Black and White Sunday: Traces of the Past

The only remains of St Andrew’s Old Kirk in North Berwick is a small white-harled stone building which stands just inland from the path to the Scottish Seabird Centre.

The first church was probably made of wood and was probably constructed by monks from the Abbey at Lindisfarne some time in the 600s. A later building was erected some time in the 1100s, but little of this is left other than low stone walls on the grass to the north of the only part remaining.

The small porch was built after the Reformation and projected south from the end of the south aisle. The entire east end of the church was swept into the sea in a storm in 1656.

The church would have served the local community, and the steady stream of pilgrims passing through North Berwick to catch a ferry to Earlsferry in Fife en route to St Andrews. The town and kirk grew to serve the needs of the pilgrims with a hospice serving as a guesthouse to look after the sick.

In 1590 it was rumoured that 200 witches had danced around Anchor Green whilst listening to a sermon by the devil. The witches were supposedly trying to summon a storm to drown King James VI, but it was only under severe torture that a 16 year old girl confessed. As a result many innocent women were arrested and tortured and some died a witch’s death in front of Edinburgh castle.

The green (which was the old kirkyard) is now empty other than a Celtic cross erected in memory of Catherine Watson who, on 27 July 1889 at the age of 19, saved a drowning boy in North Berwick’s East Bay, but was herself drowned while doing so.

Black and White Sunday: Traces of the Past 

WPC: Unusual

I am in Doncaster, South Yorkshire at the moment as my son is in hospital there. The daily route to the hospital goes along Town Moor Avenue which is opposite the racecourse. The field itself I remember as where my children played school sports. The houses along this road are quite spectacular (and very large) and today I managed to snap one of the more unusual ones through the bus window.

This conservation area contains Town Field itself and the planned suburban expansion of Doncaster’s residential area carried out in the early twentieth century along its northern side. The architecture of most of the buildings date from this period. The land was developed by Harold Arnold and Son from 1901 and it can be seen that the architects were influenced by the Arts and Crafts movement of the late 19th century. This was based on a dislike of mechanical ornamentation and a belief in the return to hand craftsmanship and simpler forms.

Buildings are mainly two-storied, although along and towards Thorne Road there are three-storied development. They are predominantly in red brick with slate or small red clay plain tiles. There are often elaborate forms of buildings with decorative architectural features, such as windows, doors, chimneys, bays, turrets, gables and porches. There are also areas of half timbering, stucco and decorative brickwork. Front boundary walls are generally low brick walls with castellated terracotta decorative copings often backed with hedges or shrubs.

Doncaster – Town Field was designated a conservation area on 8 April 1991.

Source: DMBC

Black and White Sunday: Typical

A typical Cape Cod lighthouse

I am uncertain as to which lighthouse this is, either Wood End or Long Point at the end of the spit near Provincetown.  Cape Cod (Massachusetts, United States) is a fascinating place to visit if you are a lighthouse lover as you will find more than a dozen in a reasonably small area. Some of them have had to be moved further inland as the constant pounding of the surf has caused sea erosion along the coastline. Some are even open to the public.