A winter walk #cuckfield

My birthday rarely passes without the Vet proposing a family get together. This year we found ourselves in the heart of the Sussex countryside, in Cuckfield. This place is what gives the word ‘quaint’ it’s reason to exist. Every buildings appears to have been built in the tortured twist style with a kind of ingrained architectural arthritis that in humans needs a Baltic of back rub but hereabouts generates cosy images of winter hearths and scalp-scrapes from the low beams. It’s gorgeous.

Our hotel, the grandly named Ockendon Manor meets all these expectations which, coupled with good food and a warm welcome made us very welcome.

Naturally all this was splendid but what we really wanted was a winter walk.

The leaflet from reception promised much: an ancient church,


ancient woods and views over the rolling Sussex downs. It even included that most ubiquitous example of the urbanising of remote villages: the sewage works. What could be better?

This autumn hasn’t been too wet, nor too cold but the family pack wrapped up warm as we gathered in the churchyard. We tried a family picture but there is a generational difference when it comes to enthusiasm in front of the camera.

Mind you, later in the day at a local art gallery and after a glass of complimentary prosecco the pervious inhibitions seemed to have diminished somewhat.

At this time of year, of course, with the trees pretty leafless, the joy is in the moss and lichen.

Oh and the company, of course.

For those of your concerned at the absence of Dog, he was staying with the Gardener and Wife and having a splendid time.

Cue gratuitous picture of Dog

before settling in for the evening…


About TanGental

My name is Geoff Le Pard. Once I was a lawyer; now I am a writer. I've published several books: a four book series following Harry Spittle as he grows from hapless student to hapless partner in a London law firm; four others in different genres; a book of poetry; four anthologies of short fiction; and a memoir of my mother. I have several more in the pipeline. I have been blogging regularly since 2014, on topic as diverse as: poetry based on famous poems; memories from my life; my garden; my dog; a whole variety of short fiction; my attempts at baking and food; travel and the consequent disasters; theatre, film and book reviews; and the occasional thought piece. Mostly it is whatever takes my fancy. I avoid politics, mostly, and religion, always. I don't mean to upset anyone but if I do, well, sorry and I suggest you go elsewhere. These are my thoughts and no one else is to blame. If you want to nab anything I post, please acknowledge where it came from.
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20 Responses to A winter walk #cuckfield

  1. Love the family pic…and prosecco did the trick ??? My favorite photo is the ancient tree…which reminds me to say Happy Birthday ?? Glad you had a quaint one.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. davidprosser says:

    S’funny, when someone mentions going away for my birthday they always seem to mean me on my own when it comes to booking. I’m beginning to get paranoid.
    Glad you had a good time Geoff. The place really looked quaint.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Enchanting shade of green on that pond..

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Mary Smith says:

    Lovely post, Geoff. That graveyard looks fascinating – bet Sue Vincent would love to explore it. Belated happy birthday wishes.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Loved the family pic!! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  6. So beautiful! Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Ritu says:

    I love your travels with your family, and I especially LOVE the family photo! That tree in the graveyard was beautifully twisted!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Erika Kind says:

    That’s a lovely trip again! Thank you for always sharing them, Geoffle!!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. JT Twissel says:

    What a great way to spend a birthday. I’m glad dog has a jacket! Happy Bday!

    Liked by 1 person

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