Vernal equinox

Or was it yesterday? Whichever, we’re at the start of the lighter and warmer half of the year, and next weekend, the clocks go forward (at last!). The plants in hedgerow, forest and field are certainly springing into life and flower, with total disregard for any dodgy viruses the human race may be affected by. The wind (from the east) is chilly, and the sunshine less bright than forecast, but it’s good to be out on Wenlock Edge.

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To Sheinton, Harley, Wigwig and Homer

A walk from the centre of Much Wenlock, down into the quiet countryside and curiously-named hamlets below the Edge. There are wild deer roaming the fields near Belswardine, and outside Harley church, there’s a comfortable wooden bench, warmed by the sunshine – a perfect place for lunch! The part-time ford at Wigwig is in water today, and the field above Homer is a bit slippery, but we’re soon past the worst as we enter the woods for the remaining stroll back to Wenlock. It’s been a perfect early spring day.

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Harnage Grange and Kenley

We’re walking along very quiet roads (one car per mile?) in the country below the Wenlock Edge. The ground is drying, but there’s been some heavy rain overnight, and the fields look very soggy in places. The afternoon is gradually improving – by the end, the sun is picking out details here and there in the landscape. Walking along Kenley ridge would be a scenic highlight, if we could see through the hedges (the camera can do it – poked through a gap…). An enjoyable little outing!

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Aldenham

…via Hurst Farm pools. Friday 13 March: it’s a fresh, bright afternoon, with the possibility of a light shower or two – we’ll try to avoid them. The stretch alongside the main road isn’t pleasant, though there’s a broad grassy verge to walk along, and it makes for a reasonable circular route (the alternative is the diagonal across the fields, over sticky clay). The drive at Aldenham Park is a public footpath, which aims dead straight from the gate to the house – until the last moment, when it swings away to the left, to bring us back to the lane past Hurst Farm and the fishing pools

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Back to the hills!

A dry day – bright, plenty of sunshine, just a light breeze. It’s been a long time since we were up in the hills. There hasn’t been quite so much rain in the last few days, and if we stick to the forest tracks where possible… We’re back on Brown Clee, and it’s wonderful up here. Yes, there are one or two muddy places, but we can get around them. Yes, it could be clearer – but the views, especially to the west, are truly arcadian. What an enjoyable afternoon!

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Church Preen and Hughley

As well as being St David’s day, yesterday was the first day of (meteorological) spring. To mark the occasion(s), the spring flowers are starting to appear, and the sun’s starting to feel warm on our backs. It’s still pretty cold, though on a bright and breezy day like this we’ve got to be out. We’re walking around the lanes (avoiding the mud!) via Church Preen and Hughley, whose church steeple (that’s a steeple? Its clock has stopped in protest) was celebrated by Housman. Our starting point’s not far from the school, and as we close our circle, the lanes are suddenly full of huge four-wheel drive vehicles – some of whose drivers can barely see over the steering wheel. The mums are on the school run!

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