Landscape

Rowcroft Railway Bridge

The Wall beneath Rowcroft Railway Bridge

I love the railway bridge over Rowcroft in Stroud,
I love the way it continues the lengthy viaduct that straddles the A46,
I love that Dirty Old Town industrial revolution-
Collectivist working class feeling,
When dreaming underneath the arches,
And I love travelling over the bridge and viaduct too,
Whether it’s to Paddington or Cheltenham,
And I love walking the Up-platform,
To gaze down at the edgelands below,
The rebarbative railing and the obligatory supermarket trolley,
The litter, the detritus, the security signage …
But I have to confess,
When I walk under Rowcroft railway bridge,
Whether to or from Stroud town,
I usually scurry through,
Tbh,
Trying to avoid the congregations of pigeons,
And consequent widespread excrement,
As well as the fag smoke, vaping and sputum –
I usually keep my eyes to the ground,
Trying to keep my shoes clean,
And am oblivious of anything above or beyond the pavement.

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Lodgemore Mills and the Elements

There is a sort of elemental magic at work at Lodgemore –
The very word itself suggests an ability to expand beyond
Natural confines of space and time:
Lodge-more:
The lodging of Fire, Air, Earth and Water,
A numinous presence around these mill walls,
A perpetual elemental infusion and confusion
Of history, continuity and change:

There have been three fires here: in 1802, 1811 and 1871:
The 1829 Register of Pennsylvania looked at
The phenomenon of ‘spontaneous combustion’,
And ‘enumerated several substances, which under particular circumstances spontaneously inflamed, and it may be serviceable to mention, as a caution to woollen manufacturers, that a destructive fire at Lodgemore Mills near Stroud, in Gloucestershire, which happened, June, 1811, was occasioned by a quantity of flocks impregnated by Curier’s oil being left on the floor.’

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Rodborough Fields For Ever

Rodborough Fields: The Curse is Lifted A piece of parchment flew through an open window of the bus today and landed on my lap. It was entitled THE CURSE IS LIFTED. I have made a transcription. As you won’t be building on this field, Springs will no longer o’er-turn...

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Walking and Cycling: Bike or Boots?

Edward Thomas on Walking and Cycling Richard Jefferies on Walking Reflections on Psychogeography and Cyclogeography Bike or boots? It’s horses for courses sometimes isn’t it? It’s a question of what you fancy, or a matter of where you want to travel, or how far, or...

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November

 I used to loath November, but now feel quite nostalgic about the long lost fogs and mists of yesteryear: ‘When vapours rolling down a valley Made a lonely scene more lonesome’ – as WW put it in The Prelude. So I am going to enjoy today’s fog with a walk...

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