Medieval Steps

This is my contribution to Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge: Steps or Ladders prompt.

This is the corner of Eastgate Street and Bridge Street in the city of Chester in Cheshire, England. The two sets of steps in this photo originated in medieval times.

The steps around the Chester High Cross are relatively modern due to it being broken up during the English Civil War. The top of the cross was saved and other pieces were discovered in the 19th century and were used in a reconstruction of the cross.

The steps leading up from street level to the first floor take you to the Chester Rows. The Rows are a series of covered walkways giving access to businesses on that level. Dating back to medieval times little is known about them and their origin is subject to much speculation.

CBWC: Steps or ladders
Throwback Thursday

St Mary’s Church, Acton near Nantwich

Throwback Thursday travels back to Cheshire, England in the mid 1980s.

First I should apologise to anyone who follows my Facebook page as I posted this photo on there recently. The reason for using this photo as a Throwback Thursday post is because there’s an example of 17th century vandalism in the photo.

This is St Mary’s Church in Acton near Nantwich, Cheshire. The church is historically significant, the tower is the oldest in Cheshire and there are carved stones internally that date back to Norman times.

But it’s the tall, four sided sundial on the right side of the photo that I want to talk about. It started life as a medieval cross until someone in the late 17th century decided to turn it into a sundial. Can you imagine the outcry if someone suggested such a thing these days.

Throwback Thursday: 7th May 2020


Photo Challenges

On the Hunt for Joy: Count Chimneys

This is my contribution to Cee’s On the Hunt for Joy Challenge: Count Chimneys.

Over Christmas I started making digital versions of the slides in my archives. I had previously digitised around 1,500 key slides but there are about 15,000 in my archives. I am currently about halfway through the process.

So a selection of English chimneys photographed in the 1980s from my archives.

An interesting old stone chimney on the corner of Eastgate Street and Bridge Street in the historic centre of Chester, Cheshire.

On the Hunt for Joy: Count Chimneys


A soon to be demolished chimney on a former small pox hospital north of London.

On the Hunt for Joy: Count Chimneys


Chimneys on some historic buildings on The Square, Nantwich, Cheshire.

On the Hunt for Joy Challenge: Count Chimneys


Some chimneys in north London during a severe hailstorm. The “speckled” appearance of the storm clouds is falling hail.

On the Hunt for Joy Challenge: Count Chimneys


One Word Sunday


Actually I count at least four crosses. But they’re not really the point of this post.

The tall sundial in the foreground is what remains of a medieval cross. It was turned into a sundial in the late 17th century.

An act of vandalism that wouldn’t be considered these days. Destroying something medieval to make a sundial is the sort of thing that makes me Cross.

This is my contribution to One Word Sunday: Cross.

One Word Sunday: Cross.

Cosmic Photo Challenge

Structural red sandstone

This week’s Cosmic Photo Challenge is Sublimely Structural. It was rather well timed as I had been planning on using this photo in a post.

This is St Mary’s Church, Acton, Cheshire, England built of, presumably local, red sandstone. I say presumably local because there’s a red sandstone ridge sticking out of the Cheshire plain a few miles to the west of Acton. Parts of the Church are medieval although there are Norman era carved stones in the south aisle. The tower was built around 1180 but its top collapsed in a storm in March 1757 and was rebuilt 20 feet lower than the original tower.

The tall monument in the foreground is now a sundial but was originally a medieval cross before being converted into a sundial in the late 17th century.

Red sandstone Church in Acton,