Lincoln Weekend

This weekend just gone we were in Lincoln for a family gathering. On Saturday morning, whilst Amy and Ben were terrorising their Grandparents at a farm park, Angela, Sam and I went shopping in Lincoln. To save Sam the trauma of watching his mum spend his inheritance, I took him for a stroll past Brayford Pool, along the Welham and up Steep Hill (where dad tells me some of our very distant ancestors lived). This was pretty hard work with the pushchair.

At the Cathedral some of the walls have been cleaned. I was particularly struck by some figures clearly intended to demonstrate the wages of fornication. They are very explicit. Serpents twine around limbs and bite genitals, demons pull the hair and grope the bodies of sinners. It all seems very incongruous in the urbane surroundings of the Cathedral square.

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On Sunday we went for a very windy walk at Whisby Nature Park. We followed a trail with a series of sculpted posts, each one with a question in the accompanying leaflet. Despite the fact that most of the questions referred to wildlife that we couldn’t see on this cold and blustery day, Amy was captivated and thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience. Anything that encourages the kids to enjoy a walk is a good thing as far as I’m concerned. We did see a number of Cormorants hanging their wings out to dry, and plenty of tufted ducks and swans.

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Heartening to see in this county renowned for access difficulties and often unfairly regarded as ‘flat and boring’ that one of the displays in the centre at Whisby was about a series of leafleted walks, which looked very attractive.

Later that day I managed another half-an-hour across the fields round Welton. Again it was nice to see that the landowner had allowed a permission path, and that hedgerows were being regenerated and small new copses being planted on the edges of fields.

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Lincoln Weekend

6 thoughts on “Lincoln Weekend

  1. Those medieval masons..!

    I live quite near Lincoln and often used to visit Whisby – particularly when the kids were younger and the dog was alive. Go see the nightingales there in the nesting season. Boultham Mere is also worth a visit. You can walk to it from Morrison’s car park on the Tritton Road trading estate. Sounds unpromising I know -but the last time I was there I saw a red-crested pochard.

  2. beatingthebounds says:

    We’re planning another visit in April so I’m hoping that the nightingales will be in evidence then. I don’t know Boultham Mere so thanks for the tip. Aren’t the diamonds in the rough all the more rewarding? Many years ago I did a lot of conservation work in and around Greater Manchester and some of the places that we worked – on railway sidings, at the back of housing estates – were amazing. Do you know Richard Mabey’s ‘The Unofficial Countryside’?

  3. Yes, though the book I actually own is “Country Matters Selected Writings 1974-1999”. I know that Mabey is a friend of Robert Macfarlane, one of my current “wilderness writing” heroes. On my recent Camino journey I grew to appreciate the less obvious rewards of the flatlands of Castile – though it was difficult at first…

  4. beatingthebounds says:

    I’ve haven’t read either of Robert Macfarlane’s books, but I intend to. I read somewhere that he was a friend of the late Roger Deakin, whose Waterlog is a magnificent outdoor book – it’s about swimming outdoors rather than walking. 2007 seems to have been a bumper year for outdoor books with new ones by Macfarlane, Deakin and Mabey as well as ‘Crow Country’ by Mark Cocker – all of which are on my ‘to read’ list. At the moment I’m reading ‘A Terrible Beauty’ by Peter Watson, a history of 20th Century ideas. It was a very welcome Christmas present and it’s fairly monumental so I think that it will keep me occupied for some time yet.
    I only recently came across your blog, but I’m enjoying following the Camino vicariously. The idea of making a long journey on foot of that kind appeals to me enormously. Is there not a book in your account….?

  5. I treated myself to Cocker & Mabey’s “Birds Britannica” last year – wonderful!

    Yes, a long journey on foot is very appealing – quite, quite different from one’s usual day circulars, weekend walks etc. The only multi-week walk I’d ever done before was the Pennine Way. I was lucky to have had the time to do the Camino last October – so just went for it. It was an amazing and life-changing experience. The problem is – you just want to do more and more. It gets under your skin. When I reached Santiago I could easily have walked back again… if my personal circumstances had permitted it.

    As for a book – dunno. I used to work in publishing, so know how difficult it is to get a book published. Also it would be a quite different and more difficult thing, I think, to order my thoughts in book form, as it were, rather than in a blog. Utterly different media.

  6. beatingthebounds says:

    ‘Birds Britannica’ was another Christmas present from my wife, a couple of years ago. It’s fantastic, as is its predecessor ‘Flora Britannica’.

    I walked the Pennine Way with my Dad at Easter in 1985, and I’ve walked a number of other routes since, both official and of my own devising. But not recently. Still – my time will come again.

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