Monthly Archives: June 2012

Sun Shines on the Righteous – And Also on BTCC

Contrary to expectation (after a cold and cloudy Saturday), the annual Touring Cars meeting at Oulton Park yesterday was blessed with a whole day of sunshine on Sunday. The crowds were out in force, as always: I’m told this venue has the largest attendance of any BTCC meeting.

Stationed at the Hilltop post, we had a good view of quite a few interesting incidents, and the pleasure of watching fellow marshals working hard, but for us the day was largely uneventful. One of the Ginetta Juniors made the tyre wall a bit untidy, coming out of the hairpin, and Aron Smith pulled off just over the crest in the last race, but that was about it.

Nice to have a day on the bank without being either soaked or frozen, and some good racing as a bonus.

Lundy 2012

Sunday 12th May

Departed Crewe about 10:45; paused at Cherwell Valley for coffee and to buy lunch butties from M&S; ate butties in a lay-by south of Chievley services; arrived Broadstone towards 3 o’clock. (3hr 20min driving time: 67mph average — pretty respectable.)

Monday 13th

Shopping at Sainsburys, lunch at home then off to Devon mid-afternoon.

Appledore fish and chips for tea and overnight in Barnstaple Travelodge, as usual.

Lundy Office answerphone message hints at possible sailing cancellation and requests us to attend Bideford quay at 8:00am.

Tuesday 14th

Up bright and early, and on the quayside by about 7:15 — no one else to be seen when we arrived, but joined before long by other intrepid travellers. The boat was obviously ready to go, with luggage crates waiting on the key, so we braced ourselves for the likelihood of an unpleasant couple of hours in transit. When the office opened, they immediately posted a notice there would be no sailing for day visitors; we learned in due course the intention was to turn round as quickly as possible at Lundy and sail back to Clovelly where they would shelter until tides allowed them back into Bideford: talk of force 10 winds in the forecast.

In the event, the crossing was not too bad, though very cold by the time we arrived. Customary lunch of burger and chips, washed down with Old Light. Into the house quite early, where we soon unpacked and settled in.

Salmon and asparagus with new potatoes, followed by Chatwins cream swiss roll.

Wednesday 15th

Unable to connect to Lundy wi-fi and no data on any phone networks, so it’s going to be 10 days of internet-free isolation!

Weather picked up during the afternoon. JL & I had a bit of a walk round the South end before tea.

M&S steak-and-kidney puddings; Sainsburys raspberry cheesecake

Thursday 16th

C&P up bright early and out before we were our of bed; eventually returned 9:30 for breakfast.

Lovely sunny day, so after the inevitable trip to the shop, we sat in the suntrap outside the Tavern with a pint, watching the arrivals from the boat — actually, a bit thin on the ground.

After a late-ish lunch, taken outside, we lounged in deck chairs for a couple of hours, before moving back indoors as the weather began to go downhill a bit.

Friday 17th

Another early start by C&P.

After breakfast, the Trinity House ship, Patricia, heave to in the landing bay and off-loaded a few personnel, who were picked up by a Lundy Landrover: purpose of visit unknown (even by Nigel, though he tried to pretend otherwise!) Keith the Painter working on our blue gate.

Packed up lunch and walked over to the West side, to a sheltered spot marked on Topher’s map; after lunch, up to Jenny’s to look for puffins: good sightings of 10-12 on the water, plus aerial display from the peregrine and a view of his/her nest above the pyramid rock.

Pub for tea: garlic mushrooms, whitebait, prawn cocktail; lamb steaks, venison, scampi; home for sponge pud (briefly delayed by short power outage).

Saturday 18th

Another day of sunshine!

To the Ugly in the morning, to watch cod-navy boat, divers’ boat, and Oldenburg.

Curry & RFS

Sunday 19th

Incredibly, a fourth sunny day, with just a bit of an edge to the wind later in the day.

Deckchairs outside in the morning. Short stroll by D&L before lunch (from which C&P abstained); longer walk in the afternoon.

Roast beef; Choc fudge pud; cheese & biscuits with port

Monday 20th

Well, it couldn’t last — overcast morning, though not cold. Shopping then indoor activities.

Soup and sandwiches for lunch, then a walk up the lower east side and across to Jenny’s, puffin hunting. I think I spotted one, but others didn’t see convinced.

Ham with carrots, asparagus and mashed potatoes; sticky-toffee pudding for afters.

Tuesday 21st

Brief sunny spells first thing then cloudy and pretty cool.

JL and I wandered up to the shop mid-morning for lunch bread rolls; encountered a large Warden’s Walk party coming out ot the church.

Topher’s bangers & mash with cauli cheese; banana, toffee sauce & icecream concoction.

Wednesday 22nd

Mostly sunny, but cold wind and cloud at times.

The Great Puffin Hunt. Up the main road to half wall and across to Jennys; watched for a time from south of the wall, eventually spotting a few in the burrow area to the left of the fulmar nesting stack. Lunch in the lee of the wall against the cheese rock, then further north, stopping from time to time to search for other nesting sites. Finally got a really good sighting a little way north side of Phillip’s Stone, on the promontory just left of the Stone itself. Across to the east side, stopping to chat with occupant of Tibbets; then home via the Quarries and Lower path, and up The 107 Steps.

Chilli by Phyl; rhubarb crumble

Thursday 23rd

Quite an overcast day, but with some good spells of sun; strong northerly winds; short sharp hail storm just after lunch.

Watched the boat come in (rough-ish looking crossing); counted about 100 passengers. To the pub for a pint and to watch the new arrivals stagger up.

Indoors most of the afternoon. Walked to the Castle to see the boat leave; then round to the Rocket Pole, and home for scones with jam and cream.

Pub for tea; starters and mains only. Cheese-and-biscuits with port at home.

Friday 24th

Sunny first thing, but clouding over by breakfast; brighter agaion later but windy.

Chris clinging to promise in the forecast that winds will drop overnight!

Packing in the afternoon. As usual, can’t believe it’s nearly over for another year!

Beer-can Chicken; Red-Fruit Salad

Saturday 25th

Bright and sunny all day; hardly any wind.

D & C up the Old Light before lunch, armed with padlock key to let us out on to the outside platform!

Visit by a lot of sailing craft, including several larger wood-hulled boats.

Cruised round the island on the Oldenburg in the afternoon, followed by a mill-pond homeward crossing.

Good chip-shop tea in Bideford; easy journey home, arriving about 10:40pm.

Sunday 26th

C&P on duty at church, so made our farewells by just after 9 o’clock; we left shortly after, and had an easy trip home (65mph ave) arriving just before 3.