Not a pub crawl………

……but a church crawl. Yesterday was the date of the Historic Churches’ Ride and Stride, and Jenny & I headed off to Titchmarsh in Northamptonshire, to join a small ‘peloton’ of other wheelers before heading into the depths of Northamptonshire, over fields and dales, through gravel pits and woods, in search of some of countryside’s hidden gems.

And in some cases, I do mean hidden. Either the churches were built away from the communities, or vice versa, because many are located

Redundant church at Aldwincle, connected with the Drydens

in isolated spots up to  a mile from their respective villages. But each had its own charm and allure, and each had a member of the local community to welcome us, sometimes with refreshments, and nearly always with a fascinating nugget of information about the history and fabric of the building.

The church at Pilton, for instance, had indelible connections with the famous Catholic Tresham family (of Lievden New Beild) with symbols of the Trinity emblazoned on the outside of the church. In the distance, a house with a lookout tower turned out to be the place where they secretly celebrated mass. All absolutely fascinating………… and all part of the uplifting experience of cycling 35 miles with a group of other wheelers, enjoying the British countryside at its very best.

At Achurch, Northamptonshire


About Frank Burns

Looking for the extraordinary in the commonplace………taking the road less travelled……..striving for the ‘faculty of making happy chance discoveries’ in unremarkable circumstances. Click on the Personal Link below to visit my webpages.

Posted on September 9, 2012, in Aspects of Britain and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Oh, Frank, loved this one. I especially value the info about the Treshams of Lieveden niuew build….?sp? That has been one of my very favourite of NT properties, and so close handy to where I sometimes am in Northampton, and on the weekends when i have a car to get to Little Gidding. Some of these churches I have seen but now there are more on my list to visit when I come home at the end of this month. See you at Little Gidding I hope, on the 12th of next month? Peace, etc., Caroline. I am really enjoying your Serendipities, thanks so much for them.

    • Good to hear from you Caroline. The story of the Treshams is, indeed, intriguing….especially their connections with the gunpowder plot. And thank you for you kind comments about Serendipities!

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