Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Open Gardens


Thanks for visiting, always a pleasure to welcome you.

Here in the Thames Valley, an Open Gardens scheme is run each year to raise money for the Thames Valley Air Ambulance.

The charity provides a life-saving service to patients where and when they need it. Their doctor and paramedic crews can deliver a fast, advanced level of critical care at the roadside or other area. They treat an average of three people a day.  Each helicopter mission costs £2,500, there is a full range of medical equipment on board and they operate 365 days a year -  it is very costly to keep going.

As it only runs through charitable donations and support, the Open Garden scheme is a great idea.  It raised over £55,000 in 2015. Over 60 gardens, from large estates to private back gardens, open their gates for a Saturday or Sunday afternoon throughout the Summer charging £4 entrance and providing refreshments as well.

The scheme for this year is coming to an end now but I visited Wellington College recently when they opened their doors for the scheme.

I'll show you a few photos tomorrow.


Tuesday, 30 August 2016

A Walk in the Woods


Thanks for calling in.

Come with us for a walk round the local woods.  We could be anywhere. In the middle of nowhere. We're going to take the Rambler Route, a 26 mile circular walk but don't worry we'll only do a small part of it today. Don't forget your walking shoes, it's not boggy just dusty and sandy.

Off we go!

The pines in Swinley Forest, which was part of the old hunting grounds of Windsor Forest, were planted after WWI when there had been a great timber cull for the war effort. Quick-growing pines were grown as the soil was very sandy and they are now managed as a sustainable resource by the Crown Estate. The area is open to the public to walk through.

Coming down the sandy hills with trees all around, the path opens up as we pass the fishing lake, the lilies looking beautiful on their pads.

The wildflowers are decidedly fluffy now, seeds are being whooshed off on the breeze.

Blackberries are in abundance, a sure sign that Autumn isn't too far away but we won't think about that just yet.

Climbing over the stile, we pass the farm with its rustic buildings. No sign of any sheep though.

Fluffy thistles this time,  amongst the yellowing grass, waft along the path.

Bags of colour.

Time to get that kettle on now we're home again. Tea or coffee? Which would you prefer?


Monday, 29 August 2016

The House


Thanks for calling in.

My cross stitch house is done.

Hope you like it.


Sunday, 28 August 2016

Yum! Hotel Chocolate


It's Bank Holiday weekend, let's sit back and relax.

Let me offer you a virtual chocolate.


Saturday, 27 August 2016

Down at the Golf Club


Thanks for visiting.

I'm having to go for my walk a lot earlier in the day with it being so hot in the afternoon.  Heading off in a vague direction, I ended up going past the golf course where players were excitedly preparing to take to the green.  It did look glorious.

These two caught my eye in the shop nearby.

This chap was running round a driveway. I was quite surprised to see a hedgehog in the middle of the morning.

Meanwhile, the golf course was all ready for the players.

On the way back I spotted an ancient stone.

The Roman Road from London to the major crossroads at Silchester, where there were Iron Age and then Roman settlements, is called the Devil's Highway. It left London at Newgate and headed for Staines, then changed alignment at Bagshot Park and headed West for 17 miles to Silchester which in later years was a notable and strange landscape feature that it earned it it's Devil's Highway name.

You never know what you are going to find when you head out for a walk!


Friday, 26 August 2016

Pub Signs


Thanks for visiting.

Walking round Wokingham, I noticed that some of the pubs had put a lot of effort into their pub signs and indeed some of the names are quite unusual.  There are umpteen pubs around the town but only those in the centre with jolly signs have been included in my pub crawl!

First off is the Broad Street Tavern, very pretty and covered in flowers. As it is actually in Broad Street, perhaps the name isn't unusual at all.

Round the corner is the Metropolitan.

I couldn't resist this rose in the Rose Street rose garden.

The Roebuck is near the Town Hall.

As is the Red Lion, which is the most popular pub name in the country.

And The Crispin, which has a well kept garden apparently and an Aunt Sally, an old-fashioned  stick throwing game, although from its position you wouldn't think there would be room at all.

The Dukes Head's sign has the Duke of Wellington in a Wellington boot.

Detail from the Town Hall

Artwork in the library by Bridie Gibbs
Have you noticed any unusual pub signs?


Thursday, 25 August 2016

Do You Believe in Fairies?


How lovely, you've popped in!

It's all gone a bit Peter Panish at the Park by the Shops this week.  Their outdoor production is benefitting from all this sunshine too.

As I walked round the park, bits of scenery were strategically placed ready for pirates and crocodiles, children and Indians, fairies and Peter Pan himself.

What's this in the woods?

A camp complete with log fire. Great details.

I think there are a few wigwams behind this fence.

Meanwhile, the Park is carrying on producing lots of lovely flowers.

The water features had been turned off today, not sure if that's to do with the production.  This Ripple Wall is by William Pye who designed the font in Salisbury Cathedral. The reflections were brilliant today.

I'm sure the audience will thoroughly enjoy wandering around the park whilst keeping up with the Peter Pan action.