AAARRGGHH ! UK traffic on the Friday of a bank holiday weekend 🚗🚗🚗🚗🚗 😞
We stopped off at Kenilworth Castle on the way North, which is only ten minutes off the M40, near Coventry.
Kenilworth is another English Heritage property, so again, free for us to get into this year as we’re members. Basically, most of it is atmospheric ruin of the type English Heritage do seem to specialise in…
The main parts of the castle are:
📙 the original 12th century keep
📗some early 13th century work by King John to improve the defences and to flood much of the area around the castle to create a great lake (defence was important if you were an unpopular king), now drained again.
📘 an early 14th century residential block with great hall and other improvements by John of Gaunt
📙 state apartments for Elizabeth I built by Robert Dudley in the late 16th century.
📗 a reconstructed Elizabethan pleasure garden, built from records of the garden created by Robert Dudley for Elizabeth I’s visit in 1575
📘 a gatehouse, again built by Robert Dudley. This is the only building not intentionally ruined following the Civil War; oddly enough the Parliamenarian in charge of the destruction later turned the gatehouse into a house for himself 😉
There is an exhibition in the Tudor stable block giving a bit of a timeline. Plenty happened at Kenilworth over the centuries, so it is interesting if you enjoy history. As it spans such a long period, though, you probably get most out of visiting Kenilworth if you already have some idea of who’s who and the background to some of the main events. If you’re not interested in the history, it’s still a nice set of ruins to visit on a sunny day 🌞
It took a couple of hours to look at Kenilworth and listen to the audioguide. That should have left us plenty of time to get home by mid-late afternoon. It wasn’t to be, though. The traffic has been horrendous.
We finally arrived back home at 8.45pm, having stopped for a quick bite to eat and a break from the traffic on the way 🏠
Nothing else has happened yet: there’s a pile of post to go through and a mountain of washing in SOK to be carted into the house and done. After that it’s just the intermittent tasks of life: MOT on Mark’s truck (my car’s good until November and Mark’s bike’s currently off the road), annual tests/certification and service of gas boilers & appliances / fire alarm / fire extinguishers etc, tax returns, dentists, hair cut…. You name it, it’s on the list 📜