Walking around Windsor

We headed for Windsor today for a day out of town. At the station, we saw a sign to Goswell Road, an unexpected reminder of Islington (and supposedly the only road within the City of London boundaries that is called Road). Here in Windsor, it’s the coach park.

We headed right out of the station, following the castle wall round to the Great Park. Our plan was to take the Long Walk through the park, hopefully as far as the statue on the hill. The park was quiet apart from a man in a very smart blue suit, tucked into green wellingtons, who was walking his spaniel. The walk was closed off before we reached the end, so we turned back to town, stopping at the Windsor Castle pub for refreshment. It’s an attractive pub with a real fire and views over the Great Park. After our break, we walked through the town and across the river to Eton. Eton is chocolate-box pretty  –  in fact it has a chocolate shop and an antique box shop, as well as a teddy bear shop and a branch of Coutts – but quite unreal. The school photos in one shop include Prince Harry. Another shop is a small gallery, exhibiting works by Old Etonian artists.  Eton has two schools. As well as Eton College, there is also the bizarrely-named Porny Church of England School; it turns out it was founded by a Mr Porny, who was a master at Eton. We saw some latter day Pornys walking briskly through the town in their white tie & dark coats. I’d not realised that the masters wore uniform as well as the boys.  I suppose that like the army, having all members in uniform gives a sense of being part of one organisation; and also set apart from the rest of us? Not necessarily the best background for a modern politician, whether Dave or Boris. Another old Etonian in the public eye is Harry Lloyd, playing Will Scarlett in Robin Hood on BBC1. Now there’s green taxes for you.

Windsor – despite the castle and barracks, tourists and teashops – seemed very normal after Eton. Among the shops is a plaque to a Windsor man, Francis Fuzzell who worked “to keep Windsor perfect”. Not too perfect, please…. 

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