Sunday, 26 October 2014

Sunday

Now, I had planned on writing a blog-post about the Hylands House estate in Chelmsford (accompanied by my pictures), but seeing as there was a wedding fair on today in the grounds, I've decided to try again next Sunday! - fingers crossed.

2014, has gone unbelievably fast and it is difficult to believe that November is almost upon us - huzzah for Bonfire night!
Myself and the boy have had such a good year; moving in together, finally agreeing on when to get married (next autumn folks ;)), and just generally living like adults.
We awoke today - remembered to put the clocks back (d'oh), and thought we should walk around the delightful Sandford Lock again. It was a lot muddier than last time, but was still as lovely as ever.

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Afterwards we nipped into town, had a coffee and I found some lovely owl gloves in Primark (£2), so adorable. As a rule, I don't buy proper clothes from Primark as I've heard some awful stories about the quality (one conversation overheard today "I bought these in a 10-12 and they shrunk after one wash"). I rest my case.

My next post, won't be about Hylands House, but will be about Colchester again. We are heading to the town on Friday as we both have the day off work (can't wait).

Outfit;

coat - topshop via a blog sale (about £20)
dress - topshop (xmas present last year)
bag - vintage (£6.99)
shoes - primark (£10)

Monday, 13 October 2014

The Battle of Hastings reenactment

I had been wanting to attend this event for the last two years, and yesterday, my dream came true. It was called off last year due to continuous rainfall (water-logged ground), and back in the summer when I heard it was on, I booked tickets immediately.

As per my last post, everyone is (should be) aware of the battle that took place on Senlac Ridge on the 14th October 1066. King Harold Godwinson and his array of exhausted men, traveled from Yorkshire. The reason they were so exhausted, was because they had beaten Harald Hardrada, Tostig Godwinson and the Scandinavian army at Stamford Bridge (26th September). He was in London within four days (!), and after quickly rounding up farmers, shop-keepers, any man capable of fighting, he marched further south when he heard that the Duke William was causing havoc in Pevensey (East Sussex). The two armies met at Senlac Ridge, and with the English forming a shield wall, the Norman army relied on heavy cavalry, crossbows and infantry (whom were on foot).

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They fought for the best part of the whole day, and of course, the Duke was victorious and as per last post, Harold Godwinson was cut down brutally by four Norman knights.
The question is, what would've happened to England if Harold had won? What would've happened if Harold had lost at Stamford Bridge and Hardrada had beaten William?
It is fascinating to think about. One of the important things to remember however, is that Duke William himself, was not French. Even though he was the Duke of Normandy, he was a mere vassal of the King of France. Normandy was a separate duchy so the Duke, if he wished, was able to fight for the English crown. He had papal authority since Harold himself had sworn an oath on holy relics only two or three years before. (I believe he was tricked into it, but that's another story) ;)

The Saxon camp - go Harold!

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It was a brilliant day and if this sort of things interest you, then please attend next year! There is also a literary tent - Helen Hollick and Stewart Binns were fab :)

baxter jeans - topshop via ebay (around £7)
coat - topshop via a charity shop (£8.95)
wellies - primark (£12) - bought especially!!

Sunday, 5 October 2014

Waltham Abbey

I had a rare day booked off work on Tuesday and as per my last post, we had been meaning to walk to Papermill Lock. Rain destroyed this dream on Monday and we decided it was not worth ruining shoes for.

Waltham Abbey was an idea conjured up by me (as usual ;)), and the boy was easily persuaded (he's the designated driver). I've been dreaming about visiting the market town ever since reading Helen Hollick's `Harold the King` and it was everything I expected it to be.

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Harold's Tomb is within the grounds of the Abbey, but there has been debate as to whether his bones are lying under the great stone slab. Everybody is familiar of the story of Ealdg╚│├░ Swann hnesce (Edith Swanneschals or Edith Swanneck) being given permission by William the Conqueror to search for her husband's body within the mass of dead, bloodied, butchered Saxon housecarls, thegns, mercenaries etc). She recognised Harold's corpse by an intimate scar on his torso and begged for William to allow the dead King to be given a proper burial. Even the efforts of Harold's family did not persuade the Conqueror to give up the body (they bribed him with gold).
Harold's body was eventually laid to rest in ground overlooking the seashore. However, there has been recent claims that his body is in fact buried at the Godwin family church in Bosham - hair and bones were found dating back to around the 1060s...but unfortunately, nobody knows where he is. He could be in Bosham or he could be in Waltham Abbey where his remains were assumed to have been moved to after William supposedly relented. (I'm not sure if i can see the former formidable Duke of Normandy performing these actions!).

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I had a private, quiet moment when standing at the tomb and was quite surprised to see that some soul had left some flowers by the graveside.
It would be nice to think that he could be under all that soil - obviously not much would be left, but it's still comforting all the same.

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Outfit;

coat - primark via a blog sale (£12.99)
skirt - topshop via a charity shop (£4.99)
blouse - topshop (£22)
cardigan - hobbs via a charity shop (£2.99)

I am very glad it rained.