Thursday, 24 May 2007

Ulting Church with a Walk along the River

A beautiful warm and sunny day yesterday so dropped the gardening and the spring cleaning to get out into the countryside. Drove about 50 minutes to this lovely old church at Ulting in Essex. Their brochure says "A Place of Peace and Pilgrimage". It was certainly that. There has been a church on the site since 1150AD. The church sits next to the River Chelmer and it is the most peaceful of settings. In the 1870's the fabric of the church was in a bad state and a major restoration took place.

The brickwork of the original walls can still be seen protruding from the grass in places

This is the view from the church yard

After visiting the church we drove to the nearby village of Woodham Waters and had lunch in the Bell Inn. The building is 500 years old. The food is excellent and had we not been out to walk I could have had a feast.

View from our table

We leave the Inn and begin to make our way back to the river

Passing this quaint Post Office and General Store on the way

We are back at the river and I would now like to take you on one of my walks. This river was made into a Navigation Canal in 1797. There are 12 Lock Gates and 6 Bridges. Coal, bricks and timber were carried along the river on barges. In places where the water looks dirty, it is not. The surface was covered in the fleece from the seed pods on the trees that lined the length on both sides.

This is the path we are taking as we leave Ulting Lock and we are going to walk for 3 miles to the next main Lock gates. Paper Mill Lock.

It gets prettier with the Cow Parsley

We pass a Narrow Boat. These days the river is used for pleasure

Then round a bend and we see the church from a different angle

I love the isolation and the empty spaces as we continue to walk

Bridge ahead

A seat in memory of a loved one was welcome - rest awhile if you wish

Back on the path watered and refreshed

Don't miss the wild Buttercups in the meadow as we pass

And another Lock Gate
Here we see a Swan fluffing out his feathers as he comes across a family of Geese who were obviously on his territory. The baby geese that were basking at the waters edge were quickly moved by their parents. Look at the reflection.

Civilisation at Paper Mill Lock

Well almost! These are the Tearooms

Somebody thought about the ducks
I hope you enjoyed your hour of leisure here eating ice-cream and butter flapjacks with Mango Juice. I did until I counted up the calories - over 700!!
We are now about to turn around and walk back. The 3 miles will take us about an hour as we stop to take in the beautiful fauna and wildlife around us. Our sightings today were geese, ducks, swans, moorhens, pheasants, rabbits and squirrels.
I hope you enjoyed it as much as we did.


Unknown said...

What a beautiful tour. The walk was relaxing and refreshing. And the scenery absolutely charming. I love the countryside there, and the care everyone takes to keep their yards tidy and trimmed, and no trash thrown along the way. Trash on the side of the roads is such a pet peeve to me.

Oh, I LOVED your comment on my site today. I am glad you recognized Laura Petrie in the video clip. If I looked like her I would never worry about weight. Hmm, maybe I really should take up dancing. Perhaps it would help.

Susan said...

This was a wonderful, beautiful tour. I love the way the pictures can be enlarged. Almost makes one feel like you're in the midst. You do such a great job on these.

I loved the old church with the grave stones in the church yard. The swan reflection was wonderful.

Great job. Thank you.

So you worked for Oral Robert, too. Small, small world isn't it?!!

Anonymous said...

How WONDERFUL!! Oh how I'd love to take a walk like that. So your picture 'walk' made it possible for me to see things I otherwise couldn't.

We were in England a couple of years ago and while I loved every cold, wet moment of it, (it was an early Easter) and we did get to see a LOT in our ten days there, I couldn't do any walking. And as you know, walking in England is a BIG part of the culture!

Your pictures are beautiful and if I ever get back there I'll have to visit Ulting Church!

la bellina mammina said...

Fantastic photos - thanks for taking us on this tour!

TO BECOME said...

That was a great walk and you are so blessed to have so much beautiful scenery. The pictures were breath taking. I loved the old church. connie from Texas

Betty said...

Well, I'm almost out of breath after our brisk walk! How beautiful your area of God's creation.....The bridges in UK really interest me. They look like works of art....

Thank you for stopping by to see me and commenting so kindly about our grandson's graduation. My youngest grandchild is one year old and I probably won't live to see him grown but I hope he will know that Mam loved him and that my memory will be kept alive for him.....Betty

Linda said...

What a lovely day you had. I love that church. I like how the English often have a grave yard along side the churches. Hard to beat that architecture.

Beach Girl said...

Oh, this was WONDERFUL~thank you for taking us there with you!

After several days away from my computer, not by choice, Yahweh's Retreat has brownies and lemonade waiting for visitors. I sure wish you could really stop by and sit on the front porch swing.


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