It was a beautiful sunny day today, and we went through some lovely countryside on the way south on the Staffs and Worcs. There were quite a few locks at irregular intervals, though, so I did not have much time for photography. I couldn’t resist this one, though. The old toll house at Stewpony Lock.
Stewpony Lock
Nobody is quite sure where the name Stewpony came from, or even how it is spelled. Apparently “Stewponey” is also acceptable, and there was a Stewponey Inn in the area until the 1930s. One theory is that it is a corruption of Stouri Pons (Latin for Stour Bridge) and another that it is a corruption of Estepona, a port in Spain. My own theory is that there was a glue factory here, but nobody wants to admit it any more. Either that or the food at the Inn would only have got one star on Trip Advisor if they had been around in the 18th century. Of course, in the 18th century Trip Advisor would have been rating things like highwaymen.

Claude Duval ★★★★☆

  • His gallic charm makes being robbed a real pleasure. ★★★★☆
  • Impeccable manners and charming french accent. ★★★★☆
  • Livened up the journey from London to Bath, but far too expensive to try again. ★★☆☆☆
  • Robbed my husband of a hundred pounds and then danced with me. Swoon. ★★★★★

Those are all true by the way. Sometimes you don’t have to make things up.

We moored up in Kinver (which you can also spell Kinfayre if you want to be unbearably twee) a favorite from last year’s trip.
The soft red local sandstone is used for construction or just for digging caves. There’s a huge tunnel system in the area that was used for manufacturing aircraft parts in WWII, and then as a nuclear bunker during the Cold War, back when we though anyone might survive an all out nuclear war.

We stopped at the bakery for a loaf of granary bread, and as we were the last customers of the day, we were comped a couple of cream cakes as well. In order to work off the calories, we walked up the hill to the village church.
Kinver Church
On the way we passed the Old Grammar School, built 1511, restored 1975, and could do with a paint job right now.
The Old Grammar School
I’m seriously tempted to buy an old black and white Tudor building, and then paint each of the white panels a different color just to freak people out.

The view from the church was worth the climb.
The church itself has a strange modern addition grafted onto one side.
I have a nasty feeling that if you look inside the pews would be from Ikea.

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