Saturday, 13th May, 2023

After doing a load of washing, we made our way to the Cambridge University Museum of Zoology. The museum has a collection of skeletons and skins of many animals, some extinct.

The skeleton and other parts of the Dodo. Dodos lived on the island of Mauritius and, due tothe absence of predators, were flightless. When European sailors arrived on the island, they were quickly wiped out by hunting and the cats, rats, dogs and pigs the sailors brought with them. They were gone by the 1680s.

There was a lot to learn at the museum. I knew that starfish could regrow their limbs, but not that severed limbs could sometimes grow new bodies! (A very handy
skill to have)

To avoid predators, sea cucumbers can eject their guts out of their anus and regenerate them later. (Another handy skill!)

A fossil of a Dabedium specious

Some Bristish butterflies

There were a large number of birds on display, some from Australia.

An Eastern Screech Owl

A Shoebill

The skeleton of a hippopotamus

A Western European Hedgehog

The Cambridge University Library was built in 1934 and is not usually open to the public. However, there was an exhibition "Raymond Briggs: A Restrospective". I have always appreciated the work of this illustrator, so we went along. Unfortunately, I was not allowed to photograph the very illustrations I went to see (those relating to "The Snowman" but at least I could see them. I have included some other illustrations below.

Some of the books by Raymond Briggs

Very few of these iconic phone boxes still contain phones. Many have defibrillators, but this one provides a chute for students to return books borrowed from the library!

Our next stop was St Peter's Church, Cambridge. This tiny building is a redundant church which is in the care of the Churches Conservation Trust.

Across the road, you can find St Gile's Church. This is a much larger Victorian church (although some of it can be traced back to 1092). When we arrived, there was some sort of low key music festival going on (seemed to be country music?) which made it difficult to take photos. St Gile's still has an Anglican congregation but also a Romanian Orthodox congregation. It has many stained-glass windows of saints. A Homless Centre is run there as well.

St Athanasius wrote one of the three creeds (statements of faith) in the Book of Common Prayer.

St Augustine was an early theologian. He is credited for the saying "He who sings prays twice".

St Etheldreda was an English princess who founded the abbey at Ely.

The Venerable Bede lived from 673 to 731. He was an English historian, and a Benedictine monk. His Ecclesiastical History of the English Nation, in Latin, is still an important primary source for English history from 597 to 731.

St Peter

"King Henry VI was an unsuccessful king, whose reign saw the loss of the parts of France conquered by his father, and ended tragically in the War of the Roses. but a pious and good man. He was a great benefactor to education, being the founder of both King's College (he's holding the chapel) and Eton College.

This door has some lovely carved panels.

This flower was in the garden of St Giles.

The Round Church or, more properly, The Church of the Holy Sepulchre (one of only four remaining in England) dates to 1130. It is not often used for services but contains some information on the history of Cambridge.

John the Baptist baptising Jesus with an angel looking on.

An angel helping to hold up the ceiling (see above)

St Matthew

St Mark

St Luke

St John

We decided to go on a tourist bus which took us around Cambridge. It was a double-decker bus with part of the roof removed. It was a good way of seeing some of the sights but taking photos proved to be difficult.

We are seeing more wisteria as times goes on.

After going around the route once, we continued around again but got off the bus to visit the largest church in Cambridge. This is The Church of Our Lady of the Assumption and the English Martyrs. There were many people inside waiting to go to confession and/or praying so we felt it would be inappropriate to take many photos.

It was then time to head for the Chapel at Jesus College for Evensong. As with all the colleges, one enters through the Porter's Lodge to request entry to the college. It was 5:40pm. The porter said in an important Porter sort of voice, "Yes, Evensong is at 6:30pm but 6:00pm on Fridays and Saturdays". He was a bit sheepish when we pointed out that it was actually Friday and we were ushered through! We were expecting the same mixed choir that we heard on Tuesday, 9th May, so we were surprised to hear boys' voicing rehearsing. We found that Jesus College has two choirs, the College Choir (which we heard on Tuesday) and the Chapel Choir which was there on this occasion. The music included the introit "This Joyful Eastertide" by Charles Wood, the Responses by Spicer, the canticles by Dyson in F (a favourite of Satoshi's) and the anthem "O Salutaris Hostia" by Edward Elgar. Once again, the music was of the highest standard, except for the treble soloist who missed his entry at the beginning of the Magnificat. We felt sorrow for him. The organ voluntary was Adagio in E Major by Frank Bridge.

The gate into Jesus College

After Evensong, we walked to the nearby Sainsbury's (supermarket) and bought one of their "Meal Deals" (a sandwich, some fruit and a drink) and then called an Uber to take us to West Road Concert Hall. We made it with just enough time to eat our food and claim a good seat in the hall (the tickets were unreserved). The concert this time was a program performed by the City of Cambridge Symphony Orchestra.


The concert was very enjoyable and we marvelled at the skill of the young pianist, Juanjo Blázquez, born in 1998. All the musicians were excellent.

< Back   Forward >

Back to Calendar