Author Archives: alina

Love story in Ashdown

Ashdown House (3)William Craven, a nobleman and soldier, who served in the army of King Charles I was the eldest son of Sir William Craven, a native fromAshdown Park a poor family in North Yorkshire, who managed to build a successful business in the wool trade and became Lord Mayor of London in 1610.
In an area of Outstanding Natural Beauty on the Lamborne Hills in Oxfordshire, a lonely doll’s house stands as if forgotten by everyone, the places here are sparsley populated and Ashdown House the surrounding hills are all farmland. This is a monument to love and devotion.

Ashdown House was built for the woman he loved which was the wife of Frederick V Queen of Bohemia and the sister of the King of Ashdown House England, Charles I, referred to as the Winter Queen, since she was Queen for only one winter. Sadly she never got to see it as she passed away in 1662, two years before it’s construction was completed.

This country mansion near the village of Ashbury was originally built as a hunting lodge. Hunting and horses were the passion of Cravens. Ashdown ParkAn ancient deer park on the adjacent hills was created for hunting in Ashdown Park1204. Ashdown park is also special from a historical point of view. To the west of the house is the ancient monument of Alfred Castle, it is only a hill now, where once there was a fortress. In 871 on these hills, a historical battle took place between the army of Alfred and his brother Ethelred and the Danes, when the Vikings were defeated where it was said that rivers of blood flowed down the hills. In the park of the estate, a large number of Sarsen stones have been preserved, they are somehow too correctly positioned to have been random. I have no evidence but I suspect these stones are the tombstones of the dead Dane warriors, as it is known that the dead Viking leaders were buried with honor in the church of the village of Ashbury.

William Craven never married, having lost his one and only love, he built a mansion in the village of Hampstead – Marshall but the house burned down in 1718 and on that place another hunting lodge was built, where he lived alone. Several interesting facts from his biography are Ashdown Houseas follows; Craven earned great respect from the inhabitants of London during the plague of 1665, when he did not escape from the city like other noblemen but helped to maintain order in the city. In addition, his service as a secret adviser in America was rewarded, when in his honor Craven County was named after him in the state of North Carolina . In the village of Lambourn, Craven opened a riding center, which still exists to this day and is the main equine centre of England.

Ashdown HouseAshdown House and the estate with an adjacent park were donatedAshdown House to the National Trust in 1956 by the wife of the fourth earl of Craven, the Countess Cornelia. The house is now mostly tenanted but one can visit on certain days, although most rooms in the house are occupied, you can go up stairs via an unusually wide wooden staircase, which for some unexplained King Charles I reason takes up a quarter of the entire space of the house. On the walls there are paintings presented by Elizabeth the Winter queen to William Craven, depicting King Charles I in his youth, William Craven, “The Winter Queen” and King Charles II. The staircase leads to the top floor, where there is an observation deck with a balustrade from where you can enjoy a panoramic view of the Berkshire hills and the The Ridgeway, one of the oldest roads in England which runs along the hills.

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Torchlight procession in the village of Mayfield

The West Country Carnival“Season of bonfires” ancient traditions in England are celebrated with torchlight processions and carnivals. Many events have been held for hundreds of years, such as Guy Fawkes on November 5, to comamorate the failed plot to blow up the British Parliament in 1605. Since then, from September to November throughout the country bonfires are set alight, where an effigy of Guy Fawkes is burnt, with displays of fireworks, other events are celebrated with processions and funfairs.

In the village of Mayfield in East Sussex, on the third Saturday of September, an annual carnival and torchlight procession takes place in memory of the Protestant martyrs burned at the stake in the village on September 23 1555, having been convicted by the British Inquisition for heresy.

Queen Mary I Tudor, who ascended the throne after the death of her brother Edward, began the restoration of the Catholic faith and the reconstruction of monasteries destroyed or closed during the Reformation, organized by her father, King Henry VIII of England, who declared royal supremacy over the English church.

Queen Mary, who was a Catholic feared Protestant nobles who had influence in society during the reign of Henry and Edward. Therefore, since 1555 in all cities, around 300 Protestants who disagreed with the Queen’s policy, including the hierarchs of the church, were convicted and burned at the stake. After this Queen Mary was later nicknamed Bloody Mary.

In memory of the Protestant martyrs in some towns of England memorials have been established. The torchlight procession in the village of Mayfield began in the 19th century when Mark Antony a schoolteacher from the town of Lewis published his book about the Sussex martyrs, five of them were convicted in Mayfield and seventeen in the neighboring town of Lewis, after that a tradition was born to hold an event in memory of the martyrs.

Residents from several villages and towns of Sussex participate in the carnival procession along Mayfield’s High street, they dress in costumes of that era, carry flaming torches and are accompanied by musical bands, drummers and sometimes groups of Morris dancers.

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Durdle Door sculpted by nature

Durdle DoorThe Jurassic coast in the county of Dorset, has been beautiful patterned by the sea, caressed by wind and sun, creating unusual outlines of faults, rocks and caves. Not far from Lulworth Cove, an Lulworth Covearea of Outstanding natural beauty, there is another natural object – the limestone Arch, named Durdle Door, also formed by natural erosion.

Durdle Door is one of the natural sites listed by UNESCO like the seven natural wonders of the world along with the Great Canyon of Durdle DoorAmerica and the Australian Barrier Reef, which have international geological significance. Durdle Door is the private property of the Welds family, which covers many miles along this coast. Overlooking the site, the nature reserve at the top of the hill is open to visitors. There you can go camping, stay in a mobile home or Durdle Doora caravan. A person can stroll along the hills of the coast, where there is a Southwest national walking trail with a total length of 630 miles, includes a path from Lulworth Cove to Durdle Door.

Durdle DoorThe rocky outlines of the Durdle Door Arch are clearly visible from the tops of the cliffs and surrounding hills. Most paths descend down to pebble beaches with the purest water. At the foot of the rocks, one can find many caves carved out by sea. Where calcareous rocks have not been completely washed out, rocky islets have been formed with interesting names such as The Bull, The Blind Cow, The Cow or The Calf.

The deterioration of nature’s coastline through time, has created new natural landscape masterpieces, such is the evolution of our beautiful earth. Spending time alone within nature, Durdle Doorwe once again return to our childhood, realising who we really are and that happiness only needs the sun, a clear sky, some mountains, a landscapes that catches one breath or the grace of the sea to inspire peace of mind. We contemplate at the wonders of nature and very rarely forget them.

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Sky Garden

Sky Garden (12)From most upper floors “The Walkie Talkie” in the City of London you can admire the beautiful panorama of the city and on the roof of the building a unique three-level Sky Garden was created, the highest park in London, with observation platforms, terraces, bar and restaurants. In previous article you can read about London’s skyscrapers and look at photos. Here is video made in the Sky Garden

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The City Of London skyscrapers

LondonThe latest architecture of modern cities evokes different feelings, from aesthetic pleasure to bewilderment and frustration. Admiring the modern design and architectural masterpieces, sometimes the Londonquestion arises “what was this architect thinking when he created this design.” For example, one day probably while grating cheese he suddenly came up with the idea of ​​”why not design a building that looks like a grater?” And he did … The second tallest building in the city of London (225 meters) is called “The Cheesegrater”.

London“Obsolete” architectural styles of classic baroque renaissance or Londongothic are being replaced by post-modern high-tech designs. Cubism and Surrealist ideas were only shown on the canvases of artists but now we can see a lot of these styles in architecture. The combination of digital design and new building materials allows us to create new architectural forms, which would have been impossible before. In addition, cities are increasingly rising up, skyscraper developers are in constant competition to build the highest and the unusual.

In the city of London, the Mary-Aix skyscraper known as the Gherkin is 180 meters high and Londonwon the Stirling Prize in 2004 awarded by the Royal Institute of British Architects for its high architectural standards and contribution to the development of design. “The Gherking” is Londonrecognizable at first sight; it is the business card for the financial centre in the city of London. Triangular mirror panels create optical patterns; they shine and reflect everything, creating a complex mirage of colours and shades. The panorama of ancient London has changed greatly and skyscrapers are now growing like cucumbers, both literally and figuratively. The tallest building in London, and the fifth tallest in Europe, “The Shard” soars into the sky with a height of 310 meters.

LondonA commercial 160-meter-tall skyscraper on Fenchurch Street, the sixth tallest in the City, was named “The Walkie Talkie” because of Londonits resemblance to the first models of mobile phones. Uruguayan architect Rafael Vynoly decided to stun the world not only with an unusual design, but also a non-standard solution to the problem of placing the maximum business space on to a small area. He designed post-modern style building, which expands upwards: the building soars up expanding space. The outer shell, which is made of aluminium alloy fitted with double and triple glazing and curved mirror walls, seems to hang over the street.

This design created problems: on a clear day, the sun’s rays reflected from the mirror walls creating the effect of the concave mirror and focused on the street, due to this optical effect at the intersection points of the rays, the temperature can rise to 100 degrees and above. In 2013, the bumper melted on one of the cars parked below the building. And a reporter of the metropolitan newspaper fried eggs in a frying pan placed on the ground to create a greater resonance. Now the building is protected by screens, glass is covered with a non-reflective film, and the southern side of the structure is ventilated from the outside.

LondonPublic opinion acknowledged that the new skyscraper disfigures the panorama of London. In 2015, “The Walkie Talkie” got the Carbuncle Cup as the worst building of the year. “Carbuncle Cup“, as an alternative to the Cup of Sterling, is awarded to the buildings that spoiled the architecture of the city by Designs magazine. Modernist stylists compared the new project of the extension of the National Picture Gallery’s comment by Prince Charles, “monstrous carbuncle on the face of a much-loved and elegant friend.”

Nevertheless, “The Walkie Talkie” contributed to the development of architectural design. In addition, from most upper floors you can admire the beautiful panorama of the city and on the roof of the building a unique three-level Sky Garden was created, the highest park in London, with observation platforms, terraces, bar and restaurants.

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