Hunting for black squirrels

On Saturday we went to Hitchin, which is a market town in Hertfordshire. It’s one of those places that still has lots of historic buildings interspersed with not so pretty modern ones. The main reason we went was to visit with the black squirrels, but more of that later.

The earliest record of a settlement in the area is in AD792 when King Offa (he of Offa’s dyke fame) founded a religious house. Now there is a weekly market which attracts lots of people.

We loved this cute little van selling Marley coffee

We stopped for lunch at Pitcher and Piano which is in the building that used to be the corn exchange and has been decorated beautifully – very vintage. Lots of the furniture I would have in my dream home. The food was scrummy and served in blue and white enamel bowls which added to the ambiance. Here’s a few pics from inside.

Attempt at a selfie in a mirror – at least you can see Ken

Now for those elusive black squirrels which we have seen in the churchyard in the past. The church is St Mary’s and the current building dates from around the 14th century. It’s a lovely old building with great headstones around it.

We arrived in the churchyard armed with hazelnuts to tempt the beasties as I was sure that would bring them scurrying to greet us. We met a very cute and curious grey squirrel (I know a lot of people think they’re vermin but they always make me smile) and in the absence of any of his darker relatives we gave him many hazelnuts. He was so adorable, checking each nut out before scurrying away to bury them.

Burying a nut in front of a headstone

The closest we got to a black squirrel was this shy chappy who has a bit of cross breeding going on – if you look closely you can see that he has a black tail and darker patches on his face and arms.

It was a lovely day out communing with the urban wildlife. So if you’re ever in Hertfordshire keep an eye open for the mysterious black squirrels.

Until next time,stay safe and be happy.

Pamela and Ken

P.S: Final two pics are of the toilet (yes I know I’m a bit obsessed) in Pitcher and Piano – very much continued the vintage theme.

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