Question of the Week
How much would you accept for Omar Bogle?
Mentioned Part 28
By: Rob Sedgwick
"No disrespect to the likes of Grimsby..."
monday 10th september
Great drives: Across three counties from Daventry to Grimsby
From the Motoring Telegraph
Phil Llewellin heads for the port where cars have replaced cod
This drive proves that long journeys across England need not be synonymous with boring motorways and traffic-clogged, single-carriageway primary roads. Believe it or not, quiet byways account for all but about five of the 140 miles clocked while exploring Northamptonshire, Leicestershire and Lincolnshire on this remarkably direct route from Daventry to Grimsby.
Starting in Daventry, a pleasant little bypassed town, where Charles I camped before marching to Naseby and losing the Civil War's most decisive battle in 1645, we head north-eastward, like his doomed army. We leave on the B4036, then go across the A5 to join the unclassified road to Long Buckby. Be careful here, because we veer left into Church Street where the main road swings to the right. Jink right and left in West Haddon, crossing the A428, then push on to Cold Ashby and Naseby.
A small museum recalls the battle that involved more than 22,000 troops and was fought a couple of miles north of the village. There's a small monument near the spot where Oliver Cromwell launched the crucial cavalry charge. A bigger obelisk stands by the lane to Market Harborough, a busy town with an intriguing High Street, including one shop that has been selling fish, game and poultry since 1890.
The B6047 crosses farmland speckled with tiny villages during its 22-mile run from Market Harborough to Melton Mowbray. Melton is famous for Ye Olde Pork Pie Shoppe, which celebrates its 150th birthday this year, and for Stilton cheese. The expression "Painting the town red" dates from 1837, when the boisterous Marquis of Waterford and his fox-hunting friends slapped red paint over several of Melton's buildings.
Fox and pheasant country unfurls as the B676 rambles eastward to Colsterworth. Warning signs about falling apples might be appropriate here because Woolsthorpe Manor, now owned by the National Trust, is where Sir Isaac Newton was born on Christmas Day, 1642. This is where he later spent nearly two years after leaving Cambridge to escape the plague.
Colsterworth's High Street leads to the busy A1, which has to be crossed to follow the undulating B6403 northward. The road's straightness is a clue to its Roman origins - this is Ermine Street, which ran from London to Lincoln and the Humber. There's a fair chance of being distracted by mind-boggling aerobatics on this section of the route, because RAF Cranwell, where we dogleg right and left across the A17, is the home of the Red Arrows.
After a couple of miles on the A15 we return to B-road motoring by turning right for Scopwick, then heading north to Metheringham, Bardney, Wragby and Market Rasen. This is a fertile, low-lying region of big skies, black soil and deep ditches overlooked by the remains of brick-built windmills.
"....'Alpine' and 'grandeur' are not words that spring instantly to mind..."
The drive's last leg starts in Market Rasen, a horse racing town where we cross the A631 and join the B1203. The landscape that has been flat for many miles changes quite dramatically in Tealby. "Alpine" and "grandeur" are not words that spring instantly to mind when describing the Lincolnshire Wolds - the county's highest point is only 550 feet above sea level - but keen drivers appreciate the switchbacks, the corners and, all things being relative, the feeling of being on top of the world.
The B1203 runs all the way into Grimsby, which used to be the world's biggest fishing port. Those days are recalled in the award-winning National Fishing Heritage Centre, which towers above vessels that include the Ross Tiger, a restored 1950s trawler. The extent to which times have changed becomes apparent while leaving town on the A180 and passing acre upon acre of cars shipped in from mainland Europe. Cod and herring have been replaced by Audi and Volkswagen.
Distance: 140 miles.
Traffic forecast: Light.
Restaurants/pubs: Bulls Head, Clipston; Three Swans, Market Harborough; Bell Inn, East Langton; Anne of Cleves House, Melton Mowbray.
Landmarks: Battle of Naseby monuments; Old Grammar School, Market Harborough; RAF College, Cranwell; Dock Tower, Grimsby.
Spotted by Jonathan Parkes.
In EastEnders last night (30/08), Lynne Slater was being wound up by Janine Butcher about her honeymoon (her fiancee Gary had booked a week in Skegness). Janine said something like "You never know, he may have cancelled Skegness and booked a week in Cleethorpes instead"!
Spotted by Emma Gillingham.
From The Times
Among the names of clubs expected to be among the early leaders of the Nationwide League first division, that of Grimsby Town was conspicuous by its absence. More often, it appeared in the list of those tipped for relegation.
Spotted by Grim Rob.
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