“Stop,” I asked, a little too loudly, and luckily, Mr Word Loft steered to a halt. I pointed eagerly at bunches of mixed chrysanthemums waving ‘buy us’ from a roadside stall on a country lane. Selected, purchased, and clutching the precious blooms, I headed back to the car parked under a signpost to Halton Quay. We had wondered about the place on our way to Cotehele but had carried on our way. With a couple of hours of daylight left, we decided to go and investigate before carrying on home.

Although small, I gasped as we approached the hamlet. The scene reminded me of a delicately hand-coloured photograph of bygone days. Houses and cottages face the River Tamar, and a single sailing boat glinted in the late muted light. I was most surprised, though, to see a tiny two-storey chapel standing sentinel, its pale façade simple and elegant.

Initially, St Indract’s was the shipping clerk’s office and fishermen’s nets store until the building was consecrated in 1959. It is named in commemoration of St Indract and his sister St Dominica who landed close by in 689AD. These days church services are only held once a month, and I imagine the black weather-worn bell makes a merry sound beckoning its congregation.

Some of the properties originally housed businesses, and disused lime kilns remain along the waterfront. Now draped in old man’s beard and other foliage the arched structures add charm and are a noteworthy keepsake of the area’s famous lime-making heritage from 1411.

It’s a peaceful setting, and yet, Halton was a busy port centuries ago.

No wonder it is part of the St Dominica Heritage Trail. And whenever I pass my autumnal flower arrangement in our hallway, they remind me of how one thing can lead to another.

Until next time,
Sue. X