Cream tea ...May 4 in the United Kingdom
I choose the Cornish way
Scone, then jam and then the clotted Cream 😀
I choose the Cornish way
Scone, then jam and then the clotted Cream 😀
Busy day today, as it was our last UNESCO world heritage site in the mainland UK! There's still a handful of sites in UK territory but in far-flung places (Gough Island in the south Atlantic, Henderson Island near Antarctica etc), but this would finish the mainland for us. So we drove south-east of Manchester for about 90 minutes to the Derwent Valley in Derbyshire, where our site awaited.
It's actually quite a large site, because along this valley are the first ever modern factories as we'd think of them. Large, industrial-scale enterprises where cotton was milled en masse by semi-skilled labour, as opposed to being done in small shops by highly skilled workers. The main difference was the water spinning wheels - the owner Sir Richard Arkwright had the idea to harness the power of the river and use it to drive milling wheels 24/7 which had never been done before.
So we stopped first at the village of Cromford where the original mill was. Interesting, and very important, but there's not actually that much to see - we didn't feel like spending 8 pounds each to visit the museum. Nearby was another mill, and a town built for the workers - okay conditions, but the social reforms we'd seen in places like New Lanark and Saltaire were still a hundred years away.
Had a nice lunch at a cafe in town, wandered around another nearby mill, had a coffee and then wrapped everything up. This was the last site for a few weeks and sadly my heart wasn't quite in it. The industrial revolution era sites are very hit-and-miss - I guess it's a difficult problem to preserve an enormous old heritage-listed factory, but not completely waste the land and space. So they're mostly filled with gift shops and conference facilities which is a bit odd.
Back up to Manchester where getting caught in some traffic meant that we only just made it to dinner in time. We were having a birthday dinner for my step-sister who lives in Manchester, along with her extended family. Another nice pub with good food, though sadly Schnitzel wasn't allowed in. Nice to catch up with some people I hadn't seen in 10-15 years! Back home where I didn't sleep very well - our rental car was due back in the morning and given how dodgy the company had been on pick-up, I wasn't looking forward to taking it back!Read more
Well I have to say it's lovely when you rediscover such a beautiful walk and one with fab memories - did make me keep as my boy loads though as he used to love that walk - and brought a tear to the eye
My fancy bed turned out to be very comfortable.
I headed into Chesterfield this morning.
The main reason was to buy a small suitcase as my other one is getting rather full. I came across a Debenhams and found what I was looking for.
Chesterfield is a market town and Fridays are general market day. The market took a bit of finding but I did find it. They weren't that exciting but it was interesting to read the history behind the market.
Dominating the skyline is the crooked spire. It is the spire of the Catholic church. It was easy to find - just had to follow the spire. No one is quite sure why it is crooked - it seems to have rotated. The "sensible" theory is that the foundation of the spire was made of green wood that dried and twisted the spire.
Two of the legends: one that Satan landed on the spire, the insense made him sneeze and the spire twisted. The other is that a virgin was married in the church and the spire bent to take a look, it couldn't stand back up straight. If another virgin was to marry in the church it would bend the other way and straighten up!
The church itself was lovely, built along the lines of a small cathedral.
The afternoon was spent at Chatswood - the home of the Duke and Duchesd of Devonshire. It is simply gorgeous.
I toured the house first, my favourite room was the library. I could only look in from the door but would have loved to sit in there with a book. Seeing the bedrooms set up was very interesting.
The house is very grand but the gardens are so much more interesting. I spent two hours there and only left because they were closing.
I first did a tour which gave interesting information. Then I walked around. I found my way to the maze and eventually found the centre.
Walking back to the entrance I could hear the sheep, it reminded me of being on the farm on chilly evenings when the sound of the sheep travels.
I heard (on tv?) people say that the countryside smells. It does, which really surprises me, maybe there is a greater concentration of stock than we have, plus you are often driving over land the stock roams over.
I had dinner at The Devonshire Arms. It is a very cosy pub, unfortunately all the tables there were reserved but they had a new section in which I got a table.
The food was a lot fancier than it sounded.
I had liver parfait to start with. I had to laugh when the only other people in the room (it was early) asked me what liver parfait was. I could only tell them I expected it to be like pate but lighter. I'm no expert, fortunately I was right.
Main was gammon steak and fried egg. I've seen gammon steak and egg on a lot of menus recently so I decided to try it. It brought back memories of ham steak and pineapple rings that we used to get at the hostel, hence my hesitation. It was nothing like that. It was quite a thick steak of ham with a fried egg and then lots of fancy bits - dried radish and something else, potato gems (which was just weird) and 4 different "smears". It was nice though and I'd eat gammon steak again.
Chesterfield market and market hall
Decided to go for a bit of a Sunday afternoon drive and ended up at monsal head - forgot how nice it is up here and thinking this will be my next walk in the peaks :-)
Destination Peak District, done! First day of the journey complete, and time for a well earned pint at the Old Dog in Thorpe. The car certainly proved her pedigree on the way, eating up the miles and sticking to the roads like **** to a blanket! Tomorrow we climb up through the Peaks, taking on Snake Pass on our way to Yorkshire.
Barely left the B&B, and stumbled across the most impressive private collection of classic cars 😊 Beautiful examples and some great automotive memorabilia. Very inspiring 😁
Tickets bought months in advance we were really looking forward to an amazing weekend of music and culture at the Y Not festival near Matlock in Derbyshire. We had arranged to go with our friends James and Natalie Pearson, who live in Monmouthshire and have a campervan of their own. We had agreed to meet up at a pub near the festival, but the traffic from Wales, coupled with a later than anticipated departure meant James and Natalie were a couple of hours late and we ended up getting on to the site as the act they wanted to see on Thursday evening finished.
We parked up next to one another, pitched a small tent that they had bought along between the vans and put up two wind brakes and our flag pole, which immediately blew over! Despite that we decided to walk down and take a look around and it was immediately obvious that the heavy rain over the last few days had taken its toll on the footpaths and the ground was boggy, making it tough to get around.
We went back to the vans after slogging our way around the site and compared food and drink shopping, between the two families we had enough wine, cheese and other snacky things to last a month! Without further ado we open a three bottle box of wine and pulled out an assortment of cheeses and biscuits, we listened to music and chatted till about 2am, when it began to rain again. It rained constantly all night and we took a team decision to go down to the festival site in the afternoon. By then the footpaths were more like mudslides, the tent camping areas looked like something out of a World Was One movie, everyone was up to their ankles in sludge and walking anywhere was a struggle....and still it kept raining.Read more
You might also know this place by the following names:
Derbyshire Dales District