Thursday, 10 July 2014

It's been quite a day.

This morning we stopped to take a look at the new motorway services which have recently opened on the M4 just outside Gloucester.   We have passed the site a number of times over the past year or more, wondering what was being built on such a large area.  The whole complex is built into a man made hill gently contoured to the landscape and is like a very modern Hobbit house!   I was struck by the tranquility and lack of noise when we got out of the car, even though we were only yards away from the motorway, and inside was just as peaceful, very spacious and stylish.  There is a large farm shop selling all kinds of local produce of excellent quality, though it is a bit expensive.   Breakfasts seemed very healthy, as did the light lunches but as we were there at 10.30am we couldn't see a lunch menu.  It was all a very far cry from the old style motorway service cafes I remember where all I felt safe to order was a cup of tea.

After we had done our weekly shop we came home down the A38 and stopped off at Frampton-on-Severn for lunch at the Bell Inn there.   Our son had recommended it and now we know why.   The inside has been modernised but is somehow in keeping with the age of the building.  I didn't like to take photos outside as there were quite a few people having lunch out there.

I don't quite know what has happened to my pictures but they have loaded in the wrong order.  Below is a lovely house just off the village green in Frampton and next to the village shop.

When we got home we found a houseful of offspring who had asked us not to put the double lock on when we went out as youngest daughter had left something behind and wanted to collect it.   All fibs!   They had to get us out of the way so that our son and son-in-law could unpack and assemble this lovely double garden seat with table for our 60th wedding anniversary.   As the actual date is at the end of September they thought we should have it early to be able to enjoy it in this fine summer weather.   We can sit in the shade like Derby and Joan!

Back to the Bell Inn at Frampton.   This was my lunch - scallops and black pudding with roasted tomatoes on a green salad - delicious and perfect as I can never eat a full meal at lunch time.
 My husband has no trouble in that direction and had fish and chips which the Inn is known for.

This must be one of the most elegant village shops in the country.  The whole village is full of wonderful houses from many different eras and in different styles though mainly Georgian.

Here we have the village pond, surrounded by lush plants obscuring the water.  In spring, before everything has put on so much growth, it is lovely to see the moorhens with their chicks dashing about.

I love the cricket pavilion and as I was taking this picture I wondered where the pitch was - perhaps behind the pavilion?

 Then I turned round and of course, it was right in front of me in the centre of the village green which is surrounded by more quaint houses and cottages.

I think it is time I christened that new seat and sat out there with a cup of tea.


Kat Mortensen said...

What a wonderful way to spend the day, and what a terrific and thoughtful early gift.

Let's hope your weather continues to be lovely and sunny so you can get the best out of your new seating arrangement.

Gill said...

I was born in Frampton! the beautiful white house used to be the doctors surgery until we got a purpose built one and sadly the shop has been on the market for a long time and we hear it is to close as a buyer cannot be found! but it is still a beautiful village!
BTW the service station is on the M5 not the M4!!

Carol Q said...

what a lovely day you've had Heather and a very useful anniversary present (I'll congratulate you later in the year lol). I'm interested to hear what you thought about the new services - I wanted to visit too in view of what I'd read about it - sounds worth it. Also --- another pub to add to my list to try on holiday! lol

Maggie Grey said...

Great day. I am jealous. X

Ro Bruhn said...

What a lovely day and glad to see the sun shone for you. Ah the fish and chips with mushy peas made my mouth water, mushy peas just aren't on the menu here with the fish and chips, the batter here isn't the same either. I can see many hours spent on that lovely seat.

The Weaver of Grass said...

What a lovely surprise Heather - and how clever of your children to tell white lies!
After seeing that lunch and those pictures of the countryside I would love to go there (I even fancy the service station!)

Heather said...

Thankyou for correcting me Gill - I always get my motorways in a muddle! It's just as well I don't drive any more.

ferinn said...

What a lovely conclusion to your day out,it looks as if you'll get a lot of mileage from that gift.

Aussie Jo said...

Frampton on Severn sounds lovely-I will put that on our itinerary for when we are motoring about in October (what will the weather be like in South England then, do you know?)