River Stour Festival - various authors
The River Stour Festival runs events and exhibitions throughout the year. Just published is a small anthology celebrating the river, its culture, people and surrounding landscape.
An essay by John Thorne examines how John Constable developed his gloriously accurate portrayal of clouds and skies by meticulous observation and recording of weather conditions as he sketched repeatedly the towering Suffolk skies.
Jules Pretty relates some of the dragon tales of the area: including how Richard the Second was given an egg in the Holy Land which hatched a dragon in the Tower of London. The dragon grew and escaped eventually swimming out of the Thames estuary and up the River Stour.
There is a piece on the infamous Witchfinder General, Matthew Hopkins of Manningtree and the Witch trials of 1645-7; observations by Ronald Blythe on new grass growing in Springtime and a wonderful description of ‘wild swimming’ in the river one chilly morning in early spring. Together with poems and photographs this is a fine little introduction to some of the writers associated with the beautiful River Stour.
River Stour Festival booklet, £5