of the Islands of Britain
Moon Brook Cottage has been many things, a shop, a shoe makers and a small holding. It was built sometime during the reign of George III in the blue remembered hills of South Shropshire. The landscape is littered with Bronze Age barrows, Iron Age enclosures, standing stones and Roman camps. The Saxons established a line of look outs here to watch for viking raiders aproaching from the river Severn. A ruined medieval chapel slowly crumbles nears the banks of the Mor brook at the bottom of the garden. It is a rich and varied landscape in which to study and research folklore and legend, spinning local fleece and local stories.
Here we live with our dogs and cats, a collection of hens and a goose who rules the roost next to the ancient Mor Brook which, although straightened in places by enclosure, still runs free in places through alder and willow. Our bees live nearby, foraging in old apple and pear orchards in the spring. In the late summer months they fly up to the heather on the old grouse moor at the top of the highest hill in Shropshire and, in winter, they rest under ancient oak and walnut trees. We care for them as sustainably as possible, taking little from them, their welfare is paramount.
I spin wool from local fleece whenever possible and hand dye in beautiful natural colours, Inspired by the practicality of living in a cool climate I hand knit gloves, wristwarmers, scarves, accessories especially suitable for living in such a landscape and ideal for dog walking, log stacking, moon gardening, hen feeding, hill strolling, tree hugging, wood walking and so on! Surplus wax is used for candle making and supplied to local craftspeople such as blacksmiths, and woodworkers.
The Marches have a dramatic history, rich in folklore and stories. We are close to the Herefordshire border, land of hops and my mothers kin, and neighbours with Powys, an ancient kingdom of dark tales and cruel Marcher Lords. Stories and traditions were passed on in my family and I now study and collect folklore, particularly in relation to the Welsh Marches of Shropshire and Herefordshire. I roam this landscape with Dan, a wise and loving border collie cross, exploring and researching old ways and tales. To this end I have kept many records, some will find their way into the blog which I hope will be of interested to some of you. I am always interested in anything you may have to add and hope to hear from you any ideas or contributions you would like to make.
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