A small Rabble of Ragged Ramblers explored the area around Eye in Suffolk on Saturday last. Pulling into the small town at around 9am there was a light rain, but we were full of verve and vigor - ready for some antiquarian delights. In no time at all we were within the impressive church. Unsurprisingly, we found ourselves drawn towards the gorgeous fifteenth century rood screen.
However, other things may lurk within a church such as this - surprising and, sometimes, rather unpleasant things - things like this...
A scandalously grubby handkerchief, discarded on a bench cushion in the chancel. I suspected that it might contain the Y Pestis bacilli, so there was no way on earth I was about to remove it I'm afraid. Churches are not only the places where tired umbrellas go to gather it would seem!
On the way down to the church we had noted 'The Bank Cafe', which, as the name suggests, is situated in the premises of a former bank. We were given a most friendly and enthusiastic greet by the young fellow serving there. He proceeded to make cake recommendations, and I have to say my slice of coffee and walnut cake did not disappoint. I was also delighted to be served a lovely coppery pot of tea made with leaves.
The Bank, being an arts hub as well, had a small community arts exhibition taking place. Thus, we soon found ourselves looking through the open door of a bank vault as local folk gathered for a subterranean film screening - a wonderfully English scene!
I have to say, it made a pleasant change for me to be back in a bank vault unencumbered by explosives and free of tension and the dirt from tunneling. Our Rabble like this establishment very much and can warmly recommend it to visitors.
Between the time we entered the cafe and when we left, the sun had broken through and we knew that this was going to be a special day
We laughed at the posh chippy signage!
However, it soon became clear to us that not everyone in Eye is well-heeled.
There is so much more to tell of about Eye - and so much more to discover. We will be returning. One thing that did impress us about this small town was the warmth and friendliness of the people we met. There seems to be a real sense of community here and nearly everyone who passed by us smiled and said hello. That is a lovely thing. We will definitely return. However, bolstered by cake and warm beverages it was time to move on. Referring to the trusty OS map and Mortlock's 'Suffolk Churches' we pondered where to go to next. Where did we decide upon? Well, you will have to wait for the next installment of this Splendid Perambulation in order to find out.
~ Munro Tweeder-Harris Esq ~