Monday, 4 July 2011

ABC Tour – Circumnavigation Complete


Today is our last day travelling on Olga and it is a lovely day to be riding.  Lots more crops as we travelled along and many getting close to harvest.

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Oxburgh Hall is a National Trust property we would pass on our way south, so we decided to call in.   We were a bit early for opening, so firstly, we had a look around the old parish church.

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There are interesting terracotta screens inside.

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Oxburgh Hall has some lovely gardens.

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The moated manor house was built in the 1500s and some of the family still live in one wing.  The family are Catholic so underwent incredible persecution for many years.

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Can you imagine that the hall was to be demolished in 1951.  It was sold to a developer by the then owner, who was going to demolish and use the bricks for a housing estate on the site.  The owner’s mother lived overseas and when she heard about it she came home and put a stay of execution on the sale.  Some of the family sold their homes and scraped together enough money to buy it back.  They found it too much to maintain, so in 1952 gave it to the National Trust.  Unfortunately, many of the inclusions had already been sold, as had much of the land.

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There is  a priest hole in one of the towers.  It is hidden under a latrine.  Mick climbed in there and said it was really awkward.  If you were found to be hiding a priest all your land would have been confiscated and the priest hung, drawn and quartered or burnt at the stake.  This priest hole was never discovered.  However, the fellow that built it, and several other priest holes, was arrested and tortured to death.  He didn’t reveal where he had built them.  Brave fellow.

See that flag on top of the gate tower.

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Well, this is the view from up there.

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There are heaps of chimneys and their designs are all different.

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In 1828 the discriminatory laws against Catholics were repealed and the family built a chapel.

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Many of the fittings date back to the 16th century and were brought in from Europe.

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That will probably be the last National Trust property we will see.  It has definitely been worth becoming members.

On the road again we were so pleased to see this sign.  We had made it back to Felixstowe.  We were both really happy to have achieved this, but also breathed a sigh of relief, as Olga had started to cough and splutter a bit at times over the last couple of days.  We had both been counting down the miles.

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We spent the afternoon sitting by the sea on a clear blue day.  See that strange little thing on the horizon.

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It was an oil drilling platform being towed in to Felixstowe Port.  Rather large.  Mick zoomed right in with his camera and it is like a factory.  Just as well the sea was calm.

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There were lots of people on the beach and many beach huts were being used.  There was a cool breeze, but quite a few people were swimming.

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Meanwhile, all the time ships were coming and going from the port.  Felixstowe is the busiest port in England and the third busiest in Europe.  I think our bike came over here on a Hanjin ship.  We counted 6 containers high on this one that we could see. What a huge load.

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Tomorrow we will get Olga ready to send home and us for the next stage of our trip.

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