Let­ter of the week Dead end

All is not lost

Country Life Every Week - - Letters To The Editor -

HAV­ING been brought up near De­vizes in Wilt­shire, I read Ptolemy Dean’s ar­ti­cle on the town (July 20) with in­ter­est. I re­call ‘the much-pin­na­cled Mar­ket Cross’ (right) he refers to be­ing known as the Ruth Pierce memo­rial on ac­count of the salu­tary tale in­scribed on it.

It reads: ‘On Thurs­day the 25th of Jan­uary 1753, Ruth Pierce of Pot­terne in this County, agreed with three other women to buy a sack of wheat in the mar­ket, each pay­ing her due pro­por­tion to­wards the same. One of these women, in col­lect­ing the sev­eral quo­tas of money, dis­cov­ered a de­fi­ciency, and de­manded of Ruth Pierce the sum which was want­ing to make good the amount. Ruth Pierce protested that she had paid her share, and said, “She wished she might drop down dead if she had not.” She rashly re­peated this aw­ful wish; when to the con­ster­na­tion and ter­ror of the sur­round­ing mul­ti­tude, she in­stantly fell

Idown and ex­pired, hav­ing the money con­cealed in her hand.’ Wil­liam New­som, Som­er­set READ with in­ter­est your let­ter of the week from Shirley Lane on the im­por­tant part tra­di­tional cast-iron road signs play in main­tain­ing ru­ral dis­tinc­tive­ness and the need to main­tain them (Au­gust 17).Well, all is not lost, as, since 2001, I have been restor­ing fin­ger­posts back to their orig­i­nal con­di­tion. Lo­cal author­i­ties are now tak­ing their main­te­nance se­ri­ously and en­cour­age­ment from the De­part­ment for Trans­port is help­ing in this process.

In Cum­bria, a good ex­am­ple has been set by Eden Dis­trict Coun­cil, which has em­barked on a five-year project to re­store all of its fin­ger­posts. The fu­ture for our his­toric road signs is a lit­tle brighter now than it has been for many years. David Gosling, Sign­post Restora­tion Lim­ited, Cum­bria

The writer of the let­ter of the week will win a bot­tle of Pol Roger Brut Réserve Cham­pagne

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