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WINSCOMBE 'Westward of Axbridge the Mendips begin to peter out in gradually narrowing islands—Winscombe Hill with the well-known landmark of Crook’s Peak at its western end, then the long Bleadon Hill with the Roman road along it, Uphill, and finally the mile-long promontory of Brean Down. Mendip is fortified to the very last: there is a camp on the seaward verge.Winscombe is one of many isolated manors belonging to the Abbey of Glastonbury, accessible by the road along the length of the Wedmore ridge. It is a very pleasant place, with its church set on rising ground and commanding a fine view. The tower, of the triple-windowed type, is certainly one of the best in this neighbourhood. The rood-loft stair is accommodated in an external turret. Further, the carved bench-ends are to be noted. Shipham, reached by field path, is a hill village lying eastward, and is an excellent centre for a pedestrian anxious to explore Mendip. Ascend the 630 feet of Crook’s Peak, from which there is nothing N., S., and W. to bar the view for many miles.BLEADON HILL —The villages of Bleadon are Loxton and Christon on the E. side, Hutton N.W., and Bleadon S.W. They are all on Rhxtic beds of Keuper marl, like Winscombe and Shipham, not on carboniferous limestone like the generality of the Mendip country.  Loxton’s amenity is that it looks up at Crook’s Peak, The church, slightly away from the road E., has a short tower on the S. side, a curious squint in the porch, a fine pulpit (Pcrp.) of carved stone,' and a good screen.  Christon’s small church, with central tower, though aisleless and trail septless, deserves a visit for its Norman work.  Under the tower note two Norman lurches with double chevrons and other mouldings, and the lozenge moulding of the S. door arch. Bleadon is below the penultimate hill camp, now not easy to trace. Its church, not so interesting as that of Loxton, has a fine triple-windowed tower. The chancel has a low side-window, and there are two fourteenth-century effigies of males. Picturesque Hutton has an old fifteenth-centurj manor-house, Hutton Court, but it has been much altered. The church has a good tower, fine stone pulpit, and two brasses of the Payne family. [A return may be made to WestonsuperMare.]BRENT  KNOLL {Knoll, rounded hill top near the village of Brent).—About six miles S.S.E. of Uphill by the road A. 3 70, Brent Knoll is best reached through the village of East Brent. It is a matter of getting to the top. The regular path for pedestrians is from the church to the flagstaff at the N.E. angle of the Camp on the summit. A car can get closer, but you scramble up for the last part your own way. When through E. Brent village, turn left {i.e. S.W.), by a road which has no signpost, over the hill. This brings one near the Camp on its W. side, and ultimately down into Brent Knoll village. The Camp is pear-shaped, with an area of about 4 acres; its higher and long curved side being to the S. where the hill is steepest. The entrance is in the middle of the E. side, and a terraced way leads up to it from a pond below. At the entrance both ends of the vallum are considerably splayed, and the S. end projects outside the N., and is more blunt, with space for a guardhouse. About 40 feet below the vallum, outside, there is a scarped terrace all round. At the highest point is a stone which commemorates Jubilee bonfires of 1887 and 1897, and coronation bonfires of 1902 and 1911. In the interior is a peculiar curved ridge

AXBRIDGE.—And so, in two miles, to Axbridge, the last of these places under the Mendip massif proper.  There is a distinct air of antiquity about Axbridge under its bare shoulder, Shute-Shelve Hill, but its antiquity is hardly attractive.  It was a borough under Edward the Confessor, and held its own for centuries till its Corporation was dissolved in 1886.  On the W. side of the market place and on the S. side of the Winscombe road opposite the Lamb Hotel is a group of old houses with good wooden window frames. The interesting church  St John Baptist stands high and is approached by a long flight of steps.  The choir is accommodated under the triple-windowed tower, so that the sanctuary is proportionately long.  Features to be remarked are: the elaborate plaster roof  1636  of the nave, with pendants, the Prowse  monument in the S. chancel aisle, a good carved font, an old building called the Treasury S. of the West door, and a hole in the N. wall connected with a cell outside, over which there is now an iron grating.

towards the sea is now the pleasant little village of Uphill. It is situated close to the mouth of the river Axe, where the Romans had a port and shipped the lead that was mined upon the hills.  Now one day a party of Danish pirates from the Holms swooped down upon that shore ; and the people of the country, seeing their boats approach, took to flight. But the Danes burnt and robbed all their dwellings, and then followed them inland, killing everybody they could find. Only one old woman remained near where the village had stood, and she was too lame to run away. However, she managed to hobble into some place of concealment and remained a day or two without being found. At last, finding herself likely to be starved, she came out of her hiding-place, meaning to throw herself upon the mercy of the Danes. But on the beach nobody was to be seen. The boats of the sea-robbers were still there, but every man had gone after the Saxons, eager to slay and plunder. So that cunning old woman found a hatchet, cut all the cables and set the boats adrift, and very soon every vessel was carried far away upon the tide. Then the Saxons called their neighbours to their aid, and the Danes could not save themselves because they were not able to get back to the Holms. Now during the time King Alfred was at Athelney a sea-king called Hubba came into the Severn Sea with a great strength of ships. It is very likely that he held the mouth of the Axe as a harbour; for in an ancient writing the village of Uphill is called Opopilla, and as Pill is a word meaning a creek, Uphill may easily once have meant Hubba’s creek or harbour. Moreover, at Bleadon, a short distance up the Axe, is a spot now called Hobba’s boat. It Inis been thought this was once Hubba’s boat. So it seems likely that Hubba held the river mouth as a haven from which to sail out upon his raids. But now Hubba was in league with Guthrum, and bent