Sunday, 13 July 2014

I keep thinking I am going to have a quiet week and then it turns into the exact opposite! Last week saw me driving back from Harlech on Monday which just about finished me off. I shall be very glad when the house is finally cleared and on the market for sale but it is taking a lot of time. I actually had quite a good visit last weekend and ended up socialising more than clearing which made for a very pleasant change!
The last U3A church visits group outings have been lovely. In June we went to Northleach and Burford, both in the Cotswolds so very pretty villages and towns and last Thursday we went to Bibury and Cirencester. As these were all wool towns in the 15th and 16th centuries, the churches were very well off with rich patrons. I loved the wool sack gravestones

What is even more amazing is that a lot of these churches still have traces of  the Saxon buildings which dates their foundations back to pre Norman conquest.
Cirencester is having a march hare trail this summer but they were fairly difficult to find - the hare is based on a roman mosaic in the Corinium museum. There were two in the church, and one at the trout farm in Bibury

the top one was designed by Lawrence Llewellyn-Bowen, the interior designer, and the second was a pharoah done by some primary school children. The bottom picture was taken in Bibury and was too far away to find out who had decorated it.
Saturday saw me going up to London and meeting up with Catrin and Paul. The original plan was to go to Kew Gardens and have a picnic but Catrin thought it was going to rain (it didn't) so we went and had lunch at a Portugese restaurant by Vauxhall Bridge and then we walked over the bridge to Millbank and went to see the Folk Art Britain exhibition at Tate Britain. Wow, I got very excited when I saw that they had the Wrexham tailor's quilt there! Nearly set the alarm off, oops! This quilt is made of wool and has all sorts of things on it, from the Menai Suspension Bridge to a chinese pagoda and a viaduct, all built while the quilt was being made. The quilt has quite a sad history. It was passed on through the Williams family until the depression hit and they were short of funds. They offered the quilt to the Museum of Wales for the benefit of the Welsh people and asked £75.00 for it. The Museum refused and offered £25. The quilt is now the jewel in the crown of the collection held at St Fagans and obviously worth an awful lot more than £25. There were other quilts there, including a lovely red and white strippy quilt with gorgeous hand quilting, and lots of quirky objects such as god-in-a-bottle, pub signs, shop signs and a fabulous cockerel made of bone. Worth another visit I think. But I was glad to get back to the peace and calm of Thornbury, London was manic with lots and lots of tourists but then I suppose it is tourist season there!