Just around the corner from Cholsey Primary School, where I am currently the Patron of Reading, is a small and beautiful church. When I was visiting the school a couple of weeks ago – I’ll write about that visit here very soon – I nipped away at lunchtime and, rather than sitting in the staffroom, wandered through the churchyard, past mossy graves, to a heavy stone squatting in the furthest corner from the entrance. This grave belongs to Agatha Christie, who lived a couple of miles away on the outskirts of Wallingford, and attended the church.
Here is the front of the grave:
This is taken from the other side, with the church in the background:
And here is the entrance to Cholsey church:
Next time I visit Cholsey, I’m planning to walk across the fields to Christie’s home, Winterbrook House. And I’ll also ask the children at the school how much they know about their famous neighbour, and whether any of them have read or watched the exploits of Poirot and Miss Marple.
I’m very pleased that the staff and pupils of Cholsey Primary School have asked me to be their Patron of Reading for the next three years.
I’m going to visiting the school tomorrow, talking to classes, seeing the library, talking about my books and hearing about the books that Cholseyites love.
(Cholseyites? Is that the correct collective noun for a group of people who live in Cholsey? I don’t know, but I’m sure I’ll find out tomorrow.)
I’ve been to the school once before. After that, I was sent some letters from the pupils to forward to Uncle Morton. I’m afraid he took several weeks to reply, but he is very busy at the moment.
I was also sent this picture of a fantastic display that the children have created.
If you don’t know about the Patron of Reading scheme, you can find out all about it here: http://www.patronofreading.co.uk