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Published: July 17th 2016
As fans of "Great Railways Journeys of the World", shown on SBS television we were delighted to be catching the train from St Pancras to Leicester. The glorious St Pancras station, built in the Victoria era, was very nearly demolished which would have been a tragedy had it happened. Thank goodness for public pressure!
Deciding not to hire a car this visit I'd booked all our trips online through 'Trainline' before we left home which was both easy and saved us money. Train travel in the UK can be very expensive so, following advice from a Scottish acquanance, I registered with Trainline who email you when the cheaper train tickets go on sale. So, should you be contemplating using train travel here in the UK I would strongly advice you to do likewise; the savings are quite substantial.
Once we arrived at Leicester Railway Station it was a walk of less than five minutes to the Grand Hotel where we were booked to stay for two nights. Built at the end of the 19th century the hotels heyday was undoubtedly in Victorian times. Despite the fact that it was advertised as a 4 star hotel, the hotels glory days
are definitely over. And from the many grandiose Victorian buildings in Leicester I'd imagine that the whole city's heyday was probably also in Victorian times.
The main reason for wanting to travel to Leicester was to see my two sisters Karen and Charlotte and my brother Stuart. On Saturday I'd organised to have lunch with my two darling sisters, Karen having earlier booked us into a Carluccios restaurant. Karen's husband Bill joined us as did Charlotte's daughter Emily...and a good time was had by all! There was lots to talk about.
Before meeting Stuart on Sunday we went to visit King Richard 111. Born in 1452, crowned in 1483, killed at the Battle of Bosworth in 1485, Richard's body was finally discovered and exhumed in 2012 in a Leicester car park which was the Greyfriars friary when he was buried there. After exhaustive research which proved that the body was indeed King Richard 111, finally on Sunday 22 March 2015 the mortal remains of England's last Plantagenet monarch was finally reinterred in Leicester Cathedral. I'd purchased tickets online to visit the King Richard 111 Visitor Centre before leaving home and what a fascinating experience it turned out to
be. However before we visited the centre we went into the Cathedral to see where King Richard 111 was interred and where we enjoyed listening to a visiting choir practising in readiness for the morning service. The whole experience was right up my street, being addicted to history as I am. Kev too enjoyed the experience for the fascination of the story and the science behind the discovery. I could have spent more time there but with a bus to catch to Rearsby we had to be content with just under two hours.
My darling brother Stuart met us off the bus at Rearsby then drove us to the Gaddesby pub, the Cheney Arms for lunch. There we met Stuart's grandson Clarke who we hadn't seen for about twenty years. Lots to talk about again. We also found time to visit my childhood home in Mill Road, Rearsby which seems to get smaller every time I see it!
It was great to spend time with Karen, Stuart and Charlotte and also Bill, Emily and Clarke so thank you all. I hope it's not too long before we get time to repeat the excercise!
On our last day
Leicester produced perfect summer's weather but as we'll be heading north to Scotland tomorrow it might be a little cooler.
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