A dozen on a damp afternoon

It’s not actually raining, but there are spots in the breeze from time to time. We’re walking around Colemore Green – starting out near the old Astley Abbotts school, past Boldings Pools, down through Chestnut Coppice to the old railway track, then back up to the little wayside shop (we’re out of marmalade!). Under a grey sky, today’s interest is in the detail.

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Less than perfect?

Steady rain all morning (we need it!) – then, the forecast suggested, a less-than-perfect afternoon followed by a brighter evening. By 1.30pm it’s looking pretty good – let’s go for it. The ground will be wet away from a good surface – we’ll stick to Shirlett Lane, for a good leg-stretch and some great views in the rain-washed air.

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Ramsons and rhododendron

Bannister’s and Traps Coppices in May. There’s a big clump of rhododendron in Bannister’s, and in Traps the early purple orchids are in bloom – there are 60 or more flower heads in one small area. The wild garlic is everywhere! Becoming sunnier as the afternoon wears on, it’s very pleasant under the trees today.

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Pleasantly pongy!

Walking down to Coalport, for tea and cakes beside the former china works, now a museum (to answer the obvious question – no, the YHA café serves on everyday earthenware – nevertheless, the cakes are great!). As we plod steadily back up the dingle, there’s a pleasant pong – the wild garlic is in full bloom. Snowdrifts in May!

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Walking back from Buildwas

“Are you remembering I’m out this afternoon?” “Yes – can I cadge a lift?” So – I’m walking back from Buildwas, past the park homes and up from the curiously-named Hunger Dale to cross Benthall Edge and head for home past the hall, down Lodge Lane and across the Fiery Fields. Opportunities for point-to-point walks shouldn’t be missed!

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Barrow sunshine

Tuesday: oilseed rape is this year’s crop in the fields around Barrow, and it’s in full bloom at present. Even when the sun’s behind a cloud, it seems to be shining. Another familiar route – down through the fields and across Barrow Dingle, then up past the church and across the fields to Arlescott and back. In places we’re unavoidably brushing against the crop as we walk – we’re speckled bright yellow by the time we’re back to the start.

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Rowe Lane and Topley

A fine sunny Sunday afternoon – we’ll make the most of the conditions with a walk from Rowe Lane (near Tigger’s Ickle Shop – we’d better call in for cakes and chutney…) across Corvedale to the Wenlock Edge and back. We follow Rowe Lane southwards, cross the fields near Beambridge and head up the minor road past Millichope Park. Turning back at the westernmost edge, we return past the farm at Topley, pausing to admire its highland cattle (and three little free-range pigs…) before descending beside bright yellow fields, back to Broadstone and Rowe Lane.

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