A day off in the week for some fun. It always feels slightly naughty, bunking off work in the week, but it was all legit, a days leave booked.
The threat of more rain in the form of a downpour slightly altered the plans, but this time Robochef was to adventure on the Fosseway Flyer (no. 90 bus actually)
Firstly, I cheated slightly and caught the train to Newark to save half a hour travelling time. Quite a pleasant journey through the Trent valley, gazing out of the window I concluded two things. 1., no sign of rain and 2, lots of flooded fields in this “drought”.

Arriving at Newark Castle there was a local auction in progress on the old cattle market site, but I walked on, even resisting the temptation of the teasy Waitrose store. Robochef was on a mission, to the first coffee of the day.

It was early enough for me to find a space in Strays Coffee/Bookshop. This place seems to be thriving having expanded into space next door. It used to be a farm feed shop (I think) which was re-invented into more of a bookshop with coffee instead of a coffee shop with a few books as it appears to be now. Sign of the times I guess, everyone drinking coffee and reading their electronic devices.
I browsed the books and brought one on special offer.At least they are trying, but I don’t envy their task as an indie bookshop, but I do hope they can survive. Then off for the coffee and a scrummy cheese scone, yummmmm.

I could have stayed all morning but it was market day and I wanted to browse around the few indie shops. The market looked healthy in these austere times. Porters the deli was still doing well and I brought some local honey from the health food shop. Really friendly owner, lots of nice stock, I promised to call in again.

Time to capture the ruined castle before lunch. I’ve always liked the ruin on the side of the Trent and there is so much local civil war history it surprises me that there are not more visitors. Of course, it was quite a good time to visit as on the 5th May 1646 Charles the First surrended in the nearby town of Southwell and Newark Castle met it’s ruinous fate. I felt quite chuffed that I was only a few days and a few centuries late.

Photos of the Castle. South Tower and Gatehouse

The modern bandstand, and my attempt at a photo effect.

I walked around the ruins, and a few drops of rain reminded me that it was time to catch the Fosseway Flyer to Catherine’s for lunch and a good old natter. Which had been the original purpose of the day off.

There was a bit of a skirmish on the bus, apparently there had been a traffic accident and the road closed, the driver could only take some of us on to our destinations, as his diversion would eliminate some of the stops. “No mate, you’ll have to walk, can’t stop there today, sorry”.
Thankfully I was allowed on board and I saw a part of Newark I had never been before and will probably never go to again. Hawton was very pleasant as we whizzed through, we brake for no-one, small lane, rather large mini bus, Fosseway Flyer living up to it’s name.

I arrived a little later than expected with a slightly startled look. “I thought you’d got lost….”, “I very nearly did………….”

After homemade Sorrell soup, bread and a good natter it was time to go home in the predicted downpour. Back onto the Fosseway Flyer. A very different journey nowdays as the “new” fosseway is open and it all looks very different to how the journey looked on the old Fosseway. No longer do we pass the East Bridgford garden centre, but it looked to be doing okay. I’m glad parts of the old road have been kept as backroads as I am quite fond of the Fosseway.

All in all a very pleasant way to spend a day off. And yes I did see the famous Siggy of facebook fame. Asleep in his basket where he apparently spends 23 hours of mostly rainy days. (can’t blame him I guess)