ASTRAL PIPER Redux 2013
    THE NEW SYD BARRETT APPRECIATION SOCIETY
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THE PIPER'S PATH (Part 1) - Cambridge

Come along on a mystic journey through London and Cambridge to visit places associated with Syd Barrett.

 

Our tour starts in Cambridge. Steeped in history and antiquity, Cambridge's position and lack of heavy industry gives it a beautiful rural flavour. The River Cam weaves its way through the streets and beautiful architecture.

 

Our tour begins here at 60 Glisson Road in Cambridge, a beautiful home owned by Dr Arthur Max Barrett and his wife Winifred. Syd was born into this home, and lived here until the age of four. Glisson Road can be found just off Hills Road, South-east of the city.

  

Next stop is 183 Hills Road, also in Cambridge. The Barrett family moved into this much larger home to accomodate it's five children. It was here that Syd would spend most of his childhood, listening to music and learning to play the guitar with many friends. One of these friends which he would often invite was David Gilmour. A warm comfortable home, where the Ivy loves to grow over the walls in Spring.

Sometimes reluctant to go to school, Syd's father Max would sometimes have to walk him to school to make sure he got there. The Morley Memorial Primary School is still there in South Cambridge.

It is easy to see why Syd would pen a song titled "Bike". The Cambridge streets are riddled with them as students park them along the paved footpaths of the very neat streets.

 

No visit to Cambridge is complete without a punt trip. Flat-bottomed boats proppelled by pushing a long pole into the river bed. I am sure Syd would have taken one of his lady friends on a romantic punt through the city at some stage of his life.

 

From here we wind our way south west of the city towards the Fen causeway and on down Grantchester Street. This turns right into a road called Grantchester Meadows.

 

 

Following Grantchester Meadows laneway to the end finds us reaching The Cut (mentioned in the Pink Floyd song "High Hopes" from 1994), a narrow pathway which winds its way into grassland known as Grantchester Meadows. Also the name of a Pink Floyd song from 1969 on the Ummagumma album. Clearly this place holds a mystical significance and inspiration for song-writing. I'm sure Syd and his band members spent a lot of their childhood and maybe some of their adult years here too? A beautiful place to visit and walk through any time of year. Following The Cut to the end, you will find it opens up into the lovely Grantchester Meadows grassland.

The River Cam flows through the grassy meadows. The Grantchester locals still refer to the waterway by it's old name the Granta River. There is something about this place, that transcends a feeling of timeless tranquility, one that lasts forever!

From here we wind our way through Grantchester, and onto Grantchester Road, heading south and eventually find our way back into the City of Cambridge via Trumpington Road.

Gorgeous displays of Architecture can be found everywhere along the way.

Last stop on the tour, and last stop musically for Syd, brings us here to the Cambridge Corn Exchange. In the heart of the city on Wheeler Street sits the characteristic old building where Syd would play his final Live appearance on February 24th 1972. The short-lived trio was called Stars, and they actually played a few gigs here. The venue is still used as a live music venue today.

From here we hop on the bus to London, in part 2 of our Piper Tour!

 

 




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