Friday – Sunday 23rd 25th June 2017
If you walk to the end of the lock you get a good view of the river Severn - left to Gloucester
and right to Worcester. There are a few moorings on the river, however the side is very high and not ideal for Monty.
So what is there to do in Tewkesbury? First to feed the soul the Abbey is a must. A truly magnificent building inside and out. I would have loved to have done the tower tour, but none were available when we were there. The added bonus for us is that they allow dogs inside, something we really appreciated. I have to say that a well behaved dog on a lead is probably less bother than a bored toddler! I have memories of trying to keep a very bored three year old amused when taking an elderly Aunt (yes she was older than I am now!) who wanted to stop and read everything (something I now appreciate) when we visited Norwich Cathedral many years ago.
Just a few pictures to give you a feel of the magnificent interior
This is a view of the ceiling in a mirror - very clever and very effective
We were rather taken with this sculpture outside the Abbey
There are many splendid buildings to admire
It was not just the building below that drew our attention - how many years ago did Green Shield Stamps cease to exist? What a wonder this internet is - I now know that they started in 1958 and ended in 1991, being most popular in the 60's and 70's. I can certainly remember pouring over the catalogue with my parents deciding what they were going to get when they redeemed their stamps. What I had not realised until now that eventually people could supplement their stamps with cash to purchase from the catalogue and that when the stamps were withdrawn the catalogue was re-branded as Argos! If you want to know more look HERE
On Friday we shared a ploughman's in The Berkeley Arms - and very good it was too.
Apologies for missing off part of 'shall' on the right, but a good sentiment nevertheless.
The Royal Hop Pole is now a Weatherspoons
A place of interest to Dickens enthusiasts
Tewkesbury is a town that is rightly very proud of it's history and the famous battle of 1471. Many buildings along the main street display coats of arms
Some (but sadly not all) have information in the window with details of whose coat of arms it was in 1471 with some details of their life, family and death. Well thanks to the wonder of the internet I was side tracked again to the web site of The Tewkesbury Battlefield Society and what a wealth of information there is to be found HERE. It looks as though the street banners are very new as they appear to have been created every Monday afternoon from January to 6th June this year. Having found this site, I think we have to go back to Tewkesbury as there is more to discover. A little light reading to feed the mind.
We think the society's efforts are definitely worth while - they certainly make a statement as you look along the street. As this is so recent, it has to be hoped that information about them all will be added in due course.
There are several bookshops to feed the mind - this one does have a 'proper shop' as well as this rather charming alleyway.
Despite quite a few of these signs there are still a multitude of eateries and watering holes to be found in the town to feed and body
Some have already been mentioned - I took this picture because of the name. Our boat was built by JL Pinders & Son (now trading as Crafted Boats) and they have built three boats for the same couple - Theoc, Theoc I and Theoc II. We did meet them once and I am sure I knew the reason for the name, but I cannot find anything on the internet to help and whatever they told me has flown from my brain never to be recaptured I am afraid. Having looked at the website for THEOC HOUSE, I think it is somewhere we will go next time we visit the town.
Yet more food for the body - on Saturday and Sunday there was a food festival in the Abbey grounds which certainly gave us a view of the Abbey that is not normally seen.
There was a lot of fast food on sale as well as a large food hall full of things to tempt one to part with your money. We did have a look round, but came away empty handed as nothing really took our fancy. It was the rightly famous delicatessen in the main street, 1471, that made us open our wallets - they sell Chaume - a French cheese we both like which is hard to find these days. The proprietor took great delight is telling me he had a whole one out the back. Sadly there is no room for such a delight on a narrow boat. We left with a small piece and some wonderful granary bread - a simple meal, but thoroughly enjoyed by us both.
Lunch was partaken at this dog friendly Italian café - somewhere we would both recommend.
Round the back of the Abbey there is a camp site that was hosting a Steam Rally - we did not attend, but this delightful vehicle made its way along the main street as we were passing by
What was there of interest at the water side? Well interesting happenings at St John's bridge as the boat on the left was trying to moor in a rather tight space. I am pleased to report that no contact was made and the mooring effort was successful.
Mooring at times was at a premium and on Friday evening nb Kings Gambit breasted up with us
They had a very important crew member - Harley - a male look alike of our sometime crew member Kiera. He is a beautiful dog and very well behaved, but feeling very sorry for himself as he had hurt his left front leg and had had to visit a vet for treatment. They are fairly certain it is a ligament problem that will right itself given rest and time.
There were other times we were alone
but never for long
It is not often you see one of these on a canal or river! I had to take it through the window, hence the dodgy colour.
At this time of year there is usually a local family who pays a visit or two. I really must get some oats or other food, so I can feed them. It does upset me how many people still feed water birds with bread.
For us there are always Monty walks to be done. One day I took him along to St John's Bridge, just because I wanted to see what was there - well a good view looking back at the boat
and then this rather sad view of what was a "bear's" garden
Leading at the corner to Ye Olde Black Bear
Sadly shut and it does not look as though the oldest public house in Tewkesbury is going to open anytime soon.
I am afraid it is a very sorry sight
Apart from that there was not much else and certainly nothing approaching Monty acceptance, never mind Monty heaven. There is a park near the Abbey which he enjoyed, but the best walk was along part of The Severn Way
Wide open space with a great view of The Abbey and the weather was cool enough for ball games - real Monty heaven
You don't see much of the river - just glimpses here and there
It is accessible at some points, but despite being fairly warm there is no way Monty is getting his feet wet!
Further round tucked away you get a stunning view of the weir
All in all a thoroughly good few days in a place we loved and will go back to.