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Monday, 24 March 2014

The Marlborough College Visit Part 1

Ray Ward was kind enough to organise a trip to Marlborough College which took place last Friday, 21st of March, not knowing anything really about Marlborough College, I was not sure what to expect. There was a lot to see and take in, and without taking notes for the whole trip, what follows is essentially a photo report of the trip.
The trip started rather well with a sighting of a duck and ducklings in the Priory Garden beside the river:
 I had never walked through the gardens to get to the High Street before and was impressed with the Priory building which is constructed of large stone blocks and an infill of flints between them making a very pleasing pattern as can be seen in the close up of a window below:

After meeting at St. Peter's church, we walked round the corner to Marlborough College which has a series of buildings around a central grassy area.
From there we walked around to C building which started life in the 1700s when it was an upmarket coaching inn for travellers en route from London to Bath. The advent of the railways meant traffic was diverted away from Marlborough and the building was then used as a school for clergy before becoming Marlborough College in 1842 when the other building were added.
We went into the smoking room of C building and looked at some of the wonderful book collection with Simon McKeown who has given the Friends a talk on the old bible collection.
I was particularly impressed with a book about Avebury by William Stuckley:
 Above the recognisable map, and below opening page describing it as a temple of the Druids
An old map of the college and grounds when it was owned by Lady Hertford in 1735:
The circular area of grass seen there remains the same, and the Mound is clearly seen on the right of the picture.
Here is a portrait of Lady Hertford :
We were then treated to Gould's Book of British Birds from 1873, it's in 5 volumes, there were 250 made, each with 340 engravings beautifully hand painted.



Gould was very keen to show as much detail about each bird as possible, it's habitat, diet and all stages of its development. A beautiful book.
This entry is long enough now, I'll continue in part 2.

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