A Goodly Heritage
Bilson Schools
Rosemary & Rue

E. M. O. 2004  


Rosemary & Rue

Chalk & Cheese
Son of the Soil
Webley's Row
The "Gyarden"
The Farm
Out of the Earth
Hail Smiling Morn
Peace in our time
The Americans
The Blue Jay's

The Forest of Dean  
Living History
Using local slides, photographs and reminiscences.

Rosemary and Rue.

Recollections of a Forest of Dean Childhood

Up The "Gyarden"

"Sow carrots in your gardens, and humbly praise God for them, as for a singular and great blessing." - Richard Gardiner - "Profitable Instructions for the Manuring, Sowing, and Planting of Kitchen Gardens. 1599"

In the house you sat sedately with your hands in your lap - "seen and not heard" with only the occasional "John Bull" to while away the tedium when Grandma Jane was not busy finding "just the little job for you." "Up the entry" we could play games, but only if it was wet weather. "Up the gyarden," (a child's natural playground one might have thought) fun was restricted to games which could be played up and down the long narrow paths. This immediately eliminated "tag," Hide and seek , Leapfrog and all ball games. Skipping was permissible - unless the washing happened to be on the line, so it was mostly marbles or "jacks."

Outside the back door was a long and narrow flag-stoned court, running the length of three cottages. A thick stone wall held back the garden which was at a higher level and was reached up three worn stone steps. The top of the wall was flat - the perfect place to sit in the sun and play Jacks (Five Stones to most people). Hopping up and down the court without stepping on a joint in the flags would often while away half-an-hour and if you were really bored you could always join in the boys' marbles game - but not on Sundays or you would get your best clothes "all smot up."

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