BrownhillsBob's #365daysofbiking

On a bike, riding somewhere. Every day, rain or shine.

Posts tagged ‘Black COuntry’

#365daysofbiking Eternally connected

March 13th – Friday came as a day that was decent to start, and then gifted rain in the afternoon. When I left work, the rain had cleared leaving a bright, sunlit evening on which to admire my beloved Twin Sisters, the two church spires of Church Hill in central Wednesbury.

I love to admire this view from Kings Hill Park. I love the hill, the space, the rooftops before the tree-lined ecclesiastical summit. I love to think of the hundred or more years these lovely buildings have watched over the industrial landscape and it’s changes below.

And I also wonder how many people like me have stood in this place and done exactly the same as me over the years. I love the way it’s all kind of eternally connected.

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#365daysofbiking I love this post

January 15th – Passing through Darlaston’s Victoria Park on a journey back from the hospital in Walsall late morning, I met this tidy, glossy coated very black cat, languid and sleepy on a fencepost at the Wednesbury Road end of the path.

He wasn’t particularly pleased that I disturbed his sleep, but welcomed my chatter, chin and ear tickles, for the first few minutes barely opening his eyes.

A cat of clearly senior years, I think he must live on the new esate over the back.

And adorable, aloof yet affectionate fusspot, whose acquaintance I was pleased to make.

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#365daysofbiking On the western skyline

December 1st – Looping around and back up Walsall Wood, I became aware I was in the midst of a gorgeous sunset. Chasewater would have been my place of choice to catch such a vivid one, but sadly I wouldn’t make it in time, so I headed up Shire Oak Hill.

The view downhill to Walsall Wood, Walsall and the wider Black Country is always stunning, and it’s a good while since I saw it in a good sunset. It was worth it.

This is one of the greatest local views and very much unappreciated.

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#365daysofbiking A rare burst of sunlight

November 13th – The day was better; better not just in the weather, but in the fact that I was back in Darlaston and not stuck in the hell of the local train service that seems lately to have staggered to a grim halt.

Victoria Park was showing well her autumn coat of many colours and was gorgeous in the late morning as I slid through it on an errand. Oh for the absence of rain, a little sun on my face and for the brightness of a dappled sky!

What has this autumn’s weather been so rotten?

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#365daysofbiking Signal to noise

October 22nd – On my return that evening, I crested Kings Hill during a pink and blue sunset of the most striking kind, and grabbed a chance to catch another of my muses: The Kings Hill cellphone tower with the sky and lights of the Black Country behind.

Antenna, aerials, masts and suchlike have always fascinated me. I know how they work, yet they are still mysterious: Still yet powerful structures exchanging electromagnetic radiation with the atmosphere: Ever present, unchanging yet sinister and secretive.

And particularly beautiful against a sunset or dawn sky…

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#365daysofbiking Crowning glory


October 22nd – Tipton’s Coronation Gardens on a beautiful, sunny autumn day.

The Black Country is my home, the place I love: My past, present and hopefully, future.

William Perry the famous pugilist still takes on all comers here, but is continually humiliated by pigeons. His embarassment is quiet and dignified though,like this small but beautiful park.

When you mention Tipton to people who don’t know the place, they invariably imagine dirt, factories, bleak streets and deprivation.

Both I and William Perry know different. Although he’s still annoyed about the pigeons.

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#365daysofbiking Motortown

October 21st – Nipping over to Bilston mid afternoon on a gloomy, grey Monday, I crossed the Black Country Route near Moxley.

There’s no dobt these new roads of the late 80s and early 90s helped to revive the fortunes of areas like Moxley, suffering huge loss of manufacturing industry, but they did leave many of them feeling like isolated islands in a see of ebbing and flowing traffic.

Moxley church still looks imperious, as it always has done. But now, it lords over a dial carriageway and the frantic hubbub of the daily grind, which I find beautiful and sad.

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#365daysofbiking Always restful

October 17th –  On the way to work, I stopped for a break in Victoria Park, Darlaston – the park curiously formed from a railway cutting abandoned in the 1930s.

It’s always beautiful here in Autumn and today, the trees were just shrugging on their seasonal jackets of gold.

Victoria park is a great example of how urban edge land with a peculiar topology can be repurposed into a beautiful and well loved place, that’s always restful and a real oasis in the heart of a busy town.

I’ll never tire of this place.

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#365daysofbiking On the tiles

July 24th – A sunny morning riding up the industrial, backstreets of North Walsall. In John Street, a pub with an interesting history is still thriving despite it’s secluded position.

The New Inns – or Pretty Bricks (from the tiled frontage) – is a great real ale house, and used to be a folk music venue and gay pub years ago. Now it’s a cosy, well-liked and popular real ale boozer; traditional, cosy, comfortable.

It’s well kept too, and on this sunny day the hanging baskets were spectacular.

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