Sweetbriar Dreams

So where shall we go on our journey today?

Saturday, 22 February 2014

Where Shall We Go On Our Journey Today... Stamford, Lincolnshire

As the half term week now comes to an end and a whole week off for me to enjoy with the two teens, it is time to reflect on what we did this week.  With my son's 16th birthday it was an opportunity to spread out the treats such as meals out, quality time gathering thoughts of his hopes and dreams and of course... trips!  But first, may I thank you for your lovely visits to my blog and especially for the wonderful comments on last week's post.  Sometimes with blogging you just let the words flow and they are the truest to your thoughts and mind.  Yes, he was suitably embarrassed but amazed at your comments and has asked me to thank you all.

And so, I sit here tapping away at the keyboard and re-living what we have done this week with... yes, you guessed it... throbbing hobbit feet (it was London yesterday with a typical touristy feel, but that's for next week!).  The first notable trip we went on was Stamford in Lincolnshire.  A beautiful town neighbouring the exquisite Burghley House (my posts on this historical building are here).  The town itself has hardly changed in 1,200 years!!
Now for an architectural anorak such as myself, the visit here was like receiving a box of your favourite chocolates with every single one containing your favourite centre.  Tudor, Georgian, Victorian, Edwardian... they are all here in this town.  This alleyway, one of very many, had history oozing from every angle.
The beams pop out to say hello occasionally, with tales to tell of the centuries they have seen.
There are your usual shops and yes, they are all occupied!  How heart warming this was to see once again.  Then there were boutique shops.  As this shop showed outside, there really were four floors of happiness.
Spring had sprung outside this florists.  It was so lovely to see the cheery faces of the colourful blooms.  A symphony on the eyes.
Unusual gifts at every door down the roads of shops, not the same contents in each aisle.  I never realised just how much I missed this kind of shopping.  This wonderful book store in the middle of town was a visual delight.
Its two signs drew me in - Gothic House and the Walkers sign, etched into the wood, not plastic and uniform, just wooden and individual.  There are more details on this wonderful building here, however if you ever visit this place, do go inside and go up the stairs and then look behind you.  There over the stairs is the original outside of the building, the old post office in its Tudor magnificence.
And, me looking up again, realising that even floors above ground floor in the various shops were filled with chandeliers to make the experience even more special.
Also, to make me feel at home...
Now here is a collage for a special lady, Tammy at My Journey.  I promised her I would be looking out for telephone boxes locally and further afield.  So far, they have been sparse and in decline, however Stamford has plenty!  They all work and stand proudly throughout the town.  So Tammy, here you go - maybe you had used this when you were over here!!  Please go and give her visit here to learn more about these iconic 'monuments' and her upbeat way of life... and Tammy, wait for next week's London post, telephone boxes for the computer age!
You can easily become lost in the history of the place by following the main roads and then coming across little alleyways.  Some are so narrow that only one person can go down at a time.
Some lead to more little boutique shops.
Each street has a name to depict its history such as Ironmonger Street with its shadow street sign just above it.  The street had all manner of ironwork on show.
The river Welland flows through the town, a little high with the rain, but beautiful against the winter landscape.
Just over the river is the famous George Hotel.  A place that is dripping with history.
This plaque says it all!  Can you imagine the history that this building could tell you!
One day I will have the time to go inside, it looked so inviting especially with the reflections in the windows showing what the view would be.
The rare book shop is a must for those of you who like to feel the old pages and marvel at the first editions.  I am lucky with Miss Teen as she enjoys reading from a page rather than a Kindle.  As we walked into this shop, crammed with the written word, the smell of old books gave a memory trail like no other!  Through the back it opens into what looks like an old study with old desks and the obligatory computer.  The book cases are locked but the binding of the books were beautiful.  Miss Teen held one book as she sat crossed legged on the floor and opened the book to smell the pages, the book was printed in 1850.  The smile and sigh said it all... respect for the author and the once owner.
Of course there has to be some street entertainment and in Stamford it has to be a bit more refined!  This man was playing against the shouts of the fruit and vegetable market traders.  When we put money into his case his shout of 'Cheers' made me laugh.
Also some wonderful doors dotted around the side streets.
And some beautiful boot scrapers by each door.
And so, with the sun beginning to go behind the clouds once again, it was time to head home.

Another walk over and time for me and Mumsy to rest our feet!
I hope you all have a wonderful week and the weather is improving for you as much as it is for us!

Take care.

p.s. Thank you for your comments on this post.  From these I thought I would just direct you to a couple of blogs that I think you would also be interested in:

John at By Stargoose and Hanglands and Mike from A Bit About Britain
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  1. Dear Chel
    Thank you for this - I used to live in Stamford, went to school there and got married in St Martin's Church there (where I had been a member of the choir for 14 years), so it was lovely to see it again. It has changed a little since I was there, but it is good to see some familiar shops, like Walkers are still thriving. I went to ballet lessons in a studio along St Mary's passage, but had forgotten it until I saw your photo.
    A lovely trip for both of us!
    Best wishes

  2. Right up my street too, I'd love to explore those alleyways.

  3. Absolutely fantastic photos . I just love the old streets and buildings over there such history if they could only talk . I am glad you both had a great time lol mumsy, that's what my oldest son who's 25 calls me . I want to go back to England an tour it one day , it is on my bucket list . Thanks for sharing and bringing us to this wonderful place . Have a good day !

  4. Oh and spring flowers at that shop how wonderful !

  5. Hi Chel, wow I love this post! I loved the tour so much and I do love the telephone booths too. The flowers are so pretty and it reminds me that spring is right around the corner! I love the shot of the lamp post and the sky. Thanks so much for reminding of England! Do enjoy the rest of the weekend and have a nice week.

  6. This must have been amazing! I'd love to see the UK someday!

  7. Whoa... I was typing away and my comment disappeared, I love this town, it looks like the perfect place to live and I could get lost just walking this town and in between all of the buildings, I love how you capture beauty and even the holes in wood. Thank you for the mention and the beautiful pictures of the red phone boxes, you know how much I love them! I wish we could meet up while I'm in London, but I will be back with my kids in the summer!
    Much love,

  8. Sigh, just beautiful. Thanks for sharing!

  9. What a beautiful town. It's a lifelong dream to go to England someday and I love that you take me on tours of these places through your posts. I don't know if I'll ever get to go for real, though I do hope to, so thank you for sharing.

  10. Oh how beautiful. Your photos are fantastic, and this is just the kind of place I would absolutely love to visit. Thanks for sharing your visit.

  11. Oh it all looks lovely, I particularly like sniffing pages of books too. I've never quite got to grips with a kindle.

  12. Another place where I'll have to stop next time I'm passing! All these comments from afar should make us appreciate what we've got here.

  13. A beautiful post - Stamford is now on my places-to-visit list. I grew up in Norfolk, only 90 miles away, but have never been to Stamford, although we often visited the tulip parade at Spalding when I was a child. Your journaling is as lovely as your photos - looking forward to your next post.
    A belated happy birthday to your son. Best wishes, Pj x

  14. A lovely photo-tour, Chel. It's a grand place - like a film-set from a period drama! Certainly on my list to feature on A Bit About Britain, but don't think I can equal your photographs.

  15. What a wonderful photo filled post. I loved the fact that there were so many independant shops and that they weren't empty. The four floors of happiness sign really made me smile. Thanks for sharing.
    Ali xx

  16. I am always in awe of the beauty that surrounds you...:) I can't imagine walking the streets of a town so steeped in history. Simply beautiful. Love that book store and the sign above. The boot scrapers are so pretty and all so different. Thanks so much for sharing your day out with us. I always look forward to my virtual vacations with you! Have a blessed Sunday and week ahead....Vicky

  17. Chel what a super post! Thank you for these photographs. I have been to Stamford twice only, and we think it is one of the prettiest towns we have visited. I should get there more often. In fact, I don't really know Lincolnshire much at all. Time to change all that I think. Hope you are relaxed and raring to go headlong into the new week! Like me. not!

  18. What an interesting town. The flowers outside the shop were beautiful and I love that old Norman archway, and the history on that plaque was fascinating.

  19. What a lovely tour. I really liked the old streets lined with shops... especailly old book shops!

  20. Chel, thank you so very much for this beautiful journey to this most magical place, full of history and striking architecture. Like you, I could study each stone, indentation, or iron railing of a place, whether it be that of a castle or a gardener's cottage. The display of cheery faces at the florist's, the blue doors, the dramatic lamp post with the cloudy sky above, just amazing. Have a wonderful week and looking forward to your next adventure!


  21. I agree with Poppy, this is a magical place in history. One thing you never see here are the boot scrappers and in fact, I have never seen a real one before. Thanks for sharing this remarkable town with us.

  22. What a lovely town - so much history - must pay a visit one day - thanks Chel.

  23. What a delightful and interesting day out. So much history to see!! xx

  24. Chel...thank you for sharing your wonderful trip! Your photos are amazing. At the top of my places to visit is the UK. Our lovely daughter-in-love has family ties on her father's side to Congelton. I hope to visit there one day with my son and his wife. Must add this lovely town to my wish list! Happy, Happy Birthday to your son. Smiles...Susan

  25. Thank you for another wonderful walking tour, Chel. In addition to the places you featured, I might have to take a little detour into the woolen mill I spotted in the sixth photo.

    This is a place in which one could spend many happy hours exploring, walking and soaking up the historic atmosphere. I keep scrolling up to see the photos again.

    Have a lovely week.


  26. Hi Chel. I've fallen out of practise reading my favourite blogs, but I am glad to be back! I've missed your photos and carefully chosen words. Stamford is lovely - a place I must add to my list of UK towns to visit. I love the mix of architecture and the scenes by the river. Absolutely stunning!

  27. I enjoyed this tour, Chel...so many great photos. Each one made me wish I was there walking the streets with you. I love travel -- even if I have to do it virtually!

  28. Oh Chel, the history that you live with every day is astounding to me. I could spend days wandering through the streets here. The architecture, the shopping, the people, the scenery all are wonderful! Thanks for the tour.

  29. What a lovely photo tour, I really enjoyed 'visiting' Stamford :) xx

  30. What a lovely town, Chel. We are only on the other side of the bridge from Lincolnshire but we hardly ever visit. Will make a point of going when the weather gets better.

  31. What fabulous shots!

  32. Wonderful tour. I am always enchanted by the red phone boxes. Any phone box is rare here too. Glorious photos of everything.

  33. Your photos are wonderful and speak to a lovely time. Happy birthday to your son!

  34. I really enjoyed your latest tour! Thanks for taking us along.

  35. Chel, That was a visual feast! Thank you. I would love to visit Stamford one day.

  36. Chel, I love Stamford! In 1991 (I think it was) we spent two nights there with friends of friends with whom we were traveling. The couple lived in an adorable Elizabethan townhouse with wonky ceilings I just loved! They were going to move because they needed more space with their two little girls, but it was precious. Done in Laura Ashley cowslip yellow and white striped paper (which I also had at hone) and. Ute, cute, cute. Little leaded windows, a precious little garden out back. And we saw Burghley House, too. We had stopped off in route from Scotland to England, and then they went to London with us for the day. I have wonderful memories of this trip!



  37. Sorry for the typos. I have trouble with the IPAD.


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