I am Linda and along with my husband Richard and our dog Muffin we enjoy our summers on the UK's canal system

Tuesday 9 September 2014

Limehouse Basin (Regents Canal) – Monday 8th September

Most of the SBC boats were leaving at 8.30am and as we were on the outside we had to be up and about too.  I had just gone into the shower about 8.15am when Richard said they were ready to leave!  He moved us over to the water pontoon and while we watered up the other boats went so when we were ready we moved back and are now on the disabled pontoon.  In the Limehouse leaflet it says that the pontoon is for people with mobility problems and as my knee doesn’t bend to get up walls I feel I qualify.

I wanted to go on one of the Thames Clippers (the high speed catamarans with a maximum speed of 28 knots) so we decided to go up to Woolwich on one to see the Tall Ships.  There were quite a few Tall Ships up there which you could look over but as we had Muffin we couldn’t do it.  We wandered up through the museums but were rather disappointed with what was on offer – it was either food stalls or a bandstand with a very good trio playing.

We went “off piste” and found a little café where we had a coffee and decided to have lunch as the food in the cold cabinet looked lovely – sadly it wasn’t as good as it looked :-(

The two street artists that made me laugh so much
She doesn't look too happy!
We strolled back down to the river and came across a couple of street artists on segways which had been dressed up as large shopping trollies – I won’t go into a description just look at the photo.  These two were hilarious and kept the crowd entertained with jokes, songs and dances!  There really were very entertaining and clever.

Also down by the river are a group of 16 hollow figures called Assembly.  Created by the sculptor, Peter Burke, the cast-iron quarter-ton body moulds reflect the community, military and industrial history of the site – we found them rather weird.

We went to get the Thames Clipper back to Greenwich but were told there was an hour’s wait so we walked to the DLR and got the train to the Tower of London.  There we found the wonderful Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red – the field of poppies.  888,246 ceramic poppies will progressively fill the Tower's famous moat over the summer and was created by ceramic artist Paul Cummins. Each poppy represents a British military fatality during the war.  You can buy a poppy and we have already ordered ours.

We also found the sculptures of the three lions by artist Kendra Haste.  These are here was back in the early 1200s The Royal Menagerie was founded during the reign of King John and animals lived at the Tower for over 600 years. Exotic animals were given as royal gifts and animals were kept at the Royal Menagerie for the entertainment and curiosity of the court.

The first royal beasts to arrive at the Tower - the lions, polar bear and elephant - came from Europe and North Africa. In later years, the variety of animals at the Tower increased. Everything from elephants to tigers, kangaroos and ostriches lived in what was known as the Royal Menagerie.

It was then back on the DLR to Limehouse and a short walk back to Mary H.  We ate on board then went onboard Magic with Richard and Mimi for a drink (or four!)!  It was also goodbye to them as they are leaving early in the morning.

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