Thursday, 22 November 2012

Getting up to date

Adding these retrospectively means there are a lot to go on. I think the best way is to download them all, get up to date with a brief explanation for each.
These bring my travelogue up to date. 

The River Bridge at Barford.  A more peaceful scene now that a by-pass has been built.

The main entrance to Charlecote House near Stratford. I did want to go down and get a picture of the house but I would have had to pay an entrance fee for the privilege. No way Hose!

This was the first time I used a bicycle carrier on my car to take the bike further afield. Drove to Stratford and parked up. Cycled the Greenway at Stratford, a disused railway line that has been converted and managed as a country path between Stratford and Long Marston. This cafe is an old railway carriage, sensible use for old rolling stock! Must go in there for a cup of tea one of these days.

Shakespeare's Birthplace in Henley Street Stratford. Could not visit the town without taking this picture.

 Two post boxes in Stratford painted gold to celebrate the fact that a local person won a gold medal at the 2012 Olympics. What a lovely way to celebrate the fact, even better now the decision has been made to keep them permanent.

Beacon Hill on Newbold Comyn, Leamington. You can't quite see the beacon in the distance. It has been used in the past for royal celebrations. That shadow got in the picture again. Another one to retake!

The ford in Rouncil Lane Kenilworth. Not too far from where I live it does actually flood in times of heavy rain hence the footbridge.

Bridge End at Warwick. A very exclusive residential area on the other side of the river to the castle. These cottages were built in the 16th century but attract 21st century prices!

Old Warwick Road Leamington. The site of the old Ford's foundry. Now a Morrisons supermarket. Pity I did not document this from the time the foundry was closed.

Another bridge! Yes, I do have a thing about bridges! This one is over the River Leam leading from the Pump Rooms to Avenue Road. Like most of the bridges over this river, built by the Victorians.

The Grand Union canal at Warwick with my grandaughter Carmen. She really enjoys cycling with me and we often do a nice 5 mile circuit from home to the canal and back.

 Leamington owes its existence to the local mineral water spring pictured here. The town boomed when the victorians flocked to the place to enjoy the healing effects of the local water. The nearby Pump Rooms were built to house steam baths and bathing pools. There is a tap on this monument but I would not recommend tasting the water. It has a very strong mineral taste but does you good. My Dad said so.

Tachbrook Road, Leamington. This is art! The lady who lives here is an 'artist' and believes passionately in recycling. Hence this Jubilee Crown made from old Cds to celebrate the Queen's 60th anniversary on the throne. Makes my bike look good anyway!

No shadows this time when Warwick castle was re-visited.

Barford Village. A lovely use for a decommissioned telephone box. The local heritage society use it for seasonal displays. This season it is advertising the local amateur dramatic society pantomime.

West Gate Warwick. This post box is one of the oldest in Britain. It is Victorian and the backdrop of the medieval houses sets it off a treat. Sad memories of this place. A friend and colleague died here riding his bike up this fairly steep hill. RIP Angus.

Warwick Museum.

Would you believe Barrack Street Warwick!  This is an old dungeon door leading from the Crown Court. It was used regularly in the 17th and 18th centuries and prisoners were led out from here, into the street to be hanged. I have seen the inside of this door. It has been kept in its original state and is horrendous.

The Swan Fountain in Bancroft Garden Stratford upon Avon. Must go back and do this when it's working, that is if the students haven't put foam in it again! Although that would be a good pic.

Nash's House Church Street Stratford upon Avon. Shakespeare bought this house when he became rich and famous. I was inspired to do this one as my son sent me a postcard of this house that he found in an antique shop in Vancouver. Small world. The white van wasn't on the postcard either!

Anne Hathaway's Cottage, Shottery Stratford.

An old railway bridge on the Greenway at Stratford. How much longer will it last?

Ragley Hall, Arrow near Alcester. One of Englands stately homes. Another trip using the car to get further afield. Parked at a friend's house in Alcester and went to Evesham and back and took this on the way.

No prizes for guessing where this one is!

Nat West Bank at Evesham. A traditional English market town. Good to see such buildings preserved.

This statue near the Nat west Bank in Evesham commemorates the fact that a swine herder saw a vision of the Virgin Mary in the 8th century. To mark the 'event' the local bishop built an abbey on the site and Evesham was born.

Another bridge. This one at Evesham over the River Avon. This has to be one of the ugliest bridges in the country if not the known universe!

The former Dolls Museum in Warwick now a very quaint tea room. Part of Warwick Castle is behind on the left of the picture.

A view of Church Street Warwick with St Mary's church at the top. Commanding spectacular views of the surrounding area, visitors can climb to the top of the church tower on a Wednesday and Saturday.

Lord Leycester Hospital Warwick.

War Memorial, Abbey Fields Kenilworth.

Council House at Coventry. Cathedral Spire behind it.

Lady Godiva Statue, Broadgate, Coventry. The men in orange jackets were protesting about the closure of a local firm that makes the famous London black cabs. A good cause, I hadn't got the heart to ask them to move.

The Old Forge at Stoneleigh near Warwick. A former blacksmiths on the village green, it is now a commercial property.

This was a good day. I went to Banbury. Cycled to Warwick railway station and caught the train. This is it arriving. Then went to Banbury on it.

Banbury Railway Station; now the task of getting back home. I had picked this day as the wind was from the south and would blow me home.

Couldn't go to Banbury without visiting the Cross. I looked everywhere for a fine lady but none about. Perhaps next time. Using the train to get further afield certainly opens up endless possibilities and is something I will do more of.

On the way back from Banbury on the old A41, good to get back to my home county. I had forgotten the steep hill at Warmington, a couple of miles further on. Went down there at a speed I was really not comfortable with. I won't publish it in case my insurers read this.

Note to self. When using an i-phone to take pictures of your bike, make sure that the right camera is selected otherwise you won't get Warwick Castle, you get this!

Warwick School, Myton Road, Warwick. Rode past this school and spotted these bears in the car park. No idea why they are there but love the idea.

Castle Green Kenilworth opposite the castle. Lovely old medieval cottages.

Taken on the way back from Banbury.

Leaving the county heading into bandit country!

These next four were another adventure. Took my bike to my daughter's at Clevedon and went out with two family members, Jacqueline's partner James and my grandson Dean. Cycled into Bristol and back, a 30 mile round trip. The below picture is from the M5 bridge that spans the River Avon. There is a footpath and cycleway running alongside the M5.

View from the M5 east looking at the River Avon

The Avon Gorge at Bristol looking towards the Clifton Suspension Bridge. They never told me what a strenuous climb it was to get to this point!

Clifton Bristol. These figures were commisioned to celebrate the Olympic and Paralympic Games. The inspiration for them must have come from the nearby zoo!

Another ambition fulfilled, cycled over the Clifton Suspension Bridge.  Don't look down.

This road in Warwick leads onto the Racecourse. Named after a shop that used to be here that sold, youv'e guessed it, bread and meat (thanks for that Les). Westgate Tower can be seen in the background.

Had to include this one, Taken last year at Aldburgh on holiday. We stayed at a B and B and enquired if there was any chance of hiring a bike in the town. The owner, a old colonial gentleman who had been thrown out of Zimbabwe, had a couple in his cellar. This was the best of them! Worked quite well once I had pumped the tyres up and got them out of his basement. Was it worth it? Yes, definitely.

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