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Europe » United Kingdom » England » Durham County » Durham February 2nd 2020

Where in the world is Gabby the motorhome. She is having well earned rest in the car park of the Masons Arms. Unlike Europe our own small isle does not cater for motorhomers. Caravan and Motorhome Club sites are well out of the way . Suitable for tuggers but not for us in vans. They are expensive . Over £25 a night . Not something you want to pay when you have paid a lot of cash for a lithium battery and do not need electricity. Just a bit of hardstanding. Their members book up the sites for months on end so even if you wanted to get it they would be full . The Camping Club - the friendly one offers cheaper nights of around £15 but even so they are still not what we ... read more
Behind the altar
Durham cathedral on a dull old grey day
Durham castle

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Durham County » Durham July 27th 2018

We arrived at Newcastle airport just before lunch time and after raiding an ATM, we made our way to the Airport Metro Station and caught the first train to Newcastle Central. It was very humid in Newcastle and around 28 degrees. From the metro station below Newcastle Central, we climbed the escalators up into the Railway Station where we were confronted with mayhem. Lightning from a thunderstorm had knocked out a train bunch of signals in Yorkshire so the trains heading south to London were all cancelled. We needed to catch any one of those trains for our 25 minute ride south down to Darlington where our Campervan awaits. Amongst all the bedlam at the station, we talked to some railway customer service people who told us to jump onto the train on platform 2 which ... read more
Durham
Durham

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Durham County » Durham May 28th 2018

After the FA Cup Final last week, I have to admit I was scratching around for possibilities. It was a Bank Holiday weekend. The Other Half had us destined to visit the Outlaw, so the car pointed north again. The majority of leagues had completed their programme, so it was down to an hour or so of intrepid Internet searching to come up with a possible Cup Final whose geographical distance did not render it into the bracket of beyond economic sense. The question is could anything match the Totalsport Alan Hood Trophy Final that the previous Bank Holiday threw up in Hartlepool? The rest of the country would be solely focused on enjoying the warm weather and watching the Champions League Final taking place in Kiev. A team in red had made the cut, but ... read more
Durham Light Infantry Statue
Durham Castle
Gala Theatre, Durham

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Durham County » Durham August 5th 2017

Checked out of my guest house and headed to Costa to get breakfast, mainly because I knew they'd have plant milk. Then off to the station to get the train across the breadth of England to Durham. Some very pretty scenery between Preston and Leeds, another part of England that was unfamiliar to me, the southern part of the Yorskshire Dales. So much left to explore. A rowdy lot got on at Leeds, complete with alcoholic beverages. Squaddies and possibly a stag do. Changed trains at York, and my friend who I was possibly meeting couldn't make it but he said he might stand in the field behind his house and wave at my train. I think he missed it though. In Durham I decided to have a quick walk around, despite being rather worse for ... read more
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Europe » United Kingdom » England » Durham County » Durham September 2nd 2016

A warm September morning in London turned into a warmish afternoon in Durham. The scenery on the way up was pretty unspectacular - mostly flat - until we actually drew close to Durham where the cathedral and castle towered above the trees and the station. Durham grew round the shrine of St Cuthbert who was a hermit monk who lived and died on Lindisfarne, attracting pilgrims until the Vikings threatened to invade in the tenth century. The monks took St Cuthbert's body and travelled around the north of England until they reached Durham and built an Anglo Saxon cathedral to house his shrine. A Norman cathedral, was then built round that, and became the frontrunner of the Gothic style of architecture with pointed arches across the ceiling, emabling taller building. Inhabitants must have thighs of steel ... read more

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Durham County » Durham September 12th 2013

By the time I arrived at Durham it was raining, thankfully not pouring down though and it wasn't long before I was settled into my university digs as part of the conference. After registration there was nothing on until 6pm when supper - a delectable repast - was served followed by the keynote address given by Emeritus Professor Christine Alexander. Then there was a launch of all the Juvenilia books so far published with drinks and a 'Juvenilia' cake on offer too! I can report that my bed was VERY comfortable so I was mightily happy! When I finally got into bed each night I indulged myself by reading another chapter of David Lodge's "Nice Work" which I'm loving. It's so good that each morning too I have to read more of the book. And it's ... read more
Juvenilia cake and wine to celebrate!
Dining room
Reading Room

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Durham County » Durham September 11th 2013

I'm getting used to the British train system; as I start to write this I'm on the train, boarded at Leicester on my way to Derby. Having travelled from Melton Mowbray to Leicester by train, and with another change to catch a train to Durham once I arrive in Derby I'm beginning to feel that I know what I'm doing. Ann drove me to the Melton station; one last cuddle before I left! Prior to arriving at the station we popped into our old Alma Mater - King Edward V11 Grammar School - which has closed and, having looked over it last year we expected some work to have been done to turn it into apartments. But nothing which was such a disappointment. It's such a gorgeous old building that I do hope something will be ... read more

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Durham County » Durham July 8th 2013

Had a traditional, full English breakfast this morning: egg, fried toast, tomato, mushrooms, sausage, and ham slices. Set me up for the day. Then left Durham with very overcast weather for Hadrian's Wall a bit farther North. After two short trains and a bus, I was dropped off in the nicely named town, Once Brewed (Twice Brewed is just down the road... not kidding) and began hiking up to the wall. This part of England, the true Borderlands with Scotland, is extremely beautiful. Rolling hills, lakes, farmland, and giant fields of flowers in bloom. Like walking around in paradise. The hiking, though, was less than heavenly, since it involved literally following the wall up and down the hills it traces. But the views were worth the effort, and there was something extremely rewarding walking along a ... read more
Everything in Bloom
Up Against the Wall
At the Wall

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Durham County » Durham July 7th 2013

I left bright and early from Leeds, which really is a very cool city - it's very clean and modern and feels like maybe it's the yuppie capital of the North. Took a short train ride to York, my main destination for the day. This city really is the capital of Northern England and is absolutely jammed packed with history. Most people forget that this area was once the Northernmost extent of the Roman Empire, and York itself began as a garrison town. Then came the Vikings and then the Normans and finally Edward I moved his capital here in the 13th century - he actually started Parliament in the York Minster I visited today. The York Minster really is the whole reason I came to York. It's a massive, beautiful cathedral packed with history and ... read more
Facade of York Minster
Side View of York Minster
Minster from Medieval Wall

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Durham County » Durham May 30th 2013

Geo: 54.7787, -1.55961Well after a couple busy days around Scotland the next few days to follow were relatively low key. Tuesday Natalie and I got dropped into Durham for a wander about. We walked home through the farmland between Newton Hall and Durham. We were out for dinner that night with Andrew and Anna Lise. The initial choice was Italian, but as they werent interested in serving us, we changed our plans to a Thai restaurant called Zen. It was a tasty, but expensive meal. With dregs of light still in the sky at 10.30, we walked back through the farmland.Wednesday, was a quiet one. Miserable weather meant our trip to the lake district wouldn't happen. Nat and I took a walk to a nearby pub for a cheap lunch. Two courses for 2 for 9£. ... read more
Beg Stan Beg
Platypus Returns
Our messy room




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