England’s not always gloomy!


I thought I’d share with you some pictures I’ve taken of where I live in Essex. I wanted to show firstly that isn’t always raining in England (just most of the time) and that Essex specifically is a beautiful place to live.

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Essex highlighted in red

Essex has a fairly ridiculous reputation for being full of white stilettos, fake tan and false eyelashes (with all roads leading to the Sugar Hut) but this simply isn’t so.

Being an ‘Essex Girl’ (we even have our own Wikipedia page, fairly amusing) I’ve had to put up with the stereotype my entire life. Even abroad, people have heard of ‘us’ and I get raised eyebrows and leers when I say where I’m from. Unbelievably even at the Vatican City. My friends and I were taking a tour whilst in Rome and when we told our (male) tour guide where we lived he actually laughed in our faces.

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So the town where I currently live is a kinda strange place. It was only developed in the 1970s and as such has no church or historical value (as most English towns do). It’s been described as ‘Toy Town’ or ‘a housing estate with an Asda in the middle’ or just plain ‘weird’. But it does have two really cool things about it (three if you include myself):

1. Our street names are named after Lord of the Rings characters (my personal favourite is Gandalf’s Ride).

2. And we are surrounded by gorgeous countryside, nature reserves and lots of wildlife. I’ve heard the Cuckoo three times already this spring and that’s more than some people will in a lifetime (I hope my rock and roll lifestyle isn’t too much for you by the way).

So anyway these pictures I actually took last Sunday (8th May) on the hottest day of the year so far, they are all from where I live:

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The absence of other people is brilliant isn’t it!

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These next pictures were take in Chelmsford, where I lived for about five years. I took them last summer in Hylands Park (most famous for hosting V Festival) which is one of my favourite places in the world. As well as acres of fields and rivers to wander, there is also a huge, beautiful garden filled with a variety of flowers, trees and plants. It looks different every time I go there (kudos to the gardening team):

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hylandsuse - Copy

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This picture is from Beth Chatto Gardens in Colchester, which some of you may know purely because it’s the oldest recorded town in the whole of the UK. There’s actually walls and walkways still erected (ooh matron) to this day, that were put there by the Romans.

beth chatto.jpgAnd lastly, these two pictures were taken in Thorpeness which is in Suffolk – one of the neighbouring counties of Essex.

Now I’ve lived in Essex all my life and Suffolk is about the only place I’d go to live instead. Me and my partner usually go ‘on holiday’ to Suffolk at least once a year (I put it in quotation marks because as my partner wisely says, ‘can we really call it a holiday when if we forgot something we can pop home and get it?’).

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Thorpeness also has a really cool guesthouse called ‘The House in the Clouds’, I’ve ALWAYS wanted to stay there, here’s a pic from google:

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About emmakwall

Films, books, soundtracks, good humour
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83 Responses to England’s not always gloomy!

  1. Renate says:

    This place looks absolutely gorgeous!

  2. Urspo says:

    I knew a British lady who reveled as a party trick her ability to imitate the various English accents. She liked to point out to us Yanks ‘there isn’t just one English accent”. Who knew there were so many? Apparently Essex accent is distinctive, and was one of her favorites (other than Bristol).

    • emmakwall says:

      Oh my word there are TONS of British accents! Loads!! Some of them are so distinctive and hard to do 🙂

      The Essex accent has changed over the past 50 years, I’m not sure which one your friend did? It used to be more ‘yokel’ and ‘countryside’ and now we speak more ‘cockney’ like the Londoners. Some people would just say common lol.

      Essex is one of the Home Counties though and I’d say we speak the Queen’s English more than the others haha!

      I can’t really think how a Bristol accent sounds if I’m honest but Sheffield is one of my personal favourites 🙂

    • emmakwall says:

      P.S I can do a great Scouse accent!

  3. Great pics! I would love to stay at that house in the clouds. Looks neat.

    • emmakwall says:

      Thanks Geoff 🙂 I know it’s so lovely isn’t it!! It’s pretty expensive though lol, maybe if I win the lottery I’ll stay there for a week!

  4. Zoë says:

    Love this Em! Such a cool post 🙂

    Also – great page linkage there xD

    • emmakwall says:

      Aww thanks Zoe!!!! 🙂 I’m really pleased to hear that from you 🙂

      Must confess just did this on a whim this morning, wasn’t really planned!! Hopefully some of the links are (kinda) interesting! 🙂

  5. drhumpp says:

    There has to be a killer hiding in these woods somewhere.

  6. Such a great idea for a post Ems! That is so cool about the names of the streets. It’s absolutely fascinating about how your town was developed. It’s funny because when you mentioned the disrespect Essex gets I immediately thought of this section in New Jersey known as the Jersey Shore. It was made famous/infamous by an MTV reality show by the same name. Those gardens are beautiful! It reminded me of the ones at Glen Magna which I think I told you about in one of my emails. Don’t listen to any “haters” out there Ems. 🙋🏻💕

    • emmakwall says:

      We have a similar show called The Only Way is Essex (TOWIE for short lol) and there’s one based in Newcastle called…wait for it…..Geordie Shore! So I COMPLETELY understand ha ha. I remember South Park did a cool episode about Jersey Shore as well!

      You’re the first person who picked up on the LOTR street names, thanks dearest Kims! ❤ I love them too, Thorin's Gate is my second favourite! Sadly mine isn't one of them 😦

      You did tell me about Glen Magna Kims! I remember 🙂 I'd love to visit with you one day!! I hope you're doing good today my beautiful friend xoxoxox

      • I hadn’t realized so many nasty things are said about Essex. Geordie Shore sounds really funny though. Seriously though. It must be aggravating being stereotyped based on where you live. All anyone has to do is meet you Ems. You’re such a class act! Someday I want to come and visit you and you can give me a tour of beautiful Essex! Then we’ll head over here and I can give you The Witchcraft tour!
        #loveemma
        #owww

  7. those pictures are just beautiful!!

  8. vinnieh says:

    These are just lovely Emma, you’ve got a great eye for detail. And I know that you are definitely not like anyone off TOWIE.

  9. alexraphael says:

    Your garden is huge! Come to London even if you don’t go to the reunion. Would be cool to see you.

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