Tuesdays of Texture : Week 12

St. Declans Well, Lismore

Ruins of an old church

This old building, St. Declan’s Well in Ardmore, Co Waterford, is still standing after a few hundred years, and you can see from all the old stonework that it is a very interesting wall, full of texture.   The doorway seems to be quite small, maybe earlier generations were shorter than this one!

Linked to Narami’s Tuesdays of Texture

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St Dunstan in the East : Tranquility

St Dunstan in the East

St Dunstan in the East

The Church of St Dunstan, is in the heart of the City of London with all its tall skyscrapers, and was originally built around 1100.   It is a Grade I listed building.  A new south aisle was added in 1391 and was repaired in 1631. It was severely damaged in 1666 by the Great Fire of London, which started very close to the church. A steeple and tower was added in 1695-1701 by Sir Christopher Wren.

The Church was again severely damaged in the Blitz of 1941 but Wren’s tower and steeple survived the bombing. During the re-organisation of the Anglican Church after World War II it was decided not to rebuild St Dunstan’s.

In 1967 the City of London decided to turn the remains into a public garden, which opened in 1970, and it has plants and benches, and a fountain, and is truly a haven for a break from stressful city life, even if only for half an hour.

Here are some more photos of the garden

 

We Stand and Watch the World Sail By.

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My friend and I went for a Sunday stroll not too far from home, and on the way we passed an old ruin of a church, it’s called Templebreedy Church, or the Church of Bridget.   This church was built about 1779, and was used for about 150 years, and there had been a church on this site previously, for maybe another 100 years!

This was the view looking out one of the windows, sadly now without glass or window frame, and slowly returning to the earth.    In the foreground of the view is an old Celtic cross gravestone, probably at least 100 years old, and across the mouth of the harbour you can see Roches Point Lighthouse.   This lighthouse stands at the entrance to Cork Harbour, and a lighthouse was first established in this spot almost 200 years ago.

Just imagine, the people looking out this window would have seen many ships sailing to and from the Port of Cork and from Queenstown, later called Cobh.   Cobh was the last stop on the maiden voyage of the Titanic in 1912, before she set sail for New York, and was also the place where the survivors of the Lusitania were brought to in May 1915, when the ship was sunk by a German torpedo not far from here during the First World War.

Let’s hope there were happier times too for the watchers at the window, like the little boats below that were out for a sailing lesson in the shelter of the harbour this morning!

Learning to sail in the calm waters

Learning to sail in the calm waters

 

 

Outdoors

I often post photos of being outdoors in the mountains when hillwalking, but here are a few different photos of the great outdoors, discovering new places and ancient monuments.

The ancient city of Ephesus

The ancient city of Ephesus

Sometimes it is hard to avoid crowds in places of great beauty and historical interest.

Crowds in Venice

Crowds in Venice

But sometimes the place is so beautiful that you ignore the crowds (and the scaffolding!), and the queues to get inside.

St Marks Square, Venice

But I think I still prefer to be in the outdoors with nature.

Resting from a hike

Resting from a hike

Check out Ailsa’s page for more Outdoorsy photos.

 

A Lingering Look at (Broken) Windows

Dawn’s Theme this week is Broken, here are a few broken and non-existent windows I have come across on my travels around Ireland.

Also linked to Ailsa’s Travel Theme – Broken, so I am killing two birds with one stone here!

Retracing the Past at Charles Fort

Charles Fort is a star shaped Fort at the water’s edge near Kinsale, in County Cork.   This fort was built by the British Army in the mid 17th century.    At that time, Ireland was (reluctantly) part of the United Kingdom, and was ruled by the British.

A model of the fort as it stands today

A model of the fort as it stands today

In 1601, the Spanish monarchy sent a ship and 4000 men, under Don Juan del Aguila, to Kinsale, to help the Irish forces  under O’Neill and O’Donnell, and other Irish chieftains, to try and chase the British out of Ireland.  A huge battle ensued, the Spanish and the Irish forces managed to take Kinsale.

On hearing of the Spanish landing, the British sent about 8000 men, who managed to overcome the Spaniards after a huge battle, and the Spaniards who survived sailed back to Spain.   You can still see some Spanish influences around Kinsale though, like the Spaniard pub, reputed to have been a meeting place for the Spanish during and after the battle, and a plaque to Don Juan del Aguila outside the Bullman pub, not far from Charles Fort.

After this battle, the British were worried about their foothold in Ireland, which was very necessary to them because of its trade routes with southern Europe and America, so they started work on Charles Fort, and moved a very large battalion of soldiers in to the fort.    The British were also worried that their enemies would use southern Ireland as a ‘back door’ to attack England during the several wars that happened over the next two centuries, so several forts were built around Cork harbour, for protection.

Charles Fort was held by the British until the Anglo Irish treaty of 1922.   Not everyone in Ireland was in favour of the Treaty, and after the British left the fort, it was taken over by the anti-treaty organisation, who burned it to the ground, and destroyed many of the buildings in the fort.

The fort lay derelict for many years, and during the 50s, 60s, early 70s, it was a great party and camping place for the young people of Cork during the summer months!  My sister and I had our first alcoholic drink in the fort a long time ago – ssshhhh   don’t tell anyone!

The Fort was declared a National Monument in 1971, and taken over by the National Heritage of Ireland, who have partly restored the fort, and have preserved much of the old ruined buildings which form part of our history.

There are guided tours of the fort, which we took during the week, and we were very interested to see how much work has been done on the old buildings, and to hear the history of this once huge barracks.   It is a place that is well worth a visit if you are ever in the town of Kinsale.

 

A Photo A Week Challenge : Off Centre

The challenge this week from Nancy at Nancy Merrill Photography is to show some photos that are off centre, here are a few of mine, which were taken in Venice, Italy and Ephesus in Turkey.    Both places are so breath-taking and interesting, and have many photo opportunities everywhere one looks.

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A view of Venice and its many spires

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Poppies growing on a barren dusty corner

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Enjoying the shade and watching the tourists, Ephesus, Turkey

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St. Mark’s Square, Venice

 

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