architecture buildings the sea the seaside the shore Wales

Anglesey – Part 1 – A day out in Beaumaris

We love Anglesey and our favourite seaside place must be Beaumaris with its castle and its little pier. It is a seaside town in miniature. In the early autumn of 2017 Jude, the Undergardener and I spent a short break on Anglesey with our son Jamie, daughter-in-law Sam and granddaughter Arabella, and we just had to share our love of the place with them. We had taken Jamie there as a child but Sam, having lived her childhood in France and then moving to Leicester had never been before and baby Arabella was too young to have visited yet in her short life.

We took a wander along the sea front and to the end of the pier and back.


Having arrived at the little town mid-morning we needed to find a refreshment place prior to exploring the castle, and discovered this friendly cafe close to the castle alongside the bowling green. It looked very bright with its cerise and green coloured furniture.

From there we passed this old cottage with its typical cottage styled garden before arriving at the castle itself.

It must be one of the most photogenic castles in the UK, as well as being of great historic importance and significance. Jude has given me this information concerning the castle as I am no historian.

The construction of Beaumaris Castle began in 1295 and was built by Edward 1st, the last in a programme of castle building in Wales by the English to subjugate the Welsh. The castle was never finished however as money ran out! It is unusual in that it has a set of walls within walls for extra fortification. A surprising feature is its gateway to the sea, a tidal dock which allowed ships direct access to the castle to deliver supplies.



We had last visited the castle many years ago and had forgotten just how beautiful it was. Jude, being an historian looked at it from a different perspective from my aesthetic viewpoint, but we both absolutely love it.



buildings photography Shropshire

The Architectural Heritage of Shrewsbury – Part 1 From Station to Castle.

Back to some Shropshire architecture for this posting as promised. At the back-end of 2012 I posted a couple of articles based around the market town of Ludlow after being challenged by some followers to feature architecture photos. So here is another batch of posts on the architecture of Shropshire.

Just ten minutes up the road we find the county town of Shropshire. It is not a large town but its ambition is to become a city. Shrewsbury is famous for its historical buildings, for being the birthplace of Charles Darwin and for being the friendliest, most well-mannered town in England.

We don’t go into our shire capital often for the usual reason ie shopping. We avoid shopping whenever we can and try even harder to avoid shopping in town centres. Too much noise, too many people, too much traffic!

But we love Shrewsbury for its buildings and the entertainment it provides for us. Theatre, cinema, jazz club and coffee houses.

This series of posts feature the buildings of our town. They will not follow a chronological order but we shall explore streets, alleys and lanes in bite-sized chunks of town, chunks just the right size to explore in a half day. It would be all too easy and obvious to present the architecture in historical order but I really want to give you the atmosphere of patches of the town. Sometimes the selected areas will seem random but that is how my mind works.

The starting point for today’s random collection of buildings is the coffee shop in Marks and Spencers. After a latte (Malc) and cappuccino (Jude), we are suitably refreshed and warmed up.

First stop is the school attended by Charles Darwin, where we find a big, bronze statue of the great man himself sat outside, while inside on one of the windowsills is the scratched signature of his brother. The building now houses the town’s public library and this famous graffiti is in between the book cases. Darwin is often described as the town’s most famous son, but he is more than that. The most intelligent person ever to have lived for example?



The building displays interesting detail in its stonework and a wonderful big sundial with two faces sits astride the one corner.





The cobbled lane leading to the library is overlooked by an interesting row of town houses and a beautiful gateway.



We walked on down Castle Street towards one of Shrewsbury’s most photographed buildings. It appears in many books about railways and about the Victorian era. The railway station. How can a railway station look so good?



To the left of the station forecourt we spotted a real “Mary Poppins” balustraded roof garden constructed in wonderful shades of red.



From the railway station we see hints of the castle, so we made our way towards it.









As we walked around this small corner of Shrewsbury town little details attracted my eye and my camera lens.

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