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Victor's and Barbara's Travel Diaries

 England 2013
Having left Adelaide on Wednesday morning 4th September 2013, we had a stopover at Singapore, then we landed at Heathrow at 5:55 am on Thursday 5th. We took the tube to Green Park, then went to the ROSL Club in St James, who found us accommodation at the Lansdowne Club in Berkeley Square. It was very hot, the last day of a long heat wave, about 30 degrees! We walked all around St James' Palace and Park, we saw the changing of the guard at Horse Guards' Parade, and then again at Buckingham Palace.
Nelson's Column in Trafalgar Square Changing the guard at Horse-Guards' Parade
The next day was cool and rainy. We walked to Westminster to see the Houses of Parliament and the Abbey. We walked along Whitehall to Trafalgar Square and attended a lunchtime concert at St Martin-in-the-Fields. We rested at our club in the afternoon, then went to an evening baroque concert again at St.Martin-in-the-Fields.
Big Ben, Houses of Parliament from Westminster Bridge Victor and Barbara on Wren's Bridge at St.John's.
On Saturday we took a train to Cambridge and dragged our bags from the railway station to St.John's, where we had accommodation in a very spacious set on the ground floor in E staircase New Court. We walked around the Backs a little, then dressed for a black-tie 50th anniversary dinner in hall.
Isaac Newton (1642-1727), in Trinity College Chapel Frances and Roger in the back garden of their home in Cambridge.
On Sunday we walked around the Backs to Trinity, then to Clare, where we explored the marvellous college gardens, then to King's and its chapel. We dined at the Granta pub, overlooking the Cam. On Monday we spent all day with cousin Frances and Roger. We had lunch with them at their local pub, the "Old Spring". On Tuesday it was very cold and rainy. We visited the Round Church, Christ's, Emanuel, the Old Schools, and the Guildhall.
Main gate to 1st Court, St John's. Ely Cathedral.
On Wednesday we picked up a Hertz rental car and drove to Ely. We visited its cathedral, then enjoyed lunch at an extremely characteristic pub crammed with locals. We drove up to Norfolk and stayed at a B&B in Cromer. This seaside place was dark and stormy, we walked along the pier and along the promenade, trying to imagine how Victor had been thrilled by this place when he came here as a child! 
The Manchester Regimental Museum is housed inside Ashton-under-Lyne's town hall.. The Norfolk Arms in Glossop, our base for 4 days.
The next day we drove north-west to Glossop in the Derbyshire Peak District. We found a fine old hotel, "Norfolk Arms" in the centre of town, and made this our base for 4 days. On Friday we drove toward Manchester, to the Regimental Museum in Ashton-Under-Lyne. We had an appointment with the curator, and we handed over Uncle William's letters from the Somme, and his medals and a few personal items. The museum will care for these items into the future, and display them as it sees fit.
Where is the prison for the criminal dogs? We saw this in front of the Gomersal School. The Red House Museum in Gomersal was holding a "Heritage Day" when we visited it.
On Saturday we drove across the Pennines to Gomersal, Yorkshire.  We saw the Red House Museum, which is a delightful 1830s cloth merchant's home with fascinating Brontë connections. Charlotte Brontë visited the house often, and featured Red House in her novel Shirley. We saw period rooms, enchanting recreated gardens and people dressed in Victorian costumes, as we were fortunate to arrive on a "Heritage Day".  .
One of the few remaining Gomersall family gravestones in Birstal Churchyard. Birstal Church.
In the afternoon we drove to nearby Birstal to visit the churchyard where many Gomersall ancestors are buried, from 1580 onwards. We then went on to Oakwell Hall, a magnificent stately home built in 1589 and still maintained in virtually its original condition. On Sunday it poured with rain all day, so we read newspapers and books in our Glossop hotel room.
Our barn-conversion cottage at Botvyl Farm, near Church Stretton, Shropshire. The Feathers Hotel, Ludlow.
On Monday we drove to Shropshire and settled into a cottage that we had booked in advance, in a lovely farm right beside Caer Caradoc. This has 3 bedrooms, a huge dining/ kitchen, and a lounge, a bit more space then strictly necessary!  It is a beautifully-executed barn conversion. We used it as a base for visiting Auntie Stella, Wendy and Bryan, in Shrewsbury, and Rosemary and Fred in Lyth Hill. From here we also visited Ludlow, a pretty town jam-packed with  original Tudor timbered buildings. We also went to Ironbridge. On Saturday 21st we set off for 3 days in Wales.
Ironbridge We stayed in an attic room in this hotel in Burford, in the Cotswolds near Oxford.
On our return to England from Wales, we headed towards Oxford, stopping a night at the Royal Oak Hotel in Burford. This is a very pretty town, sadly it was drizzly and cloudy. The next day we went to Oxford, using their "Park and Ride" system. We toured the city on foot, visiting several colleges and university buildings. We then drove towards Cambridge, and had a lot of trouble finding accommodation for the night. We eventually landed at a lovely place, the Abbotsly Golf and Country Club.
Bodlean Library Oxford A carousel errected on St.John's lawns for a  film being shot about Stephen Hawking.
The next day we drove into Cambridge and dumped the car at Hertz.   We settled once again into St.John's, this time in a comfortable ground floor set in F staircase, New Court, for 4 nights. We were attending the University's Alumni Weekend. W went to several different lectures and tours. Barbara went to English Literature, the problems of "doing good", a gardening tour at Pembroke College, amongst others. Victor toured the University Library, went to a lecture on research into "Tailored Cancer Cures"  in the Pathology Dept., and witnessed amazing scientific demonstrations at the "New" Cavendish Laboratory.  We both attended the official reception at the Fitzwilliam museum, where the Vice-Chancellor gave the welcoming speech. Then we both went to a concert of Brahms' Requiem in King's College Chapel.
The huge new double-width punts from Scudamores, by Queen's. They carry 12 toursists per punt. Westminster evening skyline from our bedroom window at ROSL Club in St James.
On the Saturday we went to lectures in the Sidgewick site, including "Cells, Molecules, and Cancer",  the "Hadron Collider and the Higg's Boson particle",  "Melting of the Greenland ice sheet", the "Raspberry Pi Computer", and the "Future for Nuclear Energy":  In the evening we donned black tie and evening gown for the Johnian Dinner in Hall. On Sunday we visited Madingly Hall, a lovely stately home used by the University for "Continuing Education", then a lecture on the DNA verification of Richard III when his remains were dug up from a car park in Leicester, and lastly, a guided tour of the Old Schools, including the University Senate House in which degrees are awarded. In the evening we were kindly invited to dinner by Frances and Roger at their house on the other side of Jesus Common. The next day we took the train to London, and moved into the ROSL Club,  just off  St.James' Street, for our last 3 days in London.
Royal Naval College, Greenwich. The Tower of London from the Thames.
We visited Greenwich, its Naval College, Royal Observatory, the Cutty Sark  and the Queen's House art gallery. We returned to Westminster in a Thames tour-boat. The next day we took the tube to Hampstead Heath and Parliament Hill. It was very cold and damp. In the afternoon we walked all around Regents' Park.
The London "Eye" beside what used to be called County Hall. The Royal Overseas Leaugue Club, Park Place, St.James. We stayed here for our last 3 nights before heading home to Oz.
On this trip to London we saw several of the "new icons" constructed in the last decade or two. This included the enormous big wheel called the "London Eye", the "Shard", and the incredibly ugly "Millennium Dome" at Greenwich.
Two heavily-armed policemen guarding Downing Street. The Royal Albert Hall.
On our last full day in London we went to Kensington to visit the National History Museum, the Victoria and Albert Museum, and the Science Museum. We walked to the Albert Hall, and went inside the Royal School of Music. On Thursday 3rd October we were very tired, and it was raining, so we hung around the club before eventually taking the tube to Heathrow Airport, for a late departure back to Australia. We had an 8 hour wait in Singapore airport, and landed in Adelaide on Saturday morning 5th October.