Recent Events

The Society would welcome suggestions from members for future events.
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Rye weekend – 1st – 3rd June 2018

1st-3rd June 2018

We are awaiting a full report of this recent event.

 

Annual Gathering Weekend 2018

6th-8th April 2018

We are awaiting a full report of this recent event.

 

A Murder near Witchend and some Rambling and Talking

23th-25th February 2018

We are awaiting a full report of this recent event.

 

Come to Rome and Orvieto

8th-12th October 2017

Following our visit to Venice last year (the location of the first part of the Marston Baines’ novel ‘Dark Danger’) 13 members of the Malcolm Saville Society gathered in Rome on October 8th to explore locations mentioned in the second part of the book – and to have a great time.

Ably led by our guide, Marco, on a warm, sunny Monday morning we visited the Colosseum - a place both awesome & awful, its stones forever stained in blood. A key feature was the cross erected there, which gave Count Brindisi comfort as he was driven as a prisoner to the catacombs. Following a stroll through the history lasagne which is the Imperial Forum, we had lunch near the Spanish Steps, before heading for the claustrophic tunnels of the Domitilla Catacombs – one of the possible locations for the exciting climax of ‘Dark Danger’.

Relaxing with wine and nibbles on the 4th floor roof terrace of our hotel was a welcome precursor to a tasty meal in a local trattoria.

On Tuesday morning we were able to bypass the lengthy queues outside the Vatican museums, reserving our energy to spend several hours admiring the world-famous sculptures, glorious tapestries and beautiful pictorial maps. The final wonder was the Sistine Chapel – it’s easy to ignore the crowds when gazing upwards at Michaelangelo’s greatest masterpiece ... or is that the fresco of the Last Judgement painted on the front wall?

A fleeting visit to St Peter’s was followed by a free afternoon for personal sightseeing - or resting – with another pre-prandial drink on the roof terrace then another delicious Italian meal. Wednesday, for many, was the highlight of the week. We travelled about 60 miles north of Rome to the small mediaeval hilltop town of Orvieto, the location of the Buckinghams’ novel, ‘The Secret of the Villa Rosa’. The first sight of the west facade of the Cathedral was truly breath-taking, glowing with colourful mosaics and intricate carvings. There was plenty to see in Orvieto: winding, cobbled streets lined with ancient stone houses; ‘Orvieto Underground’ – caves hollowed out of the soft, volcanic rock; numerous beautiful churches and squares; the ramparts along much of which it was possible to walk; far-reaching views across the Italian heartland. And, of course, the Etruscan tombs which are so significant in ‘The Secret of Villa Rosa’.

As previously, drinks in the roof terrace and a lovely meal rounded off the day perfectly. We left Rome late on Thursday, many of us having spent the day on further personal sight-seeing. The Eternal City had lived up to its expectations – and I don’t think any of us will forget the beauty of Orvieto.

 

Autumn Ramble in Ludlow/Hereford

15th-17th September 2017

Ludlow was described by John Betjeman as ‘probably the loveliest town in England’ and was the destination for society members on a September weekend break. Ludlow features heavily in the first of the Buckingham series of books, The Master of Maryknoll and in the Lone Pine series such as Strangers at Witchend and The Neglected Mountain.

A disaster was narrowly averted when our venue for Friday’s evening meal was found to have Legionnaires Disease and was closed without notice. Luckily the knowledge of local society members came to the rescue and the evening was saved by a delicious meal at The Church Inn.

Saturday morning saw members take a walk through the town down to the Ludford Bridge and up Broad Gate to the Castle following in the steps of Juliet and Simon Buckingham on their way to meet Charles Renislau in The Master of Maryknoll.

Lunch was at De Greys (now part of the Wildwood chain) where Dickie and Mary ate in The Neglected Mountain, followed by an afternoon stroll through the picturesque Mary Knoll valley and back to Ludlow passing over the Ludford Bridge and The Charlton Arms where we were booked for dinner.

Sunday morning was the highlight of the weekend with a trip to Hereford on a 1950’s historic ‘Midland Red’ bus lovingly restored to its original condition. Peter catches one in The Neglected Mountain and Juliet hops on and quickly jumps off one while following Foxy to Hereford in The Master of Maryknoll.

This reliable old bus, not a fear of a breakdown here, brought us to Hereford and its famous Cathedral, the Wye Bridge and the water meadows, the site of the funfair where Juliet and Simon found Charles.

So the weekend ended with the bus bringing us safely back to Ludlow in time to go our separate ways. We left looking forward to meeting up again in Church Stretton in February for ‘A Murder near Witchend’!


Midland Red coach