Sheltering from the rain in a church porch

Published 26 February 2024

The church gates at the entrance to the porch of St Mary's Church, Gladestry
The gates in the porch of Gladestry’s church.

The observant may have noticed a slight gap in publication of new posts. Mysterious gremlins have been causing problems. So belatedly…

If you’ve been following my Offa’s Dyke Path tales (and if you haven’t, what are you playing at?!) you may have noticed that the trail goes past a lot of churches and chapels. So far I have photographs of ten, and I haven’t even finished the trail yet. I suspect I passed some that I didn’t photograph.

Whilst I’m not religious in any way (far from it), I do like sticking my head in to a church. Especially rural ones. They’re usually the most interesting buildings in the area.

Unlike churches in towns and cities, country ones are often left unlocked. Which can be a blessing when you’re caught out by rain.

St Mary’s Church in Gladestry was unlocked when I got there. And it was raining. Heavily. There were signs inviting me to help myself to a cup of tea or coffee. To use the toilet if I needed to. All very nice and thoughtful.

But instead I sheltered in its porch, on one of the stone benches that lined the entranceway. Why? Because there was something pleasing about it. It may have been cold and a bit draughty, but it looked lovely. And I’m sure most of the reason were those gates at the end of the porch. They framed the porch entrance so wonderfully, the light going through the carved wood.

There was just something about it. So much so that when it did stop raining and it was time for me to make a move, I had to drag myself away.

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