The weather forecast for today had been heavy rain which we had a 2am but from then on the morning was not nearly as bad with just a few light showers although the sky was overcast and would not have been the best for the Thames trip. Indeed all the narrowboats who had planned to go today were now planning to go out on Thursday, 10 in all. The afternoon turned out to be lovely and warm.
We decided to try The Prospect of Whitby for lunch. The original site was built in 1520 and called The Pelican; it was a favourite haunt of sailors, fishermen, smugglers and thieves. This earned it the name Devil’s Tavern a name which stuck with it until it burned down in 1770 and replaced by the current building at which point it was renamed the Prospect of Whitby after a Tyne collier that used to berth next to the pub. Many famous names have been patrons of the Inn including Sir Hugh Willoughby (1533), Hanging Judge Jeffries (1648-1689) and Samuel Pepys (1633-1703). In 1696 the first Fuchsia brought over from the new world was traded here for a noggin of rum.
The original flagstone floor still survives today and ships masts support the internal structure. The pewter top bar, resting on old barrels is thought to be the longest of its type still surviving.
The lunch was ok but not as good as The Grapes. After lunch we took a bus to Wapping so that June could see where her friend Alan lives and then walked via Waitrose to St Katherine’s Dock to see the Queens Rowbarge.We then braved the hoards of tourists and went over to the Tower of London so that she could see the Poppies of Remembrance. The No 15 bus took us on a nice tour of the city before dropping us off a few yards from the boat in time for afternoon tea.