Thursday, 23 September 2010

Wrong Bus Stop!

This weeks bus trip was changed at the last minute due to our failure to ascertain the correct bus stop. We had planned to catch the Stagecoach X9 bus to Chatteris. While waiting at the wrong bus stop we watched as our intended mode of transport motored off into the distance without us.

All was not lost as there was a Norfolk Green bus to Wisbech which is a town we have not yet visited . Upon arrival in Wisbech we headed down to the Yacht Harbour where the River Nene was just about at low tide. The floating pontoon’s had a normal movement of about 12 – 15 feet between tides but in time of flooding still had as much again. Here, as in Kings Lynn we found flood gates and walls with access steps over them. Scary to think that the river can rise to such heights.

Wisbech 008 Wisbech Yacht Harbour on the River Nene at low tide.

Wisbech 009Wisbech flood gates.

The cemetery of the St Peter’s & St Paul’s church in the centre of town has been turned into a beautiful inner city garden which was obviously enjoyed by many locals. The church itself was also of interest having been started in 1181 featuring many architectural styles including a double nave and a very large organ which when cranked up to full volume would rattle the rafters. The 16th Century tower houses a peel of ten bells.

Wisbech 032 St Peter and St Paul Church, Wisbech.

Wisbech 024 The beautiful organ in St Peter and St Paul Church. Wisbech.

Wisbech 025The High Altar and stained glass window in St Peter and St Paul Church, Wisbech.

Wisbech 022 St Peter and St Paul Church Cemetery now an inner city park.

Around the corner was the Wisbech Museum giving the history of shipping and trading carried on through the port from around the world. Among the famous people of Wisbech were Octavia Hill who campaigned for better housing for the poor and was a founder member of the National Trust. Another famous son was Thomas Clarkson who was the so of the headmaster of the local Grammar school and devoted his life to the abolition of slavery. He is remembered by a very impressive memorial tower in Bridge street.

Wisbech 038Memorial to Thomas Clarkson who campaigned for the abolition of slavery.

At one point we thought we were back in Bath because of a delightful Georgian built crescent of 3 storey houses. At the end of the crescent is what is called the Castle, the term being an historical hand me down.  A Norman castle did stand on the site  bought about by the Norman Conquest. The castle was replaced in 1478 by the Bishop’s Palace which lasted until the 17th century when it was again replaced by another mansion. The current Regency Villa was built in 1816. Only the gate piers of the original mansion now remain. The previously mentioned Georgian Villa’s were built following the circular shape of the original Castle moat. All this history is just mind boggling.

Wisbech 035It was a castle in the Norman days. It has been replaced 5 times to it's present Regency Villa.

Wisbech 036 The Crescent, Wisbech follows the old line of the Castle moat.


Unknown said...

can't keep away from the water!

Derek and Dot said...

You must admit it has got some attraction