May 10th – Day 2: Trowbridge to Chesterfield

An unhurried departure after Day 1’s hectic start to our journey. Riley Blue’s vital signs were checked: water, oil, air (in the tyres!) with a quick tank-topping visit to Tesco (Riley Blue likes ‘Momentum’ fuel).

I gave myself a slap on the wrist for not charging our action cam’s batteries overnight, I simply forgot, so no video from Day 2 but our Trans-Dartmoor drive from Day 1 will be uploaded soon.

Another Day 2 irritation; our tracking software decided to have a ‘wobble’ so it looks as though we engaged warp drive near Mickleton and materialise in Chesterfield, a shame as a close study of the early part of today’s drive shows some interesting detail – the effect of road works and a road closure, how we ‘wrong slotted’ near Brockhampton and fell victim to the invisible road signs of Chedworth. A consequence was that our hoped for average speed of 30-35 mph was an impossibility. For a time it dipped below 21mph and it was only after we joined the Fosse Way at Halford and were able to complete 24 arrow straight miles at close to the legal limit (honest, officer…) that it improved to close to our target.

We survived a close encounter with a pheasant though we’re not sure how the bird felt after glancing off Riley Blue’s roof. We also experienced another form of Cotswold wildlife, the ‘invincible 4×4’. Driven by a ruddy-faced, tweed-jacket or gilet wearer, it neither stops for, gives way to or in any way acknowledges the presence of other vehicles. We encountered several of this species and it’s close cousins, the black king-cab ‘take no prisoners’ tail-gating pick-up truck and Midlands Mercedes ‘it’s my priority even when it isn’t’ Man.

We’ve a photo shoot at Chesterfield Royal Hospital at 10:00am tomorrow and a car that needs a good wash and polish first. Time for some shut-eye.

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