Paycocke’s House and Garden

The Paycocke House was built around 1500 and we visited it this afternoon and looked around the House and garden.  The Thomas Paycocke family were greatly involved with the cloth trade and the wonderful restoration of the inside is a testament to the wealth that was around during the 16th Century,    The inside had beautiful stained glass windowsuntitled (2 of 33)untitled (1 of 33)The beams inside the front of the house show intricate carvings and a small face was carved in one of them.  I wonder what things he could have seen over the life of the house?untitled (12 of 33)The Tudor dining room I was particularly taken by the teasels on seats attached to the place setting, so simple but beautiful.

untitled (15 of 33)Coggeshall White,  a product of the time.

untitled (29 of 33)untitled (26 of 33)The view of the house from the back garden.

Paycocke’s House was well worth a visit and it was a joy to wander around the garden which has beautiful lawns and flowers and a working vegetable garden.

Melford Hall, Little Cat and a Big Pig

Today’s excursion was to Melford Hall in Suffolk,  we didn’t go into the house but wandered around the outside area and gardens.  In the adjacent fields there were some big sheep, no lambs and one of them posed for his photograph.untitled (3 of 50)

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untitled (5 of 50)untitled (17 of 50) The weather was a little changeable so the blue sky in the above picture was not evident later on.  It was nice to see the tulips and daffodils still hanging on in there,   in lots of places they are now past their best.untitled (36 of 50)The garden we walked through was lovely and give it a couple of weeks the colours and varieties in borders will be amazing.untitled (28 of 50)Little Cat came along for the ride and true to form got into some photographs.untitled (35 of 50)

On our exit we saw the stand alone banqueting hall with its interesting staircase and architecture, at the moment it is also housing a small exhibition about Beatrix Potter as she used to visit here quite often to see friends.untitled (26 of 50)

On our way home back to Cambridgeshire we called in at a farm shop for some supplies and in the field next to the car park I met this ‘Big Pig’.  |He seemed very friendly and was happily munching on grass as I took his photographuntitled (47 of 50)

Anglesea Abbey, a Water Mill and spring flowers.

Today’s outing was to Anglesea Abbey and it was a great walk out in the sunshine.  We didn’t actually go into the house but did the winter trail and called in at Lode Mill.Anglesea Abbey 2017 (41 of 60)Anglesea Abbey 2017 (56 of 60)

We spotted a yellow wagtail bobbing about on the edge of the water and I could have watched him for a long time.

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A very relaxing stroll with lots of spring flowers and new foliage

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Wicken Fen

Earlier in the week  I headed off to Wicken Fen with my sons.   It was a wonderful weather and from the moment we left the car we saw some amazing stuff.    First up was a couple of tree sparrows having a dust bath and then a muntjac deer  mooching about under a hedge.

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A newly dusted Tree Sparrow

It was really good to see the sun and walk on the board walks through the reeds, chatting and taking in the sights and sounds.

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The Wicken Fen Windmill Pump through the reeds

We saw lots of butterflies but my favourite was the ‘brimstone butterfly’  it is always one of the first I see each year and up until now I have never managed a photograph of one as they are so fast and never seem to settle anywhere.  However my son spotted one stopping and and saw that on closer inspection it looked like a leaf,  not the bright yellow but a green.

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Brimstone

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Peacock

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Speckled Wood

We saw some birds from the hides dotted around the reed beds and I particularly liked my Moorhen with the reflections in the reeds.   The Long-tailed tit is a little blurred, as is the Marsh Harrier.    But seeing this majestic bird flying above the reeds was a really spectacular and my picture does not do it justice.

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Moorhen

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Long tailed tit

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Marsh Harrier

Hay on Wye

I had a overnight break at Hay on Wye earlier in the week and it was lovely to get away and just enjoy the beauty of this lovely village.   We stayed at the Swan Hotel which was very friendly and comfortable.Hay on Wye (23 of 74)-4

I have decided not to fill this blog post with books but some of the other things which I saw as I wandered around.

Amazing shop windows, lots of windows had ‘book art’ dotted around in them.  Beautiful local pottery and the a wonderful shop of chandeliers.  Is the collective of chandeliers a lustre?

There is an old ruined castle in the centre and lots of little alleyways and roads with interesting doors.

A delightful waterfall, a bear in the woods and a robin bobbing about in the undergrowth.

It is a beautiful part of the world and it was good to slow down and walk.  Sometimes we speed along on our busy lives and forget the incredible beauty which is around us.

Smeuse

Smeuse (Sussex): ‘a hole in the base of a hedge made by the repeated passage of a small animal’. Now you know the word smeuse (pronounced ‘smee-ooze’), you’ll notice these signs of creaturely commute more often.

Robert MacFarlane put me on to this wonderful word when I read his book Landmarks

I love this word and now I know it I have been on the look out for a local smeuse and I found several.  (any excuse to use my new found knowledge with my camera)  We have local badgers, foxes, rabbits, hares, voles, mice, rats and weasels so who knows who has been going in and out?

 

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