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Take a walk in Blue Bell Woods listen to the sounds around you, of bird song and bees. Smell the flowers and the scent of Spring in the air. Every year is a new beginning and every day a blessing

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Thursday, March 23, 2017

Sharpenhoe Clappers and Carrie King...............


It has been said that for most of the last thousand years The Clappers functioned as a rabbit warren. An existing minor Iron Age earthwork had been adapted in the medieval period to create the warren. There was supposed to have been an iron age settlement there and now the Clappers look down on the village of Sharpenhoe. The Dunstable Downs are a part of the Chiltern Hills, chalk hills that are home to many beautiful creatures. Wildflowers and childhood memories.
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It is also the setting in part for a book by a local author, Carrie King.
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Carrie spent her childhood close to Houghton Regis, the address was Bidwell. I lived on Bidwell Hill. Bidwell was a small hamlet at one time just like many others in our area where we grew up. The hamlets long gone but local memories keep them alive. I wonder for how long. Things are changing fast and our Houghton Regis is now a town not the small country village we knew as children. We share many good memories Carrie and me. ( or is it Carrie and I) She lived in a beautiful house called "Dell Mount"
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I suppose looking back we had an idealistic childhood. Her house was next to the allotments and surrounded by woods and fields. We knew the farmers and the fields. We wandered where ever we wanted to go. I was not so familiar with the Clappers where Carrie first lived but of course when older knew them well. The whole area we lived in was surrounded by hills, the Chiltern Hills to be exact. My grandmothers house was at the bottom of the Downs and it was often enough that I walked over the hills to Dunstable where my Aunt and Uncle lived. It was safe to walk alone in those days and we did. We knew all the fields and hills around us and enjoyed them as only we could. Kids now do not have that chance.
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Carrie is a talented author and has several books available. The adventures of her characters are built around the places she loved as a child. That includes the Clappers and Sherwood Forest among other places. They are children's books but grown ups love them too, especially if you had childhoods like we did.
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The whole theme of our childhood was freedom to roam. We loved our country lives. My friend Margaret had a farm around Thorn, another long gone Hamlet or maybe it was on the outskirts of Bidwell, because that was her address. Grove Farm Bidwell. I learned so much on that farm about nature, wildlife. I learned about shearing sheep, keeping chickens and the real work that farmers do every day all year long, from keeping ditches and repairing hedgerows.
We were certainly not rich, none of us were. Life was good.
The really nice thing about modern communications available to us, like Facebook and blogs like this. It has made it easy to renew friendships, and contact lost family members. We can share our memories and keep them alive.
Carries books are all about those days of childhood. You can click on the links to read more about Carrie and her books. (The highlighted areas)

2 comments:

Carrie King said...

This is so lovely, Janice. It brings back so many marvellous memories. What fun we had in our garden, including the time so many of us stood on the pig stye roof and it caved in. David, my poor brother, got blamed. I still feel bad about that after all these years! It is so nice to see Dell Mount in all her glory and my beautiful Clappers. Thank you so much for this walk down Memory Lane, Janice! Carrie xxxx

Magic Love Crow said...

A very beautiful post Janice! Thank you for introducing Carrie to us!! Big Hugs!