An easy 3 hour ramble with sweeping vistas and ancient shaded woodland, starting and finishing on the Steam Heritage Trail which links Peel with the Isle of Man’s capital, Douglas. Don’t be fooled by the short distance and minimal elevation gain – this route includes a river crossing and several squelchy bogs.
Low tide and no rain? Must be time to explore another shipwreck, this time the S.T. Cevic near Ramsey. The remains of this unfortunate steam trawler are testament to the fact that you shouldn’t use a large unwieldy vessel to chase down a smaller one in a storm, close to rocks. Luckily nobody was hurt.
The Manx coastline is dotted with many interesting wrecks, including the Steam Trawler Pasages. Originally built in 1917 for the Canadian Navy in Toronto, she made her way to the UK in the 1920s and was converted to a fishing trawler. In 1931 she ran aground in foul weather near Jurby, where she’s been quietly rusting ever since.
Another hastily clobbered together route that turned out all right, on the hottest day of the year, and it’s only May. This one sees us getting sunburnt over 4 hours and 715 sweaty meters of elevation, bagging one of the island’s highest peaks and visiting an ancient hermitage. Welcome to the Dalby circuit.
Abney Park isn’t as popular with photographers as other members of London’s Magnificent Seven, grand cemeteries created over 175 years ago, but it’s definitely my favourite. Uneven rows of grimy tombstones, tumble-down graves and restless creepers make for a very atmospheric location – just the place when your visiting model is in the mood for a few snapshots.
The worst floods in 22 years have transformed historic Runnymede into a giant lake, complete with waterfowl and fools in small yellow kayaks. Many local residents are taking to the open seas in an effort to get the shopping in, and one or two just want to take their minds off the looming clean-up operation. I join the latter set, snatching a chance to paddle some public footpaths and see the area from a new perspective. Quick mooch over to The Runnymede Hotel? Be rude not to.
Long before the days of computers, designers of things had to adopt a somewhat manual, suck-it-and-see attitude. The process became more complicated when those things were nuclear bombs, and led to the construction of some rather specialised laboratories, including several outlandish buildings along the Suffolk coast. We place ourselves in the capable hands of the National Trust and spend a night on Europe’s largest shingle spit, all in the name of catching that special light …
I’m standing in a car park with three canoeists comparing folding saws and hatchets. One of them has a scythe. This wasn’t strictly what I expected when I posted a note on a forum, but my new found friends seem to know what they’re doing so I resolve to sit at the back of the class and treat this as a learning opportunity. Within the hour I’m playing limbo with a tree, struggling through 2m tall reeds, and looking at a motorway from underneath. You sure we’re still in Chertsey?