September 18th – Still surviving and developing is the fascinating green tunnel over the desire-path behind the canal overflow at Clayhanger. Now completely overgrown and just the right size for an adult to squeeze through, it’s a fascinating product of what I suspect is a regular dog walking route.
I hope this continues to be used – it’s such a lovely, happenstance thing
January 26th – Returning from Walsall Wood in darkness I’m pleased to see the hedgerow arch over the towpath between the Black Cock Bridge and Clayhanger Bridge has escaped the attentions of the tree cutting crew who’ve been so keen down here since Christmas.
Despite appearances, it’s clear of your average cyclist’s head and is delightful in summer.
And rather spooky in a headlight-lit night…
November 23rd – telford, early. After a stressful train journey that involved missing my usual bacon roll, I diverted from my usual route to visit a cafe for a pause and something unhealthy to fill my belly.
It was a sunny, cold, bright morning, and in a factory yard hedge, by a seldom-walked main road, a beautiful display of what seems to be some kind of rose.
I have no idea, but it pulled me up short with the unexpected beauty.
October 7th – Time for a seasonal warning, I guess. Along the canal from Anchor Bridge to around Wharf Lane Bridge, the hedge flail has been out and the towpath is covered in cut foliage debris and thorns from the hawthorn that constitutes the hedge here. This thorns are just lying, waiting to be picked up in soft tyres where they’ll quickly cause a period of deflation.
If your rubber is a bit thin, best avoid this route for a couple of weeks until the thorny problem has passed.
March 7th – I noticed on the way to work that another spring achievement had been unlocked – the hawthorn hedges are sprouting beautiful, bright green leaves, that smell fresh and look gorgeous.
I always welcome the spring greening and any step towards it, and seeing these fresh leaves this morning was a welcome and happy surprise.
I know we’re not out of the winter yet – after all we had some of the heaviest snows for years in April 2013 – but it feels like the cold and dark is ending now. Whatever happens now will surely only be a transient to something much better.