Tuesday, 21 September 2010


On the way back from shopping in Thame I sidetracked off the mainroad, the A418, to the little village of Cuddington - it was a lovely day with a bright blue sky, sunshine and no wind to spoil the temperature. Since I began blogging I almost always remember to take my camera with me and so it was today.

Cuddington has been used in several episodes of Midsomer Murders, usually showing this building but without the adornment of a green car and builders skip! It's usually portrayed as a village hall or where villagers are gathering.

I thought this sunflower looked a little bit like a Victorian lady in a bonnet with the frill framing her face, rather frilly sleeves, a pointing finger and a full skirt in green... It's looking over a wall near the school and I think might be in the school garden; just beside it are purply-red edged Morning Glories and a dense hedge of what looked like French Beans. The school was built in 1862-3, according to Pevsner, but the sun was shining on the back of it so didn't take a photo of the front in shadow.

I walked on down the quiet street and noticed this name at the beginning of a lane. When I was a child we had a cat named Tibby, which seemed to be quite a common name. Apparently it dates from the late 18th to mid 19th Century and not in fashion any longer.

I turned down this narrow dusty lane, not having been along it for about 15 years and vaguely remembering water at the bottom.
I spotted this real water butt - did you ever wonder why plastic water butts are round? It's a daft idea, especially for a small garden - why not use a water tank which normally goes into your roof space? It's a rectangle, fits into any corner without wasting space and the lid, reversed and with a few large holes punched into the centre boss, allows rainwater to drain into it. It'll need to have a tap put in and then stand it on 4 bricks in each corner which makes it just the right height. I bought mine about 20 years ago at a car boot - naturally - and it's still doing duty and looking not too bad for its age.

I had remembered the water at the bottom of the lane; past Tibby's Cottage, round a bend in an almost enclosed lane then found, several feet below me in a narrow water course, a shallow stream flowing out of a pipe in the side of the wall on which a bridge stood - this also held back a large pond in a garden. It was dark and shady after the bright sunlight of the village street.

Walking back to my car I spoke to an older man demolishing a tree in the hot sunshine - a hefty job for such weather. Passing the church I remembered I'd written an article about 19th Century cholera in Gibraltar, a tiny hamlet across the fields, where many people had died from drinking infected water from the well. There's a plaque on St.Nicholas' wall commemorating them.

Back at the car it struck me how the horse chestnut trees are turning rusty now but I haven't seen many conkers about this year. Must look harder!! The village store is on the right with a group of walkers just about to go in.
I'll have to go walking here again, there's lots more to see.

1 comment:

Kath said...

Yes I am trying to remember my camera, with Blog posts in mind. Strange you mentioned the wooden butt, I uncovered 2 here at the weekend.