On Tuesday 12th September 2017 there will be an excursion to John Clare’s Cottage and Tickenote Church led by Alan Langton.
Tickencote Church in Rutland is our first stop where we see an extraordinary piece of Norman architecture in the chancel arch. The sexpartite Norman vaulting in the chancel may well be unique in Britain. The font is 13th century although the nave was rebuilt in 1791.
We travel then to Helpston and the John Clare Cottage for an introductory talk and tour of the building which has been restored and transformed to its original 18th century state. John Clare (1793 to 1864) was the son of a farm labourer, and with his love of the English countryside he was dismayed by what he saw of its destruction by nineteenth century ‘progress’. The gardens of the cottage where he lived have also been redesigned and contain flora and fauna which John Clare loved so much. The ‘Rural Muse’, a 2013 gold medal winning garden at Chelsea, is in the grounds. There will be food served for us in the cafe, with some free time before leaving for Nottingham again about 4.00 p.m.