|Patterning at Caythorpe (Lincs)|
|Skerry at Sutton on Trent (Notts)|
Another distinctive stone is often employed in the lower Trent Valley where the river forms the border between Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire. This is blue lias, a grey rough cut stone that produces a rubbled and decayed texture, much loved in places by masonry bees that burrow into holes and crevasses in the stone, e.g. at South Collingham (Notts) and Marton (Lincs).
Another fascination is to see the tooling marks on stonework made by medieval masons, or indeed by modern masons where repairs have been made. No doubt an expert can tell what tools were used or how old the work is from these marks. For me the pattern and feeling of connection with the masons of long ago is enough.
|Tooling Marks: Frisby on the Wreake (Leics)|
|Graffiti: Westborough (Lincs)|
Finally just a mention of the wonderful colours and textures produced by lichens. Here are two examples, on gravestones at Manton (Rutland) and at Evedon (Lincs). And I must also make mention of boundary walls around churchyards, often overlooked but sometimes of high quality in their construction. Here’s a fine example of a drystone wall at Long Bennington.