Sunday, 13 October 2013

Cogges & canals

After we left Aston Pottery, we headed north of Witney to Cogges Manor Farm Museum. Chickpea was about 6 years old the last time we visited which is the same age as my friend Gill's daughter now.

The main house dates from the 13th century but has been altered over the years with the upper floors mainly dating from the 16th century. It's built with the lovely warm-coloured limestone which is so typical of this area (and so different to the red Accrington brick from where I live).

I just love the architecture of this house and it's a pity it wasn't open on the day of our visit. What I do remember of it from our visit many years ago was the lady guide telling us about the lath and plaster construction inside and teasing us about our northern pronunciation of lath (with the 'a' as in cat rather than 'ahh' as in car).

If I ever win the lottery I'd love a walled garden.

So many picturesque corners to photograph.

I really liked these butter moulds too which were on display in the dairy.

Our favourite part of the visit though were the pigs. I was standing by the gate of the sty with the camera when one of the pigs suddenly jumped up right next to me - he (or she) obviously decided he would be much better in close-up!

And he quite happily posed in different positions for me! For all you pig connoisseurs out there, they are Middle Whites.

The following day was the last of our visit and we chose to walk along the canal. Possibly not the best choice as it was baking hot and the path was so narrow that we had to walk in single file for most of the way - not ideal for chatting.

I did manage to spot a couple of interesting things though like this lords and ladies which seems to be abundant in that corner of Oxfordshire (again, unlike where I live).

I also spotted this banded demoiselle.

All too soon our visit was over but not before Gill gave me another belated birthday gift.

When we visited last year, we went to see Giffords Circus which happened to be in the area. We missed them this time but, when Gill went, she found that they still had some mugs from the previous year and bought me one! They issue different mugs each year, designed by Emma Bridgewater who is the sister of Nell Gifford, the founder/owner of the circus.

In case you've never seen or heard of Gifford's Circus, here are some piccies from last year. So colourful and great costumes!

And so our holiday came to a close and it was time to head back up the M6 to home, thankfully without the sounds of S Club 7 singing 'Reach', which Gill's daughter made us perform several times on every car journey. I'm hoping she's grown out of it by the next time we visit!


  1. what a lovely day, those pigs are so characterful! I've never been to Gifford's Circus but I've heard lots about it and it sounds great!

  2. Wow, those pigs are real "hams"! HA HA!!
    That's interesting that Emma Bridgwater's sister started that circus, that must be some family!
    I bet I would say "lath" just like you do...but with more of a drawl!
    I would dearly love to go down one of the canals in England on one of those boats...have you ever read "Three Men In A Boat"? Please say that you have!

    1. Ha, ha, your comments always make me laugh so much! Which makes me so sad to disappoint you and say that no, I've never read '3 men in a boat' - so many books to read, so little time. x

  3. Sounds like brilliant fun, garden was lovely and the circus looked fun :) xx

  4. I love your tours! Houses like that make me think of all the activity that used to be going on there. I would love to have a peek back in time and see everything in action. And I love those pigs:)