Mud and Puddings

25. July 2012 Concerts, Photos 0
Mud and Puddings

St Mary’s Church in Depden is a quintessentially British story.  Many years ago when the church sold off the adjacent vicarage they didn’t realise that they were also selling off the right of way to the only road leading to the church.  Several years and many lawyers later and the village find themselves with a church they can no longer access.

This hasn’t in any way deterred them though.  An alternative route was found to the church which involves parking in a lay-by some distance away and walking for 10 minutes along a muddy public footpath, passing though some woods and fields and you can get to the back of the church.  This route is only passable by foot though so any bulky items are transported in wheelbarrows.

The church itself is a lovely and well kept building, but is somewhat lacking in amenities.  There is no electricity so concerts tend to take place in the afternoon, and a battery powered keyboard had to substitue for a larger piano.  New this year was the addition of a toilet – which was actually a chemical toilet in a metal shed with no windows.  Although you have to leave the door open to see anything modesty is preserved by the use of a laminated ‘engaged’ sign which you can leave on the path.

The quartet were playing in Depden in a joint concert with the Cantilena singers.  This is the second time the quartet have played with this group, the first being in Bottisham church last summer.  The two groups complement each other very well with the more traditional programme of the choir contrasting with the lighter music of the quartet.

In the run up to the concert we’d had almost daily rain for weeks beforehand, but fortunately the day of the concert itself was warm and sunny.  This had allowed the worst of the mud on the footpath to dry up, but even so many people arrived in wellies and brought concert shoes to change into inside the church.  Had the rain continued the day would have been far less pleasant!

Aside from the music, the other real reason to attend a summer concert in Depden is for the refreshments.  Although the concert had a short interval (to allow people to visit the darkened shed) the main break came after the music was over, when large quantities of delicious puddings were served to the whole audience.  Depden laid on a fantastic array of puddings from strawberry gateaux to chocolate brownies and pavlova to cheesecake – with a bit of fresh fruit thrown in to make you feel better about yourself.

After eating far more pudding than we intended we were quite glad that we had an enforced trip back to the lay-by to be able to walk some of it off.

The quartet would like to thank Chris Fell for allowing us to use the excellent photos he took on the day.