Oxhill News

www.oxhill.com / www.oxhill.org.uk

South Warwickshire, England.

The Oxhill News

June 2008

This months News



Oxhill Summer, by ERH

(Mrs Eliza Hill, born c. 1834, wife of Rev. J.C Hill, Rector of Oxhill 1894 -1905)

An extract from The Link, A Hill family magazine/diary for 1899, now in the Warwick Record Office

Much is said in these days for and against country life, or vegetation as some choose to call it.  For my part I would do as the swallow does, stay in the country during the balmy days of summer, and quit it before the winter reigns supreme.  One great disadvantage is that one day is so much like another and nothing fresh happens as everyone knows exactly what you are going to do before you are fully aware of your own intentions.  During the summer we spend most of our time in the garden where roses grow in abundance.  We play croquet and bask in the sun on the lawn.  We do occasionally wish the pigs belonging to our neighbour were a little further away, as the evening zephyrs are not of the sweetest when the wind is in a certain quarter, but that is a small matter.

Talking of croquet, it is possible at times to extract a little enjoyment out of the game, but generally it seems to have a particularly soothing almost sleepy effect on people.  Usually players forget their turns, and when Green No. 1 is wanted she is discovered intently examining the back of her neighbour’s dress, taking notes as to style etc.  Then there is a rush and the nearest ball, and of course the wrong one, is struck and general confusion follows.

On one occasion we had a croquet party, and by some mishap our before-mentioned neighbour had not seen the guests arrive, and hearing festive sounds from the other side of the wall, could contain himself no longer, so up came a ladder, next his head appeared, and cautiously taking a good look round he satisfied his curiosity and descended to enjoy his afternoon nap in peace.

In fine weather, we always have tea on the lawn, and a looker-on might wonder at the strange conduct of some of the party caused by the wasps which arrive in large numbers at tea-time. For instance you see one waging war with a handkerchief, another gallantly defending herself with a jam spoon, etc. I sit calmly by, for not being afraid of them they do not trouble me, and it is also necessary that someone should remain calm as Nick is given to taking refuge under the tea table and leaping into the air whenever he sees a wasp to the deadly peril of the table and all upon it.

Cycling is another great pastime, and much excitement was caused in the village last summer when we were a party of five.  One old lady gravely assured me afterwards that “she never saw such a sight in her life, no never!”  Once, wonder of wonders, a motor cycle strayed this way, and the awe-struck inhabitants, as soon as their surprise would allow them, trotted meekly behind it as fast as they could till it disappeared.

You will doubtless have come to the conclusion by this time that life in Oxhill is not very exciting, but when you want a quiet time away from the noise of the city and the busy haunts of man, you cannot do better than visit this dreamy out-of-the-world little village.

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Last modified: June 03, 2008