Thursday, 8 September 2016

LET'S HAVE A CHAT !!! ..........


What have you all been up to today ? 



I've been to the dentist !! Half an hour of ' fun ' with the hygienist and a check up with the dentist, who would like me to fund his next three holidays in the South of France !!! My dentist is about 5 miles away from our house and is situated just behind the river in Ware { no Ware jokes please .... I've heard them all before !!! }  
The gazebos along the river date from the 18th century and are a unique feature of Ware. Whilst there may be individual gazebos elsewhere in Britain, nowhere else do they survive as a group as they do on the River Lee in Ware. These riverside " summerhouses " stand in the former gardens of the High Street coaching inns that used to run down to the river. 



Scott's Grotto in Scott's Road is an enchanting place for a visit if you find yourself in Ware ..... with it's captivating underground passages and chambers, Scott's Grotto is a Grade 1 listed building and is the largest grotto in the United Kingdom. The grotto, which is said to have taken about 30 years to complete, was formerly in the garden of Amwell House and was completed by John Scott, an 18th century Quaker poet, who inherited Amwell House from his father in 1768.  The grotto is set into the northeast face of a hill with air shafts, light wells and connecting passages, decorated with shells, stones, flint, fossils and coloured glass. There is a " Council Chamber ", two " Committee Rooms ", a ' Refreshments Room ", a " Consulting Room " and a " Robing Room ".  Scott also had other romantic features built in his garden, including an octagonal gazebo on the hillside above. Scott kept a book which lists 3,000 visitors from 1779 to 1787. Samuel Johnson visited several times and pronounced the Grotto a ' Fairy Hall ', adding that ' none but a poet could have made such a garden'.



Are you bored yet ? ...... keep with me as I have one more historical fact about Ware and it's a good one !!! 
It's all about ' The Great Bed of Ware .....




The Great Bed of Ware is an extremely large oak four poster bed, carved with marquetry, that was originally housed in the White Hart Inn in Ware. Built by Hertfordshire carpenter Jonas Fosbrooke in 1580, the bed measures ten by eleven feet and can ' reputedly ' accommodate at least twelve people. Allegedly, Jonas Fosbrooke did not approve of riff - raff in his luxury bed so, his ghost pinches and scratches all who dare sleep in it !!! Many of those who have used the bed have carved their names into it's posts and the graffiti is as interesting as the bed itself. Travellers broke their journey at Ware just to spend a night in the bed. Reported guests include a party of butchers and their wives and a Bavarian Prince. 
.The fantastical creatures and the male and female figures at the back suggest the potential for sexual pleasure . This bed is so famous  that Shakespeare has Sir Toby Belch describe a sheet as " big enough for the bed of Ware "in Twelfth Night. The bed moved from the White Hart to the Saracen's Head, another Ware Inn. In 1870, William Henry Teale, acquired the bed and put it to use in a pleasure garden. It's now in the Victoria and Albert Museum.





 ..... and, following on nicely from the Great Bed of Ware .....

I polished my knobs and knockers this afternoon !!!

Here endeth the history lesson of Ware, Hertfordshire.


XXXX






image 1: via google, image 2: via the best, image 3: via 40cg, image 4: via me. 


Jackie















34 comments:

  1. Hell Jackie

    Ware sounds like a most interesting place. The bed intrigues. If only it could talk.
    Your door is beautiful and that is a job that is overdue at our house.
    Hope you do not have to return to the dentist anytime soon.
    Helen xx

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    1. Hi Helen,
      I always find it funny that one forgets about all of the history that is around us. I am sure that every town in the UK { and Ireland, of course !! } have many tales to tell.
      Have to go back to the dentist for a bit of general maintenance !! XXXX

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  2. BRAVA!
    YOU ACTUALLY did something instead of staring at LA COMPUTER ALL DAY!
    I am FASCINATED with WARE...........I want to see that GROTTO!
    XX

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    1. Hi Elizabeth ..... I am ashamed to say that I haven't ever visited the Grotto yet !!! It's only open on certain days and, whenever we think about going, it's closed !! XXXX

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    2. MAYBE I need to come and TAKE YOU!!!!!!!

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    3. That would be lovely .... I know that I would enjoy it even more with you for company Elizabeth. XXXX

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  3. Those riverside houses are exquisite, and go to demonstrate what little one needs to create real architectural beauty.

    I've seen the Bed of Ware at the V & A; it's huge. I'm sure we played Rugby against a school in Ware, but can't remember what it was called.

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    1. Hi Cro,
      Aren't the Gazebos lovely ? ...... and you are right, it's not always about expensive materials to create something beautiful.
      You might have played rugby against St. Edmunds in Ware. There is also Haileybury, a beautiful school, but that's more Hertford but close to Ware. Our son did a few choral courses there.
      More ratatouille making today ? XXXX

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    2. St Edmunds.... that's the one.

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  4. I did not know Ware was so posh.

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    1. I don't know if I'd go so far as to say it's posh Rachel, although there are always posh areas in most towns, aren't there ? It's a bit of an odd area where I live ..... many, many little hamlets, all spread out. XXXX

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  5. That was all wonderful. I want that bed, but I don't think I could get it up the stairs. Wasn't it Johnson who said, "A grotto is a very pleasant place - for toads."?

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    1. You're right Tom .... he did say that ..... maybe Johnson was very diplomatic and said what people wanted to hear !!
      ...... I want the bed too but, even if it made it past the stairs, it wouldn't fit into most bedrooms. XXXX

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  6. Thank you for the Ware history . . .
    I must confess . . .
    I was concentrating more on the dentist visit . . . Our dentists must be taking the same trip . . .
    grin, grin . . .

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    1. Haha Lynne !!!! Sometimes I think he finds things just for the sake of it !! XXXX

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  7. Those gazebo's are beautiful, that looks so tranquil. I'd never heard of the bed, very interesting and quirky! Great fun post, thank you x

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    1. The gazebo's are lovely , aren't they ? I just wish that I owned one !!!! XXXX

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  8. I loved that tour Jacqueline. Never heard of Ware but I love the riverside cottages. Don't they get flooded. I read somewhere that Hertfordshire was the most beautiful part of England.

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    1. Hi Donna,
      I think that it would be very difficult to say that one part of England was more beautiful than another but it is pretty.
      ..... and, I don't think that the gazebo's get flooded ..... the river doesn't rise that much ! XXXX

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  9. Beautiful post...love happy weekend ...love Ria x

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    1. Thanks Ria ...... happy weekend to you too. XXXX

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  10. Jackie, your knobs are lovely. I had done a post on that Bed of ware
    a few years back, What a fantastic bed. You live in a wonderful area, so interesting. Thanks for the trip.
    Hope you didn't pay $150.00 for a dental cleaning like I did. No mercy!
    yvonne

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    1. How funny that you did a post on the Great Bed of Ware Yvonne ..... it's amazing the history that you can dig up about the area you live in.
      The hygienist cost about the same as it cost you !!!! XXXX

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  11. An amazing portico and an amazing bed. So large it positively invites frenzied orgies. The mind boggles at what the butchers, their wives and the Bavarian Prince might have got up to.

    My hygienist costs £25, and that's only just gone up from £20.

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    1. Hi Nick,
      I think that the Great Bed of Wars could tell a multitude of bawdy stories .... if only it could talk !!!!!!
      £25 is really good .... I have to pay £60 !!!!!
      Sorry if I've missed a few of your posts ..... I've been a bit of a bad blogger but am on the case !! XXXX

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  12. Oh, dentists, Jackie. I'm still going by train to Hamburg to visit mine (a lovely man - and a very good dentist), so I have always to add the fare to his demands. But he is worth it.

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    1. If you find a dentist that you are happy with, then it's worth the journey Britta. XXXX

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  13. Ware looks and sounds really interesting....caught up on your gorgeous blog, always full of interesting topics, inspiring photography and your humour!
    Been away a while....getting my life together after drastic lifestyle changes, kiss for you lovely lady, XX

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    1. Oh dear ..... so sorry to hear of your lifestyle changes but I hope that you are getting there.... these things are often sent for a good reason and life will be better for them. XXXX

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  14. Just Hello again,
    Have to be at airport at 6:30 Am Renee is going to check out a mini yacht they may buy to live in for the winter in Fla,

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  15. I am thinking of how much work there is to making up that bed every morning, and stripping off the sheets! Imagine ironing all that lace too!
    I'd prefer polishing knobs and knockers!
    Greetings Maria x

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  16. Finally! A bed that all my grandchildren could sleep in. How much do you think it would cost to ship to Idaho Jackie???? I loved this history lesson on Ware! Now ware did you say this was again? (sorry, I just had to)
    much love.... btw I am in love with where you live!

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