Sunday, 3 November 2013

Where To Run During The Zombie Apocalypse #1 Downe House

Where are you going to go when the dead walk? There are a lot of great places in the UK to head to, most of which didn't make it into the book because I didn't want Bill Wright to have an easy life (sorry Bill). I thought I'd share a few of them with you (they'd also make great places to visit if your in the area in the meantime, since it's always good to scout the locations of your possible post-zombie redoubts). First on the list (which is in no particular order, when you start seeing the undead on the news I'd really suggest you head to the nearest one) is Downe House in Kent. This was the home of Charles Darwin. It's a wonderfully rambling house lovingly maintained by English Heritage.

Points in its favour:
1. Its a museum, preserved to look as it would have done during Darwin's life. That means fire places, old utensils and pre-electric gadgets, as well as some of the weapons he took on his voyage for his personal protection.
2. The Library contains both popular fiction (of its day) and pretty much every scientific book of note. Everything you wanted to ever know about animals and plants all neatly gathered into one place.
3. The gardens are awesome. Seriously. They still grow food there. If you go for a visit you pay a pretty reasonable fee to get inside, but the real bonus is getting to buy the produce from the gardens. For a few pounds you can leave there with a marrow so large that it looks more like a prop from a film than something you'd see in a supermarket. (I'm thinking specifically of the Wallace and Grommit movie, but I assure you its real food). The gardens are extensive, well maintained with enough seed stock for even the most ambitious post-apocalyptic farmer.

So you have food, weapons and shelter in a house that doesn't require electricity. What are the cons?

It's in Kent. No, this isn't a dig at the Garden of England, it's just that Kent is one of the worst geographical locations in the country. Sandwiched between Europe and London there could well be millions of refugees coming at you from both directions. Depending on the specific nature of the Apocalypse you may wish to go elsewhere.

But in the meantime, particularly at this time of year, why not visit it and see for yourselves (and pick up some absurdly cheap fruit and veg at the same time.)