Travel Diaries: Lincolnshire Tour – St George’s Day in Stamford

It’s like being on a film set.  Stamford, on the border of Lincolnshire and Rutland, feels very familiar and has doubled for both George Elliot’s Middlemarch and the village of Meryton in Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.  On a gloriously sunny Saint George’s Day, we arrive early whilst the streets are still quiet.

A short walk past the old stone terraces of Blackfriar’s Street takes us to Stamford Arts Centre, which is hosting an indoor market whilst Morris Dancers are setting up outside …

… and then we follow the street down St Mary’s Hill towards the river.

We pause to admire the beautiful gardens of Burghley Hospital …

… before finding a shady spot beside the river for a picnic lunch.

On our way through the park we spot a sign showing footpaths across the Town Meadows, up towards an ancient building on a hill.  It looks really tempting and I snap a photo so we can return to try this on another day.

Across Lammas Bridge, on the other side of the park, there are the remains of Stamford Castle’s archways and wild flowers have set root between the stones.

We almost walk past St Mary’s Church, which has a heavy, firmly shut, wooden side door.  However, a sign reads that the door is only closed to keep the pigeons out and visitors are welcome.

The church is empty, except for us, and bathed in light through the stained glass window.  The donation tin for our pound is a little letterbox in a tiny door, which delights the children.

Carved angels look downwards from the vaulted wooden ceilings.

Back outside, we cannot resist an alleyway …

… which we follow to the steps of Browne’s Hospital and Almshouse.

A private stone staircase leads upwards to our right (I gently dissuade our littlest son) …

… and directly ahead, a long corridor leads to a tiny archway and beautiful gardens for the residents.

Through the arches we can see the manicured gardens.  We talk to a lady who lives in one of the apartments:  ‘My grown up daughter just visited, and said “Mum I don’t want to leave, it’s so beautiful …”‘

The old Almshouse bell catches my attention on our way back out onto Broad Street.

The morning sun is fully risen as we make our way back along old side streets.  Window boxes are everywhere, with lavender in full bloom.

We admire the gardens of St George’s Church whilst listening to their choir …

… and then we take one last view of the River Welland from Albert Bridge, before it is time to make our way home.

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44 Comments Add yours

  1. Laurie Graves says:

    Another wonderful tour, which deserves a second look. I do have a couple of questions. Do you have four sons? If so, how do you fit them all into the Tesla?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Laurie – we do have four sons 🙂 Our Tesla is a 7-seater – the bit at the back that would usually be the boot/trunk – converts into two rear-facing seats. It only suits younger children though.

      The real art of packing comes when we also take an 8-person tent camping, without a roof rack. It’s like tetris! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Laurie Graves says:

        Righto! I have an image in mind of Teslas as small, sporty cars, but they have expanded. Yay! Sounds like you do have the packing down to an art.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Yup – we have the family version of the Tesla, complete with biscuit crumbs 🙂 -beck x

          Like

  2. samanthamurdochblog says:

    Beautiful photos and tour! Thoroughly enjoyed it and thank you 🐱

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much Samantha! 🙂 -beck

      Liked by 1 person

  3. MrsCraft says:

    I haven’t been to Stamford for quite a few years, and you’ve reminded me what a pretty place it is. Looks like you had a wonderful time 😊

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi there, it had been far too long since we had visited too – we used to go a lot (before we had children!) as it was the stopping off point before seeing Shakespeare Plays at the nearby open air theatre 🙂 The thing about Stamford is that it doesn’t change, it always looks perfectly just how we left it 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I am a Lincolnshire lass, and I’m seeing all these places with new eyes through you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s really kind, thank you! I’m a Leicestershire lass myself, just over the border 🙂

      Like

  5. It does look like something from a film or described in a book! I cannot wait to visit the UK someday. The stained glass window was glorious and were the other sites you shared. I enjoyed your virtual tour – thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So glad you enjoyed the post 🙂 We’ve been up in Staffordshire this weekend, walking amongst the wild garlic and getting followed by newborn lambs – I’ll hopefully have the photos and a video tour up soon 🙂 -beck x

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Great tour and the little video was excellent – I felt my shoulders drop as I listened and watched!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much Hilary – Stamford is a great favourite of mine, it’s like time has stood still 🙂 -beck

      Like

  7. Hi, I can see why you felt you were in a film set – everything Georgian and immaculate. I guess Stamford is a popular tourist destination.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It is! Especially on a sunny day – by the time we were leaving, the roads were filling up with cars. Some places, I love the crowds (Stratford Upon Avon is lovely when the festivals are on) – but Stamford to me looks better without traffic, so it seems like you’ve stepped back in time 🙂

      Like

  8. Thank you for this wonderful tour. I absolutely love England and all the amazing and historical places there.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much for the lovely feedback 🙂 I’ll hopefully have a new blog post from our trip to historic Ilam village in Staffordshire up online in the next few days … wild garlic by the river, and newborn lambs in the fields 🙂 -beck

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Thanks so much for the tip. Love the details and the write up.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks very much, really glad you enjoyed it 🙂

      Like

  10. Jessica says:

    I feel like I’ve just been in a virtual postcard. How awesome. Thank you. That stained glass is gorgeous.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Jessica, that’s so kind. I’ve got a few more posts that I really must get online soon from our travels … I get totally distracted by the garden when the sun is shining! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Jessica says:

        I bet! Love gardening! ☀️🌷🌸

        Liked by 1 person

  11. trudi_bruges says:

    Lovely photos. It looks very picturesque. Peaceful and quiet 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you – It was such a calm day, I think the gentle river just soothes and calms as you watch it 🙂

      Like

  12. Robyn Haynes says:

    Thank you for sharing such a lovely visit. Each photo just oozed history and stories. I loved it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much Robyn, so pleased you enjoyed the post x

      Liked by 1 person

  13. sultanabun says:

    This is exactly how I imagine England in my head. Such a beautiful spot.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. They keep building more and more houses over the landscape here, but there are also so many pockets of old fashioned villages left in the Midlands, it’s like time was frozen in the 1600s 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. sultanabun says:

        Husband and I have a long-held dream of making an antique-hunting/ book-buying/garden-admiring/scone-eating tour of England one day soon!

        Liked by 1 person

        1. That sounds glorious! I would love to read about your English travels (You can then also enter the centuries old ongoing English debate as to whether the cream or jam goes first in the scones 😀 )

          Liked by 1 person

          1. sultanabun says:

            Not to even get into whether the ‘e’ in scones is ‘magic e’ or not!

            Liked by 1 person

            1. Ouch that is a contentious one! 😀 I’ve got a Midlands dialect, so it’s “scones” to rhyme with “owns” 🙂

              Liked by 1 person

              1. sultanabun says:

                Me too! In Ireland, at least, I think it’s considered posher to rhyme scone with gone, which is just silly.

                Liked by 1 person

                1. The beauty of blogging, is that everyone that likes a posh English accent can imagine me to have lovely Queen’s English 😀 Round here, we have our normal accent, and a more scrubbed up version that we call our “phone voice” 🙂

                  Liked by 1 person

                  1. sultanabun says:

                    The kids accuse me of using my telephone voice with my mother-in-law who is quite posh!

                    Liked by 1 person

                    1. I’m glad it’s not just me! 🙂

                      Liked by 1 person

  14. I drove through Stamford last Saturday as I had time to waste on my way to see my Dad in Peterborough. Then I saw your post. It’s definitely time to visit again.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Funnily enough – it was the same for us. We were driving back from a pumpkin day at Riverford, and the route went through Stamford. Due to terrible traffic jams we saw all the beautiful architecture and decided we’d go back soon and see it properly 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. When my Dad first started working in Peterborough we were still living in Blackburn and the A1 still went through places like Retford, Stamford and Huntingdon. Nightmare!

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Ouch, that is a bad route. We’ve just come back from Norfolk – and the Peterborough part of the journey is the longest.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. It always seems that way. 😉

            Liked by 1 person

  15. That alley way is achingly romantic to me. I love all of these pictures.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much! I’m always trying to find the hidden places wherever I am – Can never resist a twisting flight of stairs, or an alleyway 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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