What started as a slow day ended up with us packing in a great deal of activities. We had a slow start to our morning as it was raining and we felt like we deserved a sleep in after last week of early starts to pack in all the sight seeing in northern Wales.
Our plan was to drive north along Lake Windermere and up to Keswick where there is a pencil museum for the very famous Derwent colouring pencils.
Not sure about you guys but we grew up with these very sought after high end pencils and colouring pencils. You were the favourite person in the class if you had a set.
Hopefully this picture will bring back some lost file space for some of you. It wasn’t exactly a grand tour but it was slightly amusing though had to elbow out loads of scone grabbers. Exhibited there was the largest pencil in the world……whoppeeee?!?!?!
We then had a wander around the town of Keswick and down to the lake called Derwent Water – hence the name of the pencils. They actually still do make pencils in the Lakes District but we think the wood which is cedar comes from over seas. The graphite though still comes from this region.
Whilst down on the lake edge we discovered this theatre which looked very professional. We went in and they had a number of performances and the one we liked was called The Handbagged which is about the Queen and Maggie Thatcher and their relationship which was a bit contentious. We have booked in for that tomorrow evening and are very much looking forward to it.
After a dash back to a café to get out of the pouring rain we then decided we would drive up to a Druid site just out of town.
It is a National Trust site and not a lot of info except from this plaque. We were surprised to see just how many people were up there!
We then decided that we would drive back to Windermere but via the splendid countryside…
…and some rather narrow lane ways!!!!!!
We were most fortunate as we did not meet anyone coming the other way. We were continuously looking for places that we might have to back up into should we meet someone. The drive was so picturesque with stone walls covered in moss and trees forming tunnels over the road ways, oh and a few pot holes. We spent about two hours just meandering around these laneways heading in a southerly direction.
We came back on the west side of Lake Windermere and passed by a Bobbin mill which we had been into back in 1991. It was 5.00pm and we assumed they were closed but they still invited us in to tag onto the end of the last tour of the day at no charge – how about that, eh!
So, as mentioned, we were here 26 years ago when we were young back packers and always remembered this place which blew us away at the time and it still does.
This particular bobbin factory closed in 1971 due to plastics taking over but the owner passed it onto the National Trust who have been running it since as a tourist attraction. Initially the pulleys were run with a hydro electric system but due to droughts it was swapped to a steam engine. The furnaces of the steam engine were fed by the by-products from the cut wood.
We each received a bobbin as part of the tour so we thought we might try to make ours into a key ring on our return. We have not bought any souvenirs on this trip so thought this would be a nice momento.
It was then back to the Air BnB for fish and chips and Chinese takeaway.