Old John

>>  Monday, July 03, 2017

 I had taken myself off to Bradgate Park for a run to clear my head of a lot of things that were happening.

Even when it is busy there are quiet parts of the park.
 And always a good view to be found.
 The rain was headed in so I headed up to the highest point of the park to watch it.

And for the first time ever in my hundreds of visits there to open shutters on Old John.

The guide told me  it had been opened for general access for the first time in 100 years.

 It had been painted this year to freshen it up but otherwise was as it had always been.

 And a picture added.
 It was built in 1784 as a Folly and used by the then Earl and his guests to watch horses racing around the park and fox hunting.

It has amazing views of the whole area.

 Information boards are inside telling of this Earl's rather sordid history.
 I will walk the race course, there are stones still there marking it.
 It felt an amazing privilege to be inside after so many years of staring at it and wondering what it was like.
 To actually be over the threshold.

 And I found out what the wall was about and the doorway in it we always walk through from the memorial, through the wood and to Old john.

It was part of the stabling area where the horses were rubbed down post race.
 It is called Old John after the hill it is built on and all the old wives tales about bonfires falling on a drunken John are really just old wives tales.
 I carried on with my clear head run.

 And to my favourite place in the world.  This is where I want my ashes sprinkled.
 Right on this rock thanks.


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