Thought for the day :"Hired a landscape gardener – Sadly my garden was Portrait!"
Consecration of a New Pilgrim Preceptor Conclave - No 34 - so not the biggest degree... Archbishop Plegmund not the best known Archbishop but at least he was local to the area...
Little is known of the early life of Plegmund except that he was of Mercian descent. A later tradition, dating 300 years after his death, stated that Plegmund lived as a hermit at Plemstall in Cheshire. His reputation as a scholar attracted the attention of King Alfred the Great, who was trying to revive scholarship. Some time before 887, Alfred summoned Plegmund to his court. There he worked with three other scholars – Wærferth, Bishop of Worcester, Æthelstan and Wærwulf – on translating Pope Gregory the Great's treatise Pastoral Care into Old English
Plegmund was selected for the see of Canterbury in 890 by King Alfred. His election to the Archbishopric of Canterbury is recorded in Manuscript E of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle: "Here Archbishop Plegmund was elected by God and all the people." Fulk, Archbishop of Reims, praised the election of Plegmund, stating that he would help root out the last remnants of paganism in the people. However, there was a gap in time between the death of the previous Archbishop of Canterbury, Ethelred, and the consecration of Plegmund; this may have been because the see had been offered to Grimbald, a Flemish monk and scholar, who refused it. Plegmund was granted his pallium by Pope Formosus.
During the 9th century, the see of Canterbury was at a low point. One of Plegmund's responsibilities was to re-establish its authority, and, in an attempt to do this, between 909 and 918 he created new sees within the existing Diocese of Winchester in Crediton, Ramsbury, Sherborne and Wells. This meant that each future shire of Wessex had its own bishop; of Crediton for Devon and Cornwall, of Ramsbury for Wiltshire, of Sherborne for Dorset and of Wells for Somerset, as well as the diocese of Winchester for Hampshire. To do this, Plegmund had to gain the approval of Pope Sergius III, who had annulled all of the acts of Pope Formosus, and in 908 Plegmund travelled to Rome so that he could be re-granted his pallium. He was the first archbishop of Canterbury to visit Rome for nearly a century, and he returned with the relics of Saint Blaise.
Under Plegmund's archbishopric, the quality of the Latin used by his scribes improved, surpassing the poor quality used by the scribes of the previous two archbishops, Ceolnoth and Æthelred. When Alfred the Great died in 899, Plegmund crowned his son Edward as king.
In addition to his religious duties, Plegmund was involved in matters of state and he attended the formal councils held by Edward the Elder in 901, 903, 904 and 909. He dedicated the tall tower of the New Minster at Winchester in 909.
St. Plegmund's well lies about 220 yards (201 m) to the west of St Peter's Church, Plemstall near the village of Mickle Trafford, Cheshire, England. It is named after Plegmund, who later became Archbishop of Canterbury, and who is believed to have lived as a hermit nearby. The well is situated on the edge of a low cliff to the east of which is one of the channels of the River Gowy. It is one of two holy wells in west Cheshire. An inscribed sandstone curb was added in 1907 which was dedicated by the Venerable E. Barber, Archdeacon of Chester, on 11 November 1907. The earliest documentary evidence of the well is in a quitclaim dated 1301.
A survey of the well was carried out in 1995 which found that it is a square stone-lined pit with two large slabs on either side and two steps down from the southern side beside the road. In the bottom of the well is a ceramic pipe which has been inserted at a later date. At the time of the survey there was water present up to the level of the first step. The cover slabs show some signs of damage but there was no sign of the curbs added in 1907.
It is said to have been used for baptisms up to the 20th century. In the 1990s, it was noticed that the hawthorn tree overhanging the well was dressed periodically and during the later 1990s, archaeologists from Chester City Council led local children on a well dressing walk on St Plegmund's feast day (2 August). This continued until 2000, when a more formal annual well dressing event was revived. The well is a scheduled monument.
Bit of a blowy return journey - but got in and enjoying a G & T .... while Susie is out at a Concert