Tuesday 29 August 2023

Searching For Coleridge and Wordsworth in Somerset.

Old Somerset mile post.
Barn conversions.
Nether Stowey  Parish Church.
In love with all mankind. 
Beautiful altar.
Memorial list to the Great fallen.  Every village and town have such lists in Britain and Ireland.
The greatness of God.  Well he kept us safe on our travels.
Old Toll House.

Lilliput Lane?
A pleasant pub.
Red telephone box.
Another fingerpost. 
Coleridge Cottage. Once an hovel.  Then a pub and now a museum. 
It didn't open until eleven so we never got to go inside.  Instead we stocked up in a Grocers on Somerset pasties and Lucozade.
The Ancient Mariner pub across the road.  I wonder if they serve Laudanum?  
Side of Coleridge Cottage.

Day One.

 I flew from Knock to Bristol.  Typical  Brian Hare.  Moved from Shannon to the West of Ireland.  It was a very early start and a long drive for Mrs Northsider.

I met my friend at Bristol Airport and we caught a really cheap bus to Weston Super Mare.  Caught a train to Bridgewater after being told by a chatty man no-one wants to live there.

It's a bit down and out in parts but it looks like it was a former market town that made its trade from the river.

We waited for a bus that took us to a cemetery a few miles before Nether Stowey.  It was tea time and we started walking along an extremely busy A road.  

We attempted to walk on grass verges but it was very dicey.  A young man  pulled up in a Volkswagen Golf and insisted he gave us a lift.  His friend had his back broken walking along the same road last December.  These dangerous roads were going to be a feature of our next few days.

The motorist took us to a camp site.  They wished for card payment but eventually after a telephone interrogation accepted cash.  

The campsite had a lot of caravan residents from the nuclear power station Hinkley Point.  It's the areas main employer and even provides bus transport for the workers.  This service is not available to walkers like us sadly.

I have never been so close to a nuclear power station and having voted Labour all my life would never agree to having such places. Hey Mr Starmer do you agree?

Day 2.

Next morning we got up early and left our tents pitched and set off to find Coleridge Cottage.  We met a lovely lady picking up discarded motorists litter out of the goodness of her heart.  We put the world to rights and had a chat and she told me she was a smallholder like yours truly.  She also gave us an excellent mental map of how to get to our literary destination. 


  1. I hate walking on narrow verges next to A roads. You are so close to the traffic. Knock is a hell of a long way from your country estate. Why didn't you fly from Cork?

  2. It's the same here YP. It's car world. Pedestrians and wildlife are not allowed to use the roads. I hope readers of this blog do visit Coleridge Cottage. But please do not attempt to go there without a car. Public transport is very poor or none existant and walking with a rucksack is definitely not advised!

    No Ryanair flights from Cork to Bristol YP.

  3. A good start to the trip, despite the bad road walking conditions.
    I love that little toll house. It must be tiny inside!

  4. It was lethally dangerous JayCee. I wish we could go back to horses and carts instead of speeding cars and ridiculously high speeds on roads made for horses and carts. The tiny toll house is like one of my wife's country cottage teapots/coffee pots. I emailed you to join your blog JayCee. Did you get it?

    1. Ah... I just looked and it's there now. I'll send you the link.

  5. No, roads are not for walking..and not so good for cycling either, so you need to find footpaths.

  6. Pedestrians are second class citizens especially on roads GZ. Even Google Maps led us along very dangerous roads. It's the same where we live in rural Ireland. None drivers have to chance walking on dangerous roads or pay for a taxi or maybe avail of a bus once or twice a week if they are lucky. Car is king. Pedestrians and roadkill doesn't matter. Thanks.

  7. Clearly there is a need to give users of Shanks Pony higher priority in the development of transport infrastructure. It should be possible to join any two residences by safe (if slightly indirect) walking routes.

  8. Yes we sing from the same hymn sheet Tiggers Mum. I thought I would get a comment from someone about building nuclear power stations. But like usual I get indifference. Thanks.

  9. Isn't it wonderful, the people you meet? You forget how kind people are. Lord Byron is a popular charactor in the area around Nottingham. Did you know that when he was in Oxford he had a pet bear because the college would not allow dogs.

  10. I should check my facts before hitting publish. It was Trinity College.

  11. Yes Byron was quite a character Debby. The lovely lady litter collector rents her farm off the National Trust. She agreed with me that are no litter bins in the countryside so car drivers drop their litter out of their car windows. She was an inspiration.

  12. Interesting photos, all of them.

  13. Real England is still there in parts River. You have just got to get off the well beaten track and find it. Thanks for your comment.


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