On Saturday, Kate the Southeast District Ringing Master arranged an outing to the Brandon area. This is an area near Thetford Forest and Lakenheath Airbase - just at the Suffolk/Norfolk border. A good turnout and some good sunny weather. We rang at Brandon, Mundford, Northwold, Hilgay and Hockwold.Of course we had the customary lunch at a pub - the Crown at Northwold.This pub had a giant - and very friendly - pub cat. It was lovely to sit outside in the sun - good food too.
My favorite tower was Hilgay, where the bells are not often rung these days - approached along a long avenue of lime trees. Much hilarity here. Ringing chambers are often a repository for various items from cleaning, flowerarranging etc. - here there was a nude store manikin (female)with a beard and "Joseph" written on the chest - very surreal.Perhaps part of the nativity scene at Christmas?? Anyway, it suddenly broke in half as it was being returned to its storage space, giving rise to some very odd photos....The ringing chamber was very old fashioned and hadn't been touched in years - a real sense of history here. Afterwards, Mike and I went for a walk along the Great Ouse, where there were swarms of dragonflies or darters. I looked on the internet and identified them as damselflies, the banded demoiselle, common where there are slow, muddy bottomed rivers. Another nice day in the English countryside - at the best time of year when the weather is kind and the days very long.