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Published: June 14th 2010
The front of the Abbey as you come to it from near the Roman Baths
The place we are staying in is a lovely old inn that is in an out of the way spot as previously mentioned. We stopped at the Railway Inn on our return from Cheddar as the owners are from Tasmania, but they were born in England, moved with parents to Australia and then decided on a lifestyle change. They literally stuck a pin in a map of the UK, rented a flat and commenced looking for a pub to run. They decided on Clutton as the village is small enough to get to know most people and not too large to have too much around them. They are working on a 10 year plan, but the lady of the house likes the cold weather and thought that even the few hot days in Hobart were too much for her, hence the shift to the mother country. They intend to do trips to the continent, which you can do easily from the UK, and then assess the situation at the end of 10 years.
Our room in the pub is large by European standards with a small lounge area as well as separate en-suite. For those people who have been to Europe,
Inside the Abbey
The vaulted ceiling and some of the stained glass windows inside the Abbey
they will know that room is tight all through the continent, so we consider ourselves rather lucky for the extra space.
After getting advice from the owner about parking in Bath, we drove to a Park & Ride outside the city and caught the bus into the centre, instead of trying to negotiate our way into a car-park, pay through the nose, and then drive back to our digs. Only cost £2.50 each for a return trip so thought it was a good deal. Trip only took about 10minutes with quite a few people utilising the service.
Map in hand, Lee and I decided to look around Bath and visit the places that we had missed on in our previous visit. First stop was Bath Abbey which has been in existence as a place of worship for Christians since 676AD. Bath was around well before then as the Romans began to develop the place as a spa and centre of Pagan worship around the hot springs which exist in the area. The Normans built a Cathedral there in about 1090, but this declined into ruins by 1499 when it was replaced by the present Abbey church. More damage and restoration
This is a small example of the stained glass widows that are prevalent throughout the Abbey
followed in the ensuing century plus until 1611 when it was finally re-roofed and fully repaired. It was bombed in WW2 in 1942 but has since been cleaned, restored and opened as a tourist attraction. It is still a fully functioning religious centre and costs upwards of £2,000 per year to maintain. These costs are mainly met by tourists. There are some fabulous stained glass windows and vaulted ceilings inside the abbey as well as intricate carvings and engravings.
We followed the tourist trail around the city, across the River Avon and up to the Circle, a collection of 3 story buildings, arranged in a circle as the name suggests. Hard to get a photo of this to explain, but will attach an example which illustrates the history in this place. Continued our traipse to the Royal Crescent and then went to the Fashion Museum to look at clothes fashions through the ages. Have to make sacrifices occasionally. After a light lunch and coffee, we walked our way to the oldest house in Bath which was established in 1482 and taken over as bakery in 1680 and still operates today making the same Sally Lunn buns.
Back on the bus
One third of the Circle in Bath. There is a mixture of private homes and offices in these areas. Close living!
to get the car and then back to our digs for a break as we had been on the go for about 4 hours on foot, walking up and down the streets of Bath. Will need to pack carefully tomorrow as we drive to Heathrow to get rid of the car and then get the underground into Paddington station for the final 3 nights of our stay.
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