Our next mooring was by Bridge 48, and yesterday we walked to see all the old buildings that have been brought, restored, and re-built at Avoncroft.
This lovely old Windmill can be seen from the canal as it sits upon the hill. It’s cloth sails are still attached, but are furled. Icehouses became popular with wealthy families in the eighteenth century. They were usually buried under a small hillock, ice was collected from ponds in the winter and shovelled inside to keep all kinds of food cool and preserve it. It was rather like a well drained ice well which allowed the melt water to trickle out.
The resident Blacksmith was busy making lances for a re-enactment group. Nearby was a chain making workshop where several blacksmiths would have be sweating away at their forges putting all the links together. There was a posh three holed earth closet as used by the rich people and this one-holed one that cottage dwellers had at the bottom of their garden. Our friends who had a smallholding in Wales had one of these and the view through the door across the valley was spectacular. It was a joy to sit there, during the summer months, at least!
We walked through the Turnpike Cottage with all it’s authentic furnishings. It had a bread oven and a little wash house with a mangle. These would have been built beside the Turnpike Roads to collect the tolls from travellers passing by in order to upkeep the road.
This old pillared barn was one of my favourites.
The Co-operative Society shop housed an Edwardian Tea Room serving home made cakes. There was also a very large collection of telephone boxes of all descriptions.
This is how we felt after strolling around the fifteen acre site when we had walked back to the boat!