Quote

These furrowed and grassy fields, each with a sort of personality given to it by its capricious hedge, such things as these are the mother tongue of our imagination, the language that is laden with all the subtle inextricable associations the fleeting hours of our childhood left behind them.

George Eliot (1860)

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Away, featured, Life

In honour of them all

Just a quick post with a link to a piece by talented calligrapher Patricia Lovett MBE about the beautiful Roll of Honour which she created for Plaxtol. The Roll carries the names of more than 150 former village schoolchildren and four school staff who fought in World War One. The Roll hangs in what was originally the […]

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Quote

Every man almost is a builder, and … will not be quiet till he have pulled down the old house (if any were there standing) and set up a new after his own device.

William Harrison, Description of England (1577)

Away, Landscape, Life

Coherence

April has been a month of profound contrasts. Remarkably warm days a couple of weeks ago have brought wildflowers, garden blooms (many tulips have come and gone) and fruit blossom out much earlier than usual. Apple blossom is not usual in Plaxtol until the start of May, but now the trees are already covered

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Away, Life

Folly

With so many words, in all media, dedicated to the repercussions of the UK referendum, I have been reluctant to express an opinion here. But on this morning, the centenary of the first day of the Battle of the Somme, with the blackbird, wren and chaffinch singing in the garden and highly-appropriate skylarks soaring in […]

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Away, featured, Landscape, Life

Gathering thoughts in May

Robert Browning may have craved his homeland in April (and who would not?), but is there any month more urgently, lasciviously, resplendently English than May? The very word drips with subtext; with sappy, fleshy undercurrents of light, warmth and fecundity.

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Away, Legacy, Life

The break in the chain

Meat used to be a matter of confidence and pride. Every market town held its own local fat stock show and sale in the weeks before Christmas, where farmers would compete to present the best-finished beef animal and butchers would vie to outbid each other to secure the champion beast and the honour of offering its meat […]

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Legacy, Life

What do you see?

For the uninitiated, the Plaxtol sign can appear baffling. What could a woolly goat standing proudly upon a mountain crag possibly have to do with a parish spanning the Bourne valley in decidedly lowland Kent?

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Away

Best-Loved Books

Not strictly inspired by Plaxtol, but I have come to realize that the books I love best inform my writing, elaborate my understanding of wildlife, landscape and history, and affirm my sense of place. Here are the ones which come most readily to mind.

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