Woodland creatures

It’s too warm for anything energetic, and it will be wise to keep out of the sunshine. A walk from Benthall Hall could be just the thing – we can find shady ways to the dense woodland of Benthall Edge. Who knows what there might be lurking in the shadows? Oh look, there’s a little old man of the woods!  Someone has made this tiny chap, and left him on a tree stump to enjoy the passing scene. A little further along the path, another tiny local resident scurries across the path, freezing in the leafy undergrowth for long enough to have a camera pointed at him. There must be thousands of little rodents in these woods, but how rarely we see them.

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The Honeypot and Willey

A delightful name – it’s no more than a few houses and a farm, a mile or so out of Broseley. By comparison, the hamlet of Willey is a positive metropolis – it’s even got a village hall. Other than a couple of cars on the two short stretches of road, I’ve got this quiet corner of Shropshire to myself this afternoon.

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An evening on the Edge

Thursday 18 July: it’s a fine, bright evening, and we’re having a wander with the camera on the Wenlock Edge near Much Wenlock. We walk up the stone-floored lane, along the crest almost as far as the main road, and return through the woodland and the old quarries, past Stokes Barn and back to the car. The fields and hedgerows are colourful now – and there are lots of pyramidal orchids to catch the eye.

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Summer fields

Weds. 3 July: a short wander from Benthall Hall. There’s lots of colour in the fields and hedgerows, and later, it’s pleasantly cool under the trees of Benthall Edge, with views down to the doomed cooling towers, and Ironbridge. Back at the hall, the ice creams are perfect, though I’m not sure we’ve really earned them.

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Finding the Pyramids

A fine June afternoon – bright sunshine, white puffy clouds (and the chance of a shower? No, surely not?). It’s a sausage-shaped walk, where our outward route, below the crest of the Wenlock Edge, is only 100 yards or so from our return – but also lower by a similar extent. The path through the trees is very pleasant, with the sun at our backs, but the return along the ridge is more open – and here are the pyramids! They’re orchids, dozens of them, scattered here and there in the dry grass beside the path. With plentiful pink and white wild rose, honeysuckle and (as we used to call them) “dog daisies”, it’s a colourful part of the world.

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