Thursday, November 11, 2010

Wye Not? - 6th November 2010

We had a weekend planned in Hereford, to catch the last of the autumn colours, so when 25mph winds ripped through the UK on Thursday, we wondered if there would be any leaves left on the trees. But when we reached our autumn feature for the day, The Forest of Dean, we were delighted to find the trees looking superb, with their rich golds, reds and bronzes.

We took the scenic route through the forest, with a stop for a walk at Symonds Yat Rock. This is a massive rock outcrop about the River Wye, overlooking the forests below, the town of Symonds Yat and the river curving in a horse-shoe. The trees were a wonderful autumn blaze of colour.

Our route took us past Goodrich Castle, ruined by Cromwell's troops, and on to Ross-on-Wye for lunch. This is a picturesque market town, with a covered market, the main street marching down the hill, and a soaring church steeple. Outside the church is a cross erected to commemorate the fact that in 1637 a total of 315 plaque victims were buried without coffins during the night. Next door to the church is a walled garden, overlooking the river, far below.

After lunch, we carried on to Hereford, parked at our city centre hotel and walked off to enjoy the town centre with its old buildings. The Tudor 'Old House' is a free museum, which gives a feel for how these old buildings were to live in.

The cathedral is magnificent, we have previously visited the Mappa Mundi and Chained Library here, definitely worth a visit.

The city is also built on the banks of the Rive Wye and, here too, we enjoyed the autumn colours as we walked along the riverside path before returning to our hotel.

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