The peregrinations, both geographical and mental, of Graham & Jill on narrowboat Armadillo. It being a hodge-podge or gallimaufrey of travels, thoughts and frequently inaccurate facts.
Sunday, 14 April 2013
Round the Thames Barrier.
Still playing the country bumpkins gawping at the big city so yesterday we went for a look at Westminster Abbey. Never seen so many tombs, the most annoying thing was that no photographs were allowed. Couldn't even capture the graffiti.
I did grab this though, the oldest door in Britain. Made about 1050 for Edward the Confessor. You never know what you'll find.
Medieval wall paintings in the Chapter House, the entire interior of the abbey would once have been covered in brightly coloured pictures. Mostly long gone.
Just outside the west door, I was determined to capture some illicit carvings. Well done Mr. Measson, your signature is still legible after two hundred and twenty seven years.
The great West Door, probably the most iconic view of the abbey. Having exhausted the possibilities of the abbey we decided on a real busman's holiday, a river trip. For eleven quid apiece we could go and admire the Thames Barrier! So off we went, it turned out to be an interesting trip, greatly enlivened by the commentary of the boat's skipper, it was fairly inaccurate but highly amusing. I never knew that the word wharf was an acronym of Ware House At River Front, but he assured us that's what it is, almost had me convinced.
Cleopatra's Needle on the Embankment.
The new Globe Theatre on the south bank at Southwark.
This is the site of Execution Dock where convicted pirates were hung and the tide was allowed to wash over their bodies three times, presumably to make sure they really were dead. Probably the most famous pirate executed was the notorious Captain William Kidd who was hung for murder and piracy in 1701. It's probable that he was in fact a privateer but his Letters of Marque conveniently, for his financial backers, disappeared before his trial. His body was gibbeted at Tilbury Point for three years as a warning to other malefactors.
The Prospect of Whitby, claimed to be the oldest pub on the river, once the hangout of thieves, cuthroats and villains and known as The Devils Tavern, in the 1960's it became the haunt of celebrities such as Rod Steiger, Kirk Douglas and even royalty. Now a pub restaurant for the local yuppies.
Cutty Sark at Greenwich.
The O2 arena. By the time we got this far it was blowing half a gale and pelting down with rain.
Did you know that for £22 you can take what is described as the "Skywalk"? Basically you can walk up to the top of the dome. These idiots splendid chaps were going up in atrocious conditions, I wished them luck.
The new cable car across the river, Boris got stuck on it a while back.
Approaching the Thames Barrier, we were really bouncing about by this stage.
Archer class patrol boat HMS Blazer coming through the barrier.
Through the barrier.
On the way back, the entrance/exit of Limehouse Marina, for anyone preparing to run the London Thames.
And back at Westminster Pier.
The Thames is now back on red boards, contemplating our next move.
You didn't think we took Armadillo out there did you?