Tetford, No Ordinary Village

(500 words)

A shiny green ‘Welcome to Tetford’ sign, embossed with a church amongst hills, stands on each of the three approach roads. Information states that Tetford is ‘twinned’ with Juillé, though it’s doubtful anyone cares.
One approach to Tetford, situated in the Lincolnshire Wolds and home to 400 or so, brings you through woods down Tetford Hill until you emerge to a panorama of neat green, yellow and golden fields beneath a huge sky.
A sharp bend leads into the village. Opposite is Platts Lane, a track of Roman origin that looks up to the ominous ruins of Glebe Farm, standing sentinel on a hillock.
Here is Pine Lodge, a sign this is no ordinary village. With 11 bedrooms, a swimming pool and a mini football pitch it wins the accommodation race, in which there are many competitors.
The village comprises a square of roads, imaginatively named East, North, West, and, unsurprisingly, South Road. A book, Paupers, Priests and People tells of an ancient history but now huge houses grow at the periphery.
At one corner stands St. Mary’s Church, founded in the 14th century. Its extensive graveyard intriguingly features two adjacent graves housing unfortunate victims of lightning, struck on separate occasions.
A small lane leads away, on which stands the imposing Manor House. ‘Next door’ is Meridian Meats, home of Tetford Longhorn cattle, seen in nearby fields, and claimed to provide ‘Britain’s Best Steak’.
Also here is the mysterious Dev Aura complex, owned by Aura Soma, a company which owns much land and property locally and which manufactures bottles of coloured liquid, reputed to cure many ills and apparently popular in Japan. Curiously, this area is called Little London.
There is a well-respected primary school and nearby, a playing field and cricket pitch, home to terrier racing in July. The adjacent village hall boasts the ubiquitous Zumba and activities including the annual flower and craft show, auctions and plays.
Close by stands the White Hart, the hub (for some) of the village. This ancient pub was likely frequented by Alfred Lord Tennyson. A quote painted large near the ceiling says ‘Their’s not to reason why their’s but to do and die’. One wonders where the apostrophes came from.
At the front is the Tennyson Tea Room and at the rear, a menagerie of rabbits, guinea pigs, ferrets and hens. Live music happens on Thursdays and, on occasion, in a marquee in the beer garden.
Opposite the pub is Tennyson Cottage, although, oddly, few seem to know much about Tennyson. In fact, he was born in nearby Somersby, his lurid childhood spent in the (now impressive) rectory, along with 11 siblings, most affected by epilepsy. He is buried in Poets Corner, Westminster Abbey, but his father, George, ended his improbable adventures (you can look them up) in a tomb at Somersby churchyard.
Incidentally, should the reader be interested, the White Hart is for sale, ‘an eight-bedroom historic pub in the heart of the Lincolnshire Wolds’, a ‘snip’ at £450,000.
(The picture shows exhibits at the bi-annual Scarecrow Festival)

  • Please consider making a small donation to help towards the running costs of this site. It would be greatly appreciated.
  • Don’t forget to check out some other stories on this blog. There are over 450!
  • To purchase the stories on To Cut a Short Story Short up to December 2021 in paperback, Kindle, eBook, and audio-book form, and for news on new titles, please see Shop.

Leave your thoughts