Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Hermitage Windows, Layered History and Two Narrowboats

Hermitage Windows :- Tucked right at the very back of the 18th Century landscaped Painshill Park(built between 1738 and 1773) in Surrey you'll come across a small octagonal thatched hut. Inside there's a basic wooden bed and a small table and very little else. This is the "Hermitage" that has an amusing story attached to it. Sometime during the 1740's the Hon Charles Hamilton advertised for a hermit to occupy his hermitage. The rules and conditions of the occupancy were that the hired 'Hermit' should not cutt his hair for seven years and that he should also not to talk or leave the estate under any circumstances. It's hard to believe that anyone would apply for such a position but the vacancy was filled and the 'Hermit' took up residence. The punchline to this story is that just three weeks into the job the 'Hermit' was caught in the local pub and was instantly dismissed. A replacement 'Hermit' was never sought.

Layered History :- Here's an image of the cliff face at Ovingdean Gap. It also shows the large breakwater that helps protect the beach as well as the 1930's built undercliff walk that strecthes from Brighton all the way through to Saltdean which are some 4.5 miles or 7.5 kilometers apart. Many walk along and look straight ahead or gaze out to sea but I often find myself looking up at the chalk face itself. You can look way back into the past and see layers from a very ancient and prehistoric time. It's not until you stand back and then look back that you can clearly see them all but they are there and very obvious once you are looking for them. Some bands are whiter than others, some have seems of flint running through them.

Two Narrowboats :- The Grand Union Canal stretches for 137 miles / 220.48 kilometres and has 166 locks to negotiate. It runs from London all the way through to Birmingham and passes through countryside and many towns. This scene shows a section of it as it runs through Milton Keynes. The GUC received its Act in 1793 and was eventually fully opened in 1805.

All Photography Copyright © Justin Hill