Cycle route launched at Mannington Hall

Our last visit to Mannington was in the heat of last summer. But on Sunday we were greeted by an uncertain mixture of cloud and rain for the launch of the Paston Pathways cycle route, which takes in about 18-20 miles of surrounding countryside.

This is part of the Footprints Project, which will include a number of walking routes starting from key points in the Paston story. Lord and Lady Walpole kindly allowed us to launch the route as part of their Open Gardens programme: as well as the launch, there was an exhibition in the hall and a pavilion outside. A number of siege engines drew interest from children of all ages, with potatoes raining down on a model castle.

Our picture shows Dr Rob Knee, our costumed storyteller, taking on the role this time of John Fenn, collector of the Paston Letters. He is cutting the ribbon for the symbolic start of the route during a break in the weather.