Tuesday, 13 October 2009

Hedgerow harvest

There were seven of us on the Little Green Ride in October taking a gentle meander to the Elephant and Castle close to Wheathampstead. Along the way we spent a good deal of time gathering sloeberries (left) from the hedgerows to make sloe gin.

My favourite recipe for sloe gin begins "drink half a bottle of gin." Now that is my kind of recipe!

Along the way we passed a ruined church in Ayot St Lawrence. It was partially demolished in 1775 apparently because it spoilt the view for the local landowner. The parishoners complained to the bishop and it has been left in a semi-ruinous state ever since.

Lunch was at the Elephant and Castle where we speculated on the origin of the name. The best suggestion was that it was a corruption of "Infanta de Castille", referring to a princess of Spain.

After lunch we took in a little more culture with a brief visit to all that remains of a cottage where John Bunyan was once thought to live.

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