Car repairs, and some photos

The Dereham Town sign, spanning the narrow High Street. It features the hunting of deer, once popular here, and shows the date when the town was founded, 654 A.D.

All photos can be enlarged for detail.

I had to take my car in today. It was to have its annual compulsory inspection, as well as a full service. Add the need for a new water pump and cam-belt, and I was facing a hefty bill. I got more bad news. The back axle needed attention in order to pass the inspection. The estimate was beginning to come close to the resale value of the car, which is now ten years old. As a new replacement would cost in the region of £26,000, I told them to go ahead with the work, at close to £900.

After that shock, I decided to do something more cheerful, and took a few photos in the oldest part of the town of Dereham, before clearing my head with a walk home of almost four miles.
Staying positive, in 2017. Just about…

The oldest church in town, St Nicholas. This church was founded in 654, and has remained unaltered since the 16th century. It is distinctive in having a separate bell-tower.

The bell tower, or ‘Campanile’

Next to the church is Dereham’s oldest remaining house. Built in 1502, (Roman numerals on the outside show the date) Bishop Bonner’s Cottage was named after that man, and is now used as the small town museum. It was once three separate cottages.

A brief look at the more interesting parts of our local market town.


44 thoughts on “Car repairs, and some photos

  1. I had a similar experience with my 14 year old car getting serviced in April. What is it? Mine is a Toyota Camry which are pretty damn good cars I must say but you can’t beat age. Lovely photos Pete. Best wishes, Lloyd.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Lovely place. Sorry about the car bad news. I wonder often these days if it is worth keeping a car. Because of where I live it is much easier with a car, for sure, but now that I work from home (at least at the moment) and with my comings and goings, I wonder…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We keep the old car mainly for moving Ollie around, as it is big in the back. My wife has a much newer, small car, so if we didn’t have a dog, we could manage with just one.
      Best wishes, Pete.


  3. Must be something in the air Pete, our tractor just gave up on us and I’m not liking the look of the cost of the spares, that’s assuming I can find them for a 1983 Iseki! At least the mechanics say ‘it’s not the labour mate, its the parts’ as they draw breath 🙂 Luckily the MOT in Poland can be ‘arranged’, or so I’ve heard. Having recently splashed out your repair bill on a 12 year old fiat Panda that runs on gas we are hoping to pay our next repair bill from the money we save on fuel.
    Classic church, impressive house with some very nice cobble work.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Cheers, Eddy. Just been enjoying Fraggle’s latest shots of your ‘manor’.
      If I win the lottery on Saturday, you will get the best tractor made in the Soviet Union in 1975- honest! (Or a decent John Deere, if you prefer)
      Those old parts of town are the only ones worth pointing the camera at, I’m afraid.
      Cheers mate, love to all. Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Back in the Dark Ages (mid-1960s) I lived in two states that had annual safety inspections. In one fo them no matter what the age of the car, the head lights needed adjusting. In the other, I had one inspection that cost a few hundred dollars. Subsequently, I have not lived in states with this kind of highway robbery sanctioned by a government. Accidents in the several states did not show a statistically significant difference. Living in nonannual inspection states has been much cheaper. My condolences.
    Great photos!
    Warmest regards

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Theo. The Ministry of Transport test was introduced for cars of three years old and over in 1960. By the time I passed my driving test, in 1969, I knew no different. Since then, it has become a lot more stringent, and the only way to avoid it is to change to a new car every three years. There was a time when I could afford to do that, but sadly no longer.
      Glad you liked the photos. (You Clematis was excellent too, and I forgot to mention that)
      Best wishes, Pete.


  5. Lovely buildings, I especially like the decoration on the outside of the museum. £900 will be well spent if it lasts another 10 yrs without too much trouble I suppose (thinking positive on your behalf! 😀 )

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, FR. I doubt that £900 will get me ten more years, but I will accept five…
      (Still positive!)
      The little museum is very cute; but rarely open, and in an awkward spot too.
      I just noticed the Roman numerals, 1502. I will amend the post.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Norfolk has a great history, Michael. Many Anglo-Saxon churches and medieval buildings, as well as a long occupation by the Vikings. Glad you enjoyed the photos, and thanks for the re-blog.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Is that a pigeon perched atop Bishop Bonner’s Cottage? The Dereham town sign was apparently erected in 1954 (my birth year) to celebrate its founding 1300 years earlier. It would seem that the church was founded in 654, at the same time as the town itself, but that its bell tower “only” dates to the 16th Century. Of course, it takes time to erect a church building, so I’m left wondering when the structure itself was actually completed, and how much of St. Nicholas is original construction. (Also, did you go inside to pray for a new car?)

    Getting back to the town sign, I have a question. If it represents the hunting of deer, what is the shepherd doing there?

    Pete, these are fascinating places steeped in history. I always appreciate your photos.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, David. The church was open, but I didn’t go in. I couldn’t find out a huge amount of information, but I presume that much of the remaining church is medieval, as that is stated on the Norfolk churches website, with no exact date.
      I think the shepherd is waving at the deer hunters, to make sure the dog doesn’t kill his sheep!
      Glad you enjoyed the photos.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Hi Pete – Florida doesn’t have a mandatory annual auto inspection although every other place I have lived did. Virginia required an inspection twice a year! New Jersey had state inspection facilities (they do NOT fix cars) and you would either pass inspection or be advised as to what needed to be fixed prior toreturning. I thought that NJ system was the best.

    In states where one takes the car to an auto mechanic for inspection I’ve found that there was ALWAYS something relatively expensive which needed to be “fixed’ in order to pass inspection. I’ll just bet you drove the car there without a problem.

    Oh well. I always viewed it as a shake down and cost of doing business.



    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have found this particular GM dealer quite fair, to be honest. They are much better here than in a big city like London. I know what you mean though. They put the fear into you, with phrases like’ ‘If the water pump fails, the engine will seize up.” Then they think of a number, and double it!
      If we don’t get the inspection pass certificate, it shows on your record, and invalidates the insurance. It is also a driving offence in law, not to have one. They get you from every direction…
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. These are some very pretty photographs. I’ve always wanted to live in a place like this.The quiant cottages and pebbled roads are much to be desired. I live in the city of London but my heart is In the setting such as this. A beautiful place indeed.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, MV. This is the only pretty part of a rather ordinary market town, I’m afraid. We live in a village over three miles away. I lived in Central London for 60 years. This is VERY different.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Wow! I just love it when Englanders show off their ancient buildings. 654? 1530? Wow. Of course, in the states, we don’t have anything that old standing except for a few Native American mounds or dwellings carved into cliffsides. We have a couple forts and structures scattered on the East coast and in Florida, but nothing on the scale of your island. I am happy you shared the pictures. Sorry your car bill was outrageous. Always a frustrating part of adulthood. For me, as soon as I have an unexpected chunk of change in my pocket, something will invariably break.

    Liked by 3 people

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