Lady Eleanor Talbot’s family was long connected with ‘bottomless’ Blakemere/Blackmere/Black Mere, near Whitchurch in Staffordshire. Their manor house was on the shore of the mere, and was where Lady Eleanor may have been born. I once had reason to research Blakemere, but my prying did not turn up the legend of the Blakemere mermaid. Well,… Continue reading The mermaid of Blakemere….
Yes, very strange, because there are conflicting histories of this effigy and tomb shown in the image above. The tomb is in St Peter’s Church, Elford, Staffordshire, and both it and the effigy are rather small and therefore generally believed to be that of a child. The story is that the dead boy was John… Continue reading The strange story of the Stanley boy….
It’s the usual story. There I was, rambling around looking for something completely different, when I happened upon the above photograph, which is of the tomb effigy of Ralph Fitzherbert, who died 1483, a supporter of Richard of Gloucester. As you will see from the caption, it is “the only extant example of a… Continue reading The only extant example of a boar pendant on a tomb effigy….?
Every September on Wakes Monday, which follows Wakes Sunday, an unusual dance takes place in the small Staffordshire village of Abbots Bromley. A company of dancers bearing huge, ancient reindeer horns, accompanied by a Fool with a pig’s bladder, a Maid Marion who is a man in female dress, a Hobby Horse, a Triangle Player,… Continue reading THE HORNE DANCE AT ABBOTS BROMLEY
We Ricardians know all about the problems, if not to say mysteries, that can arise from the final resting places of famous figures from the past. It doesn’t help that in the medieval period especially a person’s remains could be moved from place to place. Edward IV had his father and brother moved from Pontefract… Continue reading Was the younger Despenser buried in two places at the same time….?
There is a pub in Bridgnorth, near where I live. Well, let’s be honest, there’s about a hundred. If you have ever been to Bridgnorth, aside from the Severn Valley Railway, the funicular railway from Low Town to High Town and the remains of the slighted castle, which lean at a greater angle than the… Continue reading Talbot Country
Most people, even if they haven’t read/tried to read, the ancient British poem Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, will at least know the opening scene. It’s Christmas at Camelot, and King Arthur and his knights are enjoying themselves, feasting and celebrating, when into the hall rides a huge knight who carries a sprig of holly.… Continue reading A visual and literary appreciation of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, by Simon Armitage….
Tutbury Castle is being investigated by a team of young people from the Prince’s Trust, who have exposed a 17th-century floor. But Tutbury’s earlier history is mentioned, including Richard III’s 3-day visit from 22nd-26th October 1484. It is believed he went there to inspect building work, upon which £919 had been spent. I hope they’d spent it… Continue reading Mysteries of the ‘Royal Floor’ at Tutbury Castle….
Recently, it was announced that Tutbury Castle in Staffordshire discovered a connection to King Richard III – he stayed at the castle for five days – and it will be revising its guidebooks and signage to include this bit of information. http://www.burtonmail.co.uk/King-Richard-III-visited-Tutbury-Castle-just/story-29307109-detail/story.html Had they read Rhoda Edwards’ The Itinerary of King Richard III 1483-85, they… Continue reading Tutbury Castle and its Yorkist Connections