Sunday Afternoon Walk

We’ve been enjoying some glorious spring weather here over the last few days, and according to the forecast it’s set to continue for a while longer yet.  This means that the footpaths around our village have begun to dry out and are now considerably less muddy than they were over the winter.  So what better way to spend a sunny Sunday afternoon (after enjoying a rather delicious family roast lunch) than to set off on one of our favourite walks around Oakhill.  Everywhere is beginning to look so pretty now …

I think Oakhill has finally caught up with where Devon was – last week that is!  I have read that spring advances at a walking pace up the country from south to north and can definitely believe it.  Of course the Newfies as usual became totally bored of my stopping to take photos.  They really enjoy this walk and were impatient to get along ….

“Hurry up Mum!” they seem to be saying!

 Although small, Oakhill village has an interesting history, with not one but three manor houses (one of which is now a ruin), an old brewery that operated from 1761 to 1938 (it’s now been converted into dwellings) and even a model railway …

The railway fell into disuse around 30 years ago which is great for Ben and Daisy as it’s been left to become overgrown and, according to them, is full of the most delightful smells and interesting discoveries.  The overgrown railway was our destination this afternoon…

The tracks are still there and the long curved steps originally led up to the station building which again has long since disappeared.  It’s a great circular walk on a sunny afternoon, but is quite eerie on a misty November evening when it’s easy to imagine you can hear the clatter of a ghostly train heading towards you. (eek! I think I have an over-active imagination!).

I was interested to discover this collection of photos taken just after the closure in 1986 …

The curved steps are where Ben and Daisy are standing in my photo, and you can also see the tunnel that appears in my pictures.  It’s amazing how quickly Nature has reclaimed the railway and it’s even harder to spot as summer progresses as the walk becomes very overgrown so I was pleased to be able to take photos to show you today.

Then when we’d completed our walk it was time to head back to the car.  Ben tires more easily now and though he loves his walks, his elderly legs can’t manage the climb back up the steep hill home very well when he’s tired, so I always drive us to the start of each walk. Unfortunately this is probably why Daisy has grown rather fat as she is not elderly and needs her exercise.  I have told her that she’s beginning to resemble a black furry overstuffed pillow with a leg on each corner and must go on a VERY STRICT diet – much to her ladyship’s disgust!!

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