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Natacha's trips around Canterbury
24 October 2010

Today I took the lovely Natacha on a tour of the landmarks in the Canterbury area.

We started off at Howlett's Farm in Bekesbourne where Micky was born. From there we went to see the Red Lion at Wingham which is part of the Hand of Glory. Not too much to see at either of those places but what there is is of great significance of course

"I bet it was a Horton who did that weatherboarding"
From Wingham we went to Wickhambreaux, that idyllic Kentish village where we find not only Colpeper's house but also the mill that Alison & Bob drive past and the place where Alison asks Dorothy Bird about her experiences with the glue man as Dorothy is delivering the post.

"What wouldn't I give to grow old in a place like that"
Colpeper's house is still that gorgeous four-square Georgian house on the village green with a church to one side and a pub to the other. What more could you want?

Alison says "What wouldn't I give to grow old in a place like that" - and of course Sheila is in a place very similar to that one :)

Next we went to Fordwich to have a look at the Town Hall (exterior only, it's out of season and I didn't have time to arrange to have it opened up). Also the church where we see Bob go in with the Hortons after he's had his lunch with them.

Fordwich also has the buildings visible from the other window of Bob Johnson's room at the Hand of Glory, even though Wickhambreaux is over a mile away. The magic of cinema

Then we went into Canterbury itself. A slight diversion to have a look at Canterbury Christ Church University and the Powell Building there - we wanted to see where Eddie works :)

Sorry we couldn't meet you there Eddie, maybe next time.

After a spot of lunch at Tiny Tim's Tearooms (very nice) we made our way down to the "bottom end" of town and started at The Falstaff just outside the West Gate. This is where pilgrims would spend the night if they arrived too late and the West Gate had closed, preventing them from entering the city.

We walked up the main street through the West Gate, having a look at the old police station and various other places of interest en route. The new work on the Marlowe Theatre seems to be coming along well.

I don't know what they're doing at the Beaney Institute. It's closed for renovation until 2011 and there's scaffolding up outside with a big sheet preventing you from seeing anything. There's a worrying notice on the hoarding which seems to suggest that they'll be totally changing the front of it.

Further on up, to St. George's tower, the remains of the old church with the clock hanging out over the street. Then back down to Mercery Lane and into the Cathedral. It's an amazing place that never fails to astound.

We went out through the cloisters and through the dark passage into King's School so that Natacha could see where young Micky spent his school days - or the ones he enjoyed the most.

By then it was getting a bit late and we were getting a bit tired so we decided to leave Chilham for Natacha's next visit. When we got home I showed her the scenes from Paul's book and from our previous visits there.

See also, our trip around Pinewood and our trip to London

Other P&P trips