Warwickshire Wanderings – Part 3

Thanks to being reasonably sensible Sunday night and sticking – at least partially – to halves, things weren’t too foggy Monday morning as we made our second assault on Coventry.

As many will know, Coventry took one hell of a pounding during the Second World War and a lot of it was completely flattened. What was created when it was rebuilt is still the subject of debate but some of the original city did survive including St Mary’s Guildhall which we were reliably informed was worth a look around. That idea was soon thwarted however when signs indicating a private function barred our entry.

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Godiva’s Cafe in the undercroft though provided an opportunity to replenish caffeine levels. And very nice it was too.

Less lucky was Coventry’s original cathedral as but a shell remains. It provides an interesting contrast to it’s more modern neighbour completed in 1962.

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The shopping area is not one to excite, although no doubt at the time it would have been considered innovative and modern. Interestingly Dresden, which took a tit for tat pounding from the Allies decided to re-create rather than re-design. Having seen the pictures I know what I prefer.DSC_0045DSC_0049

On the way out we stopped at the Coventry Canal Basin, which marks the end of the Coventry Canal. A statue of 18th century canal engineer James Brindley overlooks. Next up was a ride out into the country, pausing briefly at Kenilworth Castle before heading on to Hatton Locks.

Comprising 21 locks over a stretch of less than 2 miles the locks raise (& lower) the Grand Union Canal by 45 metres or 148 feet. It’s an impressive sight and in the distance you can just see St Mary’s Church in Warwick.

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Equally impressive was the little café that sits by the second lock from the top, and just a few minutes walk from the car park. A lovely toastie was washed down by an equally enjoyable cuppa. Served properly too – in a tea pot. Reasonably priced and friendly service too. Well worth a look.

The oven stayed cold again as we headed out for an evening meal and the chance to indulge in a bit of ‘research’. The first pub The Bear at Berkswell – a chain I might add – clearly did not want to take our money. It was woefully understaffed and after eventually being told there was no room in the restaurant but we could eat in the bar – not a problem - we gave up waiting even for a drink. A pity as it came recommended, but our second choice was much better – The White Lion at Hampton-in-Arden. A great choice of ales, combined with great reasonably priced food and friendly service made for a very enjoyable visit and if you are staying at Somers Wood like us it’s only a short drive away.

Tuesday was a day off – from sightseeing anyway. I caught up with the blog in the morning, then we met with friends from Sheffield for lunch in Meriden. The afternoon saw us again at Jacksons for some more caravan related purchases – a replacement strut for one of the front windows, a spare key and a new brighter light for the wardrobe. It seems dark once all my clothes are in there. I can’t think why……

Part 4 coming soon.

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