Monday, 8 March 2010

Dudley Living Museum

Dudley 086 Beautifully restored old lorry at the Black Country Museum.

Saturday was the day we had arranged for an engineer to come and fix our electrical problem. Unfortunately the local Birmingham company let us down with a non arrival so a quick phone call to Howard of Boatelec:Ltd and an arrangement was made for Monday. A short time after the arrangement had been made, Howard rang back to say that he had re-arranged his schedule and could call at 2pm (Saturday). Naturally we accepted his kind offer.

Dudley 040 The gauging bar at Dudley Tunnel. You've got to be pretty low to get under this.

Howard duly arrived on time and within half an hour had the job done plus a couple of extra’s that had slipped my attention. We can personally recommend Howard so if you are within 40 miles of Leicester and need an electrician, he is the man to call. He may even travel beyond  his boundaries if you ask him nicely.

Dudley 052 Limestone deposits on the tunnel walls.

While all this was going on we had a visitation from John & Elizabeth from Nb Helen Louise who had planned to visit the Black Country museum with us. Because of the change of plans with the electrician we were unable to leave the boat to visit the museum so spent the time on board chatting over future plans and idea’s.

Dudley 065 The arrow points to a pre-historic fossil in the limestone in Dudley tunnel.

That wasn’t the end of our day because that evening we arranged to go to the movies with Carrie and family to see the latest Johnny Depp movie “Alice in Wonderland”. Unfortunately the cinema wasn’t 3D equipped but it didn’t detract from the movie.

Dudley 075 Boat builders yard at the Black Country museum. Steam boat President and butty Kildare in winter storage.

Sunday morning was sunny cool and crisp with an overnight low of –4.50C. The canal was iced over but we had no plans to move today. At 10am I went off to take the boat trip into the Dudley Tunnel and Limestone mines, an experience not to be missed. This labyrinth of tunnels and caves has been added to in the 1980’s taking you to the Singing Cavern, Shirt’s Mill basin or Castle Mill basin, all exotic sounding places. The singing cavern is used for weddings, concerts or recitals.

Dudley 088Black Country Museum's new 1930's High St. Hobb's fish & chips cooked the old fashioned way in Beef dripping.

From here it was a short walk up to the Black Country Living Museum where a mining town is recreated on the 1920’s style.  Everything from Tram and Trolley bus rides, kiddie rides in a fair ground, guided tour’s of a coal mine as well as the many display houses and shops in the town square. Some shops just displayed articles of the periods but you can buy fish and chips ( the best we have had for a very long time), a bakery with something for everybody and a candy shop selling all sorts goodies.

Dudley 080 Vintage 1920's Tram at the Black Country Museum.

The museums latest venture is a 1930’s style High St with different shop’s and accommodation (hotel or B & B) so people can come and stay and live in the period if they wish. This won’t be completed for another couple of years but a lot of it has already been completed and in use.

Dudley 082 You don't see petrol pumps like this any more.

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