"To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand
And eternity in an hour."

From "Auguries of Innocence"

by William Blake

Saturday, 18 July 2015

Isle of Wight - Day 7 (2nd July) : Ventnor, Niton Walk and Church

It rained quite heavily on the Thursday morning. In the end we popped along the coast to Ventnor.

This small Heritage Museum was very interesting and had lots of information on the local area including Niton and Chale.

Rubbish crop and photo but we liked this picture of Niton in 1903

and here's the Buddle Inn in the early 1900's.

Ventnor Spring Hill Gardens - local volunteers renovated what was once a derelict garden. The gardens include a memorial to "Jimbo" a past leader of the Ventnor Comical Jazz Band.

Had a rather delicious home-made icecream in this shop.

By the time we returned to Niton it had stopped raining so a short walk round more bridleways and footpaths. A few random photos....

I didn't walk far along the coast path here - it was very narrow and on the right was a very sheer drop (under all the vegetation)!

I'd been meaning to pay a visit to the Parish Church of St John the Baptist all week - as you can see it was very close to the cottage.

The church is Norman but, as with many churches, it is likely it was a place of worship for much longer. The church was given to the Benedictine Abbey of Lire in Normandy in 1070. There was probably a Saxon church here prior to this as many Norman churches are built on Saxon foundations.

The ancient church door is studded with hand-made nails. Even today important church notices legally have to be posted on the door because it is the portal of the church and the one door that everyone has to pass through to enter the church.

The church features work by modern artists and the paintings below are by John Reilly. He originally had a pottery in Ventnor but in 1981 he ceased ceramic work to concentrate on his paintings. The artist commented that he was "trying to paint the glory of God and through that the meaning of life."

Stained Glass

The church is dedicated to St John the Baptist and his story can be seen in many of the windows around the church. Unfortunately I couldn't get a photo of one of the windows as you could only see it through a kitchen door"

The next 3 windows are believed to be late Victorian depict the Angel Gabriel who visited Zechariah to tell him that his prayers for a son would be answered,Zechariah's wife Elizabeth in the second window who would give birth and the 3rd window shows Zechariah with a thurible signifying his priesthood.

This window shows Christ resurrected on the left and on the right he is blessing his Disciples - unusually using his left hand.

The Arnold Memorial Window

This window links the story of John the Baptist with the Goodman Kirkpatricks, local landowners and bankers, who were benefactors of the church.

A few close-ups of the Stained Glass

The font dated around 1070 is the oldest item in the church and may even pre-date it. The bowl is hewn from solid stone and there is cable moulding round the rim. The commemorative lid was added in 1957.

The Medieval market cross is located on what was once the village green. It was once a place of exchange and sale and legal documents were signed and witnessed here. The cross, designed by Joseph Clarke, was added in 1874.

The Edward Edwards Monument. Edward Edwards, who is buried in the churchyard, co-founded public libraries and it is thanks to him that most towns now have a library.

War Memorial

We returned to the Buddle Inn in the evening for a meal on our last evening of the holiday.

Final post will be short!! Just a few photos from the last morning of the holiday as we caught the ferry at one o'clock.

Reference : "The Windows of the Parish Church of St John the Baptist, Niton, Isle of Wight"
"Welcome to the Parish Church of St John the Baptist, Niton, Isle of Wight"
Various Information Boards around the Church


Margaret Adamson said...

Onceagain I really enjoyed this post from the I.O.W. The stain glass windows are absolutely fabulous. Pity about the rain. Ventnor was the first place I visited on a day trip years ago before my family moved there.

Ragged Robin said...

Margaret Adamson - Thanks very much Margaret so glad you enjoyed. At least the weather brightened up late morning :) I like Ventnor - my first visit there was when I was a child and we had two holidays on IofW. First visit we stayed in Shanklin and second Ventnor. I always remember going with my grandparents as they stopped in a plush holiday whereas my parents and me and my brother were in a cheap guesthouse nearby!!!

Deb said...

I love the stained glass and the paintings by John Reilly. I can see why you want to live on the island it looks such a lovely place.

Ragged Robin said...

Deb - Thanks so much Deb. It is rather lovely there and seems a much slower pace of life. Very rural too on the West side.

David Turner said...

Loved the church, the Isle of Wight does indeed seem to be blessed with many such buildings, and those Yew trees (at least I assume they are Yews) are rather magnificent. The modern religious art is interesting and makes a change from the usual fare, whilst the stained glass certainly has plenty of colour :-)

Beautiful downland scenes again, they actually remind me of the Yorkshire Wolds a little.

Kindest regards :-)

Ragged Robin said...

David Turner - Thanks very much David. There are so many wonderful churches there and, unlike round here, they are all open!! They were Yews from memory. I must admit I couldn't make up my mind about the modern art but it was certainly different.

I would love to live near downland - have to get my yearly "fix" when on holiday!! There is something so special about the wildflowers, scenery and butterflies :) I always follow a geology map of Southern Britain as we drive down and cheer as soon as we enter chalk areas - sad person that I am!!!