Showing posts from June, 2012

Margate: Seaside Special

Took the South Eastern train from Bromley South to Margate, last Wednesday 27/6. Apart from some signal failures at Whitstable, causing a six minute delay, the journey was quiet, smooth and very agreeable.  Alighting from the station, one walked through the entrance/exit and there in front of you was the sea; how lovely. The beach stretched out  in  a curve, with real  sand.  The tide was out.  We walked along the main Esplanade, enjoying for once, the warmth  of the sun. Margate has been a seaside town for over 250 years. It has been a holiday spot for Londoners, drawn to the sandy beaches. In recent times Margate has seen a downturn in its economy. 36% of the shops are now closed. But all is not doom or gloom, far from it. The new Turner Gallery opened in 2011 and is bringing a new art culture to the town. There is to be a grant of 100k to help in the rejuvenation of the town, and when we paid a visit to the old town quarter, we were delighted with the local sh

A Personal Space: Along The Way

Briar If I was a Rose upon a briar tangled; without space I would expire. If I was a match in a box  so tight; I'd want to be used and go on strike. If I was a letter in a morning's post, so cramped, stiff and raw; I'd want to be rid of my stuffy host and land upon a doorstep floor. But I'll guess I'll find a country space, where I can rest my old, weary face and shun the noise of all the crowd oppressive and sometimes rather loud. To see birds swooping with such grace through a slowly, moving cirrus cloud  upon a grassy slope; a perfect resting place. 22/6 Ck (((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((( The  Gloucestershire Way ; pictures from Ford to Farmcote. Key To Pictures: 1 Track up from Ford; just past the 'Plough Inn.' 2 Looking back from same track; notice Jonjo's practice jumps at the nearby 'Jackdaw's Castle ' racing complex.  

The Green, Green Grass ( Near Home ): More Along The Way

After  this week's downpours, I think I was a little premature, in expecting the 'Wetlands ' to be open for business. the photograph above, taken last week shows the River Severn in a swollen state, with the water encroaching on the banks. It clearly will be even fuller  by todays' s date. (16/ 6 ). Yet paradoxically, last Thursday D. and I managed a walk along the Gloucestershire Way , which linked from Green Field Farm, near Shurdington  to Crickley Hill  taking us at times through near- knee high grass, which somehow remained in a dry condition. The first picture gives the view from the field, near Cold Slad, in which you may notice on the left the curving track of the M5 Motorway and the second picture illustrates the grass track we walked down from the top spot. From the state of the track and the largely absent waymarking, it was self evident that this part of the  Gloucestershire Way  was not often walked. This leads me to comment upon th

Royal Frolics: A Nest For My Word Birds

Well let's start with some good news; our local wetlands are now open for business, replete with buttercups. Jubilee thoughts: I felt  so sorry for the Queen and the Duke, having to stand the entire time on their feet, in pouring rain, on board the Royal Barge, that I penned an instant piece of doggerel for her: InstaGram  Thank you dear Ma’am For all that waving in the rain Made me tired all that flim flam All that water, such a pain. Sixty years so very long for you to reign Looking quite pale in that pink How do you stand the strain? Get out the Royal hip-flask for a deep drink. 3/6’12 My other gripe was the coverage of the event by the BBC. It was like 'Blue Peter ' on water. Where was the gravitas and subject knowledge that  Richard Dimbleby would have given to the occasion? Instead we had Paul Dickenson, normally an excellent athletic  commentator; clearly ( pun intended ) out of his depth; producing little maritime  information,

Further along the way: spot of cricket.

On Tuesday D. and I went from Buckle Street ( Jackdaws Castle )  back along the Gloucestershire Way  to our last finish point in the woods near Condicote. "Jackdaws Castle" is the  horse racing establishment, run by Jonjo O'Neill. Read more at: Jonjo The Way  continues opposite these gates along a metalled bridle path/track leading,  after a  half mile to Ford Hill Farm. The path loops around the farm and soon emerges on a pleasant bridleway. This is a very quiet stretch and I agree with our guide writer Gerry Stewart, who describes it thus: "  This open ridge-top provides a great sense of kinship with the early people who once traversed these tracks." ( p.91) After this bridleway, the path continued  through a field of yellow rape seed, until turning left,  we espied our former end position amongst the woods of Hinchwick. Another link in the  Way  had been made. IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII "Naked land-slides