May 19 – Richborough Roman Fort

St Augustine's Pugin's Church, Ramsgate and Sandwich museum

Hello from 1066 – Medieval Mosaic

Richborough Castle is a Roman Fort which is an English Heritage site. We got the headset so that we could hear all about the site. It is a huge site and was first established in AD43. It was an important site because of its position and was a thriving village for several centuries.

The walls were amazingly high and well built with different layers of different types of rocks and bricks. Roman bricks appear to be thinner and wider than present day bricks but certainly do the job, as they are still standing now. The history of this period is very interesting and we look forward to learning more.

On leaving the fort we walked down a pathway, crossed the railway line and walked along the River Stour picking up two caches along the way. One was a puzzle cache which I worked out a few days ago. The puzzle was easy enough to figure out but finding the cache was a whole different matter. We searched and searched nearly giving up on several occasions but I was determined that we should find it and eventually we did.

On our way back we passed a windmill as there was a cache nearby we stopped to have a look. It is free entry and it is a real hidden gem. It is run by keen volunteers and there are lots of little buildings holding a wealth of museum pieces to do with windmills, grinding flour, growing and gardening etc. It was very interesting.

Next, we went to Ramsgate as we had been told about Pugin’s St Augustine‘s church there. The church was open and we went in to be greeted by a very enthusiastic volunteer. Part of the church was still having renovations being done but we were able to still see some. The carvings of the Stations of the Cross were amazing. I have always wondered what this was as we have seen similar things in other Roman Catholic churches but this time it was explained and it now makes more sense. The Stations of the Cross were designed by Flemish sculptor Alois De Beule. Everything was so beautiful and exquisite. The Digby Chantry, the wagon roof, the Altar of the Sacred Heart, the stained glass windows the carvings and the Wilfrid Alcock monumental brass all take your breath away.

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St Augustine’s Church, Ramsgate

We went into Ramsgate to find a final for a church micro but we couldn’t find a car park where we didn’t have to pay. We only wanted to park for a couple of minutes so Mike stayed with the car while I went to find the cache and as luck would have it the heavens opened up and in seconds I was soaked through. Mike thought it was hilarious when I returned to the car looking and feeling, like a wet rat.

On the way home, we visited St Peter’s church in Ramsgate and then the Sandwich museum to say hello to John from St Bartholomew’s and to see their new displays, a very nice interesting museum.