Friday, 6 July 2012

In search of the saints. . .

 Mike and I have just had a lovely holiday in Northumberland, it was such beautiful countryside, wild, woolly and ofttimes wet.
I went in search of the saints from the golden age of Northumbria, gathering stories for my talks.
We found hidden churches, like this one at Old Bewick, there was a stream just behind where I stood to take the picture and an ancient clapper bridge which lead to an old pathway.
This old path got me thinking, about the people who, over the centuries have made their way down through the fields, over the little clapper bridge to the church . . . . .

 In the churchyard at Alnwick we found this charming cherub.
I've spent many years collecting angels and this one is right up my street. . .her thighs need working on, just like mine!

I'm sure she'll find her way into some stitched creation. . . .
 We spent a lovely , sunny day on Holy Island, where St. Cuthbert lived in the 7th century and where the priceless illuminated manuscript,the  Lindisfarne Gospels were made in his honour.

In the picture you can see Lindisfarne castle in the background and in front, an ingenious use of an old discarded fishing boat.

 In the parish church these life size wooden monks are carrying the coffin of St. Cuthbert as they did during their flight from Lindisfarne when the Viking raiders came .

We walked across the fields at Duddo to find  a strange stone circle, 4000 years old.
The stones looked like giant misshapen teeth.
 I wish you could feel the atmosphere there, the sun strong on our faces and silence, except for the skylarks.

I also went to see an exhibition of stitched textiles in Alnwick. There were about 80 exhibits, all made by the Northumbrian artist Helen Cowans. It was wonderful, have a look at her work here.


Clare Wassermann said...

it sounds really quite mystical up there. I've always wanted to go. I love the cherub. It gives me hope that someone with a tum and thighs like that was as close to God.....!
I have a night alone with hubby tonight....first in two years!!! No children. We are staying at the Felin Fach Griffin near Hay-on-Wye. Shall take sketchbook / camera / paints .... But must remember to speak to hubby!
Anyway keep up the to hear your tales x

annette emms said...

Oooh Clare, sounds wonderful! Have a great time.x

Maggi said...

What a wonderful part of the country with so much inspiration.

fairyrocks said...

Sounds like a wonderful way to spend some time. I love the stones too and wish they could speak the things they have silently witnessed.

Tina Gilmore said...

Oh! I love Northumberland, my most favouritest ( that a word?) place in the UK and Lindisfarne is special. The photos are so lovely, they bring back lots of nice holiday memories, i love those upside down boats. There used to be a house on the corner before you set off for the castle that sold the most amazing crab sandwiches and my little girl loved them!!! Thanks for sharing, your work is beautiful. xx