HALF-TERM took the family to North Wales and I used the opportunity of the long journey there to introduce the children to Chester. I tried to make the visit a challenge, devising a list of 13 objects and sights that we had to see. As an incentive to enthusiasm, there was, of course, promise of a small reward at the end. The weather obliged us with soft sunshine, which showed off the walls and the racecourse in all their autumnal splendour.
The hounds on the Duke of Westminster’s tomb reconciled the children to the cathedral and when the castle was deemed boring, an improbable number of ladybirds on the surrounding trees rescued the situation. The Roman amphitheatre and—to my amazement—the courtroom in the town hall caught their imagination sufficiently to create long delays in our progress. It was, therefore, as dusk drew in that we finally made our way into the two-storey shopping streets known as the Rows that are perhaps the most famous feature of the city. I marvelled afresh at Eastgate, with its magnificent ironwork clock, and so apparently did the children. It was like a fairytale, they agreed. In fact, they had just spotted a Disney shop. JG