I’ve been getting a bit lazy with this blog over the last week or so and I have no good excuse for it so I will attempt to get up to date as soon as possible.
The next leg of our trip took us from Eckington bridge to Tewkesbury and again we set off with the intention of arriving mid-morning. It was sunny and windy again but we hadn’t appreciated that the wind direction had changed and was coming from the north and it was cold, very cold. After an hour, I gave in and pulled a sweatshirt on over my tee shirt. The sweatshirt wasn’t enough and within another twenty minutes there was a third layer (Navy surplus 100% wool jumper) between it and the tee shirt. After braving the elements for a while more, we arrived at Tewkesbury and moored just below King John’s bridge and opposite Ye Old Black Bear Inn, Gloster’s oldest pub according to the signage. Well it may be the oldest in the county but it’s closed now and in fact looks like it was just abandoned one day leaving everything in place.
We paid our mooring fees to the lock keeper and prepared to stay in the town for the next few days. There was a food festival scheduled for the weekend (we arrived on the Thursday – just to get the timeline straight) so we began our stay with a good look around the Abbey. At the Dissolution of the Monasteries the Abbey was dissolved and all its valuables seized and placed in Henry VIII’s coffers. The Abbey was purchased by the townspeople for £453, the price of the lead on the roof and the metal in the bells, to become their parish church. You can read all about it here.
The town of Tewkesbury has a rich history and its streets are full of old and interesting buildings so we spent a lot of our time exploring on the Thursday afternoon and all day Saturday after our visit to the food festival. If you’re wondering what happened to Friday, well we caught the bus and went to Upton upon Severn to have a look at the place – more of that later but as a result of our visit we decided to move on the Monday morning rather than on the Sunday as we had originally planned. The extra day was spent on a shopping trip to Morrisons followed by a circular walk around the island formed by the Severn and the Avon.