Wednesday, 1 September 2010

An Inland Voyage - in Coventry

Today's excursion, (bus to Stafford then another half-price train ride) was to the Herbert Art Gallery in Coventry to see the exhibition of Robert Longden's photographs taken around Hawkesbury Junction in the 1950s and hugely evocative of the lives of working boaters - warts and all. Others have written about it already, including Granny Buttons and in any case, its over now and you've missed it  so I won't go into detail except to say it was well worth the trip.
Afterwards, I took the bus up to Hawkesbury Junction itself to remind myself of what it looks like today. I'd always arrived by boat before, so I'd never seen this sign that greets travellers by road.
Nice to see that the area's informal name "Sutton Stop" is still recognised, even off the cut.

There was just time for a quick pint in the Greyhound, the old- and new - boaters' pub that overlooks the canal here.  Curiously, Longden doesn't seem to have taken any interior shots here; perhaps that would have been too much of an intrusion?
The Greyhound as it is today (or rather, last Saturday)
As an all-day ticket on Coventry's buses costs only 20p more than the fare to and from the railway station this side trip cost virtually nothing and I was able to take a different route back to the city to take in a ride on one of these:
Coventry is one of the few places in the UK that one can ride on an articulated bus now that London is being forced to get rid of them, so it was an interesting way to get back to the centre and see a bit more of what the city has to offer.

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