A Saunter Through Banwell.

In a small pocket of Banwell, is a picturesque gem beckoning the photographers` eye.  On my recent stroll around the village of Banwell, I made my very first port of call to St Andrew`s Church and its surrounding yard punctuated with bursts of floral decked walls and the trappings of a sun kissed day to announce the arrival of the spring season. 

Black And White Landscape Photography - Banwell, St Andrew`s Churchyard, Weston-Super- Mare

   N.B Please be aware that individual monitors will display minor differences in tone and colour.

Colour Landscape Photography - Banwell, St Andrew`s Churchyard Weston-Super-Mare

   N.B Please be aware that individual monitors will display minor differences in tone and colour.

About St Andrew's Church, Banwell, Somerset.

The mainly 15th-century parish Church of St Andrew in BanwellSomerset, England, is a Grade I listed building.

The body of the church has a nave with a clerestory, north and south aisles and a rather short chancel, considering the proportions of the rest of the church. The font dates from the 12th century and there is a carved stone pulpit from the 15th century and a carved rood screen built and set up in 1552, which escaped the Reformation.

The 100 ft (30 m) high tower, which dates from around 1417, contains ten bells dates from the 18th to 20th century and the clock is dated 1884. Bells dating from 1734 and 1742 were made by Thomas Bilbie, of the Bilbie family. On the western face of the tower is a representation of the Annunciation. In the Virgin Mary's niche there is a lily pot symbol of purity, and a lily leaf motif also to be found in the font and pulpit.

The churchyard contains the war grave of a Hampshire Regiment soldier of World War I.

About William Beard, Banwell, Somerset.

He was a reserved man, of quaint manners, and with a high opinion of his own skill. The nickname of the "Professor" given him by the bishop pleased him, and he was generally called by it. He retained his bodily and mental activity almost to the day of his death. He was a small man, of short stature and light build. There is a bust of him in Banwell churchyard, and an engraving representing him at the age of seventy-seven in Rutter's Delineations of Somersetshire.

He was the son of a farmer at Banwell, Somerset, was born on 24 April 1772. He received such education as the parish clerk, who was also the schoolmaster of the village, could give him. Like his father, he worked on the land. He married and bought a small estate, which he farmed himself.

Excited by the tradition that Banwell Hill contained a large cavern, he persuaded two miners to join him (September 1824) in sinking a shaft. At a depth of about 100 feet they came to a stalactite cave. While making a second opening lower down the side of the hill, in order to form a better approach to this cave, he discovered a smaller cavern containing animal bones. With some help procured for him by the Bishop of Bath and Wells (G. H. Law), to whom the land belonged, Beard dug out the cavern, and found among the debris a number of bones of the bear, buffalo, reindeer, wolf, etc. Captivated with his discovery, he let his land, and spent all his time in searching for bones and putting them together.

He acted as guide to the many visitors who came to see the cavern and the bones he collected. He soon learned something of the scientific importance of his discoveries, and became an eager collector of the contents of the bone-caves of the neighbourhood, at Hutton, Bleadon, and Sandford. He died on 9 January 1868, in his ninety-sixth year