Have you suffered from holiday envy like me? That’s the problem with having a huge holiday to Japan in Spring, you don’t think about needing sun in August. Until you see everyone on Instagram drifting round the pool on inflatable flamingoes in the South of France.
The only way to cope has been lots of long weekends in the country. Continuing the theme of ‘improving my driving,’ my Mother and I stopped to look inside the picture perfect St Mary’s Church in Bucklebury, Berkshire. Just look at that gate!
A lovely man managing ivy in the graveyard, paused his gardening duties to give us a tour. The Georgian box pews are beautiful, but my favourite was the sundial in the stained glass window. Look closer and the little fly which looks trapped between the glass, is actually hand painted to remind us that ‘time flies.’ Very poignant.
Eric Gill, the Arts and Crafts Sculptor, also carved this monument. He’s one with a dark past.
Frank Brangwyn, also strikes again! He designed the stained glass window over the altar and the decorative stone course. He must be one of the most underrated designers and artists of his time. Probably living under William Morris’ shadow as his apprentice. I wrote about him last month here.
The Church has even made it on to Trip Advisor, for those on the Duchess of Cambridge tour/Downton Abbey devotees. Nobody had ever heard of the place when I was growing up:
[5 of 5 stars] Reviewed 18 October 2013
While we did not have a chance to visit the farm, we found Bucklebury to be a wonderful place in the country to meet locals. I would encourage anyone to (rent a car-being sure you are totally covered with insurance for any mishap) get off the beaten path and into the countryside of the UK. We were hoping to find Highclere Castle when all of a sudden we spotted a turn off for Bucklebury (home of the Duchess of Cambridge). We stopped by St Mary's church and met some wonderful people participating in a walk/ride charity event. I can't thank them enough for their time spent with us in some good/fun conversation. Even though we did find the location of the Middleton home we kept on driving, not wanting to linger or bother anyone.