What better way to spend the 1 year anniversary of acquiring the XKR, than by taking it on a slow drive round the county of Rutland? - more specifically, we planned to almost circum-navigate Rutland Water clockwise, and take in as many of the sights as time allowed. It was a gorgeous day - just the right temperature - mid 20s - and not quite so humid as of late.
Rutland Walkabout (well, mostly by car actually!) - click for larger view
Ann and I set off just after 10 and headed first to Uppingham. It was market day, and that gave this very English town an extra degree of charm!
The Falcon, Uppingham
After a heavy 20 minutes window-shopping it was off for a short coffee-break in The Falcon, where a jazz band was playing outside. suitably refreshed, we jumped back in the car and headed for our next stop - Oakham. This was another very ‘English’ town, full of mostly independent shops and a lovely Church - All Saints.
All Saints Church, Oakham
Then, it was off to Oakham Castle. Not very castle-like in appearance, but a castle by the strict definition of the word. There was plenty to see inside, including a massive collection of ornamental horseshoes, by tradition, given as a gift when the town is first visited by someone famous (not us then!)
Oakham Castle (yes, really!)
Then it was down to the waterside and a spot of lunch at the Harbour Cafe in Whitwell with a perfect view across the water.
A Perfect View across the Water
We finished our tour of the UK’s smallest county, and Rutland Water, by dropping into Normanton Church - a curious construction actually on the water, but partly submerged. Very beautiful and somewhat weird, in equal measure!
This sunny day wouldn’t haven’t been complete without an ice-cream of some sort, but we hadn’t seen anything up until now - then, we spotted a van just alongside the Church. 99s all round then!!! Result sticky fingers and a smile!!
What a great day out! It’s amazing that this place is more-or-less on our doorstep - and we’d never been to it before. The Jaguar returned 23mpg, which I suppose given the lack of straight roads and dual carriageways, is perfectly acceptable.