A beautiful sunny day for a bus ride into Leeds and a walk along the Leeds Liverpool canal as far as Armley Mills – a city-owned museum partly of weaving, with lots of other stuff chucked in as well. Its one of those places awaiting European money to turn rooms full of old kit into an effective educational resource. I suppose under the present regime European money may be replaced by a newly super-rich, tax avoiding entreprenuer and hundreds of early-retired or job-seeking volunteers – the former to take the credit and the latter to do the work.
Anyway it gave a taste of what Britain was like when it made things, mistreated workers and polluted rivers – so it was really nice .
Jackie and I are thinking of signing up for a nail making day with a local blacksmith. I have obtained some oak planks and want to make a new front door in a traditional manner using hand-made iron nails.
After sandwiches in the grounds of the museum we found a bus to carry us to Kirkstall Abbey ruins, also run by the city and having some of the same unlikely books in the gift shop as were in Armley Mills. I bought a beautifully bound hardback volume on wine and beer making for just £3.99. Of course monks did like their beer, and one explanation of this circular stonework in the kitchens is that its the base of a big beer fermenting vessel.
After Henry 8 took the church lands for himself Kirkstall became literally the gateway to Leeds, as the main road passed through the nave of the ruined church – marked here by the white gravel.
Back in Leeds I had the chance to photograph one of my favourite naked ladies. This one is ‘Morn’ and she used to bring light to the city square, I don’t know if she does anymore.
You can see ‘Evening’ here.
Speaking of cast metal, we also walked through the City Market Hall, partly a grand Victorian cast iron edifice, where I snapped these red dragons supporting a mezzanine walkway.
We called at the glorious Victoria for a pint of Leeds Pale before dinner at the newer bar/cafe called Veritas where I drank a Magic Rock Rapture whilst Sue and Jackie sank a bottle of wine. Then it was on to the Yorkshire Playhouse to see Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. Great set and thoroughly engaging story, well-reviewed in the Guardian the next day. Late bus home and another lazy day completed!