Monday, August 4, 2014

Stokesay Castle Highlights.

Back in March or April, we visited Stokesay Castle, a National Trust property, It was beautiful and atmospheric.  There were daffodils and sunshine and birds singing etc. But there were two things that, for me, were highlights.

The first was this old trackway. I'm fascinated by old trackways.  This one was appears on old maps as Bayham Track. It's believed that it was a droveway for pigs from nearby Bayham Abbey to market. Britain is filled with the very old remnants of tracks and hollow ways. They are steep-sided either worn away from use or sometimes they are very ancient boundaries between fields. The two owners would dig in the middle and throw the soil up on their side producing a hollow center with steep sides. No one really know how old some of them are. But the countryside is filled with them, sometimes only fragments now. Sometimes still marking boundaries. 

Here is a closer view:

And the second highlight for me was this funny little house.

It's an ice house. Apparently one that worked extremely well. Here's the inside. the roof is heavily thatched, so that any warm air would escape through the thatch, but that the cold would be held inside.

The hole that contains the ice is very deep. Because this is built on a rise just above the lake, any melt water drains back into the lake. I love elegant and simple solutions like this one. 

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