley Church, Baroque ceilings

It may come as a surprise that what might be the finest Baroque church in Britain will be found, not in some great city, but in rural Worcestershire. This is Great Witley Church.  It dates from 1735, when it replaced an earlier medieval parish church that had stood nearby. The new church was built by …

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Molly visits Pevensey Castle, a Very Important Place

Pevensey Castle

We bowled up to Pevensey Castle on a blue-sky day in the company of Molly.  Molly, I should say, is a small dog of exceptional poise and dignity, but has no relevance whatsoever to our story.  She is mentioned merely in a cynical attempt to win the cute dog vote.  Sorry, Molly.  We have included …

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A Bit About Britain’s History repeats itself

A Bit About Britain's History

Finally – A Bit About Britain’s History (From a long time ago until quite recently) is available as both an e-book and paperback on Amazon. A Bit About Britain’s History is a light introduction to Britain’s fascinating story.  It could be a selective reminder of what you might have learned at school; or if you …

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London’s medieval Jewel Tower

College Green, Westminster

Regular watchers of TV news will be familiar with the scene outside the Houses of Parliament, where journalists interview politicians on a patch of grass opposite Old Palace Yard, against a backdrop of Gothic architecture and the appropriately barbarian howls of protestors.  While you’re hanging on every sage sound-bite tripping off the tongues of our …

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Through cloisters and gardens – a visit to Lacock Abbey

Lacock Abbey, Wiltshire

For some, Lacock Abbey will always be associated with the invention of photography; for others, it is the Tudor-Gothic-Victorian house that gets the juices flowing; for me, the real pleasure was in wandering through cloisters and gardens. It was September and a stroll beyond the inevitable National Trust shop took us past pastel-shaded cottage-garden style …

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In the middle of Scotland

Stone at the Centre of Scotland

Have you ever found yourself in the middle of Scotland?  Not just vaguely messing about in it, as it were, or immersed in its cultural hub (wherever that is), but bang in the geographical centre of the country? There really is a centre of Scotland – of course there is – and its location is …

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Robert Burns, an’ a’ that

Tam o' Shanter

What is all the fuss about Robert Burns? Robert – Robbie or ‘Rabbie’ – Burns was a prolific poet and lyricist, who died more than 200 years ago.  He is Scotland’s favourite bard, still revered throughout the land, the world over by those of Scottish descent – and, in fact, by many non-Scots as well.  …

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Swaledale ‘twixt Muker and Keld

Swaledale

Or it could be the other way round.  Son of Britain and I had often considered meandering through Swaledale between the small villages of Keld and Muker.  Once, we had even chanced, equipped with boots and all the trimmings, as far as the car park in Keld.  But it had been a day when the …

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Our Brontë tour begins in Haworth

Haworth, Bronte Parsonage, Cemetary

Who was the third Brontë sister?  It’s a good question for quiz night down at the Olde Rupturede Ducke.  There was Charlotte and Emily, of course – the authors of Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights respectively.  But who wrote The Tenant of Wildfell Hall?  Tracy Brontë, perhaps?  Or Chelsea?  No – if you’re a literary …

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