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BBC Countryfile Magazine September 2019

Countryfile Magazine inspires you to explore forgotten corners of the great British countryside and provides knowledge of the people and wildlife that inhabit it. We want to tempt you into trying new things, seek out new places and make the most of Britain’s beautiful landscapes.

United Kingdom
Immediate Media Company London Limited
$8.20(Incl. tax)
$69.37(Incl. tax)
13 Issues

in this issue

1 min
hidden treasure

“I got very lucky this summer – I was given the chance to join an archaeological dig at a sacred place in Ceredigion in West Wales. Even from where I live in Abergavenny it took two hours of driving; it felt wild and remote. The site was the ruined Cistercian monastery of Strata Florida where the local trust is creating a new school for archaeologists. I found myself treasure hunting in a beautiful and atmospheric place steeped in Welsh history and surrounded by mountains unknown to me. It was a day of discoveries, and anyone can have the same brilliant experience; read more on page 38. A similar rugged world that resonates with old tales is Exmoor – this time the fictional romantic story of Lorna Doone, which is 150 years old…

1 min
this month’s contributors

Paul Whitehouse, p46 “Bob made a very good point; he said ‘the best angler is not the one that captures the most or the biggest, but the one that enjoys the day the most’.” Sue Baker, p50 “Landscape, winter weather, hill-farming life and lawlessness are all convincingly woven into the romantic story of Lorna Doone.” James Fair, p62 “The hotchpotch mosaic of trees, shrubs and wildflowers on Knepp is more reminiscent of the African savannah than an English farm.” Photo: Oliver Edwards, Giles Bennett…

2 min
september in the country

must-see STORM OVER CAT BELLS As evening descends, walkers hasten off the miniature mountain of Cat Bells near Keswick in the Lake District, pursued by storm clouds and lightning. An open hill is not the place to be when lightning forks from the sky. Cat Bells may take its name from local dialect ‘cat’s bields’, which means wild cat’s shelter. “Its popularity is well deserved,” said famous fell-walker Alfred Wainwright of the peak. “Its shapely topknot attracts the eye, offering a steep but obviously simple scramble.” SHEAVES AND STOOKS Proud rows of stooks march into the sunset in a Devon wheatfield. These are recently cut sheaves of wheat – usually 12 – carefully arranged to stand up in small pyramids. This helps dry and cure the grain and keep it off the ground away…

1 min
the queen accused of witchcraft

Six hundred years ago this month, an ambitious and politically astute consort became the only English queen to be arrested and imprisoned for treasonable witchcraft. Related to almost every important family in Europe, Joan (or Joanna) of Navarre, Duchess of Brittany, was second wife and queen to Henry IV, King of England. Following her husband’s death in 1413, relations with her stepson Henry V continued amicably, but on 27 September 1419, Joan was deprived of all her revenues after accusations of witchcraft were levied against her. The allegations were based on the testimony of Joan’s confessor John Randolf, a Franciscan friar, who foolishly admitted to plotting with the queen to kill Henry through sorcery. Both were thrown into prison, the queen forfeiting her lands before entering the relative comfort of…

1 min
make seed bombs

Making your own seed bombs is a fun and easy way to attract pollinators to otherwise-neglected wasteland, says Carys Matthews. At the end of the wildflower season, allow the seeds to dry on the plant, then deadhead the plant and place the flowerheads in a paper bag. Give the bag a good shake to collect the seeds and leave them to dry out further in a cool, dark place. Autumn is an ideal time to throw your seed bombs. You will need: 1 cup of seeds collected from flowerheads or a packet of shop-bought UK wildflower seeds • 4 cups of peat-free compost • 3 cups of clay powder • 1–2 cups of water • Mixing bowl 1 In the bowl, mix the seeds with four cups of compost and three cups…

1 min
harvest festivals

7-8 SEPTEMBER MALTON HARVEST FOOD FESTIVAL YORKSHIRE This free event pays tribute to Yorkshire’s finest produce with over 100 stalls selling game, seafood, soft fruit and baked goods, as well as vegetarian and vegan treats. visitmalton.com/ harvest-food-festival 7-8 SEPTEMBER LOCH LOMOND FOOD AND DRINK FESTIVAL STIRLINGSHIRE Set on the banks of Loch Lomond, this celebration of local food and drink producers also has live music and home-cooking inspiration. lochlomondspringfest.co.uk 20 SEPTEMBER - 6 OCTOBER SEAFOOD FEAST DEVON Explore England’s Seafood Coast, dropping in on Brixham Fish Market and listening to guest chefs. englishriviera.co.uk/whats-on/ englands-seafood-feast 20-29 SEPTEMBER YORK FOOD AND DRINK FESTIVAL YORKSHIRE Enjoy 10 days of some of the region’s best street food, interactive demonstrations and activities. yorkfoodfestival.com 28-29 SEPTEMBER MALVERN AUTUMN SHOW WORCESTERSHIRE A harvest festival boasting giant veg and family entertainment at Three Counties Showground. malvernautumn.co.uk…