Sunday, 4 September 2011

Summer Holidays - Leek

In between everything, we have been staying in the Peak District. The first time we stayed in Leek. We went there on because Mr S wanted to have his first experience of driving a steam engine...he wanted me to come, but he wanted to start small. It was a great day, he said he had the most fun day since he was a child!

Here I am reversing into the coaling station for a refuel. I hope you notice the beautifully polished brass. The start of the day consisted of cleaning out the boiler with long rods, adding water, and getting the engine up to steam. Afterwards Mr S and I took turns driving up and down Rudyard Lake.
 Even though it was not a normal working day we took on a few passengers! Mr S has just told me that Rudyard Kipling's parents loved the area so much, they named their son after the place...

As for Leek itself, it was full of interest.....from medieval buildings to attractive domestic, industrial and civic architecture, every single walk out from our Town Centre house, was interesting. This is just one of the many pictures I took, here one can see the wonderful coloured glass window which looks to the rear of this upper room of a house on Stockwell Street.



If great interest to me were the wonderful hand embroidered items, the quality of which is close to those of Opus Anglicanum.

The silks are still vibrant, and it was also interesting to learn about the group of ladies who worked on these. William Morris is closely associated with the town and his influence can be seen frequently.

Whilst we were there we had time to spend the day in Macclesfield, where the Museum of Silk, and Paradise Mill were the highlights. During the week, we explored the area, and as usual I did a little foraging. A little way out of Macclesfield we walked along a trail and I spied some wild bilberries. All I could pick was a small handful, until Mr S made me a small paper cone from a guide leaflet he had in his pocket.
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I poached them gently when we got back to our holiday house, and they were a treat with cereal and yogurt for breakfast....we also had a few on the Congleton Oat cakes too...local holiday food or what?

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