This blog's theme is culture. Make of that what you will!
No sooner had we moored up in Salthouse Dock on our first visit of the year that we were off up into town. Helen had booked to see the Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra at the Liverpool Philharmonic Hall. Despite being up the gods the sound was fantastic, the seats comfortable and the music lovely. The building is a very different Art Deco affair too. Well worth a visit I would say.
Once we had crossed the Ribble Link we headed into Preston for a look see. We visited the Harris Museum and Art Gallery that was paid for by a bequest. It opened in 1892. We felt very arty when we were discussing one of the exhibitions by Lubaina Himid as we were familiar with her work as she had displayed in Hull for the City of Culture year Turner Prize, and won. We even talked with the artist who was there in Preston where she is a professor of Contemporary Art.
The exhibition at Garstang station, where some scenes from the film 'Brief Encounter' were filmed was very good, and there was so much to see you could easily spend a couple of hours there.
During our second visit to Liverpool we went up to the Anglican Cathedral to see the moon exhibition. It is a 23' moon made up of high definition NASA photos of the moon, with lighting and mood music. It also shows the massive and imposing size of the Cathedral too. We also saw the same moon in the Hull Minster, which is said to be the largest parish church in England, but the place was filled by it!
When we got to Manchester, or rather Salford, we visited the Imperial War Museum, Manchester, and these are girders from the Twin Towers in New York that were brought down by the crashing aeroplanes.
When actually in Manchester we went on a tour of Cheetham's Library that was opened in 1653 and is the oldest free public reference library in the UK. It has over 100,000 books, 60,000 of them from before 1851!
When we were down the Montgomery Canal we took the bus to Shrewsbury and this church, although quite cultured in its own right, being built in 1662, destroyed by Jacobites in 1715 and rebuilt by King George I, it is also linked with Charles Darwin and Samuel Taylor Coleridge. Just about all bases covered there.
Our visit to the Nantwich show was another sort of culture with the displays of vehicles, horses, sheep and cattle, and some magnificent hens.
Canals are plagued quite often with graffiti as there are normaly lots of plain walls with a nice accessible tow path. Must is just straight vandalism, but some can definitely be called art. Here in Hull a whole old industrial area has been given over for street art and the area has been brought to life with colour.
If you wanted to know what we did before the biro was invented then you should pop along to the pen museum in the Jewelry Quarter in Birmingham. Birmingham ruled the world in making pen nibs etc so anything down with a pen for a hundred years or more would have been dependent on Birmingham factories. Including all Walt Disney cartoons as the 200 artists he employed all used pens made here.
This bronze muzzled bear is the emblem of the Beauchamp family who became the Earls of Warwick. The Beauchamp Chapel in St. Mary's Church in Warwick is stunning. This bear sits at the foot of the tomb of Richard de Beauchamp who did in 1439. I don't think there is anything like this anywhere in the country.
Bits of the Lord Leycester Hospital in Warwick date back over 450 years and is also well worth a look around. It still serves its original purpose of housing ex- members of the Armed forces who administer the place, as well as live there.
This year seems to have been our cheapest for repairs etc since we have been cruising with very little problem that needed sorting
New Jack Staff for ensign.. 1-73
Hurricane service 1 hr labour + service kit + VAT 105-00
Hurricane repair to fuel 'T' piece 2 hr labour x 'T' + VAT 124-99
At various times over the last year there has been diesel in the Hurricane drip tray. The Hurricane is our diesel water heater. It runs the hot water and radiators if required, and is a great bit of kit made in Canada and only needs servicing every 1000 hours. We only had 930 hours on the clock but as we were passing Calcutt Marina which are the sole distributor for them in the UK, I believe, I thought it sensible to get the fuel leak checked out, although it had stopped for the last couple of months. At the same time it made sense to carry out the service. The engineer checked over the system and found everything in order and finished the service. It was when the system was flashed up again and left running that the slightest weeping was seen from the 'T' piece. Once it was removed it could be seen that there was a crack quite a way round it, but obviously under most situations it was kept closed. The time to find the crack was the longest period and it was soon fixed. The Hurricane is really good and reliable and has never given any bother. Some say it is a bit noisy but when you hear some of the others on the market they are not much better. If they work in the log cabins of wild Canada in sub zero temperatures etc they should be fine on the boat.
ANNUAL REPAIR COSTS