Nico and Thandiela, our first visitors in the UK, arrived last night after traveling 23 hours via Amsterdam and Dublin. To ease them in, we decided to take their first day very slowly and to explore Britain’s oldest recorded town, Colchester.

Here are some of the highlights:

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Caption: Elaine is telling us the secrets of ancient architecture at St. Botolph’s Priory. It was established in c. 1100 and reduced to its current state in 1648 during the Siege of Colchester (part of the Second English Civil War).

 

pic2Caption: Balkerne Gate, the largest surviving town gateway from Roman Britain, built c. 70-96AD. Easily one of the oldest and most fascinating man-made things I have seen. It is so old, Leonardo da Vinci was born 1356 years after the gate was built.

 

pic 3Caption: The 600 year old Gatehouse of St. John’s Abbey, Colchester. The abbey church was systematically demolished during the 16th and 17th centuries and the gateway is all that remains

 

pic 3Caption: We visited Colchester Castle. Construction began around 1076AD, but stopped in 1080AD because of a threat of Viking invasion. The castle was ultimately completed by around 1100AD

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Caption: Elaine visiting the prison / dungeon at Colchester Castle. Some brutal things happened here in the 1100’s

 

pic 4Caption: I had to see if I could be a warrior.

Tomorrow Elaine needs to go back to work but I will be playing tour guide and show our guests the awesome sights in London.

All the best.

Andre