Suffolk Sojourn

Back after a few days away in Suffolk where we almost melted until the Thunderstorm arrived. We were in Cedric (our camper) and pedalled around the coast. One ride was to Oford Ness and it was 33 degrees.

On Saturday we went to a celebration 10th wedding anniversary party for Eleanor (my god daughter) and Gary. time certainly does fly! Earlier we visited Sutton Hoo one of our favourite places. It was enhanced by some people dressed as Saxons demonstrating different skills like coin making, weapons, clothes dying and many other things from that time. It inspired us to visit West Stow Saxon village, wonderful!

We also walked round Wicken Fen.


Cheltenham Cricket Festival

Short blog today! I had a super day yesterday at Cheltenham watching cricket with good friends. Martin and I had cycled and gone by train to get there, we cycled back via Leckhampton Hill and Birdlip. A lovely ride especially descending down from Birdlip through the Slad Valley. The Cheltenham Festival is a real gem just hope the rather ill conceived future Franchise Tournament doesn’t erode this. I do sound like a grumpy old man don’t I!


Late Cuckoo

Forgot to mention how Thursday’s Bird Survey went. A real surprise was a Cuckoo flying near us, we got excited about this, the adult birds  are usually well gone by this time of year. I think this is the latest I have seen an adult, I’ve seen juveniles in early September. We also saw a Redstart a rarity in Frampton.

Finally been on the bike quite a bit this week and yesterday Clare and I went to Nailsworth and climbed up to Minchinhampton, she is really enjoying her new bike!

Alpe d’Huez

What a fantastic race yesterday on Alpe d’Huez in the Tour de France. We found the afternoon absolutely gripping as the action ebbed and flowed with different riders looking like they would take the stage win. I think it was one of the best day’s racing ever. I am always in awe as they race for miles up and down these great mountains. Yesterday took me back four years when three of us cycled in the Alps going up Alpe d’Huez three times-don’t ask me why? However, it is great to watch a sporting event like this and have a go at it yourself albeit without the crowds and not racing or the three weeks continuous cycling!

Yesterday I remembered the fear that coursed through my veins as we first approached those imposing snow capped peaks and I questioned my sanity. Why I am I going to cycle up there? Those of you who have read my blog for a while will know I do frequently embark on some interesting challenges on my bike! I’ve put a picture from 2014 of my David, friend George and yours truly on top of Alpe d’Huez above the Tour finish at the snowline and one looking down at the bends of the Alpe, this is only a section but you get some idea of what faces the riders.

Had a lovely morning working at Hygrove House this morning with one of my Story Telling workshops.




Currently we are dog sitting for Dave and Vicky (they have got our camper van Cedric). So Tully a rescued greyhound is often sprawled out chilled in our living room. Wonderful watching him hurtle across the field in the early morning after rabbits. Picture below is his regular drink spot on our morning walk.

Story Telling slowly easing down, I told stories to adults at a charity event on Sunday and I am at Hygrove House working with adults on Friday morning. I need to work on our 2019 project that Dan and I have talked about. more on that as it develops.

Bird survey tomorrow morning to look forward to although don’t expect to see that much.

Birnam Wood to Dunsinane……….

I have to comment on how ashamed I am about the fact our government invited Trump to our country and rolled out the red carpet. He is an abominable man who displays all the traits of a badly behaved playground bully who by his actions  doing irreparable damage to  our precious planet and displaying a poor example on how to treat fellow human beings. RANT OVER!

Talking of tyrants, we went to Stratford yesterday to see Macbeth (Christopher Eccleston and Niamh Cusack as Lady M). The witches were played by young girls which was certainly different! It is an all action production! Not sure when Birnam Wood will come to the White House but surely they will get rid of him won’t they before he does too much harm?

Pity about the football, a missed opportunity but sadly for us the best team won.

Hope in your Hearts!!!!!

Short blog on the afternoon of the World Cup Semi!

My plan for the next few hours

  • Fingers crossed,
  • legs crossed
  • making sure I avoid cracks in the pavement,
  • avoid walking under ladders
  • Don’t drop any mirrors
  • Make sure I get my timings right for this evening’s Story Telling! We have altered timings to fit the football in!
  • COME ON ENGLAND!!!!!!!!

Sizzled and Roasted!!!!

My goodness it is hot! I played cricket yesterday and we arranged to wrap the game around the footie. Good to report we won at the death and of course England did. First time I opened this season and started really well to slapped a short one to a fielder, so sadly I missed out. My old team mate Nigel saw us home (we are the only two players over 30 in the team!)

I capped off a really busy week with another book at a local school. Pleased to say this week looks like being quieter! Hopefully will clock up a few miles on the bike.

Bill on Tour!!!!!!

One absolutely wiped out Story Teller here! Three successive mornings telling stories in Nottingham-I even managed to see the football in an interesting local pub! How stressful that was! I camped in our camper Cedric. Also called on some old friends near Lincoln.

On Wednesday afternoon even managed to visit a Leicestershire school (St. Peter and St. Paul Academy)  who visit us at Wick Court to promote my book. What a treat visiting our friends there. I was unexpectedly asked to do a story in assembly. Sold many books as well! Thank you to a lovely school.

Finished up with telling stories this morning in Nottingham and doing my usual residency back in Gloucestershire this afternoon. No wonder I am feeling it-will try do a more coherent blog tomorrow or Saturday.


Dartmoor Classic

Followed up on last week’s busy week with a Story Telling Workshop with adults at Hygrove House on Friday that went well. I later pedalled to see fellow ex Headteachers at the wonderful Old Spot. It is a great pub.

Final bit of Story Telling for me and the end of a busy week was at Lakefield School Fete on Saturday. I nearly baked in the sun! We then drove down to our Dave’s in Exeter later that afternoon to meet up with all the family.

A ridiculous early start saw the three Church boys set off on the Dartmoor Classic. Fearing that we would melt in the sun we smeared on the sun cream made sure our water bottles were brimmed to the full. However we got a real soaking in persistent torrential rain! Still 67 miles and 5,300 feet of climbing was eventually negotiated and wait for it I was award a silver medal for my age related time! Picture of Pete and I below with my time above!

Likely to be unable to blog for the next three days. I am on Story Telling Tour to Nottingham. Just finished packing!