Saturday, 23 August 2014

Sunday Times Where Was I? Holiday Competition

 Near as I can figure it, through the possibly flawed perceptual filters of my own reality tunnel, the most likely answers this week, seem to me to be :

Q1. Thomas Hardy

Q2. Bossiney

The initial clues seem to place us in Cornwall, specifically at the church of St Juliot, just to the north of the river Valency, about one click south of the B3263 and about one point three clicks, south west of Tresparret. The church featured as 'St Agnes', in a story by Thomas Hardy (born circa 1840), called 'A pair of Blue Eyes', which appears to have been published c 1873. As well as being a novelist and poet, Hardy's day job was that of architect and he was sent to recce the church, with a view to reconstructing it. Some of his bios claim that he married the rector's sister in law, Emma Lavinia Gifford, circa 1874.

Driving west from the church would bring us to the village of Boscastle and this featured in a novel by H.G.Wells called "When The Sleeper Wakes", "One afternoon, at low water, Mr Isbister, a young artist lodging at Boscastle, walked from that place, to the picturesque cove of Pentargen".

Travelling three and a half miles or so from Boscastle, would likely take us to Tintagel and through a hamlet called Bossiney, on its eastern edge. Bossiney returned an mp called Francis Bacon (b 1561) c 1581 (Bacon became attorney general c 1613) and an mp called Sir Francis Drake c 1584.

Tintagel's most famous building, according to the National Trust website, is the post office, which they acquired c 1903. The building is a c 14th century yeoman's farmhouse and was the letter receiving station for the district, when it was given a licence during the Victorian period.

The island castle at Tintagel, was declared by Geoffrey of Monmouth, to be the site where king Arthur was conceived and because of the association with the Arthurian legend, Richard Earl of Cornwall (b 1209) and brother of Henry III, is believed to have built his fortress there, c 1230s

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