My recent trip to London took me way back in history - 800 years.
I was also following in the footsteps of one of the most successful authors of recent time.
The Temple Church dates from the Crusades. It was the Headquarters of the Knights Templar, soldier monks who protected pilgrims journeying to the Holy Land. The church was consecrated in 1185 by the Patriarch of Jerusalem, probably in the presence of the king, and it houses the effigies of ten Templar knights including William Marshall Earl of Pembroke.
The epitome of chivalry in his time, he was adviser to four kings of England, which was quite a feat in those days.
If you want to learn more about William, track down Elizabeth Chadwick’s two books The Greatest Knight, and The Scarlet Lion, that bring the story of William’s career to life in vivid detail.
The other thing about the Temple Church is, of course, that it was the site of one of the clues in the Da Vinci code. Except that it wasn't. If you’ve read the book, you know what I mean.
The first time I visited it, years ago, it was a beautiful sunlit morning and I had the place to myself. Now hundreds of people come to look at a site that featured in a best selling book and a block buster film.
Even so, the church still has an aura. It's a special space. But I wonder what the Templars would have made of it all.