Monday, 18 March 2013
A Weekend At Windsor
No hobby time this weekend as we took a bit of a break to Windsor. I have never been there before, despite it being less than 2 hours away. Not even the rain could spoil a lovely weekend – it barely stopped for the full 48 hours that we were there.
I say no hobby time but the first thing I saw when I looked out of the hotel bedroom window was Games Workshop right across the road!!!
You can't escape it.
Obviously the town is dominated by the castle which acts not only as a visual focal point but also the main source of tourists. As a consequence the town seems to be prospering – lots of shops, restaurants and cafes all seeming to be doing well in trade.
Naturally we had to poke our noses inside the castle, but at £20 each (!!) it was never going to be a cheap visit. Even the included audio tour didn't quite seem to make up for the extortionate entry fee, although we were there for a couple of hours or so, until a break for tea was needed. No cafes on Her Majesty's property alas (though there were several gift shops) so we were forced to find refreshment outside the castle walls.
The visit to the castle itself was actually very interesting. Of course I found the various armouries the most enjoyable, full of weapons and trophies from historic conquests. The Queen was actually in residence over the weekend, hence heightened security and the royal colours flying over the tower.
A thoroughly enjoyable visit to one of those places you always felt you should go to. Not so much a castle as a fortified village. I learned a lot more than I thought I would; for the model-maker in me I was intrigued by the enormous dolls house that was built, not for play, but for accuracy and as a historical document of the time, with scaled down replica paintings and crockery all made by the original creators.
Of course a visit to any royal establishment would not be complete without a guard or two with a bearskin hat and an emotionless face. Lots of marching about – they have to keep warm somehow!