As it’s Halloween, I thought I would take a look at the witch’s cauldron in history and myth. It turns out that as well as being an ancient household cooking vessel and a witch’s potion pot, the cauldron has been a mystical symbol of life and, in some stories, an instrument of death…
Archive for the ‘History’ Category
The village of Lytchett Matravers, to the north of Poole in Dorset, is one of my ancestral places. Several times in the past I had tried to find the parish church, but with no luck. We had driven around in circles in the middle of the village and there had been no sign of a tower that could have been St Mary’s.
Then this summer, when we were killing time for half an hour by driving around the country lanes, we took a “wrong” turn in the vicinity of Sturminster Marshall. And there, surrounded by patches of woodland and farmers’ fields, was a church. I was amazed – the nearest village was Lytchett Matravers, so this must be St Mary’s!
A decade ago, when I was doing a gardening correspondence course, I chose to write about the gardens of Powis Castle, which is perched high on a narrow ridge near Welshpool in Mid Wales. But I wrote about it without ever having been there and it has taken me until now to make the journey.
We visited in August this year and as it belongs to the National Trust and we are members, it felt like we got in to see everything free! (more…)
STOP PRESS: Moments after I published this, reports came in of a volcano erupting in Sumatra – so best wishes to everyone struggling there…
Did you have an irrational fear of something when you were a child? In my case, for a while at least, I was terrified of volcanoes. You might say that’s not so crazy. But as I lived in Wales, where an eruption would be pretty near impossible, I think it was.
So this post is all about what (more…)
Although I had been to Ross-on-Wye many times, I had never been as impressed as I was on the Sunday between Christmas and New Year. It was a lovely sunny day and I was surprised to find how many shops were open and welcoming in this very “low” season.
As there was not much traffic, it was the first time I (more…)
Cardiff’s famous animal wall stands in front of Bute Park, alongside the castle, and you will always find tourists taking pictures of it with their mobile phones.
I caught sight of the animals with their glass eyes glinting in bright sunshine on my way to the Country Fair at the end of September. Although I had my camera with me at the time I didn’t stop and it took many weeks before (more…)
OK, this will probably be very boring for you, but I am going to explore some big moments in history from my childhood perspective.
If I don’t do this now I never will, for there can never be a better time than the 50th anniversary of the assassination of John F Kennedy and the first episode of Doctor Who on TV. Those events happened in this week and I’m sure most people will have noticed the coverage in the media.
I don’t have any huge insights into history, just a few moments frozen in time. In my mind and heart I can still (more…)