1 EAGLETON NOTES: Exeter to Ambleside

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Friday, 6 July 2012

Exeter to Ambleside

It's been quite a day:  350 miles or thereabouts of mostly hellish driving in pouring rain and, when we were on the motorway, crawling traffic.  We arrived in Ambleside about 1830 and eventually located the Lakes Lodge hotel CJ booked this morning on line which has turned out to be excellent even if reception and breakfast room's predominantly purple is not quite to my taste.  Bedroom beautiful.  Wi-fi free!  We had decided that our 'usual' hotel, The Queens, was now off our list because of the service and terrible meal we had last time.

After dinner at a very pleasant restaurant CJ retired to the hotel and I went for a walk.  We spent many holidays in and around Ambleside and I never cease to be surprised at the changes which have taken place.  Of course I shouldn't be surprised because around half a century has lapsed since those days.  Now there are lots of art galleries (there used to be Heaton Cooper and he was all I can recall) and more outdoor clothing shops than you can shake a stick at and I couldn't begin to count the restaurants and coffee shops.  Surprisingly there are a lot of secondhand (or whatever the current PC term for such emporia is) book shops at a time when such places are closing down left right and centre because of charity (goodwill/op shops) and Amazon and eBay not to mention Kindle and other ebooks.

Perhaps the main thing though is travel.  It used too be a major journey to get to the Lake District from the conurbations.  Now its reachable from the North of Scotland or the South of England in a day and Liverpool in a couple of hours.  One can 'do' Ambleside as a day trip from Liverpool. How things change.




Some Westfield enthusiasts are staying.  The Nighthawk is the centre of the three staid cars parked against the hedge.

The Lakes Lodge

14 comments:

  1. Love that you post your adventures with us. The boys will have to come pay a visit to this post, they'll love those cars! And, I'd like to visit that fudge shop ;)

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    1. Thanks Heather. I'm sure all the 'boys' would love those cars although driving with no roof in the rain wouldn't be my idea of fun I have to say.

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  2. I love seeing photos from your side of the world! So different! It's like I'm reading a novel from a very special place.
    350 miles is waaayy too long a drive for us! Especially in the rain!

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    1. Thanks Lisa. The 350 miles seemed even longer because of the exceptionally heavy traffic on the M6 motorway in the North West of England. We used A-Roads whenever we could (they have a lower speed limit than motorways but the ones we used were generally more enjoyable and less tiring than motorways. My car is designed for long-distance cruising too which helps. I wouldn't like to drive your vehicle those distances.

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  3. With our without rain, it looks a beautiful and interesting place.
    How many books have you bought? :-) and have you been inside the Fudge Shop yet?

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    1. It is a beautiful and interesting place Meike and we've both spent a good bit of time there in our lifetimes. Unfortunately (or fortunately for our wallets) we arrived after the bookshops had shut and left before they opened. We did go inside the Fudge Shop - CJ wanted postcards. No fudge was bought. Unusually neither of us were in a fudge mood.

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  4. Sorry you had such bad weather for your drive. We had "the same" rain here yesterday, I believe; but I did not have to go anywhere... Ambleside may have gone through some changes (not to mention the traffic situation) but your pictures still bring me back holiday memories from our family travels in Britain around 40 years ago. Not sure we ever visited this particular town, it's more the general impession of the kind of buildings etc. Thanks for sharing the photos!

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    1. Many of the buildings have altered little outside over the last half century, Monica.

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  5. An entire shop dedicated to fudge???? That's my idea of heaven!!! Hope I find one of those when I am in the UK later this year....me with the 32 sweet teeth...

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    1. It did have postcards as well Virginia. I've not got quite as many sweet teeth as you have so the shop didn't have quite the same appeal for me.

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  6. It's a long time since I've been. In a way I miss the old village shops and rather broken down atmosphere of some of these places. I am sure the people who live there don't. For me, the countryside has always been the main thing. If it would only stop raining.... and I think it has one of the highest rainfalls in Britain, not that this means a great deal at the moment...

    Lovely pics as usual. Thanks for taking us with you on this trip.

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    1. It's good having you along with us Jenny. Ambleside is holding up remarkably well and really doesn't have a broken down atmosphere at all. In fact it's much livelier (and a bit larger and a lot busier) than it was when I was a youngster. The Lake District certainly used to contain the place with the highest annual rainfall in the UK but it never put us off.

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  7. Wow, what wonderful shots. The fudge shop looks so inviting! But I know Keith would be inside those bookshops like a flash. And I'd probably have time for a 5 hour walk before he emerged... that is of course if I could resist them myself!

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    1. Well you'd both be in your respective heavens Katherine. The only problem with the Lake District these days is that it's so popular it can be too full of people. But then Mum used to say that 50 years ago because she compared it to the time she spent there hiking as a teenager.

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