TO LACOCK ABBEY
Apparently we should have left the site by seven am, but I didn’t know that and as knew the stones would not be open for a while was doing some research on my day’s route when there was a very loud hammering on the door. Phoebe who had been dozing in her bed sprang to the alarm and gave whoever it was a really fierce loud barking at.
Opening the door I could see three heavily built and jacketed Security Men, though now at a respectful distance from Thebus door. They had obviously been sent to clear out the last of the vehicles, but their first words to me were - Is the dog alright? - and I don’t think they were enquiring after her health. Then they asked rather politely if I minded leaving, which of course I didn’t so putting everything in order we set off.
All in all my night and mornng at Stonehenge was experience I wouldn’t have missed.
Stonehenge wanted everyone gone by eight and as by then I had been up since before 5 am the day before apart from just over an hour’s fitful sleep between 2.30 and 4 am I was feeling more that a little tired, but I headed towards the the charming village of Lacock and Lacock Abbey both in the stewardship of the National Trust hoping we could stop at a nearby caravan park after a look round.
The road, though a main road was a fairly windy one, and on Saturday morning we soon found ourselves with a good tail back of followers. Spotting an unmarked pull in at the last minute I steered us in, and guess what - It was another shady spot with a row of mature lime trees and a little stream with an old stone bridge. Obviously part of the main road which was left behind some time in the past after road straightening. And it was flat. Perfect. I straight away settled down for some much needed sleep, and waking sometime after lunch decided to spend the night and start for Lacock early in the morning before everyone else was up.
At about five in the afternoon a local farmer turned up to feed his hiefers in the field next to where we had parked, and I checked with him that I wasn't a problem, which seemed to be ok, and we had a quite a chat about this and that. As well as doing a bit of contracting he had recently started driving for a local firm doing their deliveries and was loving it.
Intending for another early start I was soon back to bed with the alarm set for four thirty, though we didn't get going much before five it was an easy drive to reach the locked carpark and wait for the gates to open. Driving in the early mornings in the summer is lovely. The world is fresh and new and apart from the inevitable cars in the southern part of England which seem to be in the roads no matter what time of day, but even the driving seems calmer in the early morning.
The gates opened at just gone eight - I hadn't wanted to leave Thebus before they did as we might have been causing a blockage, but as soon as we were safely parked I took Phoebe for an early Sunday morning mooch up the high street and what a pretty little place it is. The shop and post office was just opening, and the kind postmistress was putting out a nice big fresh bowl of water which Phoebe did her level best to drink to the very bottom, even though I had offered her a drink before starting which was disdainfully refused out of hand (or paw in her case)
As the batteries on the scooter were sullenly refusing to recharge I had checked to see if I could borrow one at Lacock Abbey - and great - I could, with the result I could see the whole of the Abbey gardens and grounds, and very lovely they were too. I shall let the photos do the rest of the talking.