Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Insert Coin 2009

Might seem an odd title but Insert coin is all about Arcade games and one day my oldest son wanted to go so dragged me along, well should I say got me to pay for him to go and as I had the honour of driving him I went along as well. The show or what ever it was happen at Northampton Rugby Club conference centre

When we saw this we knew we were in the right place

There was a queue to get in but not a long one

Though we did notice a couple of Star Wars Storm Troopers watching the crowd

They were looking menacing watching people along the line

Then started harassing people

Mr Smith was there as well keeping order with the end of his gun

But it was not long before we were in amongst the gaming machines

Where people were already sat down enjoying themselves

So was one of the Storm Troopers

This character is lost on me

But it did not stop here posing

There were racing car set ups

and jet ski's  if you could get the Storm Troopers off

tea shirts for sale

More games

Even more games

Even older people were playing (It's not me)

first person shoot em ups

even take the dog for a walk games

The girl in the pink hair was watching the dog went off and walked the dog

These two were happy to pose

there was a dance machine though the guy on the left looked like he was having trouble

Went outside for a breather and a bit to eat and met this guy

Back for  a last look round then went off home

saying hello to this couple
Quite a good time I admit and even I had a go  on some of the machines teaming up with my son.
I admit I've been to a few other functions like this with him but not of late.
Hope you enjoyed my light hearted explore this time.

Thursday, 1 September 2016

Chilworth Gunpowder Mills

I happened to be in the village one Saturday at a small dog show with my wife the intention for me was to find some WWII pillboxes  which according to my map were in the vicinity. So leaving my wife at a dog show we were at I had a look around then after walking through the countryside then after coming across this cottage

I passed this row of cottages which I think are called Gunpowder Mills

Not far away was a information board on the entrance to a park. (I might add I saw a few people riding horses through the place)

It did not look very inviting I must admit

Above a sign telling you what is happening with the woodland and the track taking you to it

The area looked very overgrown

With a lot of undergrowth growing either side of the track

This is one of the mills buildings being restored

The parapet of a bridge over an old watercourse

which it seems to me there were a few of flowing into the stream

It soon became apparent there used to be buildings here

which were part of the mills

and they needed water to power them hence the number of water courses I saw

I had to wonder what happen to the rest of the building

The main course was a series of mill ponds

and soon enough I came across huge mill wheels

and more building remains

then a long line of mill wheels

half buried in the ground they still stood a good meter high

remains of mill ponds

water courses and valves

 bridges which wagons were pushed over and others you could walk over

I came across another building in the midst of being restored

The water courses were used to transport small barges containing materials along to the mills

though I'm not sure what this was for

 Nearby were and odd assortment of handles sticking out of the ground

 Probably still attached to a valve under the ground

Not far away you come to the huge building that seems to loom out of the woods 

The structure was very solid and seemed long

The building was really big when you stood near it and would have has flimsy sits & roof in case of an explosion

 on the left is where the mill wheels would have been grinding up the powder . Between a staircase leading to another part

 or down to the mills through this doorway

It looked narrow but I feel there was a lot more to it at one time

further of there were more remains

the whole place looking like it was lost in a jungle

I soon reached the end of the mills area

and found the only piece of World War Two remains I thought I would find but not a Pillbox. Instead a road block at least part of one. The other half had been demolished. The roadblock was a series of rails dropped in the slot going to the other half across the road

Time to head back to my wife and some lunch but first past the remains

They looked like they had been lost for hundreds of years with the covering on them

The woodland was being cleared uncovering parts lost for year

On the last part going out I noticed a couple of cones which would have been also used in the roadblocks in World War II to stop tanks, I wondered how many more were lost here.

Nearby  I passed Blacksmith Lane a trade which would have flourished when the mills were in operation.The mills opened in 1626 and stopped producing in 1920, the are is now a scheduled monument looked after by English Heritage you can read more about the place in this link
I left feeling I had seen a piece of history I never even knew of and I doubt many people outside of the village do either. If your near Guildford the place is well worth look round for a few hours