Saturday, 1 October 2016

Scoot by the River

An interesting array of aged scooters outside the Town Hall today.  A 'Mod' was getting married and his mates all arrived to celebrate with him.  These guys gather every Sunday morning at the cafe round the corner, aged bikes with aged men pretending they are 40 years younger than they are.  Not all remember the original 'Mods' who gathered in large numbers in the 60's, the 'Who' were their favourite band and it is unfortunate no music was playing when I passed today.  I suspect the bride would turn up on a scooter but did not wait to find out.  I did think it funny that several were dressed in 'Skinhead' outfits, especially as the lack of hair was becoming apparent at their age anyway.

Yesterday I wandered as a lonely cloud by the other river in Chelmsford, the River Chelmer.  A narrow winding stream flowing past hidden industrial works and row upon row of boxes in which people live their lives.  Maybe it is just me but while the houses are perfectly acceptable there is no 'heart' to be seen in them.  Many rows of decent enough grossly overpriced housing with decent enough people but no character to be seen.  I suppose when the rows of 'two up and two down' were built in Victorian days people thought the same but those appear to have more character than today's estate homes.  

Chelmsford today is summed up in this picture.  The house that once was a mill, one for which I can find no history, sits above the wee bridge over the Chelmer surrounded by parked cars.  Cars from which many have entered the building itself, now an office block, and others who have moved to similar buildings, possibly the university situated at the rear itself. Behind are more offices in the distance and several industrial units, car repairs and the like.  The once idyllic scene now surrounded by modern blight.  At least the council keep the waterway clear and the gardeners do a marvellous job looking after the paths around.

The gentle flow of the waters do not tinkle by in this area, the only tinkling comes from the many bikes that rush along the path carrying students to their work or possibly lecturers to their enlightening talks.  It may be just the usual suspects going about their business of course but happily none of them smiled bar one pretty young lass and the rest merely carried the cares of the world as they passed by.  Still it is a good thing when towns, oops this is now a city, keep their rivers clear and create decent paths through tree lines areas and encourage wildlife as much as is possible.   This is to be encouraged as we need these green spaces in our concrete and glass world.
That concrete and glass world was where the path took me sadly, five story glass fronted new temples of Mammon reared up and I plodded through the main street, now at least filled with a lively market, bought my coffee to keep me going and headed for the butcher for three for £10 chicken pieces to keep me alive.  

An interesting wee house, totally out of sequence with the road in which it lives, called 'The Rectory.' This stands (in 'Rectory Lane') next to a closed cemetery the details of which I could not read as the gardener had blocked the note with his vehicle.  The cemetery has been closed for some time and now the only people bar the council gardeners who occasionally cut the grass to be seen there are vagrants sleeping rough.  I am tempted here to add 'Rest in peace' but will refrain.  

Above the Rectory door however I noticed this!
Quite what this is or was supposed to be intrigues.  It is certainly not what Christian buildings out to be decorated with I would say, it looks more like some portrayal of a demon.  Possibly it was placed there to upset the rector and he quite liked it, these Anglicans are strange folks.  I have no idea who lives in this building now, it may be uninhabited as the curtains are drawn across the windows.  No doubt this once housed the man responsible for the cemetery upkeep, and very nice too, no noisy neighbours in the past, and possibly it lies idle for the moment.  No wonder with this guy above the door!


the fly in the web said...

That carving must be the work of someone who had had long acquaintance of caretakers.....

Kay G. said...

I could be wrong but I wonder if the man above the door is a representation of the "The Green Man". I think that sometimes the churches would incorporate things into the construction of churches and rectories because certain things were so well known and loved, part of why the Easter and Christmas traditions were woven together with some pagan ideas. As I say, I could be wrong.
Lovely photos, wish I could have walked on the path, I would have smiled at you!

Lady Di Tn said...

What a lovely stroll. You have not seen boxes until you see all the stuff ground from the ground in Nashville. Lots of folks love progress but I find all the BOXES void of any character and I can only imagine how they will look hundreds of years down the road, probably all will have collapsed with quick way they have been built. Now I would like to request a copy of your 2 photos of the wee house and the carving over the door. Why? I have a folder where I place photos for future painting projects. It is my Wish2Paint folder. Unfortunately our few days of cool weather have been taken away and it is now hot in Tennessee again. Peace

Lee said...

That sounds (and appears) like it was a fun wedding.

There's a suburb in Brisbane, capital of Queensland, named "Chelmer".

I love your photo of the River's lovely.

Adullamite said...

Fly, You cynic you.

Kay, That's a good point, some dafties did include such things.

Lady, You can take anything you like any time.

Lee, Chelmer in Brisbane, some Essex convicts I assume.

Jenny Woolf said...

That's a bit puzzling.I am wondering if it really was a rectory as we know rectories to be. I looked up "rector" and the definition was

1.(in the Church of England) the incumbent of a parish where all tithes formerly passed to the incumbent.
2.the head of certain universities, colleges, and schools.

So you would expect the rectory to be near the parish church. I wonder if there might have been a HUGE rectory now built over or sold off, to which this was the entrance lodge. On the other hand, it clearly was for the cemetery, the inscription shows that. As for the strange stone person, it is creepy indeed. Yes, a real mystery! do the local histories have anything to say about it? Possibly an eccentric rector in Victorian times, they certainly did have them!

Adullamite said...

Jenny, It certainly looks like the caretakers house but called the 'rectory.' The road is now Rectory Road, or was it lane? Large cathedral, many staff, need for housing perhaps. maybe the man is the 'green Man' as suggested, some rectors were indeed strange folks.