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ON THE ROAD AGAIN (PART FIVE)
Sunday was also very entertaining as we left Taunton in the morning and stopped off at a place called Barrow Mump, in the Somerset Levels. It was where Time Team excavated near a church on the top of a hill and we walked up the hill to take a closer look. The weather was a little bit grey but it made everything look quite gothic. took off towards Priddy, which is just North of Wells to track down a field with a series of Barrows. We found them and wandered around for a little while with me getting a series of midge or mosquito bites that I didn’t discover until I got back to London. Then we jumped back in the car and drove to Wells where we visited the Bishop’s Palace, a fantastic Medieval building and the Bishop of Bath and Wells was even there when we visited. It has a fabulous moat and is fairly intact architecturally. We could also see the Cathedral from the Palace gardens and we also found the springs that give Wells its name Then we had lunch in Wells and headed back to Taunton, making one small detour to Athel Ney near Barrow Mump to see the memorial to King Alfred, who spent some time in the Somerset Levels after he was driven out of Hampshire. The Levels include King Sedgemoor’s Drain, a huge piece of reclaimed land dating from Charles II’s time. On Monday, I left Taunton and drove back East to Bradford-on-Avon to see my friend Jaspre Bark and then tried in vain to find the country house Stourhead near Warminster. So I gave up and drove back towards London, stopping off to take a couple of shots of the Cherhill White Horse. Here’s a selection of photos including a couple from Porlock Weir, some from Wells, a few from Priddy and from Barrow Mump…






















GO SOUTHWEST YOUNG MAN PART 4 OR WELLS ALRIGHT
So I left Taunton on the Sunday morning and meandered my way back to London. I took several A-roads which skirted through Glastonbury and Street and through the spectacular Somerset Wetlands, a huge area of reclaimed land that looked beautiful in the semi-sunlight compared with the pitch-black rain of the night before. Leaving Glastonbury, I saw signs for Bath and for Wells. Now there was no reason to visit Wells for the pagan book but I had heard it was a stunning place and I wasn’t in any real hurry so I thought ‘Why Not’ So I made my way out of Glastonbury and onto Wells. My brother took my folks there for the afternoon back in July and I have to say it is a really beautiful place. Forever associated for me with the evil Bishop of Bath and Wells played exquisitely by Ronald Lacey in Blackadder II, Wells is a small city a little bit west of Bath and it is home to a spectacular Gothic cathedral, which dates from around 13th century, and a Bishop’s Palace complete with its own moat, which also dates from the same period. I admit that I didn’t go into the Cathedral or the Palace, partly because I didn’t want to spend all day there but also because I was conserving my money but they look incredible from their exteriors. So I’ll have to go back to Wells properly someday and I really need to go back to Somerset and explore it further…