Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Pepperbox Hill

Yesterday, after making my visit to the Nursing Home near Salisbury, I was in need of some fresh air and a few moments to myself before driving back home again to Berkshire.  I grew up in a village nearby and know the area quite well, so I decided to take a quick trip up to Pepperbox Hill which commands a great view over the ancient and historic city of Salisbury. 

Pepperbox Hill is so called because of the Pepperbox Folly which stands atop the hill.  We used to visit here sometimes as children, although it has been many decades since I last visited!


The area is now owned by the National Trust and they have this to say about Pepperbox Hill on their website:-

"Commanding the high point on the chalk ridge south-east of Salisbury, Pepperbox Hill
is topped by an early example of a brick folly. Thought to have been built by Giles Eyre of Brickworth House, it may have served as a viewpoint for ladies following the
hunt, a haunt for highwaymen and a lookout post for the home guard.
 
Surrounding the folly is a diverse habitat, produced by the scrub-grassland mosaic,
supporting several rare or uncommon species including orchids, juniper and yew woodland.
 
The adjacent chalk downland is a significant site in Wiltshire for rare butterfly
species, including the duke of burgundy."

I don't know where Brickworth House is or was, but it might be interesting to find out.  There used to be a brickworks in the village where I lived as a child, just a few miles down the road from the hill, so perhaps it is related to that in some way.

It was dusk when I arrived at just about 4pm, but as you can see it was still light, but it was icy cold and there was a frost forming on the ground already.  After the very hot Nursing Home though, the cold air was bliss just for a short while.

While standing and looking out across the view, I was reminded of the poem by W H Davies called Leisure:-

What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.

No time to stand beneath the boughs
And stare as long as sheep or cows.
No time to see, when woods we pass,
Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass.
No time to see, in broad daylight,
Streams full of stars, like skies at night.
No time to turn at Beauty's glance,
And watch her feet, how they can dance.
No time to wait till her mouth can
Enrich that smile her eyes began.
A poor life this if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.
It was great to take some time to stand and stare and enjoy taking these pictures.



There is a wonderful information board at the car park area which describes all the wildlife that can be found.  It was designed by local school children.



Here you can see the actual Pepperbox Folly.  I only ever remember it with the windows bricked up, I don't know if there were ever actually windows that opened.




This plaque tells you all that you can see from the hill in the surrounding areas.


The views are incredible, although not so good yesterday.  You can see the spire of Salisbury Cathedral - the tallest in the world I believe - but you couldn't really make it out yesterday - and I checked that I was looking in the right direction!.  I think that it is the spire that you might be able to make out to the right of the centre of the picture below.




It was lovely to have some cool air and a few moments to think before getting back in the car and driving home again.  The funny thing was though that it was exactly as I remembered it from childhood.  Usually when you revisit somewhere you went or lived as a child it seems smaller, but this was exactly the same size!

Amy

44 comments:

  1. This is another place I would love to visit! I love old buildings, and that view is incredible!

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  2. Sometimes you just need to get out and about, have the fresh air blow the cobwebs away. I bet you felt refreshed when you got back in the car.

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  3. What a beautiful place to stop and visit, you have some amazing historic places to visit in the UK. I do like that poem too:)

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  4. What a great place to visit.

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  5. Glad you were able to take some time in the fresh air yesterday. I did the same this morning - just half an hour, outside, looking around, and listening to bird song.
    I agree, most memories get changed from reality along the way, don't they. x

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  6. It was great that you got to get out & visit a local landmark and get some fresh air in the process! I enjoyed this post & the story about the folly and what it may have been built for. I'm glad you shared it with us.

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  7. It is indeed unusual for a place to seem the same as it did when we saw it through a child's eyes. A beautiful spot... perfect for clearing the head. ;) blessings ~ tanna

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  8. What a lovely place to be able to stop at, hope your breath of fresh air did you a little good. x

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  9. How funny- I was in Salisbury yesterday at the fabric shop. Romsey is only a few miles away and I've been to Pepperbox Hill. xx

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  10. That was a blast from the past, a place we have visited on numerous occasions whilst stationed at Middle Wallop. I used to love shopping in Salisbury. Hope you managed to clear your head.

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  11. First of all you made me go to Google to look at the definition of a "folly"....an ornamental building with no real purpose". In any case, a great structure, a great verse for reflection, and a grand tour of the area. Nursing homes can be very depressing, so I'm sure this trip up the hill gave you a whole new perspective on your day. Thanks for the post, Amy.

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  12. I love the poem you chose for today's post, so lovely and yes I think we forget to stop and let our minds drift. Beautiful photos!!

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  13. Looks like a wonderful area to get some fresh air. Your pictures are perfect for the day and the poem is just lovely. Have a wonderful day!

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  14. I love it that you stopped to stare. That's SO good!

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  15. It would have been so easy just to get into your car and drive home, and then you would have missed out on the exhilaration of being on Pepperbox Hill which brought back lots of lovely childhood memories for you.
    W.H. Davies was Welsh but his final resting place was in a little hamlet in my corner of world where he died.

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  16. I lived near Salisbury for a couple of years and had never heard of this place. Wish I had, it looks like the kind of place we'd have enjoyed visiting!

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  17. So glad you were able to go and just be. It is such a stunning place! And that poem....I needed that this morning. Such a powerful poem with a beautiful message. You take care Amy! Nicole xo

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  18. I love that poem. I was just thinking today how so many people think they constantly have to be occupied, usually with their smart phones, and no is just enjoying the moment, or staring and pondering. I think it's very sad. Great pictures. Best wishes, Tammy

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  19. It can really make you feel good to get out in the fresh air although it was mighty cold.

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  20. How interesting, too bad the windows are bricked up, the view must be incredible.

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  21. What a gorgeous folly, and in such a beautiful spot. How lovely that it's owned by the National Trust now, they make a very good job of looking after things don't they. I'm glad you had a moment to stand and stare and enjoy the countryside. We need these moments in life I think. CJ xx

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  22. I'm glad you were able to take time out for a while after the nursing home visit. It did you good especially as you were able to return to a spot you haven't been to for many years and it didn't disappoint. It's a charming folly and the views all around must be wonderful especially the one looking across to the spire of Salisbury Cathedral.

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  23. What an interesting place Amy. I love imagining what it must have been like way back when - imagine being one of those 'ladies' looking down from the folly across those beautiful views. And imagine living in a time when this was what people did with their disposable income! Lovely post x Jane

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  24. This is so interesting Amy. Is that the Salisbury plains area where soldiers were stationed during World War I? My father was there during the Great War and I have a photo somewhere of him there, if it's indeed the same area. Wonderful photos of the folly and I enjoyed your remembrances of it. I can see the cathedral spire in the distance.

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  25. Such beautiful photos and I LOVE that poem! I completely agree we need to take more time to stop and stare.

    I just loved feeling like I was along with you for the walk and view. I want to go to England so badly one day. You have such romantic names for all of your places. I wish we did that here in the states. Lol

    Thanks for sharing and "taking me with you"! xo

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  26. It looks like the perfect place to "clear you mind" and get ready for the rest of the day. I just love brick buildings.

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  27. Wonderful Folly! Taking time to stand and stare is so precious when we do and I am glad you found some time.

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  28. I love follies! What wonderful views - definitely a good place to visit for a little "me-time"!!

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  29. A beautiful place to visit and somehow the wintry feel adds to its grandeur!
    I remember having to learn that poem in primary school!
    Thanks for sharing!

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  30. Looks like a nice place to just think or not think. I like that poem. Nice views, there is a walk we have up here that has follies around the walk and they look so old and romantic, but were only built in the victorian era. :)

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  31. What a wonderful name for the Folly! I was good to read that poem again too! Sarah x

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  32. I love that poem Amy, I think of it often when I am rushing around. Glad you were able to take some time to stop and stare x

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  33. The poem is so true. I think we spend too long doing things other than standing and staring so that, when we do do it, we feel guilty for doing it. (I'm not sure that sentence makes sense! LOL) I'm glad you took the time to stand and stare, Amy. I'm sure you feel better for it! :o)

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  34. It looks just the spot to have a think, some space and a breath of fresh air xx

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  35. What a fascinating place to visit.

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  36. It looks a lovely place to visit. Love that poem.
    Rosezeeta.

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  37. Cannot believe I have never been there! Amazing that it felt the same size as you say from childhood things are often very distorted. Thanks for the share Amy, when next that way, will try and divert to pepper hill x

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  38. Oh! I DEARLY want to visit that area! I wonder if you know, there is an Anglican hymn that it is said that the hymn writer was influenced by the lovely views around Salisbury Cathedral. I should know it, but I can't remember.
    I loved this post, thank you!

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  39. So cool.
    I would stand in awe.
    Truly beautiful history.
    Warm Woolie Hugs

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  40. Lovely post and photos Amy. Wish we had some follies over here, as they are fascinating. Take care.

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  41. What a lovely post, Amy. Pepperpot Hill looks wonderful:)

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  42. That does look an interesting place, and thank you for sharing the poetry. It IS a poor life if we have no time to stand and stare! I think that's part of why I like the blogoverse, because if I don't get time to stand and stare, then other people do and I can pause vicariously!

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