Ludlow is a town of small businesses. Behind the Jacobean and Georgian facades, down the scenic streets and cobbled alleyways, thrives a community of talented creatives. They are artists, writers, potters, chefs, restaurateurs, jewellery designers, book binders, beauticians, curators and florists and they are Ludlow’s beating heart. If anyone can tell you about the ins and outs of our buzzing town, it’s the people who work here. This is week, we interview Monty Lowe, curator of Ludlow Buttercross Museum What’s your connection to Ludlow? Are you an incomer (fell in love on a visit) Returner (grew up here, went away, glad to be back) Have never left the shire (why go anywhere else?) I am in incomer. I grew up in Leicestershire and have lived all over the UK. Living in and around Ludlow is the bees knees because…. It is centrally placed on the Welsh borders within a great landscape both geographically and in its archaeological and historical context. It is also vibrant in the modern sense too. Tell us something about Ludlow nobody …
Secret things about Ludlow: We have our own beach! The beach down at The Millennium Green. When the water level falls a pebbly beach appears either side of Dinham Bridge.
I wished more gardens were willing to engage novices and young with either a flyer or an occasional name tag on various plants especially those that look unusual.
“There were weeks when the only exercise we had was shovelling food into our mouths. Now our elbows are suffering from bursitis”
Be aware of things that act as kindling to fire up antipathy amongst the neighbours (in no particular order): bins, parking, cats (either for or against), dogs, parking, noise, branches, fencing, kids (for or against), parking…
February, on the other hand, is not a welcome month; it is January’s hangover and March’s grumpy neighbor.
I’ve moved to the country and stored my high heels away in my loft. But I love clothes and fashion. I also like living in the country. The two are not mutually exclusive. I haven’t abandoned my love of the whimsical just because I live in the countryside. One of my favourite places to shop in Ludlow is the vintage store 55 Mill Street. The decor and layout are delightful and I love browsing the three floors of eclectic ‘stuff’ from fur coats through to furniture. Change and turnover ticks over regularly so there is always something new. In my day, boy was I a bit of a show pony. New York and London were my virtual catwalks –places to promenade and to be theatrical. These days I tailor and tether my whimsy to the solidity of being practical. Of course, because I’m dressing for myself, I wear whatever I feel like, but there’s no way I galumph around the countryside like I danced around London. For one thing, I don’t like feeling cold and, for another, my feet are shod for driving and walking not prancing. Still, sometimes I’m badly …
There were no recipes for novices. Such as: this is what a crab apple looks like, they are small fiddly things and you will hate crab apples and yourself after an hour of topping and tailing and cutting the things.
During my tender years living in New York, it always felt like Xmas was a way to fortify yourself for the real action – 26 December sales. Feelings of warmth, family, festive feeling swamped by a possible 75 percent discount on a desired top.
Last year, I tried the ‘handcrafted stamp’ look but it looked as though I had delegated my gift wrapping to a three-year old. This year, I am liking the ‘brown paper/butcher’s twine/stag’s head tags’ look as seen in the latest issue of Red magazine.