Rutland Walkabout

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What better way to spend the 1 year anniversary of acquiring the XKR, than by taking it on a slow drive round the county of Rutland? – more specifically, we planned to almost circum-navigate Rutland Water clockwise, and take in as many of the sights as time allowed. It was a gorgeous day – just the right temperature – mid 20s – and not quite so humid as of late.

The Rutland Walkabout
Rutland Walkabout (well, mostly by car actually!) – click for larger view

Ann and I set off just after 10 and headed first to Uppingham. It was market day, and that gave this very English town an extra degree of charm!

The Falcon, Uppingham

After a heavy 20 minutes window-shopping it was off for a short coffee-break in The Falcon, where a jazz band was playing outside. suitably refreshed, we jumped back in the car and headed for our next stop – Oakham. This was another very ‘English’ town, full of mostly independent shops and a lovely Church – All Saints.

All Saints Church, Oakham

Then, it was off to Oakham Castle. Not very castle-like in appearance, but a castle by the strict definition of the word. There was plenty to see inside, including a massive collection of ornamental horseshoes, by tradition, given as a gift when the town is first visited by someone famous (not us then!)

Oakham Castle (yes, really!)

Then it was down to the waterside and a spot of lunch at the Harbour Cafe in Whitwell with a perfect view across the water.

A Perfect View across the Water

We finished our tour of the UK’s smallest county, and Rutland Water, by dropping into Normanton Church – a curious construction actually on the water, but partly submerged. Very beautiful and somewhat weird, in equal measure!

Normanton Church

This sunny day wouldn’t haven’t been complete without an ice-cream of some sort, but we hadn’t seen anything up until now – then, we spotted a van just alongside the Church. 99s all round then!!! Result sticky fingers and a smile!!
Smile Smile

What a great day out! It’s amazing that this place is more-or-less on our doorstep – and we’d never been to it before. The Jaguar returned 23mpg, which I suppose given the lack of straight roads and dual carriageways, is perfectly acceptable.

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