Maria is making a journey around the Cheshire Ring in 2014. One of the highlights was a visit to the boathorse stables at Wheelock.
By arrangement with CRT, we unlocked the Wheelock Stables. A shock awaited us. Russian Vine came tumbling down from the roof so we had to cut that down before Bilbo could enter. Live woodworm is infesting the woodwork of the stall partitions. It was dark and dank with lack of ventilation. Bilbo was not keen to enter. He was enticed inside with apples, into Stall No.3.
Sue unharnessed him there then hung the boathorse harness on the large wooden peg behind the stall. The harness hung there all weekend, on view to the public, but also very handy for cleaning in situ on Saturday. Each of the 4 stalls are numbered and have a harness peg behind where the horse stands. After photos and filming, Bilbo was brought out and taken to a large field for the weekend. The stables were open to the public all day Saturday to visiting walkers and boaters.
Many local people had never been inside the stables and many did not even know they were stables. They were the scene of filming in 2002 when Sue brought 4 horses to fill the 4 stalls to make the documentary film “A Tanner a Night” by Sight Seen Partnerships, on sale at the National Waterways Museum. One of the few stables left with its fixtures and fittings intact, but now being seriously neglected.