Ipplepen-Pen Diary – On Tour 2019
Day two of this year’s summer tour was spent in Broadway which for those who don’t know is very often considered and referred to as the “Jewel of the Cotswolds”.
It is such a beautiful place which is enhanced if like today the weather is brilliant which has the advantage of showing the village of warm Cotswolds Stone Cottages, homes and local hostelries to their very best advantage which is of course great for the large number of visitors.
We have visited Broadway a number of times when we always take the opportunity to walk the three miles to Broadway Tower which is a brilliant uphill walk across fields.
This morning was no exception so we set off only to arrive at Broadway Tower to find that it has been cordoned off for the week because they were filming a new episode of Father Brown.
They even had the props there in particular the police car used by the comical and incompetent police inspector which raised in me the question – why doesn’t someone simply tell him to go on holiday “The priest will solve it”.
Which would happen if it wasn’t a fiction.
The walk itself took us through the wide Broadway Main Street past the museum (where there is a fantastic wooden sculpture of a flying man) and then across fields in which there were lambs.
Don’t panic – our springers are used to livestock and don’t chase them.
Broadway Tower is sited on Broadway Hill (not a great deal of effort went into thinking up an exotic name for what is a folly) and is the second highest point in the Cotswolds being 1,024 feet above sea level.
The country folk of the Cotswolds like those of Ipplepen still talk of measurements in feet – none of this new tangled metric measurements for them.
The tower itself is 65 feet high and was the brainchild of the legendary Capabilty Brown and designed by James Wyatt for no other reason than that the Lady Coventry of the time wanted to know if a beacon on the hill could be seen from her house in Worcester 22 miles away.
Incidentally William Morris who lived in the tower in the 1880’s was so impressed by it that in 1877 he founded the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings.
Well that’s the history lesson over for today.
After a scone (there is an argument in the UK whether it is pronounced “scone” as in “sc-one” or “scone” as in “sc-own”.) Don’t ask me all I know is that in the cafe at the top of Broadway Hill they make brilliant cheese ones, we walked back to Broadway to meet with Liz’s cousin John and his wife Loraine who live in Broadway.
By the way in the past there was 33 public houses in Broadway which today has now been reduced to three – so much for progress.
Naturally being British the venue to meet up was in a pub – the Trumpet – who incidentally have fantastic and very easily drinkable local ales (which made the mile walk back to the site appear to be a lot longer).
So that’s it for Broadway.
We will be coming back later in the year but for now it’s time to sleep and tomorrow we are off to Derbyshire and a famous stately home, but that will be another story.