England - Round The World Tour 2 2003 Day 150


Saturday 9th August

Another day and another couple of ancient historic sites kept us occupied today. I had a crack at trying to empty the waste water lines of whatever it was that was causing the water to drain so slowly. Alas the problem is greater than my ability to fix it with the limited tools that we have with us. When we get back to Holland, I will have the water lines replaced and re-fitted.

When we checked into the camp-site yesterday evening, the nice old lady that parted me with the £10 camp-site fee gave me all sorts of useful information about things to do in the surrounding area. Chief among these suggestions was to visit the Forest of Dean that is just a few minutes away. We headed in this direction after leaving the camp and spent about an hour or so driving around within the forest looking for a good place to stop and have lunch. We stumbled upon an old mine and cave site that had been converted into a tourist attraction. It seemed like a reasonably nice place to visit so we stopped off and toured the mine for an hour or so after fixing lunch.

We left the forest and headed towards our next English Heritage site that was in the general direction of our progress towards Coventry. Goodridge Castle is neither a complete ruin nor is it wholly intact either. The audio tour provided the usual, fascinating insight into the castle’s history and design and we examined the site both inside and out thoroughly. We finished off our visit with our now usual ice-cream treat and set off again in a Northerly direction.

The last attraction on the agenda for today was Whitley Court. The outer façade of this huge stately home is mostly all that remains now. The surrounding grounds and fountains, however, are still as magnificent as any time in their past and the whole place was nicely complemented by the gorgeous English summer’s day weather. We arrived at Whitley Court rather late in the day and were a bit rushed in getting to see everything before closing time at six o’clock in the afternoon. Despite the time pressure, however, we did manage to see everything that was worth seeing.

We spend the next hour trying to find a camp-site to set up for the night. Although they are everywhere in this part of the country, we struck out at the first two that we tried as they seemed to only cater to permanent mobile homes (somewhat of a contradiction in terms). We ultimately found a nice camp-site situated close to the River Severn. At just £6 for the night with electricity hook-up, it’s the best value so far.

I spent some time chatting with our new, temporary, neighbours about television antennas the pros and cons of getting a satellite dish before finishing off the evening playing bingo with the rest of the campers at the nearby social club.

As ever, we are still unsure of what tomorrow will bring but there is a historic battle re-enactment event taking place in Coventry this weekend so we may head over there to check it out.