There is something admirable in true eccentricity.  C. A. Morris’s decision to build a one-ninth scale model of Bourton-on-the Water in the 1930s was eccentric (and why not one-tenth scale?), yet the result is admirable in its own way.  Exclude the Gulliver-like visitors from the view and with a little suspension of disbelief the Lilliputian buildings take on a charming reality.

Step back and the illusion is shattered by figures towering over the houses.  It’s both eccentric and ironic.  Morris built the model to encourage tourists to visit his pub.  The visitors to his village now mirror the Brogdignagian spectre of tourism that stomps all over the village outside, turning it from a real place into an erzatz Cotswold theme park with all the charm of an Orlando version of Olde England.

Photos: Model Village, Bourton-on-the Water, September 2019.

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