Good evening everyone,
This update was done in two parts.
Well I've shot across three counties to get to Lichfield ready for the get together at the National Memorial Arboretum next weekend. I'm actually staying in Tesco, its one of those with the car park under the store and it's warm, 20 degree's, I don't need the sleeping bag...
It's been a funny week with the memorials, every church in Lichfield except one is unsurveyed and the one that is I can't get in! I've had a couple of falls this week, one was just catching my foot on my bad leg and going down like a sack of the proverbial, hurt my left shoulder in the process, the other was as I came out of the Methodist church yesterday, slipped on the green algae and bashed my ribs on the hand rail. As a result of the first fall I've gone back to wearing the bits on my leg as the ulcer has healed, walking is easier again.
I've been part of a trial with Veterans NHS Wales over the last few months where they provide mental health support once a week or fortnight by phone, this comes to an end next week, I think its has helped...
After the get together next weekend I'll be heading back south to Help for Heroes and then on to Tramper to have the scooter serviced after covering more than 30,000 miles.
The second part.
Well this morning's bit was written in a cafe whilst I had a cup of tea and the drizzle was coming down. I managed to get another chapel and plaque on the side of a building done this morning before I headed back to Tesco and decided to do some maintenance on the scooter trailer instead. I might get a lot done, being undercover mental strip out the inside of the trailer put in a shopping trolley a crack on. I managed to replace so the nuts and bolts that provide my little bit of cover on my door as that worn very thin I also might get some new shelving inside, well storage boxes screwed to the wall that odds and sods in.
It brightened up around five o'clock and I nipped down to Stowe pool with the camera as there was a bird there that I have loved to see since I was knee-high to a grasshopper and I only tend to see in the winter back home, a great crested grebe with a well grown chick.
Great Crested Grebe
Good afternoon everyone,
it's been mixed to say the least since I write in Hinckley on Friday, heavy rain, sunshine and strong winds, in fact think yesterday was the first air didn't get wet!
I managed to finish Hinckley and Nuneaton for the most part, I couldn't get in the museum as it is very old building steep steps getting in, and I know this one war memorial in there, a battlefield marker. One of the things that amazes me is when the church has been recorded previously there may be just one record on our system for example a World War I window yet to the right on a different wall is a huge memorial naming all the men that died in World War I and World War II and this has been missed! And find it more common, I spoken to London about it and we think that people may look at it and it being so obvious been recorded already...
I'm still plodding away with old place names a county at a time, so far I've managed to do Herefordshire, Worcestershire and Warwickshire that is 1578 place names out of more than 40,000 so far!
Going back to the weather, I hate to think was like in other places in Britain this morning travel from Hinckley to Tamworth was littered with branches down all over the roads and the odd tree in a field being blown over and when it rains the heavens open and it's been torrential, luckily I had got my stop in Tamworth and was repairing a puncture, yet another one, under the smoking shelter when the heavens opened.
Tomorrow I had Lichfield Tesco and I have a lot to do in and around Lichfield including the National Memorial Arboretum so be there for a while, not sure where went ahead to after that...
Good afternoon everyone,
I made a move this morning in a bit of a break in the weather as the local youths in Bedworth were a real pain last night, although it was a comfortable night as I was actually inside Tesco :-)
I managed to three counties in three days, Coventry was suitably busy to pick my route carefully along the back lanes to get to Bedworth, surprisingly Bedworth was unrecorded upset for the pillar in the cemetery that has only just been added to the system and is even in the wrong county, I need to get that corrected.
Whilst doing the admin side of the images yesterday afternoon a lady approached me and told me about her husband who was killed in Northern Ireland in the 1970s and she buried him in the local cemetery, so I went back to find him along with Missy. I think Missy died and gone to heaven yesterday with all the squirrels running around near where a partner scooter it was like watching a cartoon, her head was going side to side as the squirrels went round and round the tree chasing each other...
Well I'm in Hinckley just over the border into Leicestershire and I have no data for it from the office so I don't know what recorded already and what is not, I went into the main church photographed everything there and then the memorial cross at the Catholic Church and then the main war memorial on what I believe is where the castle used to be. I got back and found a little note stuck to the trailer saying Missy had been taken to pets at home so she didn't get squashed by trolley, the girls were wonderful.
Hinckley Tesco is an old store by the look of it and there's not much room for me to park up and also for people to get past.
The weather is atrocious, heavy heavy showers with rumbles of thunder in them, it looks like going nowhere for a while...
Good afternoon everyone,
I tried to do this update yesterday but my laptop didn't want to play by the rules!
Bit of a rough weekend this weekend for me, to falls and I found damage to my power cable, the outer sleeve has been cut by something, the inner cables are fine and I need to save up to get a new cable.
I'm not sure if it's tomorrow or Wednesday I had Coventry, still try to get into to churches in Leamington left a message one phone number on the other doesn't exist any more she's really helpful.
Last night we stayed on the caravan site at Warwick racecourse and Missy was being continually teased by Robin that kept sitting post two foot from her and she couldn't reach it :-)
As I left this morning the wardens gave me a donation from the money they collected over the summer, thank you for that.
I willingly stopping at Coventry one night before heading to Nuneaton although looking at the forecast is not very good for the week coming so I have no idea how much work to get done although saying that, the stacks of admin to do especially on the place names and grid references keep over the next year think!
Good afternoon everyone,
I'll start with a thank you to Csta in Tesco for treating me to breakfast this morning :)
Well other than my first Regiments museum, Queen's Own Hussars, I have finished Warwick,eighty-five unrecorded memorials here so far, I started with fourteen recorded and the sun being out seems to have affected some of the locals...
I think I'll lock myself away for the rest of the day...
Anyway, the rest of the week was pretty much mundane, one thing I have found that the younger generation won't possibly understand, Enoch Powell, former Member of Parliment and Royal Warwickshire Regiment, a man famous for his "rivers of blood" speech.
John Enoch Powell
I start Royal Leamington Spa tomorrow, I have to base myself in Tesco in Wawick whilst I do, it is litterally next door :)
I have thirty-five recorded memorials and eighty graves, if I haven't finished by Sunday I'll head to the race course caravan site and then back to Tesco Monday morning to continue. Once it is finished I'll head to Coventry for one night, not sure after that, Rugby or Nuneaton...
Good morning everyone,
it's been an interesting week in Stratford-upon-Avon – get all but one memorial done and found 14 new ones, and rather annoyed yesterday morning as I been trying to get in the Baptist Church as we had one memorial recorded there and I've been phoning the number of the office during office hours and getting no reply, I went there yesterday morning and saw someone inside and rang the bell asked for could do a quick survey of the church and was told I needed to make an appointment!
And it's a big thank you to Zia who sent me some money this week, I was going to use it to pay for staying on the campsite this weekend as it is a bank holiday which I had forgotten about but the owners the campsite of the allowed to me to stay for free so thank you Stratford-upon-Avon racecourse campsite, I might just have a barbecue tonight instead.
I head for Warwick on Monday getting mixed messages about the forecast some people says can be dry and warm over the Tom it's going to rain, I will wait and see.
Good evening everyone,
Well it's been a very productive week of the admin side of things, I've now finished all the town data for Wales Scotland and Warwickshire ready for the Imperial War Museum War Memorial register, it's following the lines of the Ordinance Survey system where you have the location name, a four figure grid reference, the County and what type of feature it is. I've changed it slightly so instead of having Swansea and Abertawe as two separate entries there is just one. This should hopefully stop some of the wrong spellings and entries into the main system.
It's also been a week of no Internet at the trailer and even got no phone signal here at the moment! So when this update gets online I got no idea...
With working so hard on all data I am now got a backlog of images in the system, hope your clear these this week.
A nice surprise today was meeting up with an old friend Peter Finn are spending the day in and around the Stratford-upon-Avon area, we've managed to see a Vulcan powering up at the old RAF Wellesbourne airfield this afternoon, there is a video of it on my Facebook page, for those that don't do Facebook you shouldn't need to be registered only to see it. Another nice surprise was a couple of hours ago, seeing three cats in the caravan opposite me, they simply watching Missy enviously as she catches shrews in the hedge behind us!
Tomorrow is a short hop into Stratford-upon-Avon to Tesco and I'll start this area, I suspect I'll be here for roughly a week, I suspect it will be then Warwick and Royal Leamington spa, not sure after that moment.
Good afternoon everyone,
A bit of a blip with my mental health this week, it's thrown at me a bit it's also made me work a lot harder trying to get over it. I've been trying to drag the war memorial and war grave data into the 21st-century, all the war grave information is still down as World War II counties, the war memorial data for Wales and Scotland is pre-1994 counties. I have around 35,000 records in my system that need updating, some is fairly easy others isn't. For example Yorkshire, as it used to be World War II is now split between North South and East Yorkshire is the same with Sussex. Still a lot to do but I'll get there!
Met up with Neil Berryman at Cirencester Caravan club site who gave me replacement cap badge, it was to be a weekend meeting up with old friends and new with the odd shandy thrown in.
I headed out to the Gloucestershire steam extravaganza at South Cerney and met up with the Gloucestershire branch of the Royal British Legion Riders and spent a lot of time helping out on the stall. The weather was terrible, we had two thunderstorms go through with a little bit essentially between not pleasant for the visitors and stallholders at all.
I again headed for the steam fair, the weather much improved and was able to have a mooch around in between helping on the stall again. In the afternoon I was called into the main ring with the scooter and was introduced to everybody told to go round with my bucket, it soon became very heavy!
I headed back to the caravan site to find that Missy's flexible lead and ground spike had been mown by the wardens it was totally obliterated and hard to miss being blue grass!
I headed for Stow on the Wold, it's a lumpy journey from Cirencester to Stow and I knew my power would be chewed so had arranged for a charge in Bourton on the water, the managers at the old manse hotel had met me before at the Woolpack in Beckington so that I didn't have to explain everything to them about what I do et cetera. Once plugged in let Missy out to entertain the public, or perhaps it should be the way round, whilst I sat drinking tea on the scooter, there were a lot of people from the Far East in the town Missy photograph taken a lot I also met to people that Somerset. Once I had got enough of a charge I headed for Tesco Stow on the Wold.
Tuesday and Wednesday
Tuesday started dry but soon went downhill with the rain so you get a little bit done in Stow. Wednesday was a complete washout.
A pleasant day yesterday, I managed to get six towns and villages done of which Upper Slaughter was a Thankful Village, for those that don't know what thankful village is it is the lost nobody in World War I. As I went to Lower Slaughter the only thing that was recorded there was the cross in the churchyard yet village hall had plaques to World War I and World War II and so the church as well as of the things, and I'm told that the son of the man who invented the Spitfire lived there so in a village hall was a large mural of village on the wall along with the Spitfire.
Lower Slaughter Village Hall
Today I headed for Moreton in the Marsh via a couple of small villages, I had to visit and make an appointment to get into firefighters college, this will be on Sunday.
Not sure what to do tomorrow yet, the rain is supposed to be heading in again tonight according to the last forecast I looked at play by ear. Sunday I had to Moreton in the Marsh caravan site get a shower et cetera before heading to Evesham on Monday morning, having spent to one of the staff here who lives in Moreton in Marsh about the route I will take I will apparently be passing through Blockley, apparently the church was used in Father Ted television series I can't say remember the series will have a look anyway.
There's a lot to do in and around Evesham so not sure how long I'll be there for, nor where I'm going after that yet...
I missed doing this update for June so there are two months worth here:
Junes mileage: 631.49
Julys mileage: 522.60
Mileage so far: 29567.43
Raised with Gift Aid: £73,121.86
Raised without Gift Aid: £71,705.11
Good afternoon everyone,
Apologies for the lack of updates last week it was a very slow week and at times very wet. I managed to get Badminton church on Thursday managed to beat the rain thank goodness. It was a week of killing time and not wanting to far away from the campsite needed to be at ready for the meeting in Birmingham.
I decided on Saturday to move to the campsite, this was due to the forecasts and seen about Sunday being extremely wet, as it turned out it was a wise move! Sunday, besides being wet I wasn't feeling too good spent most the day curled up in bed, it was so bad I couldn't even look at a beer!
Well Monday morning arrived in the taxi collected me from the campsite and to the station in Gloucester collecting my tickets, I was well out of my comfort zone and was hoping the train was going to be nearly empty. As the platform filled up I started getting a bit more anxious and ended up using some of the tools on the phone app to help me get through it. It worked to a point. It turned out to be the Cardiff Central to Nottingham train with only two carriages! I was lucky to find a seat myself and many others in the carriage were being wound up by a group of unruly, ill mannered Welsh girl guides!
I was glad to get off the train at Birmingham New Street station, forgotten how big it was and could have done with a mobility scooter to get from the platform to the taxi! A tiring and painful experience which was to be repeated as I headed home!
On arriving at the central library I met up with Ian and Catherine from the Imperial War Museum War Memorial Register for a spot of lunch, a brew and the natter, it was also nice to put faces to voices I normally hear on a phone.
I learnt a couple of bits during the meeting from the War Memorial Trust about how there are grants available to help clean or protect war memorials, this information can be found at warmemorialsonline.com
A couple of bits from Saturday as it travelled across from Tetbury to Eastington, the first being the war memorial at Inchbrook on the outskirts of Nailsea, I have been reliably told by number of different sources that this was the first war memorial in Britain to those from the Great War, apparently the villagers at the time thought it was a waste of time and money! I suppose at the time money was short...
The other one was as I passed Chevanage house, this is where the filmed the house seen for Poldark, the entrance gates were firmly chained and padlocked, I can only guess it's to keep Ross Poldark out ;)
I head to Westonbirt School tomorrow for an appointment to photograph the memorials in the school and in the church, hope you can beat the rain is forecast to move in. Thursday I had to Cirencester for one night at Tesco's and then it's a weekend off as I'll be meeting up with Neil Berryman again. Monday I'll be heading for Stow-on-the-Wold, a long hop up the Fosse Way, in some ways are not looking forward to that as it's a long straight road and the cars will be travelling fast because of it!
On the 23rd and 24th of September we have sandbag bash very close the National Memorial Arboretum so I'm gonna change my plans slightly and Potter across country slowly towards the National Memorial Arboretum do memorials on the way I will then head back towards Stroud to finish that area. I've also got to go back to Tedworth house some more counselling sessions before heading down to Salisbury to get the scooter trailer thoroughly serviced I suspect then it will be out was the Forest of Dean and the Chepstow area to try and finish off Gloucestershire.
Good afternoon everyone,
Well it's been a mixed weekend, Friday was rained off, I was meant to go to Wotton under edge to the church there but instead headed back to the trailer to dry out. I tried again on Saturday, got caught in a very heavy downpour when I was in the middle of nowhere, and was thwarted by a wedding when I finally got to the church! So again I headed back to the trailer.
Sunday was another wet day and is a case of having to move to my next stop which is preplanned by the time I got to the leisure centre in Yate it was easing off, monsters of the Cross Hands hotel again in the orchard the sun was shining, well for a little bit. I had to apologise to the management there is apparently Missy lesson presents that I didn't know about, a tad embarrassing to say the least. Later in the afternoon the heavens opened it didn't half come down! I did deploy the rain shield and then contemplating making a new one for the other end of the trailer...
This morning I headed towards Tetbury and try to do Badminton church on the way but the churchwarden wasn't available, one thing I noticed as I left the village was a lot of press photographers outside the main gate to Badminton House, no idea what was going on there. It was then onto Westonbirt School and church, again I was to be thwarted, this time by a film crew were apparently going to be at the school the next week, this means I have to come back and try again.
This week's a bit of a limbo week waiting for the meeting in Birmingham, I don't stray too far from the campsite that be staying at on Sunday and Monday. Apparently Wednesday and Thursday are going to be very wet so be glad of bit cover at Tesco in Tetbury.
Good afternoon everyone,
for the thunderstorm that six clock this morning was as much flash and bang as fizzle and pop, nevertheless the heat over the last few nights has made it difficult for sleeping and feeling tired this afternoon.
Well it's been pretty much the same as normal with the graves and memorials that still averaging more than four new memorials per day and around six known memorials per day which rather happy with.
Two things of late which which have thrown me slightly off balance mentally, one is not having my beret, strange not having on my head and the other is my bits my leg which until the ulcer on my leg heals I can't wear and makes walking very very difficult very painful especially on an even ground.
I headed out this morning to do to churches one was a small town and was easy to do, the other was a village called Owlpen. On the way there I spotted a muntjac deer in the edge of a wood stopped to watch it for a few minutes before it disappeared back into the wood. I always study the map for heading out not only to see where got to go but also to pick the best and easiest route. Owlpen is in very steep valley so by looking at the map I was going to go in on the less steep side, however on arriving at the junction there was a red triangle sign saying it had a gradient of one in four or 25%, the scooter is fine graves like this unless they were like this one, underneath the red triangle was another little sign that said for 1500 yards! As I would have to come back out this way I decided to air on the side of caution and not damage the motor scooter by climbing the hill.
I also about the hospital is morning and had the lead checked, the ulcer is healing nicely should be about done in one to 2 weeks which is good news.
My next stops are Thornbury until Sunday, old Sodbury Sunday night, Tetbury for a few nights to catch upon bits of missed and then Cirencester for a couple of nights before heading to Stow on the Wold, I may be there for a while as there is lot to do in that area and I have no other stops there.
One thing before I forget, I need to say thank you to Ashley at ZX Host for upgrading and sorting out the servers when my blog and war grave website are hosted.
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