Friday, July 28, 2017

To Irthlingborough lighthouse

Pevsner says St Peter's, Irthlingborough, is:
A quite remarkable sight, lying as it does between the village and the river. The church is large and at first seems quite incongruous. What appears to be incongruous is however the survival of not only the church, but also the very tall and dominant tower to the W of the church which belonged to the college founded by the widow of John Pyel, a mercer of London, in 1388.
This tower (which had to be reconstructed at the end of the 19th century) is called the 'lantern tower' and many books will tell you that it was used as a beacon to guide travellers crossing the valley of the Nene.

I have to record that I cannot find an authoritative source for that tale, but it ought to be true.*

Crossing the Nene at Irthlingborough will feature here another day, but for now just enjoy the tower and its position commanding the river.

* Equally, Lord Bonkers has suggested to me that 'Irthlingborough' may be a corruption of 'Earthlingborough', showing that neighbouring settlements were once occupied by aliens.

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