North Norfolk camping and stuff

 think it is about time that I got on and wrote a proper blog again, it has been far too long now. I shall begin with our little trip to Norfolk, which was thoroughly enjoyable thankyou.

We eventually got away Wednesday before last (the 10th), and headed off via Worcester and the M5, M42 and Peterborough to the wonderful little coastal village of Stiffkey, in between Wells-Next-The-Sea and Cromer. (Famous for its crabs). The campsite was quite large and it took us almost half an hour to decide where best to pitch up, eventually we made up our minds, and up went the tent.  That night we had camp chilli, which is a wonderful quick meal when you are too tired to do anything more than sling a few tins together to heat. Stewed steak, kidney beans and tomatoes with a chopped onion and seasoning, delicious, with precooked rice. Camping can be such fun. Early to bed that night and up with the larks the following morning. Got the shower block all to myself, bliss. Once MLO and I had prettied ourselves up we decided to go to Norwich for the day, as it would give him a bit of a break from driving. All along the North Norfolk coast runs a bus service that goes directly to Sheringham and Cromer,  from where a train could be caught to Norwich. The best bit was though that an all in one ticket was available for just £7, which gave unlimited travel between Hunstanton and Norwich via bus and train. We were pretty chuffed when we found out about it.  

Anyway we arrived in Norwich and headed up the hill. By the time we had got sorted waited for a bus and then train, it was lunch time by the time we got there, so as we were passing MLO said we should go to the cathedral for lunch and a look round. Off to the refectory first of all for lunch. Baked potato, ham and salad followed by lemon drizzle cake yum.  Oh and don't forget the tea. Once we were suitably refreshed, we set off to explore the cathedral. At the bottom of the steps from the refectory was the cloisters, so we started there. So glad I took my nice camera even though it can be a pain to carry round at times. Like they say; no pain no gain.


We wandered around the cloisters for a while taking lots of pictures. In the center was a labyrinth which would have been great to walk round, but we wanted to see inside first So off we went along the cloisters to the first door we could find and in we went. Wow. Thats all you can say. mightily impressive. Yet more photographs. After a thoroughly enjoyable few hours looking round the cathedral, it was unfortunately time to head back to the train.

On the Saturday, we went for drive around local villages in the area. The weather was completely perfect, the sky was so incredibly blue and not a cloud in sight. We ended up at Walsingham. When we got there the place seemed deserted, with only an extremely happy smiley nun there. We wandered round the village looking at the various shops, then had a coffee. We then went down to the  Anglican shrine. We spent a couple of hours there, then as time was going on, we left. We paid a short visit to the farm shop  there and bought some lovely bread and meat for our dinner that night. On the way to the shop a couple of buses turned up and the village went from being wonderfully peaceful to bustling and busy in a matter of seconds. We were stood watching all the people that had got off, it was almost funny the difference in the place. We also bought a couple of rolls, some pate and apple juice, and sat in a field just across the road from the farm shop and had an impromptu picnic, which was incredibly enjoyable in the warm sunshine.   

I think I decided I want to live there, it was almost like the village was in a time warp, or surrounded by a little bubble, so amazingly peaceful and calm there.   When we went to Norfolk, we didn't realise that Walsingham was there, so that came as quite a lovely surprise, and gave us a perfect excuse for a visit, when we realised how close it was.

We also visited Wells next the Sea that day too which is the only town along the north part of the Norfolk coast which is still navigable by sea, all the rest along that stretch of coast having silted up and tuned over to salt marsh. Other towns and villages along the north coast are practically landlocked, if you can call saltmarsh land, that is, and places like Cley-next-the-Sea, aren't, Blakeney with it's enormously impressive church. You know me and churches by now, well, I couldn't resist asking MLO if we could go and have a look.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      

 Blakeney church really is quite huge, and oddly enough has two towers one at either end, although you cant see it on my picture, sorry about that. It was a lovely church inside and out. I think the reasons that the churches along this part of the coast are so large is down to wool, and the fact that so much of the English wool was sent over to the low countries via ship, and these villages and towns having once been quite major ports, a large proportion of the wool was shipped out from here, and as such the wool traders and merchants made lovely profits, some of which went into church building and renovating. The churches at Cley, Wiveton and Salthouse are similar.   
On the Sunday morning we decided to brave the natives and go to the church at Stiffkey. We had visited it the previous evening to check there was a service the next day, and what time if there was. It was lucky for us that there would be a service at 9:30, so we went to that one. When we entered a lovely man greeted us, and handed us a reading sheet, the service booklet and hymn book, then explained that due to the fact that they currently didn't have a vicar looking after them, that it would be a family service, and that we were to sit in the choir stalls, facing everybody. Aargh, I thought, I don't like facing other people to much like that, but too late to back out now I thought, so MLO and I went to get seated. A lovely lady there said hello and welcome to us, and showed us a seat. A few minutes went by and a couple of other people arrived. The man who had greeted us then stood up to do the service. We had a couple of hymns, and a lady read something that she had read in a book, and two others did the readings. The service itself only lasted half an hour. At the end, the man who had led the service said thankyou to the organist, which was a lovely thing to do, and in return the organist played something else, at the end of which everyone clapped. MLO and I were unsure as to what to do next, whether to make a bolt for it, or hang around looking like lemons if no-one spoke, but as we wandered up to go, the lady who had shown us a seaat told us that there was coffee and biscuits and we would be extremely welcome to stop and have some if we wished. We couldn't turn down such a lovely offer. We got talking about all different things, the people there were so lovely. We started talking then to the man who had led the service, and he asked us where we were from, and whether we were on holiday. When we told him we were from Herefordshire, he said "Really, what part" so we told him a few miles east of the city. He then said that he knew a few people in Herefordshire, and then mentioned Tarrington, where MLOs Mums church is, and where the farm used to be, turns out, he knows people that MLO and his mum also know very well. Small world.
Half an hour later, after much talking, we decided we had better go, and so said our goodbyes. The lady whose name we found out was Helen, who had shown us our seat, actually thanked us for visiting their church, and said that she hoped we would be going again. We promised we would whenever we were next in that part of the world, and went on our way back to the campsite.
Later that day, we went along the coast towards Hunstanton, which we weren't particularly impressed with, but when we drove through we maybe missed the nicer parts, but it reminded us a bit of a small version of Rhyl. As we headed back along we thought we had better stop for lunch at some point. We came to the village of Thornham, and turned along a little road towards the sea, and came across a lovely looking pub called the Lifeboat Inn . Just in time for Sunday lunch,  marvelous.  It was lovely and the food was good too. As we were eating there was the sound of bells coming from outside, so we looked out, and a troop (is that the correct word?) of Morrismen had turned up to dance, along with an enormous green felt dragon, who kept peering in through the windows and frightening people, which was highly amusing. 

Once Lunch was over and we were well fed and contented, we went on our way back to the campsite, and stopped at Burnham Deepdale to get some water from the shop. There just happened to be a church across the road, with a round tower, so, obviously, it required further investigation.   In the porch is a pair of lovely medieval windows, one depicting the moon, and one the sun. Inside there is a lovely font showing twelve scenes from a farming year.  The res of the church was quite interesting, with a tiny little chapel of sorts in the round tower end of the church.    

I have written enough for today, I think, and will finish off tomorrow, and bring myself up to date, so for now, goodbye.          


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All about Me

Herefordshire, United Kingdom
Born in 1975 in Brixham, in glorious Devon. Spent most of my youth in grimy birmingham. As soon as i was able at 18 I moved to beautiful Herefordshire. Where i remain to this day. Work at Locks Garage, famous for our ice creams. Generally wonderful place.
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