Wednesday, 9 September 2009

Something Different (for my) Fiftieth Post!

I like taking photos of unusual subjects - the drawback is they are not easy to make into a scrapbook page!I've been itching to photograph these walls ever since I noticed them on the Coast Road near Brighton.  They belong to about half a dozen white-painted Almshouses facing directly out to the English Channel at Telscombe Cliffs. The village is surrounded by miles of chalk paths and grassy downland, but Telscombe's claim to fame is the ancient church of St. Lawrence which is built on land given by Eldred, brother of Edmund, in the year 966. (You 'd never know I'd looked it up, would you?!)
It's a very exposed spot, perched high on  chalk cliffs, and I reckon the early settlers were a very hardy bunch!

"How shall I tell you of the freedom of the Downs--
You who love the dusty life and durance of great towns,
And think the only flowers that please embroider ladies' gowns--
How shall I tell you ..."
by Edward Wyndham Tempest.

The Almshouses' walls were originally quite decorative I think, with stripes of grey cobbles, broken into pieces, inlaid into the cement. But now the standard clay bricks have been eroded by the salt-laden winds, and in places, only a few centimetres of brick remain.  The cement layers stand out as they have withstood  the ravages of the elements far better than the rest of the structure.

From each of the front gates there are steep steps leading up to the cottages, but the retaining walls are in very poor condition and there's evidence of  attempted repairs (see the brackets on the inside wall on the first photo). The cobbles and grey brick layers remain whilst the traditional yellow bricks decay all around them. It's a sad state of affairs, but it makes for very interesting photos I think. 
I hope you like them too.

1 comment:

  1. Love your photos of this amazing wall.
    Your gift arrived safely today ...the tag is briliant and will get good use ....thank you again



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