Tag Archives: Nicholls Parkgate

A tale of two ducts: Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and Cefn Bychan Viaduct

A ‘Letter from Sarah’ here with a slight difference. She’s put all the structure together, taken and selected all the photographs and will be the main writer. But I went on the day out in North Wales too, so we’re going to sit and write together. My occasional contributions in italics.

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So… with one thing and another it’s been a while since me and Ronnie have had a day out together. Me being up in Knoydart, off in my kayak, and of course, Ronnie not being well from early August, have all meant that we’ve simply not had the time or wellness until now to pack our day bags and go off exploring.

I’ve suggested that we come to Pontcysyllte Aqueduct today, out of sheer curiosity. (For those of you not fluent in Welsh, a helpful sign tells us, ‘Pontcysyllte’ is prounounced Pont-ker-sulth-tay.)

We arrive at Trevor Basin, not far from Llangollen.

It’s the day the clocks have gone back so we’re a bit disoriented. And after an early start from home we eat much of our packed lunch as soon as we arrive. Though our watches are telling us it’s only 11am our bodies know full well it’s lunchtime.

We arrive here without a plan (for once), but knowing it’s a World Heritage Site expect good signage and obvious things laid out. Continue reading

We’re all light

I love all of the days and times of the year, but particularly this one. The throw the doors open, let the light in, eat outside, springtime. Like the first time you heard ‘Up town top ranking’ or ‘One day like this’ it gets me every time. The upsurging joy of spring.

Some of it though is so fleeting or so tiny that you can easily miss moments and wildflowers if you’re not looking for them. I’ve been looking for them, together with Sarah. And here are a few our cameras have gathered in.

Like last night as it finally grew dark I went over to draw the curtains and saw this, in the Liverpool sky to my west.

The Moon, Aldebaran and Venus.

The Moon, Aldebaran and Venus.

Sarah tells me that in asronomy this is known as an ‘occultation.’ Aldebaran at the bottom there (the bright star 54 times the size of our own Sun) is either emerging from or about to be hidden behind our Moon. So there.All Light - 38

But even better is the not dark sky of the springtime Northern Hemisphere. So much more light every day that flowers are blooming everywhere you look.

In the hedgerows.

In the hedgerows.

Continue reading

The Shining

A Friday Walk then, in all but name, as it’s happening on a Saturday. And a walk done so many times it’s become a meditation now. The Shining Shore.The Shining01Taking place in the lanes around Thurstaston on the far side of the Wirral, I’ve not been here since last March. Mostly urban walking in Liverpool since then. But we’re both off work today and it’s good to get out here together on holiday.

Still wintry here, the long hedge in Station Road completely bare.

Still wintry here, the long hedge in Station Road completely bare.

But for a few left over berries too bitter even for the winter birds.

But for a few left over berries too bitter even for the winter birds.

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On 5th July

5th July, high summer in Liverpool and a day off working. A day to ramble around, seeing what we find.

First place we get to is Cairns Street, Liverpool 8.

First place we get to is Cairns Street, Liverpool 8.

Mostly empty houses, though soon to be renovated, and a street full of heavy summer trees sheltering people and market stalls. The Granby 4 Streets market. I’ve been coming to these markets for four years now, mostly to talk. About politics and possibilities, with the people who live here, who once lived here and want to live here again.

But this is Sarah’s first visit for a couple of years and she immediately moves into shopping mode.

Searching rigorously through what's on offer.

Searching rigorously through what’s on offer.

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Wildflowers and pirates: Our day on the Wirral

If you’ve been around here for a while you’ll recall the practical help offered by ‘The Wirral: A guide for Liverpool people.’ That provided useful instructions on how to get to a place where many Liverpool people have simply never been. And then some handy hints about what to do when you get there. View this as Part 2. More information about the delights of the Wirral. And further handy hints about what Liverpool people can get up to over there.

The imposing sea wall at Harrison Drive on the Wirral. Like a Mark Rothko painting.

The imposing sea wall at Harrison Drive on the Wirral. Like a Mark Rothko painting.

All of this guidance put together by us two Liverpool people in one day, yesterday. Sarah has a brief gap in her funeral work and I, as ever, am always keen on walking about rather than working. Continue reading

Independent Liverpool

Here is your first guide to 2014. Photographs, in more or less the order they were taken, of Independent Liverpool. Cafés, shops, artists, musicians, pubs, streets, bakeries, restaurants, enterprises, wine bars, street markets and even supermarkets. Every last one of them, though, an independent. So a celebration of what makes Liverpool (and Wirral) so special. Along with us lot, the people of Liverpool, these are the life-blood of the place.

Mind you, because they’re independent they’ll mostly be off today, New Year’s Day, just like you probably are. Not driven to service the endless greed of the corporate shareholders. But the rest of the year these are just some of the Liverpool Independents who make our place so special. And remember, the money you spend with all of these stays here.

Independent Liverpool. Idea of the Year, 2013.

Specially big thanks to Independent Liverpool  for all your work promoting Liverpool’s independent sector in the past year.

And I’m not going to do titles and directions to them all. If you’re from Liverpool or Wirral you’ll probably know where most of them are. If you don’t, just ask me. Continue reading

The Friday Walks – Out on the Marshlands

For several years we would walk every Friday and during 2012 we wrote about these walks every week for the whole year. Then this year they stopped, mainly because Sarah’s working pattern changed. As well as being part of ‘a sense of place’ she’s also now an independent funeral celebrant and therefore often needs to work on Fridays. So we have gone on walks, but not so regularly, fitting them in round both of our work.

Well I’ve missed the regularity, the rhythm and the ritual of the Friday Walks. So I’m starting them again. I don’t know if they’ll be every week, and Sarah will come on them only when and if she can. But I need to walk, for me.

Today’s walk is out on the Marshlands in the Dee Estuary. I’ve not done this particular walk on my own before but I’m always happy to spend time on my own. So let’s go.

Beginning at the long disused open air swimming pool near Parkgate.

Beginning at the long disused open air swimming pool near Parkgate, facing the coast of Wales.

It’s a cool and windy day.

Filled with autumn leaves.

Filled with autumn leaves.

 

And berries on the trees.

And berries on the trees.

Continue reading