Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Long Melford, Suffolk

In the shade

During the recent hot days I've seen quite a few cottages swathed in roses. These in Long Melford made me pause as I made my way towards the church. I was struck by the way that the house is painted almost the same colour as the flowers so that the profuse blooms stand out more in space than in hue. Except that when you look closely, the flowers display a variety of pink shades.

Shade cast by the roses drew my eye down to the doorways below. Here what struck me were the gates fitted to each entrance, like the bottom halves of stable doors. Please bear with my ignorance: are they dog gates, to keep animals in (or out) when the main door is opened for ventilation? Or are they intended to keep small children indoors? And why not just have stable doors? Perhaps my readers can throw some light on the subject.


Joe Treasure said...

Both cottages have them, which suggests local fashion or local conditions. All your suggestions seem plausible. Or are they ready for when the Chad floods? Lovely roses.

Philip Wilkinson said...

Joe: I did think that if you put some seals on them they might make a flood easier to cope with. I'm impressed that you know the name of the watercourse. I'd assumed it was just the River Stour, but I look on the map and there's the other one: the Chad, hanging around the edge of Long Melford. Thank you.

Joseph Biddulph (Publisher) said...

When we lived in the Wisbech area, it was usual to visit houses by the BACK door: the front doors were usually kept closed, sometimes had canvass screens, etc. Elsewhere it's considered bad manners to approach a stranger's house by the back door. Anyone know of any similar regional conventions? Could there be a similar custom in Suffolk?