I had to travel to Oakridge Lynch in the Cotswolds on Thursday to drop off a dozen copies of my book at my cousin's house, so I decided to make an afternoon of it and take the dog for a nice, long walk. We parked in the same little lane in Sapperton where I got snowbound 18 months ago and had a very slow and slip-slidey journey down off the scarp and back to Bristol. No such problems in July. In fact, for once this summer it was glorious.
I started with the church, and as soon as I walked into the churchyard, I spotted the grave of Emery Walker, engraver, printer and an acolyte of my all-time hero, William Morris. How propitious!
Lots of loveliness inside the Church of St Kenelm also, including Tudor linen-fold panelling and elaborate carvings from Sapperton Manor.
I also loved the tomb of the topographer, Sir Robert Atkyns, who died in 1711, especially the figures to one side. (I know that feeling well.)
There was also a very covetable, traditionally made oak bookshelf with a cupboard underneath, which looked as if it might have been crafted by one of Sapperton's celebrated erstwhile inhabitants, the Arts and Crafts architects and furniture designers, Ernest Gimson and Ernest and Sidney Barnsley.
Around the door, one of my favourite things, graffiti with serifs dating back to at least 1729. This beautifully lettered example is from 1749.
Back out in the summer, there was a proliferation of cranesbill and mallow, moon daisies, ragwort, grasses and angels.