Friday, October 31, 2014

Imagining Medieval Leicester

  In my attempts to nibble around the edges of some blockbuster epic projects of yore, and resurrect some interesting photographs, I have tried two Flickr tours of medieval places, Beverley and Pickering, small and charming towns in Yorkshire. So, in a fit of enthusiasm, I have attempted something a little more tricky.
  Leicester is a town whose post-medieval history has cut swathes through its historic past, but it is possible to put together a mental picture of the size and shape and nature of the town through surviving bits and descriptions while plodding up busy streets, dodging traffic and getting lost in labyrinthine parks. It's not like York where you can perambulate leisurely around the walls and fit the picture of the city together and conceptualise the spaces. I'ts like a jigsaw puzzle with lots of bits missing.

  There are relics marooned by traffic.

Some very splendid buildings.

Some sites practically deserted and incomprehensible.

Some things displaced.

And some which have gone forever.

  As our travellers John Leland, Celia Fiennes and Daniel Defoe all had a bit to say about Leicester, we can see how it changed. Links to other photographic sites have been included, as I had not spent as much time in Leicester as some places and some buildings were just not accessible at the time. And of course it is just a wee bit topical right now.
  The system is as before. Start here then click your way through, scrolling, meandering and diverting as you will. Eventually all these bits and pieces will come together into something with coherence and some themes. Optimist, me.
  Now I had better give my brain a rest and just get on with cleaning up and cataloguing all my medieval images. Besides, I'm sick of trying to copy type 16th and 17th century spelling. Bon voyage.


Anonymous said...

Great photos - really interesting 8-)

Anonymous said...

Having lived there for ten years, it's nice to see Leicester reduced to most of the best bits! Some of them, I'm sad to say, I was too young and ignorant to seek out and appreciate properly at the time.