Thursday, 26 February 2004
Pix Of The Day: Tale Of Two Bridges And A Stile
CREDIT: © Charles Winpenny/CornwallCAM.co.uk
WHERE: Cornwall, England. WHAT: the patina on ancient landscapes.
MAPS: Luxulyan Valley, & Treffry Viaduct; and the village of Stithians.
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During yesterday's visit to the Sceptred Isle, we passed a remark about landscapes that were 'overlaid by the rich patina of time'. In recent weeks Charles Winpenny at CornwallCAM.co.uk has visited a number of locations with just such a patina. We chose two of the locations he visited: the Treffry Viaduct in the Luxulyan Valley; and a clapper bridge and stile near the village of Stithians.
The viaduct will delight the connoisseur of bridge engineering: it not only carried the Par Tramway across the river, but also carried Carmears Leat (an open watercourse conducting water to a mill - OUP, electronic Concise Oxford v.110) whose waters turned the Carmears Waterwheel to raise the trucks on the nearby incline. Charles refers to the book 'Around The River Fowey' by Bob Acton* (ISBN 1873443021), which describes the route taken by Charles, and provides historical detail.
The ancient, and you may notice rather care worn, clapper bridge and stile are similar to many other crossing arrangements found throughout the United Kingdom. We are sure a learned treatise could be written discussing historical influences, regional patterns & variations, and the social & economic significance of both stiles and clapper bridges. Motorized travellers already the intriguingly named WetRoads.co.uk, which is devoted to the Great British Ford (shallow place where a river or stream may be crossed by wading or in a vehicle - OUP-CO again), but we have been unable to find an equivalent for pedestrians in search of safe crossing places.
* Local guides by Bob Acton are often marked as out of print by booksellers, so we give here an unchecked but frequently found address: Landfall Publications, Landfall, Penpol, Devoran, Truro, Cornwall, TR3 6NR Tel: 01872 862581 publishers of Bob Acton's Landfall Walks books featuring local history in Cornwall.
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Jules Laforgue (1860-1887)
"Ah! que la vie est quotidienne."
Oh, what a day-to-day business life is.
'Complainte sur certains ennuis' (1885)