On Saturday we went over to Nottingham to have lunch with friends. On the way over we stopped to look at St Mary's Church in Attenborough because I wanted to find the memorial to the victims of the Chilwell shell factory explosion for my last post. It took us a while to find it in the churchyard. I asked a local lady where it was but she didn't know. She had come to the church to look at the bazaar and wondered why it was closed even though I wasn't local I was able to tell her it was actually in the village hall but only because I'd seen it mentioned on the church's website whilst I was looking up details about the memorial the day before.
The church does open three days a week but not on Saturdays so I'd like to go back some time and look again. The house to the right of the church in the photo below is Ireton House. It was the family home of Henry Ireton a general in the Parliamentary army during the English Civil Wars and the son-in-law of Oliver Cromwell, he married Cromwell's daughter Bridget. He was baptised at the church on 3rd November 1611.
I've always been fascinated by Henry Ireton since I had to study the Putney Debates as part of my 'England in the 17th Century' course for the Open University. Although he fought on the side of Parliament during the civil wars he was wary of all the radical groups that grew at that time and he still believed in the constitution of King and parliament.
Just near the church is a path to the Attenborough Nature Reserve. We visited a few years ago (seems like only two but it was five) and here is a - link - to the post I wrote at the time where you can see a photograph of the visitor centre.
From here we went to pick up our friends from home and then out towards the village of Draycott where we had a wonderful lunch in The Beetroot Tree. The food was tasty we all had Homity pie and a winter salad followed by a lemon meringue. The service was excellent if a little slow but that was quite understandable as they cook whilst you wait and it was very busy. Inside, as well as the cafe, is an upstairs exhibition area as well as sales of different crafts, fair trade goods and crafting supplies. They also do workshops and courses.
We were there over two hours after which we drove back towards the city and to the Djanogly Art Gallery which is part of The Lakeside Arts complex at Nottingham University. We went in to see the Lowry exhibition they have on at the moment. As it was late on a Saturday afternoon it was quite busy and we struggled to see some of the paintings and drawings. As it is on until the end of February I think we may go back again. I have seen quite a few of Lowry's paintings at The Lowry in Salford and there are some of his paintings in our local museum. I just love them. I was particularly struck by a couple of paintings he'd done of a deserted house on an island in the middle of an industrial wasteland, very dark and stark but quite different from his densely peopled city streets.
We also visited the newly opened University Museum which is near the gallery. It was so quiet in there after the Lowry exhibition. Based on the Romano/British collections of Felix Oswald which were donated to the University in 1933 there is lots to see including a case of artifacts found in Nottingham's famous caves. Again we will have to go back and look some more. When we left it was dark so I couldn't take a photo of the new building.
Before I leave you I just want to show you a couple of photos I took in the back garden late on Tuesday afternoon the sunlight after all the rain we'd had was golden......
and quite beautiful.
Have a great weekend, everyone!