We were in Winchester for the day. It’s a town I rarely visit, and every time I do, I think I shall return again soon. The reason today was it was the destination of the Annual Outing of a local archaeological group of which I am not a member. Last year Celia and I joined them for the trip to Ramsgate and had such a good time we were among the first to sign up for today.
Our visit coincided with the town fair. The city thronged with people enjoying themselves in the sunshine. Joy was spread by unicyclists and others. We had the cathedral almost to ourselves.
It’s where Jane Austen is buried. She died aged just forty-one. I don’t think any member of our group had clocked up less than half a century. Our combined ages would make a pretty sum.
But I have seen Jane Austen’s headstone and memorial on previous visits. Today my eye was caught by other things. To be anyone in Winchester it seems to helpful to be called William.
William Walker was the diver who worked for years at the start of the twentieth century to clear the peat floor under the cathedral, and by so doing, he saved the building. We ate cake and drank coffee in a pub named after him.
And our afternoon cake in another pub celebrating Hyde’s most famous buried king, Alfred, was not short of photographs commemorating him either. And the references to Alfred were many, though no sign of his recipe book. We looked at where he is said to be buried.
It was a splendid day altogether, and I do hope I shall be back in Winchester again before too many months have passed.