|Lichfield Cathedral with its three spires|
But even though we've spent a lot of time here – and I mean a lot; we did up Harry and worked on our previous boat, Star, for many weeks at Streethay Wharf – despite all that time we only visited the city's museum on our final visit. And discovered what a fascinating little city it is.
Lichfield was at the centre of things in English history since Roman times: just south of the present city was a major Roman town at the junction of two main Roman roads – Icknield Street and Watling Street. When they left, today's city slowly evolved nearby. It was virtually destroyed by the Vikings, then rebuilt with a new three-spired Gothic cathedral replacing the old Saxon one.
|Market Square with statue of Samuel Johnson who was born in the city|
Modern times have in some ways passed it by: the old coaching roads that used to run through it are now the M6 and A38 trunk roads and the West Coast Mainline railway roars past a couple of miles away.
Even the canal remains frustrating distant: the nearest mooring demands a walk up a muddy hill to reach the road and a 20 minute trek into town. Take a tip from one who's tried every route: the simplest way is to moor in nearby Whittington (an amiable village with pubs, Co-op and P.O.) and get a bus which comes every half an hour.
One day, there may be another way. The Lichfield & Hatherton Canal is being restored and will run from Huddlesford Junction through to Lichfield and beyond. Indeed, as a tempting view of what things will be like, a section in Lichfield is now in water, and very impressive it looks too.
|Boats are the only things missing - the restored L&H in Lichfield|