Sunday, 28 August 2016

St Nicolas Church, Pevensey and William the Conqueror, storms, North American students ...




I went to a talk on St Nicolas Church in Pevensey – of William the Conqueror fame – well he conquered and left us, Angles or Saxons as we were, with a new world … talk about change – but we are what we are now 1,000 years on …
St Nicolas Church, Pevensey looking east



I have written briefly about Pevensey, as too Herstmonceux Castle … but nothing as thorough as this recent post from Mike at “A Bit AboutBritain” on the Battle of Hastings


Dr Scott McLean, an archaeologist from the Canadian School at Herstmonceux, gave the talk … and wondered why no recent detailed excavations of Pevensey had ever been made … particularly with the tools that we have available to us today …


We have no idea where the harbour was that William, with his huge fleet of ships, landed – it was Pevensey … but was it north of the castle, or to the east … were there two harbours even … no major archaeology has been found, nor has a recent serious search been made.


The coastline of Pevensey c 340 AD
that expanse of water is now the
Pevensey Levels


To go back to the Roman era (2,000 years ag) – this part of the Sussex coast was very strategic with its ‘deep water port’, a number of salt works … Pevensey was a peninsula … and the coastline had many more deep water inlets …







Graveyard surrounded by trees - not of the Saxon age!
Through the trees and over them is where
Pevensey Castle stands

The thick forest of Andredsweald (c/o Mike for the name of the forest) … offered the Romans all the necessary raw materials to increase the already present iron industry (wood and iron) … together with clay for tiles and bricks, hogs, deer, and at the coast – fish … to feed the population.





Less manicured part - but it was a lovely day to be
at the Church and walking around


The forest provided a natural barrier … trade would be south to the various ports along the coast … the ‘Classis Britannica’ or Roman fleet, an imperial organisation, as well as a navy, supplied the inhabitants with necessities … while encouraging some form of farming at the various farmsteads dotted around the various forts.





… as the trades were established the land became relatively settled – albeit of a coastal tract – as trade was by boat … and these were  Harold Godwin’s lands … so William’s invasion – was war on King Harold as he might have been.

Early Medieval France - the Germanic tribes were
to the east, Armorica was settled by the Celtic Britons
escaping the Anglo-Saxon invasions


Yet – why did William land here … he came with the winds – but it was because there was this major connection with Normandy and western France – rulers hadn’t settled, as we know them, their lands yet … and so Pevensey became the centre of people movement and of ideas …






Pevensey Castle outer wall - the east entrance


… a Mint was established, the new church of St Nicolas was built to the east of the castle, but on a previous Saxon church … while in 1207 Pevensey was given the status of a Cinque Port.  The Cinque Ports were a trade and military confederation along the south and east coasts of England.




… but a harbinger of disaster was ‘brewing’ - the climate was changing – so much so that there were major storms in the 1286 and 1287 seasons … which changed the coastline for ever.


Compared to the Pevensey Bay coastline
above - the shore line is very different today

The wide open harbours were silted up, cliffs collapsed leading to harbour settlements finding themselves landlocked, while others that had been inland found themselves with access to the sea.






This was the wide bay - now silted up

The Pevensey levels were swamped with silt so that Hailsham became landlocked … Pevensey was left without either of its major harbours … trade ceased: impacting in a major way life along the Sussex coast … 100 villages were deserted … and these storms continued on and off until 1430 …



Trade moved to larger open water ports … such as Portsmouth, or north Kent where the London ports became established … perhaps Pevensey could have been ‘a Portsmouth’ … and our lives here in Eastbourne and East Sussex would have been very different.


They are still farming at Church Farm hundreds of
years later - pigs were in this field

Dr McLean brought some Canadian students from Herstmonceux to experience a dig … they were not impressed! with the square of old farm yard next to the Church … which needed to be carefully dug/trowelled out … looking for Neolithic, Roman, Saxon, Viking, Norman, Medieval finds …






Emperor Allectus of the Britannic Empire
with a Classis Britannica galley on
the obverse

… relatively few were found – they found some Roman coins, pottery, the base of a medieval road, a beach and a wharf that would have been nearby …





… all leading to the fact that the Church would have been at the centre of a community – on the harbour, surrounded by a Mint, Customs House, homes, shops, farms etc …


Unusually the nave and chancel are almost
of the same length - it is slightly off true;
the thinking is that it was intentional - a
deliberate feature to create an illusion of
greater strength, or to depict the
drooping of Christ's head on the Cross.
The students however loved the new born lambs, baby pigs … meeting the locals … but not the mud and farmyard yuck – but archaeological digs cover all things …



… then one day – they were ushered into the Church … and had a seminar in the Medieval Church that is 800 years old … something that they’d have never have experienced in north America.


So as you can see I hope from my brief foray along our coast and through the two millennia back to Roman times, and even another 4,000 years further back in time to the Neolithic Age – confirmed by other finds in and around Eastbourne … that history uncovers much … including storms that completely change the way of life.



Flint Wall, wonderful picket like fence, white roses
taken from the graveyard



History is weird and wonderful … so much to learn, so many mysteries to solve – where did William the Conqueror land … exactly where is that harbour, and the underlying archaeology …




To the Sacred Memory of Thomas Pierce - mariner and
pilot who died, drowned in sight of home in the gale
of June 6th 1870 - aged 70 years.
… someone one day will decide it’ll be worth the expense and effort to unravel that historical unknown … much as they appear to have done for the Battle of Hastings – where William conquered, and Harold lost his eye, before death cut him down.


It was a fascinating visit … and now I need to revisit and find out more …


Please also see http://positiveletters.blogspot.co.uk/2016/11/st-nicolas-church-pevensey-and-william.html for some extra details of the Church and its history

Hilary Melton-Butcher
Positive Letters Inspirational Stories

70 comments:

D.G. Hudson said...

Very interesting, indeed, Hilary! I sometimes feel I'm taking a course in UK history when I read your blog, and I love learning about the historical sights. I sometimes watch the tv show about the mud diggers in Britain who find old Roman items, and they also tell a bit about each item. Thanks for all the work you do to write such fascinating posts.

bazza said...

Hi Hilary. I assume that there is not much of Pevensey Castle still standing? I mean like, say, Dover Castle.
CLICK HERE for Bazza’s fabulous Blog ‘To Discover Ice’

Patsy said...

We've been to Pevensey castle, but not the church - will try to pop in there for a look next time we're in the area.

So agree about history being weird and wonderful!

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I wonder if repeated storms over time washed away much of what was once the town. You would think something would've survived though.

Out on the prairie said...

Amazing finds, sometimes we only look at what is there, forgetting what made it that way.Through the centuries information can be lost and forgotten.I have worked a few digs and still search for treasures around me.

Jo said...

I knew some of the Kent ports had silted up in the past, Rye for instance which used to be a Cinque Port. Didn't know about Pevensey certainly didn't realise that was where William the Conqueror landed. Nor that that was Harold's territory. Wonder what it would have been like if Harold had won.

I used to recite The Battle of Hastings as written by Marriot Edgar and performed by Stanley Holloway.

Rosalind Adam said...

I've never been there but hope to do so one day. Been to Rye. Lovely part of the country. I always thought that one of William the Conquerer's legacy was all the French influence in our language.

Mike Goad said...

Very interesting. I was somewhat familiar with some of this. Supposedly one or more ancestors in my Jocelyn lineage participated in the Norman invasion. The name appears several times in the Domesday book.

The Great Storm years correspond to a theorized period of low solar activity called the Wolf Minimum where climate change lowered global temperature.

beste barki said...

I love history too. It teaches us about ourselves and about being human.

Kathleen Valentine said...

You do such a thorough job of giving your readers a feel for the place when you write and your knowledge of history is wonderful. I learn so much. The pictures are excellent, too. I love the one of the overgrown cemetery. Thanks.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ DG – delighted to read this … I enjoy writing the posts up as I too learn so much history along the way. It’s fascinating seeing what does come up out of the ground or seashore from a dig … and then being able to give us what the items refer to … I agree – so informative about our antecedents and their way of life …

@ Bazza – you’re right - there’s little left of Pevensey Castle … the basics are there – ruined walls etc … but not a lot else … it is definitely not like Dover Castle is today – a still working building: too true!

@ Patsy – there’s two churches – this is the one on the east – with the Mint and Customs House … it’s worth a look in … and as we agree so weird and wonderful …

@ Diane – the storms and seas are incredible ravishers of land and whatever’s on it … but we do find things still being washed up or unearthed …

The ‘town’ would have been around the Castle and now there is more land there than 1,000 years ago – because of the silting up … but it’s obviously felt a thorough 21st C archaeological survey should be conducted – let’s hope so – which would at least highlight where potential finds lie – and give a better understanding of the soil structure … sea scapes etc …

@ Steve – it is extraordinary how they can deduce who, what and why they lived where they did from the ‘finds’ unearthed in the soil structure. I’m just happy to be around today – when the experts are better able to let us know so much of our ancient past … So glad you’re keeping your eyes open for ‘finds’ too in your prairie …

@ Jo – Rye is in Sussex … and was a Cinque Port. I’ve always known William landed at Pevensey … then travelled up the coast – having travelled inland first – to meet Harold at today’s town of Battle, near Hastings.

I hadn’t heard of Edgar Marriott … so that was interesting … Life would have been very different if Harold had won …

@ Ros – it is a lovely part of the country down here … but Rye is a delightful town … however sometime I hope you make it down here. You’re right Norman French was brought in and became the language of the Court, Government and the upper classes for the next 3 centuries … English was used by the ordinary peoples, while Latin was the language of the Church.

@ Mike – thank you. Jocelyn certainly appears to be a Norman name and their appearance in one of the Domesday books.

I was interested in your reference to the Wolf Minimum … as I’d never heard the term – or noticed the other information on solar maximums and minimums … thanks for that!

@ Beste – you’re right there we can learn so much about our ancient history and social history … as times changed.

@ Kathleen – thanks so much: I like to feel I understand the aspect I’m blogging about and that often means putting those extras in ... dates etc … and the pictures – it brings the times to life. Thank you – I’m glad I put the photo of the overgrown churchyard in …

Great to see the post resonated with you all … such fun to read the comments – thank you … cheers Hilary

Deborah Weber said...

Oh how fascinating Hilary. My mind is caught by the images of the Great Storms and the changes they wrought. History is indeed weird and wonderful - and you do such a delightful job of inviting us into your explorations.

Inger said...

You are so right, history is weird and wonderful. I used to know quite a lot about yours. But I knew nothing much about American, so a few months back I decided to learn about the constitution of the United States and how it came about. A friend of mine lent me a book called 1787, which details the work that went into it. It is fascinating and now I have decided to learn more about the history of this country where I have lived for over 50 years.

Of course this has nothing to do with this wonderful post of yours, but I just wanted to share. I didn't know that no one knows where exactly William and his fleet landed. Again, congrats on some great and thoughtful research.

Inger said...

I forgot - I also wanted to tell you that on my Kindle, I'm watching Lark Rise to Candleford, a series from BBC back in 2010. I absolutely love it. Do you know about it by any chance?

Botanist said...

I love these reminders of the long line of history that Britain (and Europe) enjoys. It's something I miss over this side of the pond.

Dianne K. Salerni said...

Fascinating that the coastline changed so drastically that major harbors were lost!

Julie Flanders said...

It's always so amazing to think how coastlines change and an area can end up completely different. Love this mystery of where William landed. Fascinating history as always, Hilary.

M. Denise C. said...

So interesting, Hilary! Thank you for this nice lesson in history/geography !!

Truedessa said...

History is indeed weird and wonderful. Thank you for putting so much effort into your posts they are fact filled and so interesting.

Liz A. said...

Fascinating stuff. Maybe one day they'll get archeologists to play there. But still so much to explore.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Deborah – we’ve had some large storms since I’ve been around and we’re seeing the coastline, particularly in the east, continuing to have radical changes. I was so interested to see the map and realise how much has altered … just glad you enjoy your visits …

@ Inger – I hadn’t realised they’re still unsure about William’s landing here … we do know he marched his men eastwards to meet Harold and that famous battle at Battle.

How interesting you’re learning more about your American history … the constitution etc. I looked for “1787” – but Amazon took me directly to one on Australia … coincidence?! That looked interesting too …

Re Lark Rise to Candleford – I didn’t watch it … it was at the time my mother was ill … so I was very distracted, also I’m not good at watching long series. The books look interesting … now you’ve highlighted the series, I’ll remember and perhaps catch up …

@ Ian – yes … the missing of history (even though then I wasn’t that interested – just it was part of the fabric of my being) when I was in South Africa is an odd sensation … but something so intrinsic – I know exactly what you’re feeling …

@ Dianne – yes major harbours lost … yet that has continued to happen over time as vessels got ever larger … I wrote about one in my Agincourt post last year … regardless of the weather.

@ Julie - the softness of the rock found at the east coast of the UK is troublesome, even today … I keep finding out more. It’d be interesting if they would put in motion an archaeological survey of the area – at least to get an idea of where some actual history from 1066, with artefacts and coastline of those times, would be …

@ Denise – just glad you enjoyed it …

@ Truedessa – very happy you enjoy your visits …

@ Liz A – I am sure at some stage, someone will take up the gauntlet and find William’s landing place or encampment in that 1066 era …

Thanks so much ... so glad you all enjoy the history aspect and reminders of the variety of our past … cheers Hilary

Nas said...

You always have such fascinating posts Hilary! I come here and go through your old posts too for research if I come across something I need clarifying!

Thank you so much!

A Heron's View said...

The Normans certainly introduced lots of changes to these islands.
Did you know that they used to have a sweat rooms in the basements of their castles for the easement of bodily pain ?

Rhodesia said...

As ever another very interesting post with much information that I did not know. You are so good at delving into the past and making it interesting. Have a good week Diane

Mason Canyon said...

It is odd that with modern technology where hasn't been done. St. Nicolas Church looks lovely and like it has so many stories to tell. Always enjoy your post, Hilary. I learn about and see a part of the world I'd love to visit.

Thoughts in Progress
and MC Book Tours

Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

I love hearing historical mysteries! This is a good one and I hope someone/some group will take it on.

And...what a beautiful church!

Christine Rains said...

How immensely interesting! Such a beautiful place. One day, I'd like to visit the UK to see those buildings with so many more centuries of history than here in North America.

Gattina said...

Looks quite familiar to me, I have been to Pevensey quite often. At least I have seen the church and the graveyard. The rest I didn't know. Very interesting !

Summer said...

Such interesting history! Happy Monday ♥

summerdaisy.cottage.blogspot.com

Joanne said...

I'm sure that talk was quite fascinating as is your presentation here. Goes to show fortunes are affected by the weather. Are we learning that lesson today as the weather changes and is more extreme? History must serve a purpose!

cleemckenzie said...

Fascinating history. The Romans had everything right there. How fortunate tor them. All would have been different if they'd arrived a few centuries later. Timing is all. I always enjoy these historical snippets and you must spend a lot of time finding and writing them. Greatly appreciated, Hilary.

mail4rosey said...

I would have been happy with the small finds they came across. :) I agree, history is delightfully weird.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Nas - crumbs! ... gosh that's a bit of a surprise to read - and an honour!

@ Mel - yes the Normans have much to answer for don't they - still I think I prefer the way things have turned out ... not sure about the future though - re Brexit?!

No - I'd no idea that 'sweat rooms' formed a part of a Castle - extraordinary ... but for the easement of bodily pain - it almost gets worse?! Beggars a thought or two ...

I found this website - additional information for some of you:
http://www.castlesandmanorhouses.com/life_01_rooms.htm

@ Diane - many thanks ... when I hear something interesting and that I've enjoyed - it makes a good post ... which you all seem to enjoy.

@ Mason - it is strange that they haven't done any recent scientific explorations, or investigations ... but they are expensive to set up - so I'm sure one day it'll get done. So happy you enjoyed your look around St Nicolas Church ...

@ Elizabeth - that's great ... and it would be fun to uncover the truth about the harbour - I expect it'll happen. It is a delightful church ...

@ Christine - I hope you and the family can get over for a visit at some stage - we have so much history here ... it's daunting sometimes!

@ Gattina - I'm sure you've been to the Church ...

@ Summer - thanks for visiting

@ Joanne - the talk was so interesting and I'm glad you could get that experience here. The weather has always changed ... as have the coast lines caused by weather, or from a variety of movement of the earth's crust/surface ...

History can serve a purpose ... but too we won't have that knowledge - the earth does its thing ... as we know from earthquakes, tsunamis etc ..

@ Lee - you're right - the land offered all that was needed ... but the Romans were cleverer than that they had the system in place ...

The Normans inherited Roman roads, buildings etc ... so could integrate and learn from the Roman remains ... but introduced so much more to this little island.

Thankfully I mostly hear things or read an article - then I've a basis until my mind wanders off and adds on to the post ... or just extracts ideas ...

Cheers to you all - it's a pleasure to write things up here - as you're all so good with your comments: many thanks - Hilary

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Thanks Rosey - you 'snuck' in as I was posting ... wouldn't it be fun to find a Roman Coin .. or something recognisable that was over a 1,000 years old ...

Cheers and I quite agree with you - Hilary

mail4rosey said...

Yes! It would def. be fun. A coin would probably be my most favorite thing to find. :)

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Great Rosey ... a coin would be good wouldn't it ... suspect I won't find one as I don't go out digging up the muck or dirt!! Cheers H ..

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

As an American, I often think while reading your posts how amazing it is to live somewhere with so much history. I really enjoyed your posts.

Jacqui Murray said...

This is the type of history we Americans don't have. I will say I'm pretty enamored with Anasazi culture--they were a talented group that just seemed to disappear.

Mark Noce said...

You make great points! I always wonder why more archaeology isn't done in some locations. I encountered a dispute once in Ireland between two places I visited where both claimed the same ancient queen was buried...yet neither of them wished to dig it up to prove it! :)

Annalisa Crawford said...

Wow, that's quite an alteration to the coastline - those storms must have been incredible to live through. How weird to suddenly have a house by the sea!

Paula Kaye said...

Another wonderful post chock full of magnificent history. Thanks for sharing!

Denise Covey said...

Thanks Hilary! I know so much more about the history of the UK thanks to your super research and attending historical meetings etc. All good reading for when I come back to the UK next year! And, yes, isn't it amazing how coastlines change over time...:-)

Melissa Sugar said...

Hi Hilary, Thanks again for sharing so much history. I love a good mystery. Where did William the Conqueror land and where is that harbor? Surely, it's worth the cost and effort to discover the unknown. I hate not knowing.



















Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Susan - I really missed the range of eras we have at our fingertips here in the UK and Europe - when I was in South Africa ... albeit I wasn't that interested in history as such at that stage ... now I totally appreciate the whole history thing. I'm just delighted you're happy to read ...

@ Jacqui - lovely to see you: I can quite understand why you have an interest in the Anasazi culture .. it's just such a pity there was no writing - that's been the saving grace of our history ... as well as all the structures and understanding that archaeologists have discerned.

@ Mark - thank you ... there must be some logistical reasons why no excavations have been done ... roads have been built - but nothing major has been uncovered. Your dispute in Ireland - I'm sure neither side wished to disturb the sacred site ... much easier to let their queen rest in peace ...

@ Annalisa - there's lots of these storms over the centuries that have altered our coastline in a major way - many in the east ... but rivers etc Such a surprise to some communities - desperate for others washed away ... as now!

@ Paula - thank you ... glad you enjoyed it.

@ Denise - many thanks ... I hope you can decide where you want to visit - so many places to see. But I'm delighted if my thoughts give you some ideas. Coastlines are always resetting themselves ...

@ Melissa - my thoughts are probably the area is too large and nothing major has been found when the land has been disturbed in a major way ... road building, during the Wars ... etc - so perhaps having no specifics and no records means there's no potential hot spot for the harbours: too broad an area. I don't know - but I'll find out in due course ...

Thanks everyone - so lovely to see you all ... cheers Hilary

Morgan said...

It's been too long, Hilary! I always loved your posts and I'm so happy to be back. This of course was lovely and fascinating. Love the pics.

Mike@Bit About Britain said...

Fascinating post, as ever, Hilary - and thank you for the mention! This was really well-researched and presented. Amazingly, I have never visited Pevensey, though I love that part of the world. It is indeed amazing to think of how geography has changed our coastline. There are just so many places to see - isn't it wonderful?!

Bish Denham said...

Nearly 200 years of bad weather? Wow! I know coastlines can change suddenly, but in just a year or two, to lose a harbor is pretty amazing. So many towns abandoned. So much history. You're right, archaeological digs need to happen.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Morgan - hey ... great to see you! I hope you'll be soon posting too ... delighted to see you around again.

@ Mike - thanks so much - pleasure re the mention - your posts are so, so informative. I did add in quite a lot to this post ... I'd forgotten! Glad it's brought it to life ...

Well I hope Pevensey and this area is on your visiting list now?! But I'm staggered at how much of our coastline has been changed through the centuries that we're aware of ...

Yes - so much to see ... and I'm finding out so much about this area - which I find fascinating ... but as you say - we could go anywhere in England and happily write up posts ...

@ Bish - well it wasn't continually over 200 years - but over that time-span: weather is cyclical. It would have been sudden, but there'd have been silting up as the land adjusted to the storm damage ... and erosion happened etc.

There is so much history ... I'm sure they'll get some geophysics in at some stage ... expensive to arrange ... but the site needs to be re-surveyed aerially ...

Cheers to the three of you - and thanks for visiting ... Hilary

Susan Scheid said...

I love your observation, "History is weird and wonderful … so much to learn, so many mysteries to solve – where did William the Conqueror land … exactly where is that harbour, and the underlying archaeology …" Once you start on the trail of almost anything, there is no end to it!

Chrys Fey said...

Old castles and churches are marvels. I would love to see many of them.

Lynn said...

History is so fascinating - I love reading about it. And yes - weird and wonderful, too. You live in an enchanted place - so lovely that you get to visit places like that.

Nick Wilford said...

Fascinating that such a well-known event as the Norman invasion would still hold so many mysteries. Those storms must have been incredible to have changed the coastline so dramatically.

Rhonda Albom said...

I learn so much from coming to your blog. One of my favorite things about traveling through Britain was stopping at the old castles and ruins, and for me that is the best way to learn the history.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Susan - everyone seems to have picked up on that phrase - which is great because history is weird and it is wonderful. You're so right when I do start looking at things I'm always taken off to look at other links and connections. It's fun - but the need to stop can be challenging! Thanks - lovely comment.

@ Chrys - I thought you'd said "old castles church marvels" ... which is a good phrase as well ... I do enjoy going in and looking around and then writing about my visits.

@ Lynn - so glad you enjoy reading the posts on history ... and Britain, as well as Europe, has so many fascinating places to visit - we're lucky ...

@ Nick - it's odd to find out that not much is known of William's landing as such ... we know about Battle and the battle and (they believe) where Harold was killed - but the harbours apparently not a lot. The storms were very dramatic - as we've seen since the War.

@ Rhonda - just very happy that you enjoy your visits ... with the snippets of history I write about. The thing is it teaches me too!

Cheers to you all and thanks for your comments and visits - Hilary

Nicola said...

Such fascinating events and so much to still discover. So pleased you enjoyed your time, Hilary and for taking the time to share your new knowledge. Wonderful pictures too.

Ann Best said...

History is indeed, as you say, weird and wonderful. As always you have given us awesome photographs to guide us through the "visit." As for storms...they do change places, sometimes step by step... other times it's catastrophic.

You have so much history to see in your country. I'm always awed by your knowledge!

Thanks for stopping by my website. I always love seeing your smiling face. ((( ))) from me and Jen

Robert Bennett said...

Thank you for the history lesson and for the pictures. It's absolutely gorgeous and reminds me of a church and graveyard back home. Thank you

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Nicola - you're right there's much more to discover and I have lots more to learn ... but I enjoy passing on interesting snippets of history - so thank you ... the photos I use to give the post more life.

@ Ann - I know history is quite extraordinary ... and each era has its own, and show us how people lived. Storms have always occurred and changed our lives. Thank you - I learn as I go ... so if something is interesting I highlight it here - so I'm only half a step ahead of you!

@ Robert - good to see you and I'm glad you enjoyed the post and photos: the church and graveyard is a very representative one ..

Good to see you and thank you so much for stopping and commenting - cheers Hilary

jabblog said...

Very informative and interesting as always. There is so much to uncover in our history.

Elsie Amata said...

What beautiful countryside. The cemetery is so pretty and peaceful. Thank you for sharing it with us.

Victoria Marie Lees said...

Fascinating, Hilary. History is always teaching us something--even today. Thank you so much for sharing this bit of history, this bit of knowledge with your readers. All the best, my dear!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Janice - loved seeing your photos of the cats and dogs .. delightful. Our history holds so many stories doesn't it ..

@ Elsie - delighted you enjoyed the photos of the area and of the church ...

@ Victoria - we are always being taught aren't we - I'm just glad you enjoyed it ..

Cheers to you three - Hilary

Weekend-Windup said...

Looks great! It was happy to know many things:)

LD Masterson said...

Lovely history lesson. I'm always fascinated by this period in England.

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

Although my knowledge of European history is sadly lacking, for whatever reason, some of the things we were taught about the Battle of Hastings 55 or so years ago has stuck in my head. Of course, I learned more here on your blog. HA!

Really, quite interesting. But I'm somewhat baffled by the students not being impressed. They found ancient Roman coins and pottery... and weren't so excited they were jumping around like Tigger over it??? (I would have!)

Have a super weekend!

diedre Knight said...

This was truly enthralling! I would have loved to have been one of those students visiting the 800 year old church! Can't say why the students weren't more engaged, I know I would have had sweaty palms. So tragic to lose an entire piece of history due to devastating storms - but then, that is part of history too, isn't it? Fascinating post, Hilary!

Anabel Marsh said...

Definitely fascinating! History is full of "what if?s"

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Weekend-Windup - thanks ...

@ LD - so glad you enjoyed it ...there was so much going on here in the 2,000 years since the Romans 'found us'! ...

@ Susan - my knowledge is very limited too -that's why I enjoy writing the blog ... I learn as I go.

I suspect the kids, like me, don't enjoy getting down and dirty in cow pats, mud, chicken yuck etc ... they were happier once in the church. I guess a few 'finds' didn't make an interesting history lesson - be they Roman coins, a Roman road ... but it takes a while for it to sink in! I'm sure it'll stay with them ...

@ Diedre - thanks so much. The church is here for you to visit! I just think we need time for history to sink in and then to start understanding what it's all about, and putting the pieces together. I'm sure some of the archaeologists get really excited at times ...

Storms sweep coastal sites away ... it's fascinating how history changes things though ...

@ Anabel - yes history is so fully of "what ifs"? ... fun finding some of them out -

Cheers to you all - this little church is fascinating ... Hilary

DMS said...

History is a real trip and I learn so much on my journeys with you. :) Great post!
~Jess

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Jess - sorry ... never got back to say so good to see you and am delighted you enjoy wherever I decide to take you ... history is such fun - now! Cheers Hilary