Finish What you Started

I tend to try and finish what I start – though at my age now, a long term project (a very LONG one) may never get done.

I was reading about photographer David Hurn, who started a 10 year project about the village he lived in. He was inspired by a John Updike quote: “giving the mundane its beautiful due”

This seems a good project for other people too, though mundane could run things down a bit. Uninteresting could become interesting only when you start to do research.

Like my own village – there’s nothing here till I started to look. A pre-conquest minster church – now dilapidated, with all the roof lead stolen last year. Inside the burial of Sir John Skipwith, who died in 1415.

Investigation starts with a little knowledge, and involvement. It’s up to us to put the two together.

After that, it’s about where you stand, and when you press the shutter.

St Bartholomew’s Church at night – lit from inside with floodlights. There’s no electricity, no water – only the odd owl and a few bats in the belfry. Literally……… 🙂

Where East Meets West – Part 11 – Fulstow

I’m sort of going back in time now as I visited and photographed part of Fulstow some weeks ago.

During my research phase though, I came across some information that I found utterly fascincating.

The village was one, that for many years, did not have a war memorial to the soldiers of the first world war. Fulstow was offered one in 1918 but was told it could not include Pte Charles Kirman, of the Lincolnshire Regiment’s 7th Battalion. Pte Kirman, a veteran of the Somme, was shot at dawn in 1917 after going absent without leave.

Villagers insisted that every name be on the memorial,  and the issue became so sensitive that Fulstow didn’t even have an Armistice Service.

The village hall that was built to remember those who died in the second world war, contained no reference to the earlier conflict.

Pte Kirman, a former soldier recalled when war began, went to France as part of the British Expeditionary Force. After fighting at Mons and the Somme, and twice being wounded, he went AWOL in November 1916.

After a court martial he was returned to his unit. Terrified at the prospect of being sent back to the front line, he absconded twice, each time turning himself in after a few days.

He told his final court martial: “My nerves are completely broken down. I suffer with pains in the head when I am in the line. Sometimes I don’t know what I’m doing.”

He was convicted of desertion and of going AWOL and was executed, aged 32, on Sept 23, 1917.

Following a long campaign – and money raised by locals, they finally got their memorial, and Pte Kirman’s name is there – along with the other fallen…..

_DSF6536-Edit

 

Boston – Where East Meets West – part 8

Boston and the Maud Foster Mill

According to legend, Boston is named after St Boltoph. It is said he came to the area in the 7th Century, and built a monastery and church next to an existing settlement. The settlement was renamed St Boltoph’s Tun (Town) and contracted to Boston.

Boston was not named in Domesday of 1086, but probably grew into a town in the 11th or 12th Century. At that time, international trade was booming, and Boston was well situated to trade with Europe, and became a busy port. It became a focal point for the villages around Lincolnshire, and slowly grew as the population expanded.

Once the church and tower (known locally as the “Stump”, was completed in the 15th to 16th Century it was a local landmark and used by sailors to find their way to the coast, and the town.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

It was the wool trade that made Boston important – and with a Royal Charter to hold a market – it became the place to see, and be seen.

The wool trade had almost stopped by 1500, but Boston continued to be an important trading town, with the import of spices and other goods.

In the mid 16th Century, work was started on the Maud Foster Drain.  Why this drain has this name is not entirely clear.

In History and Antiquities of Boston, Pishey Thompson states (p201) “Maud Foster herself  has ceased to be a myth, for we find frequent mention of her in the Corporation Records. But we cannot connect this person with the Drain, so as to discover any reason why it should bear her name. Tradition asserts, that Maud Foster was the owner of the land through which the new cut would pass, and that she gaved consent to its passage on very favourable conditions, one of which was that it should bear her name. Our readers must take this tradition for what it is worth, as we cannot strengthen it by any facts.”

The Mill was not built till 1819.

When we visited the windmill in February of this year – there was some construction work going on in front of it, but the current miller was talkative, and I was able to purchase some of the flour, ground there.  He sells a good variety, and I purchased both seed and plain strong bread flour – since made into a loaf.  You can also purchase porridge oats.

_DSF2047

I appreciate that there has been quite a jump from the last location to this one – and I intend to fill in the gaps as time goes on.

On the same day that we visited Boston, we also went to East Kirby Airfield, which houses not only the Lancaster ‘Just Jane’, but a stone which deliniates the East West Meridian.

I think that East Kirby deserves a post all to itself, but I think I need a return visit for more photographs.