What You See Is What You Get. This is a journal blog, an explore-blog, a bit of this and that blog. Sharing where the mood takes me. Perhaps it will take you too.

Menooffagainorrhoea; Away From The Hutch

On Monday, we spent the morning on the Northwards and outwards (from Carlisle) part of the trip enjoying three churches, a private castle and a fine lunch.

Next we drove the scenic route, leaving the firth behind and following the flow of the River Wampool, past an installation of radio towers at Anthorn... I rang the father, knower of all things electrifying, and he advised us it was built by the parent company in which he spent his career (BICC). Originally there had been an airfield there, and it was part of the navy (HMS Nutchatch, before becoming RNAS Anthorn). It is VLF (very low frequency) transmission for comms with submarines! Now it is the source of the time signal in the UK. Link for the curious.

Anyway, we moved along to our next church, at Kirkbride, only to be disappointed. It was locked. Jess and I were glad of the porch though, for there was a little shower of rain at that point.

Onwards to Aikton, where the door was more welcoming.

St Andrew's is well away from the actual village and sits quite high with extensive views of the surrounding country; it is extremely peaceful. A good portion of the building is the original 12th century Norman - the extension of the South aisle (to right in photo) was made in the 19th C. The roof timbers are the originals.

There is a stone font from the Norman period, carved differently on each side. This churchyard also had the misfortune to be 'visited' by body snatchers; perhaps due to its rather isolated location.

For the record, am including this photo of St Peter's at Kirkbampton, because we did stop the car and go to the door - but this was the second church to be locked to us. The literature reassures that all churches are open, and had there been a notice of explanation (upcoming funeral service, for example) it would not have felt quite so rejecting! Such a shame. We circumnavigated the outer building, admired a couple of headstones, then travelled on - to St Giles at Great Orton. Our seventh and last for the day, as it was already 5pm and the rain was getting set on again. The door was open and this proved to be an interesting place, with a wall leaning well to the left; it is said to have been done to represent The Ark. It is considered to be the first church built in the region (1098) and does retain some of the original Norman features and, of course, uses much of the stone from the Roman wall. I particularly wanted to visit this church and was glad it was our final one; St Giles is the patron saint of the lame and crippled and Edinburgh's great central Cathedral is named for him also. Not that the saint was Scottish - he was French! There is an ornate font cover in here, and a copper font jug which is patterned in similar style.

We drove back into Carlisle, parked, had a cuppa and decided that we would take the bus into the centre (not far to walk, I know, but remember, the YAMster's legs and back are not what they used to be and they'd been busy all day!) and attempt another couple of geocaches before finding food. One of the finds took us to an old canon and another up onto a bridge with interesting fretwork (covered in laminate which made imaging a tad difficult). From here there was a good view of Dixon's Chimney - a fabulous structure!

...and yes, both caches were located! Not by me - by the expert.

Walking back into town we pondered about food; deciding just to check menus and follow our stomachs! It didn't take long. First place we looked at had an interesting offering so in we went. It was starting to get chilly out - but it was very warm in there... almost too warm for me... but the food was fab; I had to get a doggy bag as the portion was ridiculous. As we enjoyed, we reviewed our stay and how much we'd managed in so short a time - and that there was definitely a lot to draw us back to this part of the country. Aitch is planning to retire up this end, so it will be lot easier to plan get togethers such as this. We got the bus back to the guest house and into bed. Unfortunately I didn't have the most restful night (who knows why? It just happens sometimes), so was rather groggy for our final brekky. Aitch headed off East and I turned Li'l Ren North - but only got half an hour away, where I made a stop at a shopping mall for some art materials and 'pit stop' to get my head more 'on'. It worked; I was good to go and, despite the weather deteriorating once more, managed back to the Hutch in a little under four hours. That was that for this adventure!


  1. So pleased you found at least some of the churches open. The first church I ever remember attending, age ?three, and under VERY firm instructions from my father not to utter a peep throughout the service, was St Giles in West Bridgford, Nottingham. I confess I've never before thought to wonder who St Giles was.
    Cheers, Gail.

  2. What a beautiful church the steeple is amazing love the design.
    Jess you had a ton of fun didn't you?
    Hugs madi your bfff

  3. I don't remember seeing that sign about the cannon, I would have been more careful with the cache if I had known!!I enjoyed reading about the trip and I was on it with you!! Forgot to ask if the reheated doggie bag was as good as first time around. xx

    1. Hari OM
      Howdy! It really was a fun-packed and informative couple of days. Yes, the food was just right on the day I arrived back, reheated and a bit of salad on the side. Money's worth!!! Yxx

  4. Fine road trip!. I have a young friend, formerly Hannah, who changed to Haitch. Her sister, Sarah, was content.

  5. I really enjoyed "coming along" with you on this trip. Your photos are so good. I'm sure Jess appreciated the doggie bag. (smile)

  6. it is great to discover so much wonderful things with you... many thanks for sharing the beauty of your country with me...

  7. Hello, I love the beautiful church photos. Looks like a great road trip. Congrats on finding the geocaches. The lunch sounds great too, always nice to have leftovers to take home. Happy Thursday, enjoy your day and weekend ahead.

  8. Oh to just wander about seeing whatever there was to see! Beautiful churches. Too mad some of them have been closed!

    Your Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

  9. Thanks for taking us along on your adventure. Love seeing all these older churches. And the fact the stones came from the Roman walls was even more interesting. Take care, sweet friend. namaste, janice xx


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