DAYS OUT: St Leonard’s, Apethorpe; Ashton; Unfeasibly Knackered!

St. Leonard’s.

I’ve had another episode of extreme fatigue. Had one yesterday evening. Really, really horrible. I just pushed on through that one. This time it was so appalling I had to stop. I called both 111, and my local Doctors’ Surgery. Got an appointment at the latter, for later today.

Do I look tired?

So, I’m taking a brief breather. I don’t think I can safely drive until I feel a bit better! Maybe 20 minutes rest? A bite to eat, and a drink of water, etc. Hopefully I’ll feel better, and be able to finish my current delivery shift?

View from the parked car.

I pulled over in Apethorpe, by St. Leonards. It was raining when I parked. It’s stopped now. It’s very peaceful here. There are several incredibly beautiful villages in this area. I passed through the very picturesque King’s Cliffe on my way here.

Now, to St. Leonard’s…

Tower, window view.

The local vicar unlocked the church for me, and chatted to me about it a bit. A lovely lady! Under the tower, I took the snaps, above and below. Different focal points/exposures, for different aspects of the same view.

Tower, woodwork view.

The corbels are great. But so high up my iPhone struggles to capture them. I simply must get a better camera for this sort of malarkey!

Nice amusing little corbel grotesques!
Hard to shoot on my iPhone.
A nicer than average old chest.

It’s odd, but I’ve noticed that most – or at least a lot of – old churches have one or two large ancient chests. The carving on this particular example puts it a cut (boom-boom) above the average.

An old ecclesiastical chair or cushion cover.
One of two textiles on display.
The other is what looks like a tabard, or some such.
Covered with heraldic devices.
A large oil of Jesu walkething on the waters-eth.
Dinky almost cute lil’ organ.

There’s a rather odd selection, window wise.

Very fragmentary, this ‘un.
Knackered heraldry.
The altar and ‘main’ window.
Oddly austere.

The main window is totally blown out of the water by this:

Boom! Wowzers!!

This is the window in the chapel dedicated to the FitzHerberts, of nearby Apethorpe Palace. And just as their home is far more splendorous than God’s house – and St. Leonards is still pretty splendid – so too is their part of the church.

The FitzHerbert Monument seen through an arch, looking South.
Viewed looking Westwards.
Whoa, Nelly!
One of four pillar damsels.
There’s a jugs theme of sort here…
… if you see what I mean?
A right pair o’ FitzHerberts.
Their view.
Intriguing foot end details.
A heavenly shoe-in?

As amazing as this enormous edifice is, let’s turn back now to the window behind it. That’s really something special, in my opinion.

The upper area.
Adam & Eve.
The Crucifixion.
Wow! I love this detail, below the cross.
The dead arise; last judgement!?
The fourth and final ‘frame’. Psychedelic, man!
Once again, amazing detail in the design.

Along the bottom of the window are a series of texts. Which make pretty strange reading. Or at least they do to me. Here they all are:

‘Love not your own pleasures…’
‘For Christ loved not…’
‘He is the death…’
‘Happiest is he who…’

Bonkers, eh!?

Wall and roof details.
What a view!
Note the medieval helm!

On, to Cotterstock:

Cotterstock bridge and weir, by the old mill.
Another more modern bridge, at Cotterstock.

After the restorative sojourn at St. Leonards, I finished my shift. And after that I wandered around Ashton, where my shift had ended, taking the following snaps:

The green out front of the local pub.
Lovely! If you look really carefully…
… you’ll see this feathered beauty.
More loveliness.

HOME/DiY: Gas Hob Finally Done… Yay!

Thar’ she blows!

This post is headed up by the ‘after’ pic. Below is a before one.

Work in progress.

Simon, the guy who recently serviced our boiler, came over today. And fitted our has hob. It’s great to have all four rings working. On the old hob, the littlest one ceased functioning aeons ago.

At last, plumbed in and ‘cookin’ on gas!’
Our new electric oven, and our new gas hobs.

It took Simon a lot longer than anticipated to do this job. And it precipitated much cussing! Apparently almost all hobs differ slightly, making each one a new and different pain in the arse.

Still not used the oven, because…

The electric oven’s still not been used, on account of my wanting to be 100% sure there’s nowt left in there, transport or packaging wise. We don’t want melted foam or plastic stinking out the house, and ruining our brand new oven.

All shiny n’ new, gassy n’ blue.
To the left…
To the right…

DAYS iN: Chester Wants To Play

Sausage cat.

Our dear little hairy pal, Chester, was keen to play today. In fact he usually gets that way at some point every day.

Swiping downward dog/sausage cat.
Legs akimbo tummy bongo!
Going for the feet time…


St. Mary The Virgin, Whaddon.

On my way home from my second and final delivery shift of the day, I stopped to admire St Mary The Virgin. I’ve often passed her. And she always turns my head. But this is the first time I stopped to investigate.

Sadly she was shut.

Re-thatching in Melbourn.

Passing through Melbourn en-route home, I saw this picturesque cottage being re-thatched. Took a quick snap. The Old Ways live on.

Looking back towards Flo’.

Back to St. Mary… I knocked at the door of the large house (former vicarage?) next to the church. But answer came there none.

Nice hedgerow arch.
Inside the arch.

The gorgeous hedgerow arch above looks amazing. It’s even more magical to take shelter under it in a downpour. As I was doing when I took these pics.

Tower through foliage.
Pano’ from the shelter of a yew.
Alas, the church was locked.
Moody weather by the road.

When I got home, utterly spent, it was feet up on’t couch time. But I spotted that the sky was unusually pink. So we popped out to have a look.

Amazing pink skies.

Kind of accentuates the cherry blossom.

Peachy and smoky.

These photos are nice. But they fall a long way short of capturing the actual colours, or the powerful impact of the light as we saw and experienced it. Magical!

A bit more lighting for the drum room.

I finally got around to moving the filing cabinet out of the corner, in my drum room, where I could’nae get at it. And I put a new lampshade on an old lamp, making it look fresh n’ new. The colour once again coordinates well with the feature wall.

And rearranged a bit.

There’s still vast amounts of stuff floating around without a proper home. But I’m chipping away at it all the time. Now… time for some serious bedtime reading:

Hmmm!? Choices…

HOME/DIY: New Drum Room Light Fitting & Lampshade

Pretty neat, eh?

Today I fitted the new light fixture and lampshade, in the drum room. The colour rather neatly, and completely by lucky chance – or serendipulosity – is colour coordinated with the new feature

New lampshade, from Dunelm.

I bought the lampshade yesterday (or was it Monday?). And trimmed the short length of ‘hang’ cable to make it even shorter. The ceiling is low in the drum room!

Cutting the cable down.
Wiring it up.

That was yesterday. Today I’m putting the damn thing up. Hope it won’t prove too tricky?

Sone time later…

Making a note of the old or original wiring.

Antonio popped out to have a run. So I thought I’d try and do this job whilst it was just me at home. But it took ages in the end. As I was busy doing other small chores as well: washing the breakfast dishes, hoovering the lunge, and taking the old fridge to the municipal dump. There’s always so much to do!

With the mains lighting fuses off…

Having, naturally, to switch off the lighting circuitry fuses, I had to work by lamplight. And the awkward overhead angle, accessing the ceiling fixture = sore neck!

The new and better (flexi!) light fitting.

When it was just a naked bulb, the light was just above my head. Having to have a little bit of cable length, to allow for the desired flexiness, means the lampshade is now below noggin level. Hey-ho… compromises!


The observant viewer may note the weird black gooseneck doodad, to the left. That’s for an ‘over the kit’ phone-camera set up, as and whenI’m either recording drumming vids, or teaching via Zoom or Teams, etc.

Slowly but surely…

I’m still chuffed with this small but noticeable improvement. Each little chip away at the ol’ block gets one that little bit closer.

DAYS OUT: St John’s, Girton

A gorgeous day.

‘Twas lovely out, this evening. I saw this beauty of a church, and stopped to take a snap or two.

St John’s, Girton, on the edge of Cambridge.
Where does this little slightly ajar door lead?
Looking up the stairs.
Funky little room, over the porch.

Well, it leads up to… a funky little room, over the porch. That’d be a nice place to sit and read or write, methinks.

Another little door. Locked, this time.
Nice roof.
Modern stained glass.
Pulpit detail.
Chunky chairs, one.
Chunky chairs, two.
Main window.
Vertical pano’, main axis.
The graveyard.
Final parting view/shot.
Mackerel skies, on the way home.

All told, a pleasant time was had, out n’ about.

HOME: Kilner Butter Dish

This arrived today.

Ah, the simple pleasures. Our old butter dish, a porcelain jobbie, got broken. That was ages ago. We’ve been using an ugly old takeaway tub, ever since.

All glass.

But takeaway that takeaway tub. Plastic ugliness begone! This is rather lovely. All glass. All see through. Nice and simple.

HOME/DAYS iN: New Cooker

This arrived, around 1.30 pm.

Woohoo! Our new cooker arrived today.

The main element of the old oven went, again. It did so once before; I ordered a new one and fixed it. But this old stinky dirty broken down thing needed to be replaced.

The wiring of the old cooker.

Whereas for the gas hobs I need a ‘gas safe’ certified engineer, to sort us out, with the electric oven it’s a pretty easy DIY job. You just have to be safe, methodical and accurate.

The old cooker comes out.

Getting the old cooker out wasn’t too hard. Awkward and heavy, yes. But a one man job, nevertheless. What this revealed though, was pretty grotesque.


I gave the internal space a good clean. And then got the new cooker in position to be wired in. It is of course hard-wired to the mains, as it draws a lot more power than your standard three-pin plug socket outlets. This is fiddly, but pretty easy.

New cooker wired in.

Done. Took a bit of sweat, some huffing and puffing. But it’s sorted now.

Thar’ she blows.

Rather foolishly I orders this oven – actually the same brand as our previous one (Russell & Hobbs) – without checking the dimensions! Could’ve gone horribly wrong!

But it didn’t. She fits the space like the proverbial glove. And once all the fuses and switches were turned back on, she powered up first time. Fab!

Ok, wrong time. But she’s up n’ running.

Very satisfying. Thanks again, Dan Ellis.

DAYS iN/HOME: New Fridge-Freezer

Fab! Unboxing fun to follow…
New Hotness Coldness vs Old & Busted!

The old combo is actually two separates; a fridge and a freezer. Hence the extra height of the ol’ stack.

Plugged in and running.

So I’ve plugged the new gal in, and she’s humming contentedly. I’ll give it a few hours, to reach operating temperature, and then start transferring the perishables.

What will I (we) do with the old units? I’d like to just bun them both. We already have a decent second fridge-freezer upstairs. Mind, the latter is in the guest room. For tenant’s use, as a d when we have guests or lodgers.

We have to thank our friend and brother, Dan Ellis, for this (and other kindnesses). Despite Teresa and I both working we’re right on the knife edge of survival.

This is quite largely due to my circumstances of the last fourteen months. Which hopefully, now that they’re resolved, will improve. What can we do in return, I wonder?