Thursday 17.05.18 Martinstown W.I. boarded the 9am coach ( with the Valley Club) to The Hinton Ampner N.T Estate in Hampshire and The Watercress Steam Train. The house itself was closed due to electrical repairs, fortunately we had a warm sunny day, so being outside was a favourable option.
We were herded into the main entrance to hear about the history of the house and it's alterations , making it into the Neo Georgian style house and gardens of today. Then we were taken on a guided tour around the gardens by the Head N.T Gardner, taking in beautiful sights and smells. At Midday we all ventured off to the restaurant to join the queue for light refreshments, then to sit outside in the sunny courtyard to savour the delights. Some of us visited the garden and gift shop, and the " thornless rose " was a popular purchase.
Next back onto the coach to travel to Alresford, to catch the steam train,along the Watercress Line to Alton. The journey took 35 minutes, passing glorious views of the Hampshire countryside. Once at Alton we wandered around the station at leisure, visiting the shop and buying drinks and icecreams. When the time came we reboarded the train back to Alresford.
As the train guide was preparing the train to leave , we realised we were missing Sally. Group panic set in, " Stop the train, we are missing Sally ! " Lesley shouted to the guard. Then Sally appeared from the end of the carriageway, arms full of "Watercress Beer ", as she had been busy in the buffet car totally oblivious to the panic, phew !!! Then a leisurely stroll back to the coach, where we spotted " our little Margaret H "nearly getting on the wrong coach, (with a group of foreign travellers...) " oops ....bless her x". It was definitely an enjoyable fun day to remember.
W.I Next meeting; 13/06/18 at 6.45pm.
"Healthy Living Month" Celia & Lesley to run fun chair based exercises, ( please wear suitable comfortable clothing). Heather & Barbara to provide the healthy snacks for the interval.
Heather Bonser ( W.I Press Officer).