A dark, wet and windy evening here and I’m just plonking away on the old laptop with a glass of scrumpy in my hand 17:30 is a little early I know but my brain is fried with circuit diagrams, thermocouples, thermistors and the ‘38.5 ohm fundamental’ Having not quite grasped the wiring diagram given us for homework I figured that Weston’s ‘Cloudy Cider’ might help Silly me Oh well, the night is young, the cider gone so perhaps clarity well arrive later
Anyway, I digress, the purpose of tonight’s effort was to finish off yesterday’s trip to Tynemouth and its priory http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/daysout/properties/tynemouth-priory-and-castle/ . I had done the walk there last year but by the time I arrived the place was shutting so I returned yesterday.
Starting first with a tour of the outside walls, not because I was that interested in them but because I thought that the £4.50 entrance fee was a little steep.
I have to say that after checking out the beautiful artwork done by centuries of sand and salt laden air on the soft sandstone I figured it was worth a look inside.
The twelfth century priory stood on the site of a much older church http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tynemouth_Castle_and_Priory and was sadly destroyed during the dissolution of the monasteries http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dissolution_of_the_Monasteries by Henry VIII who was sorely pi55ed off with the Pope. His lust for money, power, Anne Boleyn http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anne_Boleyn and a male heir prompting him to split with the church of Rome. Had he known just what a fine queen Elizabeth (from his first marriage with Catherine of Aragon http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catherine_of_Aragon ) made I doubt he’d have bothered, but that’s guys for you
Mind you, by all accounts Catherine wasn’t much to look at and Anne was a bit of a babe.
Anyway, back to the ruins
edit ‘The cider must be affecting your history memory as well! Of Henry’s wives, Catherine of Aragon (first one) produced Mary, not Elizabeth; Anne Boleyn (second) was the mother of Elizabeth; ‘
comment from Iain MacB, who obviously listened when he was at school
and it’s hard to imagine how on earth the masons of 900 years ago did all this with hand tools and man power, none of them actually seeing the process from start to finish. Life expectancy then being a matter of three or four decades at most for an artisan and such construction projects taking many more years to complete.
This little bit on the end being added in the sixteenth century the Oratory of St Mary or Percy Chapel.
It’s only around 16’ x 12’ but the ceiling and stained glass windows are amazing.
This was all very well and interesting but my main reason for parting with £4.50 to English Heritage was to go and check out the coastal battery and recently restored magazines for the 6” guns.
Me being a bit of an ‘anorak’ in the naval gunnery department was most dischuffed to find this particular part closed for the winter
Having dived on a few wrecks that had these guns fitted and visited the old batteries at Loch Ewe on several occasions I was looking forward to seeing the arrangements for hauling the 6” shells and their cordite bags up to the guns
However I just had to content myself with a tour of the locked up exterior
Still, at least you could see where they kept their rifles
Fat lot of good they’d have been against a battleship
Even though it was a little disappointing I did manage to pass a few hours there admiring the various forms of brickwork, masonry, concrete and gravestones spanning almost one thousand years of occupation of this strategic fortification above the Tyne.
Sure, there were probably people here in Roman times and before, but their footprints had long gone under ruins of later civilizations, still, it is a rather grand and impressive location
Though I have to say that I prefer the views from our new house
I doubt it will be there in 900 years but I’m sure something will be
That will be the views from kitchen, utility room, and living room, OK, not quite as sunny as Tynemouth but it’s where I’d rather be