Here in the UK we are enjoying two days of public holidays and a weekend for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. It is wonderful to see so many people out and about enjoying the celebrations but we all need to send a BIG THANKS to the folk who continue to work and make this holiday safe – e.g. in the emergency services – and fun – e.g. those in hospitality and shops. Special thanks to all the supermarket staff who will be busy on checkouts and re-stocking shelves – how else would the street party goers get their victuals?!
But let us go back a wee bit. Last weekend saw me on the X6 Stagecoach bus from Kendal to Barrow to meet up with friend MB for a walk to visit The Port of Barrow. As I alighted at the magnificent town hall, the sun was as you can see in my eyes and it gave a really eerie backdrop to the gothic building.
I toddled on across the deserted car park to find MB – something of a relief as I was beginning to think I had skipped into a zombie apocalypse. After a hearty breakfast, with my over zealous imagination put back into its secured corner of my brain, we set off to walk through the wild industrial sea line around the Port of Barrow.
Barrow is a special place for it’s mix of working industrial butted up to amazing wild places. There is nothing quaint nor gentrified here and that’s why I love it. Barrow is just as it is.
We were surrounded by water much of the time.
As you walk along the causeway towards Roa Island you have the tidal waters to your right and the old Cavendish Dock on your left. Aeronautical history was made here: the dock saw the first British sea plane (the Aero Type D prototype if you are interested) take off in 1911; and the construction of the ill-fated (it snapped in two!) Mayfly, Britain’s first rigid airship.
The waters still reveal glimpses of the past with tangled pieces of metal jutting from the waters as the tides turn to reveal the sites of old jetties. Even on land there are remnants of our recent military past.
You could just about wade through the discarded cans and other detritus (I don’t want to think what this was) of the first Pillbox air raid shelter to catch a glimpse of Piel Island in the distance through the embrasure (fancy word for hole in wall). We took the advice of the graffitied scrawl on the second and gave internal exploration a miss.
It was an amazing walk with so much history. Thank you MB for being a font of knowledge. I definitely want to re-walk this little piece of Barrow or even better cycle it as I have barely touched on some of the intriguing tales this landscape has to offer. As Arnie would say ‘I’ll be back!’.
The 1st June saw the start of ‘30 Days Wild’ an annual celebration of nature run by Wildlife Trusts all around the country. Sadly our Barrow walk was just outside the month of June but nonetheless I have got off to a flying start by …. drum roll please … having my lunch in the beautiful wildlife garden of Cumbria Wildlife Trust at Plumgarths, near Kendal. Isn’t it a joy that nature can be visited in surroundings to suit everyone wherever they live and work? There is somewhere for each of us: be it high fell climbs or cliff walks or sitting quietly in a local park, garden or wildflower meadow.
I just love the living willow fencing. It is beautiful.
Yesterday the sun came out and I spent a happy morning pottering about in my own slightly chaotic garden, enjoying planting the super plants that cousin PF brought over (thank you!) and doing a little judicious snipping and dead heading.
Lucky I got out there when I did as the heavens opened later and today is off to a wet start. Can’t grumble as everything got a good watering. But what about Day 3 you ask? Today I am drawing and sewing bears. Variety as they say is the spice of life!
I hope all is well with your day. Off now to fire up my trusty sewing machine, Jolly Janome. I will be back soon with more 30 Days Wild mini adventures.