Meandering in the Midlands.

We had three fab walks in The East Midlands this week.

First was Bradgate Park in Charnwood Forest, Leicestershire: https://www.bradgatepark.org/

Weather was a bit moody but held out:

Second was Kingsbury Waterpark Warwickshire, lying on the River Tame: http://countryparks.warwickshire.gov.uk/country-parks/kingsbury-water-park/. Lake walks, bug hotels and a fab little railway:

By far my favourite was the Quarry walk in Mountsorrel. We started walking up the canal and river from Loughborough:

The industrial past of the region was obvious from the riverside buildings:

Then we hit the public footpath running through Mountsorrel Quarry: https://www.tarmac.com/mountsorrel-quarry/

We got talking to one of the foremen as we walked through who told us that: this is Europe’s largest hard stone quarry- producing pink granite; 50% of the granite is transported by the railways; quarried land is restored in and around the quarry for the community; it has been identified as a potential site for public water supply.

I live on the south coast and we have little or no heavy industry so was really interested to learn about this part of the Midland’s past and present.

Sunny Scunthorpe

Tuesday afternoon saw me with a few hours to kill in Scunthorpe this time; an industrial town and the UK’s largest steel processing centre. Two things took my fancy. One was this statue in the town centre:

Tribute to British Steel workers past and present.

The other was Cafe Indie, a not-for-profit community project providing food and beverages, live music and events. Chatting with the manager, it works with community groups to address social issues and serve as a springboard for community development: https://cafeindie.org.uk/ Find them on Facebook at cafe INDIE pendent.

And it was licensed, so I had a very nice large glass of wine. Cheers Scunthorpe!

Leicester and Richard III

Had a spare couple of hours to while away in Leicester city centre a few days back so wandered up to the cathedral to check out Richard III’s story.

Leicester Cathedral

Richard III was the last king of England to die in battle when he was defeated at Bosworth in 1485. It is debatable whether or not he murdered his nephews to protect his throne.

In September 2012 his remains were discovered within the site of the former Greyfriars Church in Leicester England, now a city car park. His remains were ultimately reinterred at Leicester Cathedral on 26 March 2015.

His tomb faces east and is tilted slightly, as if to meet and face the risen Jesus, with an open cross to represent the resurrection of Christ.

Tomb of Richard III, Leicester Cathedral

Was Richard good or bad? I liked this thought:

Arlington Reservoir, East Sussex

A late summers evening last week saw us walking around Arlington Reservoir in East Sussex. Set in 120 acres of beautiful landscape below the South Downs it is maintained by South East Water.

It’s a nature reserve and a site of special scientific interest. And the reservoir’s beautiful bird hide is a special, favourite place to hang out, be it a warm summer evening, a crisp autumn morning or a cold winter afternoon.

Bird sighting board, Arlington Reservoir

The Girl Who Reads on the Metro by Christine Feret- Fleury. Translated by Ros Schwartz

The Girl Who Reads on the Métro

The Girl Who Reads on the Métro by Christine Féret-Fleury

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Introspective and whimsical Juliette and vague and solitary Soliman I enjoyed getting to know you both and hanging out at the bookshop. Juliette- the idea of how much literature enriches your life:

‘…covered in a flash almost inconceivable distances… let the centuries roll over her… spoken to animals and the gods, drunk tea with a rabbit, and tasted hemlock and ambrosia? where were her companions hiding?- Count Pierre…Alice… Pippi Longstocking… Aladdin…?’ P.118

You both enriched my reading and made my train journey across Europe even more enjoyable.

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