Notes & Queries
compiled by Mark Valentine
The Hermit of Charlcombe Rectory
Under the headline ‘Hermit told to quit holy well site’, the Bristol Evening Post of 06/06/86 told how the Bishop of Bath and Wells had obtained a court order to evict ‘bearded 42 year-old artist Alan Broughton’ who had made a makeshift home under a tree in the grounds of Charlcombe Rectory, near Bath. The rectory is due to be sold by the church even though its grounds include St Mary’s holy well. Churchwarden John Kirkman is leading a campaign to preserve the well in some way and I sent a letter of support on behalf of Source to be added to similar letters from other concerned parties for presentation to the Church Commissioners. It is to be hoped the Church will not put profit before sanctity
Thanks to Jennifer Scherr for the news cutting.
New Spring Water Enterprise in the Brecon Beacons
Today newspaper of 13/08/86 featured a farm in the Brecon Beacons, Llyndewi, which has turned from a cottage industry in bottling its own spring water into a major concern, having been taken over by Belgian drinks firm Spadel.
Thanks to Alan Cleaver for the cutting.
Ffynon Garon, Tregaron
A columnist in the Cambrian News of 31/10/86 reports that Tregaron Womens Institute have produced a booklet about their town which features the holy well of Ffynon Garon, a curative spring that was visited on the saint’s feast day, 16th March, when mixed sugar and water would be drunk. The custom has ceased but the paper proposes a revival.
Thanks to Janet Bord for the cutting.
St Myllin’s Well Re-opened
The Shropshire Star of l2/05/87 reports that St Myllin’s Well, Llanfyllin was to be officially reopened on the following Friday. The well, in Coedllan Lane, was restored by the Manpower Services Commission and has been ‘outlined in Welsh stone, with matching walls’ – it had been covered in brambles and inaccessible before.
Thanks to Laurence Main for the cutting.
Mysterious ‘Jesus’ Image Appears
The Sevenoaks Chronicle of 05/09/86 had as lead story ‘Face of Jesus’ Mystery Grows’ – ‘a mysterious image, said to be that of Jesus, on a wall of a house in St John’s, Sevenoaks, is attracting sightseers….from all over the country’. It adds….’A spring and well, reputed to have healing powers, existed near there. A chapel was built over it and dedicated to Our Lady of Greatness….’, and reports that a poem was written about the well, calling it ‘Fount of the Virgin’s ruined shrine’.
Text © Mark Valentine (1987)
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