A Sunny Weekend Ramble...In March!

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Cotswolds Stone WallThis weekend we have had the sort of weather with which we would be delighted with had it occurred in June, never mind in March. When the woods are already filled with bluebells and their intoxicating scent, and butterflies are sunbathing, the countryside is irresistible. On Saturday I went to Guiting Power, a perfect little village tucked away in the hills above Winchcombe. Sheep were grazing in the meadow adjacent to the church. Nothing else was happening at all – exactly how I like it. Since it is on one of the Cotswold Journeys walking routes, I wanted to see if I could find a new footpath that would avoid a section of woodland that is sometimes prone to mud. Easy – a lovely open section, passing by a handsome mansion that overlooks a pretty valley, that rejoins the original route further on. A satisfactory solution.

Inglesham ChurchOn Sunday, to Lechlade-on-Thames. This historic river port, from which the richly textured Cotswold stone was once transported to build Oxford colleges, has a very handsome main street, overlooked by the parish church that featured in Shelley's poem called, appropriately enough 'A Summer Evening Churchyard, Lechlade'. A pleasant riverside walk brought me to Inglesham and one of the most fascinating churches in the whole region. No longer active, to enter it is to go back in time, filled as it is with Jacobean box pews, a dusty piano and the remains of wall paintings that go back hundreds of years. Enchanting.

NewsVictoria Fielden