Canterbury January 2016 – Archbishop Bear

At £75 this chap was far too expensive to buy for Church of England clergy friends (although the lady in the shop said that his vestments are made from off-cuts of ‘the real thing’)…

…and if you had one you’d need a complete set of vestments for the whole liturgical cycle not just one set wouldn’t you?

Canterbury January 2016 – The Cathedral

Saturday found us in Canterbury on a lovely, clear day. The Boy had never been to the cathedral, so we popped in to have a look. You can find lots and lots of amazing snaps online, so here are just a few things that caught my eye.

I’ve always loved this figure of Christ on the gatehouse to the cathedral precinct.

I’m not sure what these creatures are on one of the cathedral doorways, but I like them.

This candle burns on the spot where St Thomas a Becket’s shrine was, until it was destroyed on the orders of Henry VIII., who also ‘unsainted’ him for good measure.

I was rather taken by the altar front…

…and restored painting.

Intrigued by this weekly service...

…and left wondering how many memorials record death by ‘an assassin’?

France August 2015 – Sancerre

Sancerre…renowned for great wine, delicious cheese…and ruddy, big ice-creams.

I’m not sure what this flower is, but there were a lot about and they were absolutely beautiful…

…as was this shop front.

It was great to see this old house…

…restored to some of it’s former glory.

Outside and inside the church we were menaced by a busker, who followed us round playing the guitar.

This BVM is very kitsch, but very effective. I have a vivid memory of seeing it when i was a child. Seeing it again this summer dropped me back into that memory, a very strange feeling.

My lovely Boys :-).

France August 2015 – Tonnerre

My blogging seems to have grown to a halt of late. I think it’s partly down to putting lots of stuff on Facebook, and partly because all my photos are on my elderly MacBook which is now going incredibly slowly. I need to find some way round it. 
Here are some photos from the summer.

We see Tonnerre from a distance when we travel down to Moulins-Engilbert. This August we finally made our way there. This is Hôtel-Dieu Notre-Dame des Fontenilles…this fabulous old hospital building, founded in 1293, is now a museum and art space.

Photos really can’t capture the amazing space.

It was a shame about the art exhibition, which was uniformly dire.

On the floor is this lovely eighteenth-century sundial, the elongated figure of eight. It used to be marked out in copper, but that was stolen during the French revolution.

At the back of the main hall, down some steps, is this beautiful entombment of Christ, which dates from 1454.

Tonnerre is also home to the Fosse Dionne, which is a natural deep water source, used from Roman times. It’s last incarnation was a public washhouse.

Sadly, when we were there, the water level was quite low.

It was easy to imagine a creature lurking in the depths.

France August 2015 – La Cathédrale de Jean Linard

I realised the other day, that what with the onslaught of the beginning of the academic year, I hadn’t finished looking my holiday photos…so here are some more.

A friend was off to Paris while we were away, and keen to find some ‘off the beaten track’ things to see. We found Atlas Obscura , a website with all sorts of interesting places.

I decided to have a look for sites close of Moulins and came across La Cathédrale de Jean Linard. It took quite a bit of finding, but it was well worth it.

The artist Jean Linard, bought some woodland in the 1970s, and built a quirky house, that looks like it’s been there for ever.

He decorated the house and grounds with ceramic mosaics…

…and sculptures.

It’s very hard to describe the place. Many of the pieces are religious in nature, and it is an incredible artwork.

France August 2015 – St-Père-sous-Vézelay

When we first started visiting Burgundy about 15 years ago this church was in a very poor state.

There’s been a lot of restoration work in the last few years…

…but there’s still a lot to do.

I’m glad it’s happening…

…as it’s such a beautiful church.

Despite there being a car park, tourists park all over the place. I love that this householder has put cones out, but made them look pretty.

France 2015 – Vézelay

I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to visit this lovely place twice this year.

The first time was with my parents.

I’ve posted lots of photos of the ‘obvious’ sites over the years, so here are some little things that caught my eye. A nice light fitting…

…a very well behaved spaniel (FYI in my experience any man wearing a beret in France is Belgian)…

….some amazing wax fruit…

….a nice old car…

…and a very funny tourist sign.