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Runnymede

After leaving Windsor, we made our way to Runnymede. The river skirts around the Royal estate at Windsor, passes by Old Windsor and then gets to Runnymede. In the two days that we spent at Runnymede, we did so on an ideal mooring – ideal from the point of view that it was exactly the right length and at the right height for us to step on to the bank – we visited all the memorials there and also went to the royal estate farm shop. The latter was a bit of a disappointment really. We had expected that it would be selling produce from the crown estate but in reality it was selling nothing that couldn’t be bought in any independent fruiterers. We didn’t buy much but one of our purchases was supposedly a dozen free range eggs. As eggs go they were no better than a basic supermarket offering, pale yolks and a bland taste.

The real attraction of Runnymede is that it has a number of memorials. One dedicated to President John F Kennedy which stands in an acre of land which has been gifted to the American people. There is the memorial to the 20,000 airmen and women who died during WW2 and whose bodies were never recovered for one reason or another. Of course Runnymede is most famous for being the place where the Magna Carta was signed and there is a memorial there to commemorate that event. The memorial was actually paid for by the American Bar Association because the Magna Carta is the foundation of the American Constitution and as such it means more to the American people than it probably does to the citizens of the United Kingdom. Interestingly enough, despite the fact that many nations have constitutions which are based on the principles laid down in the Magna Carta more than 800 years ago, the UK has no written constitution!

Here are the pictures.

Fifty steps, representing the fifty states of the US lead up to the JFK memorial.

JFK Memorial.

An example of the lists of missing airmen from WW2.

US memorial to the signing of the Magna Carta in 1215.

The Jurors, modern art representing the principles at the heart of the Magna Carta.

The Jurors

The City of London away in the distance.

Windsor Castle from the top of the memorial.

 

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