Saturday, 31 March 2018

Leamington Spa (two town tours in two days)

All our children take the mickey out of me saying I should run tourist tours around the different places we visit.  As Sophie and Yanos were staying this week I treated them to my ‘four gates’ tour of Warwick which included a picnic by the River Avon and a trip to Sainsbury’s at the end 😉
As we cruised to Leamington on Tuesday afternoon I took them on a tour of the town on Wednesday.  There are a great many places to visit in Leam so I gave them a taster tour taking in one or two items of different tours such as the elephant tour, the spa tour, the garden tour, the water tour etc.

Fishing on an overspill weir on the River Leam

Looking upstream with Robbins’ Baths on the right with the colonnades - one of the long defunct bath spas that made the town famous

Richard Robbins discovered the fourth springs to be found in the town and opened six baths and a pump room on the site in 1806.  Originally called Robbins Baths they were rebuilt as Victoria Baths which was when the colonnades were added. 

For most of its journey through the town the River Leam is lined with gardens on both sides.  The Pump Room gardens with its bandstand were built in 1814 and were originally only for use by patrons of the Royal Pump Rooms.

Crossing the Leam into the Pump Room gardens

Outside the Royal Pump Rooms, which are opposite Jephson Gardens and the opposite side of the river to Robbins’ Baths, is a water fountain which is the only public source of spa water left in the town.  Our boater friend, Les, tried the water once and told me that it was the worst thing he had ever tasted – totally belying the health-giving properties they purported to give.  Because of this, neither Karen nor I have ever tried the water but Yanos felt he had to, even though I had told him about Les’s comment  

Yanos agreeing with Les

Before going back to the boat, we had a quick look at one of the old elephant houses and also the, supposed, elephant wash.

When Karen stops working next week we will no longer need the car, and will leave it at my parents’ house in Yorkshire for the next year before we move the boat over to France.  We have built up a few things we have never used on the boat so on Thursday morning, whilst we still had the car, I paid a visit to our storage unit in Solihull to get rid of them.  I also picked up a couple of things we have been missing and really need on the boat.

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