Stoneleigh Barn B&B
We have had the most wonderful few days away. As the kids are both away (DD in France, DS at Soul Survivor) and we managed to get Merlin in kennels for 2 nights, we decided to go away on the bike. It's been a very long time since we actually went away on the bike, and quite a few years since we've been away on our own too.
We decided to go to Sherborne, and look for some family history stuff. My G grandfather was born there, and his father and mother lived there. On our way down we stopped at Mottisfont Abbey near Romsey. We had lunch, and a good look round the house, and then a wander round the gardens, sadly not looking their best! The famous bit is the walled garden with it's old-fashioned rose collection, which of course is well over now, but everywhere is so dry! Must make a mental note to go back there next June for the roses. We stopped at Shaftesbury for afternoon tea, and found a wonderful tea shop! Very modern, wonderful tea, and what a beautiful town!
On Thursday morning, we wandered round Sherborne, and visited the Somerset and Dorset FHS Headquarters. We found out that gg grandfather was married in Sherborne Abbey. He worked as a silk throwster in the silk factory, which is still there, and we found out that the silk factory went into decline in the 1880s about the time ggrandfather moved to Birmingham. I also took some photos of the streets where they lived.
We stayed in a fab B&B http://www.stoneleighbarn.com/ Penny and Kevin are fabulous hosts, and have worked very hard to make the B&B very comfortable. Apart from visiting Sherborne (Thursday morning), we motored down to Lulworth Cove, had a cream tea in the rather lovely cafe right on the bay, and then walked over to Durdle Door. I think it's one of our most favourite places in the world! I really struggled with the walk this time, which is very wimpy of me, and I felt very unfit! (I must make my dog walks longer and walk quicker!) On Friday, we went to find the small village of West Camel, which is where my ggrandfather was married, and it was delightful! The church was gorgeous, but there was building work going on, so we couldn't go inside. I took some photos. We saw some signs to Haynes Motor Museum, and Maurice fancied that. It was very nearby. What a fabulous museum! All cars of the 50s, 60s and some 70s! All cars that we had heard of, not a 1911 De Dion Bouton in sight!!! We loved hall no 1, absolutely packed with red sports cars, favourites being the Lancia and the Ferrari. After we left there, we stopped at Stonehenge, very busy with foreign tourists, we didn't go in, just sat on the grass and had a cup of tea. We got home about 5pm, and then dashed to get Merlin, who was very pleased to see us!