Making my my way up towards Holyrood Church and the next stage of the Titanic trail, I couldn’t help thinking about all those passengers. How lucky they must have felt to secure tickets for the maiden voyage of this wonderful ship and how unlucky most turned out to be. For two days Titanic sailed through calm waters and good weather while passengers enjoyed the luxurious facilities, fine dining and entertainment. Continue reading Ice, music, lifeboats and memorials
It was a relief to turn off of Queens Park and walk up Latimer Street towards Oxford Street, at least I would have some shelter from the wind which had been trying to blow me off my feet since I set out. The next part of the Titanic trail is also part of my family history, without which I would not be writing about my wonderful Commando. Continue reading Missing the boat and other small disasters
In the summer of 1907 J Bruce Ismay, Chairman of the White Star Line and American financier J P Morgan came up with a plan to outdo their main rivals, Cunard, who had just launched the Lusitania and the Mauretania, the fastest passenger ships in service. Rather than try to compete by building a speedier ship, Ismay thought size was the way forward and suggested a new class of liners the largest and most luxurious in the world. Thus the seeds were sown for three new ships, RMS Olympic, HMHS Britannic and RMS Titanic. Little did they know the name Titanic would go down in history in a way neither of them could have anticipated. My Tuesday walk took in some of the places that are inextricably linked with her.
“So, where are you going walking this weekend?” Elaine asked me between calls on Saturday.
“I don’t know yet,” I said, “I’ll probably have a look at the maps and see if I can find somewhere that looks interesting.”
“Maybe you could look for another one of those boundary stones. I’m quite curious about them myself.”
“Actually there is meant to be one down by the river somewhere on Mansbridge Road, I’ve been meaning to check out.”
So that was that, I had a plan. Continue reading Freedom, boundaries and trespass
It was too sunny to go to work on Wednesday morning but, being a concentious sort of girl, I did anyway. There seem to be magnolias popping up everywhere and I spotted some lovely ones, still speckled with dew, in the gardens I passed on the river route. I love the excitement of spring, seeing new flowers every day. One side of the road has moorings and, as I passed each gate and fence I peeked through and over at the blue sky reflected in the river. It would be nice to have a mooring and a little boat. If I did I could sail to work. Continue reading An exciting week, sort of
My Tuesday walk was prompted by a post on the Southampton Heritage Facebook page about a strange brick structure in West Wood. There were lots of theories about what it could be and it looked so interesting I thought I’d try to find it myself and take a look. I do like a good mystery. Also, as last week’s West Wood exploration was cut short by an unaccountable bout of lethargy, it seemed a good plan to go back and finish what I started. Continue reading If you go down to the woods today
While I was keeping a worried eye on the clouds the ponies, who’d been grazing some way off beside Beaulieu Road, had noticed us. Maybe it was the rustling of sandwich bags or the smell of the cold bacon rolls but they decided we were interesting enough to investigate. Very slowly they sauntered towards us. Once or twice I may have mentioned that I find ponies a little scary. As they wandered nonchalantly in our direction, trying to pretend they were just looking for juicier grass I watched them nervously. Continue reading Care For A Walk? Lyndhurst to Totton
This Saturday morning I got a lie in until six thirty, more than an hour after I’d normally be prising myself out of my bed. After such a hectic week it was a bonus and even better because I didn’t have the office ahead of me. The day of the annual Care For A Walk New Forest hike had arrived. This is one of the highlights of spring for me because I get to wander through the forest with no fear of getting lost, guided by Pete and Mike, who know the trails like the back of their hands. It’s also satisfying to know I’m raising money for MacMillan Cancer Support, a bunch of wonderful nurses who make life a little more bearable for those suffering with this terrible illness.
In all honesty I wasn’t looking forward to going back to work on Wednesday, but who is after a week off? Outside the weather was a repeat of Tuesday morning. Looking over Cobden Bridge the distant houses were half hidden by a touch of mist and a seagull sat huddled on the end of one of the jetties waiting for the sun to take the chill from the air. A pair of swans swam listlessly between the little boats on the lookout for bread no doubt. Continue reading A short week and an eclipse
A little while ago I visited Cross House, the ancient shelter for people waiting for the Itchen Ferry boats. Cross House was built on base of the old Itchen Ferry boundary cross and, close to the building, I found a strange rectangular stone. This, I discovered later, was one of twelve modern boundary stones, carved in the council workshops in 1988 and placed at significant points along the city boundary. It was not the first one I’d stumbled upon but it was the first time I’d been able to find out what I was looking at. As Tuesday was my last chance for a walk before I went back to work, I decided I’d revisit the first boundary stone. Continue reading Boundaries, stones, woods and lack of energy