Friday, 7 June 2013

Stour house: The joy of Manningtree

Spent a great day in Manningtree last weekend. Constable country was looking glorious and thanks to my wife Nicola's relatives Diana and Eugenie for sustenance and entertainment. It's got a bit of everything, great views across the Stour estuary, some fine converted maltings, two Robert Adam towers from the old church, swans, a hut that was swept there in the 1953 floods and a great pub in the Red Lion, where you're allowed to bring in kids, dogs and takeaways. Good beer and chilli and honey roasted peanuts too.

And you can see the pond where infamous former Manningtree resident and witchfinder general Matthew Hopkins had his ducking stool. Hopkins was the ultimate Essex conman, paid per result, he inevitably produced more witches than he could shake a broomstick at. He was active during the English Civil War. Within a year Parliament was questioning his methods and thankfully he died young, at 27, in 1647 and is buried at Mistley.

On a lighter note, there's some fine footpaths behind the town through the   woods and fields, all oaks, cow parsley and buttercups. All this and it's only an hour from Liverpool Street on the train. We plan to return via train soon and walk to Dedham and Flatford Mill and, of course, sample more of Manningtree's delis and pubs…

No comments:

Post a Comment