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Autumn Crocus

October 2, 2009
by the gentle author


Walking through Lincoln’s Inn Fields this week on my way to Covent Garden, I was pleased to see this fine annual display of Autumn Crocus in the autumn sunshine and then, taking a different route home to Spitalfields, I came upon some more in St Paul’s Churchyard (below).

In 1996, I walked the whole length of the Pyrenees from the Atlantic to the Mediterranean and, in the eastern Pyrenees at this time of year, I came upon Autumn Crocus growing wild in the mountain valleys. Although I saw some growing among grass, I was most impressed that they forced their way up stubbornly through the hard crust of the beaten-earth path to pave my way with flowers.

There’s something magical, and perverse too, about these Crocus that come out of season and stick up straight out of out of the ground without leaves – as if someone had stuck plastic flowers into the earth. They are nature’s genuine late bloomers and all the more welcome for it.


9 Responses leave one →
  1. Frances Milat permalink
    October 11, 2009

    Lincolns Inn Fields! I used to play netball there when I was a pupil at Central Foundation Girls’ School, Spital Square. One of my most embarrassing moments occured there, which I am not willing to reveal at this point – I still blush about it!!
    Love the blog, brought to my attention by friends in Wilkes Street. I used to live in Hanbury Street, and discovered on one of my visits to London (I now live in Sydney, Australia) that the house was built in 1705!

  2. the gentle author permalink*
    October 11, 2009

    Dear Frances, not only I am delighted to know I have an expatriate Spitalfields reader in Sydney but I am also dying to know about your most embarrassing moment that happened in Lincoln’s Inn Fields. Please do tell more because you can’t just leave me guessing!

  3. Susan Phillips permalink
    March 7, 2010

    I was at Central Foundation Girls school between 1967 – 1974. I remeber playing netball at Lincoln’s Inn Fields. We used to go there by bus along City Road!! I loved it – playing goal shooter.

    Athletics were further away at Buckhurst Hill. I have many fond memories of my school days. It was always a bit if a scrum catching the number 8 bus back home!!

  4. sharon sullivan permalink
    April 1, 2010

    I also attended Central Foundation Girls School possibly with Susan Phillips. Only discovered spitalfields life today and am working my way through with great enjoyment. I too have fond memories of my time at CFGS and surrounding areas. The fruit market was alive then and buzzing with people early morning (going to school) but strangely silent and empty at 3.30pm when we finished school.

  5. January 23, 2011

    I too lived in Hanbury Street – and ‘progressed’ to Chicksand House…went to CFS when Miss Menzies was Head….then Miss West. We played netball in our green bloomers; went to Muswell Hill to play hockey………..and am now living on the Sunshine Coast – Noosa!

  6. Vicky permalink
    May 17, 2011

    memories, recalled because you spotted some autumn crocus

  7. Pat Gerber-Relf permalink
    January 19, 2012

    And here is my bit. I went to CFS from around 1958 until 1964. At first Miss Roberts was headmisstress and then it changed to Mrs. Dunford. I remember well my school days. The playground in the middle of a fruit and vegetable market, the green uniform with the beret and the badge, and the red and green gingham dresses in Summer. The best years of your life my mum said – were they? I think they were some of the best memories of my life – now sitting in the middle of Switzerland since 44 years I still reflect on them.

  8. July 5, 2012

    Just found this website whilst surfin’ looking at old photos of Bethnal Green, etc. I went to CFGS when Mrs Dunford was Head. I was in Miss Glynn’s class 1G. I left when I was 16 (I think). I have some memories and remember some names. Do you remember me?

  9. Susan Nichols permalink
    July 31, 2012

    I also went to central foundation from 1970-1975 mrs dunford was headmistress it was a lovely school,games at buckhurst hill every Friday afternoon.the market traders gave us boxes of carrots and apples.many good teachers mrs porter,miss palfreman,miss Ryle,miss Webb,mrs webber,to name a few. The green uniform was unique with our school motto embroidered on the badge……fond memories.

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