A walk into Dorchester.
Since mooring above Days Lock is no longer available due to the area between the moorings, the lock and Dorchester being fenced off by a new landowner, we discovered another path ...
this pill box looked familiar until I realised that there is another on down by the river where we used to moor
Dorchester is such a lovely village
click any of the photos to enlarge
... and there's the abbey
The People's Chapel, a 1340 addition with 14th century wall paintings of the crucifixion was once used as the parish church.
The rear of the abbey as you enter (from the left above) is a huge open space
which contains the font - cast in lead about 1170 it is the only one in England which belonged to a monastic church to have survived the Reformation
In 2003/4 during some redecoration of the church, patches of colour were seen in the Shrine Chapel and in 2006 this huge wall painting was revealed of a 14 foot tall St Christopher (patron saint of travellers) who legend says carried a child across a river. The child became heavier as they crossed and the child reveals himself as Christ and tells Christopher that he has carried the weight of the world on his shoulders.
On the left is the Lady Chapel and on the right is the Requiem Chapel
George is standing in the Lady Chapel looking at the effigies. The one above, a cross-legged knight in chain mail, is apparently a fine example of 13th C funerary sculpture.
The East Window is spectacular, a medieval innovation intended to create a wall of glass, the pillar was added for strength to reinforce the tracery. Much of the glass is 14th century as was collected from other windows in the church in about 1840. The Rose Window was designed by William Butterfield who restored the church in 1846-53.
The Jesse Window (the Tree of Jesse) on the north wall of the chancel shows how Christ was descended from King David's ancestor Jesse.
If you enlarge the picture above you will see Jesse asleep at the foot of the tree
St Birinus Chapel - the roundel in the window is the oldest stained glass in the Abbey and dates from about 1225
I love the new modern choir stalls
I thought that we'd not actually visited the Abbey before until I looked back on the blogs and discovered that we did briefly in July 2014
It seems amazing to me that such a large Abbey/Church was built in what really is just a village today. For more on the history of Dorchester Abbey click here.
To the Abbey Museum next but we didn't stay long, I was too overloaded with the visit to the abbey itself.
I loved this though. The building used to be a school amongst other things and these are the pupils pen drawers.
World War I stories from three Dorchester women.
This is Mary, she comes from California with her husband to Dorchester every year for about three months and volunteers here in the museum and in the tea shop. She was very welcoming to us and was interested in our life style and informative about the exhibits. We did tell her that we'd be back on Thursday afternoon for coffee and cake but a change to our plans prevented that visit. If you're reading this Mary, please accept our apologies.
Views around Dorchester village
After collecting a few provisions from the well-stocked Coop we started the walk home
One of the two Wittenham Clumps that we also intended to visit tomorrow morning, next time perhaps. We climbed the clumps with Sue and the dogs in August 2016 if you'd like to take a look.
Bet you can't guess what we had for tea!
A perfect end to a perfect day.