Friday, 12 June 2015

Travelling north along the border

Tuesday 9th June to Wednesday 10th June 2015

We spent part of Tuesday having a closer look at Waltham Abbey - it was market day so we usually try to visit those whenever they occur.
Well it was not something to write home about as far as a market was concerned but I was fascinated with the accents that were going around - there was one woman whose voice was a dead ringer for Mandy Cohen (aka Terry Jones) in The Life of Brian - if only she had said "he's not the Mesiah, he's a naughty boy" I would have been satisfied.

A few others sounded very much like those that you hear as villains on any police drama here - mind you, I would never cast aspertions on the character of the marketstall holders anywhere - but it was amusing to just listen

Just a small section of the market - actually it was almost the entire market
The main interest in this particular expedition was the Waltham Abbey Church which dates back over 1000 years.

The weather was glorious and we enjoyed a very sunny morning as we wandered around the grounds reading the information boards and then finally going inside the church.
We had a goodchat with one of the deacons who gave us a great deal of information about the history of the church and, of course, explained the change in layout over the centuries - far better than we would have understood from the literature.

The pedestrian portal of the gate into the Abbey grounds

The organ - currently going through a restoration program

The Church ceiling - you cannot see it clearly but there are
pictures depicting the signs of the zodiac and associated
activities that the parishioners would undertake during those months

As usual - a candle for Lauren

This painting dates from the 15th century but was covered over and only found
in the 19th century

This was the church of Harold (of 1066 fame) and he arranged for a stone church to be built on the present site; other extensions and a cloisters were built and destroyed/demolished over the intervening years until the present church is all that remains, but it is well worth the visit.
It is reported to be the last resting place of Harold, although the exact site is not known (exactly) - maybe a look under the carpark will help.

Following that we thought that we should then walk back over into Hertfordshire and visit  Waltham Cross, which appears to be the go-ahead town of he two - at least judging by the extent of the shopping precinct, houses and having a rail station.
The Cross in Waltham Cross

Of the two, I think Waltham Abbey has much more appeal.

Unfortunately we didn't have time to visit the LeaValley White Water Centre (the venue for the slalom canoeing events for London 2012) but we may see it on the way back - Adam from nb Briar Rose mentioned it to us.

We felt the need to keep moving - it is a matter of viewing the overall plan and whilst an extra day would not have caused any problems there is a time when you feel the need to move on - that and the fact that we needed a train station for work on Friday night.

Cruising was very pleasant if not a little on the cooler side and we finally decided on a spot after reaching Hoddesdon - enough miles and enough locks for the day.

I have heard of Angry Birds but now we have Angry Boats

Looking from the lock over to the waters of Nazeing Mead

After all it was a pleasant quiet place as we found out later in the evening - taking a bit of a walk further along the tow path where would be passing the following day, it was just simply stunning with the sun now out and filtering through the trees - so nice that on the way back we stopped off at the Fish and Eels to enjoy it even more.

pleased with the outcome apart from the shadows, but taking a selfie looking
into the sun made it difficult to see what was on the screen

Such a pleasant way to end the day.

5 Mile, 5 Locks
YTD: 419 Miles, 232 Locks, 10 Tunnels, 2 Lift Bridges, 11 Swing Bridges

Totals: 3313 Miles, 2353 Locks, 108 Tunnels, 36 Lift Bridges, 162 Swing Bridges

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