Hay-on-Wye

Hay is seriously out of the way. It seemed to take ages to get there (passing through Hereford but not stopping) and there was still a deal of driving to do. There wasn’t much of a view along the way as the high hedges resticted the view. They reminded me of the bocage in Normandy.

Hay itself is a strange place. The good lady and I wanted to visit it (well; me, mainly) as it’s supposed to be England’s capital for second-hand bookshops. Well; it is – and it also has some antique shops and craft shops – but it’s a very unbalanced town. Relentless. Seemingly everywhere you turn there is a bookshop. The first one, more or less opposite the car park, was promising and the good lady noted down a couple of possibilities but after several hours doing nothing but look at books and antiques and walking to the next shop we were drained.

We might be the only bibliophile couple to go to Hay and not buy a book.

(There was one I thought about but I decided I could do without it. The author wasn’t one who had really impressed me before. The prices tended to be on the high side and there didn’t seem to be much in the way of hidden gems that you can light upon elsewhere. They’d probably been hoovered up by other book collectors.)

However, it is the first time I’ve been in Wales. Hay is just over the England/Wales border, in Powys.

I was too caught up with the book hunting to take any photos of the town itself and it was only after we’d left I realised that we’d not actually seen the Wye. I did catch Hay’s War Memorial, though. I think it’s Hay Castle in the background.

War Memorial, Hay-on-Wye, Powys

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