First port of call in once we were away was a little food shop called Bonnies of Ironbridge. We popped in the afternoon before to buy a couple of large merangues and the chap running it suggested we give him a call in the morning to place an order for a picnic. He had some really nice looking ‘ploughman’s lunch pies’ and some full baguettes so we took one of each, halved, plus drinks each.
We left Ironbridge on the main road through and stayed on it for a whole, gradually climbing high over the River Severn valley. Below the river meandered across meadows full of sheep and cows. We pulled off the main road into a narrow lane but soon had to beat a hasty retreat as a huge tractor ‘thing’ bore down on us. We backtracked as there as no way for us to pass, and took refuge in someone’s drive. The rest of the ride was uneventful as we passed farmyards and solitary houses with wonderful views of the distant Welsh mountains. A map reading error made me realise I was low on energy levels so, backtracking, we stopped for a while to eat the remains of the merangues we had bought at Bonnies the afternoon before.
At around 12.30 we came across a ruined house. A very large one. Moreton Corbett is now owned by the national trust but there had been a dwelling there since Saxon times. It evolved onto a large stately home but was severely damaged in the civil war. Some walls still stood, with grand windows, but there was little else. A nice place to sit in the SUN and eat our lunch. Karon even managed a quick sketch.
From there it was only a few miles to Wem. We needed a reasonable sized community to find a wifi signal so we could hunt for a bed for the night in or near Whitchurch, our day’s destination. The town hall cafe provided the wifi and a bottle of Crabbies each. That set us up for the last ten miles straight down the B road into Whitchurch where we easily found our B&B. It was actually a small hotel but the rates were similar to some B&Bs we’ve stayed at. A soak for tired muscles in the bath, meal in the bar and the last half hour of the England/Ukraine match, then bed.