The sunshine is warm, but the air’s cold today. Fortunately, the outdoor tea area at Benthall Hall is sheltered from the breeze, so we’ll enjoy our al fresco refreshments without a shiver. The bluebell season is just beginning, the chestnut leaves are emerging (they remind me of pale green cormorants drying their wings) and the oilseed rape is brightening the fields – sunshine even when the sun’s gone in…
We’ll catch the bus and walk back… It should have been wall-to-wall sunshine, but clouds are blowing across from the north-east – we’ll have to be selective with the photos. We’re certainly not going to stand and wait until the sun shines – it’s much too cold, barely above freezing. Nevertheless, it’s pleasant when the sun’s out, and there are one or two reminders that spring isn’t too far away.
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I know – there are still four weeks to go. But the Christmas lights are being switched on this evening – Saturday 24 November. We’d better get our coats on…
There’s a procession of unlikely vehicles (and even more unlikely drivers and passengers), then, after a (mercifully) few words, the lights are on, and with them, the fireworks.
Once that’s done, we’ll take one or two more photos, but we won’t hang around. There seems to be an unofficial “who’s got the biggest speakers” competition, and our ears are already hurting. But it was fun, and good to see such a big turnout at this very local event.
Sunday 5 August: Broseley Festival of Motorcycling. I’m not sure what the purpose of this event is – just fun, I suspect. It certainly appeared to be fun, on this warm and sunny day (must have been really warm in those black jackets…). It was certainly quite a spectacle, seeing them all (getting on for 200) arriving and parking in Broseley High Street, after a short ride from the Woodbridge at Coalport, via Ironbridge and Much Wenlock. All very friendly too – no “show-offs” and a generally sedate rumble of engines.
It’s a regular: walk down to Coalport, for tea and cake. But it’s too warm for tea and cake – we’ll have ice creams instead. We’ll vary our return route too – Corbett’s Dingle (locally known simply as “the dingle”) can be impossibly muddy, but today it’s dry, and pleasantly cool and shady on this warm afternoon.
After lunch, the clouds cleared (as forecast) and instead of rain, warm sunshine fell on Shropshire’s sodden fields. We’d better make the most of it, it may not last… The no 18 bus to Much Wenlock gets us started, on a route which we’ve chosen in the hope of avoiding the worst of the mud (by avoiding field paths, a policy that nearly caught us out on the very quiet road near Wyke). Leaving Benthall Edge (last gasp of the Wenlock Edge) we find ourselves at Benthall Hall, where it’s warm enough to sit outside, in shirt sleeves, for tea and cakes… Suitably refuelled, it’s not far home now.
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