Shade needed today…..


Woodland Rhododendron

Not a cultivated hybrid, but the humble ‘civic’ Rhododendron that Councils and others seem to wage war on.  Shame as the floral beauty is just as good as any hybrid.  It also still attracts a great many Bees and many other insects.

Today was very hot and also humid.  So we first made for the shade of the woods.  As each day goes by they appear darker under the leaf canopy…….  I guess it adds to the mysterious beauty of  the woodland


We haven’t had any real rain since the floods.  Some rain was forecast for late yesterday but never arrived.  It is when you step out of the woods that you see  that the ground is getting scorched and dry… fine under the shady spread of this Oak but in the sun its a different matter….



Right now I am not complaining.  But do admit that we do need some rain…. till then those blue skies are just great.

In the field meadows the Dandelions have been short lived in their yellow floral state.  Again I think the dry and heat has  hastened their transition into those familiar ‘time clock’ seed heads…


As one meadow crop goes another takes over….The Buttercups this year are very productive, so  growing conditions must have be just right….


Wild herbs…but just as pretty as any Alpine Collection.

All in all a rather grand day…Again.

As always ……

Please Remember ….

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

19th May

(C) David Oakes 2020


A Bridge….. over onetime Busy Waters


Ironbridge Gorge, Shropshire

Once upon a time this part of the River Severn was know as the Severn Gorge.  It was a busy industrial area and relied upon the Severn as the key means of transport.  Coal, Iron Ore, Limestone and Clay could all be found in the immediate area.  The area became known as Coalbrookdale home of iron foundries and pottery… an important industrial region.

So to link both sides of this busy valley a bridge  was needed.  It had to be a bridge high enough not to interfere  with the passage of  the high mast boats  on the busy river.

The Bridge that was constructed and opened in 1779 was the first in the World to be made from Iron.  100ft span and made from Iron founded in the Gorge.  The design was by  Architect Thomas Pritchard.  Not at first taken that seriously, after much lobbying and fund raising  Master Ironmaker Abraham DarbyIII was contracted to construct the Iron Bridge.  Records suggest that the cost was between £3000 & £4000.

The Bridge was such a success that the Gorge changed its name to Ironbridge Gorge.

The Bridge, the Gorge and its Industrial Heritage is now part of a World Heritage Site.

When life becomes more normal it is well worth a visit….  Till then…

Please Remember ….

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

19th May

(C) David Oakes 2020