outside – in the Country Park

August 8, 2013

hastings old town1

The country park is also a nature reserve that spreads itself over the cliffs to the east of Hastings and further along the coast to Fairlight and Pett. It’s good to escape the town in the early morning and explore and stroll freely before the dog walkers arrive. This environment combines heath, grass and woodland in well balanced amounts, all battered by strong, salt laden winds, mostly westerlies. I liked both images of the town nestling between the two cliffs and really couldn’t choose one or the other  . . .

hastings old town 2

. . .  seats are placed to take in views of all aspects. This very grainy image into bright 9 o’clock sun taken from the favourite bench offers a glimpse of leisure craft and fishing boats and containers mingling together – they’ve all been out for hours!.

view from country park

The footpaths are disappearing now under the rampant  growth that happens with a sunny summer with spasms of  useful rain. Brambles are just fruiting up nicely and in fact I picked a blackberry this afternoon.

track

stream

Water flows through the glynes down to the sea. At this point, the way down to the beach is via a rope  – about 4m long – well secured to the sandstone rock.

view from edge of cliffs cliff edge meadow

Ecclesbourne Meadow is part of a restoration project to prevent the encroaching growth of scrub and bramble but, also, the detrimental effects of modern intensive farming techniques.  Areas of insect friendly wild flower planting is marked off with mown paths offering close engagement for walkers – these areas are also carefully managed by grazing.

meadow 2 oaks

Ecclesbourne Glen is the home of ash and scrub oak – with contorted sculptural branches –  bracken and now, epilobium. Pools of shadow envelop the wooded landscape that spills down directly to the town.

epilobium 2 oak branches

The beach belongs

to me. A dark tide

stretching the moon.

Waves splutter

“The beach is ours.

It saves us when

our waters break.”

Pebbles shriek

“We are the beach.

You pound on us

with energy rude

and swell subdued.”

God coughs politely.

“I think you’ll find

the beach is mine.

I share the sea, the sea

with one whose mind

was breached.”  Pam Hughes  The Beach (for Iris Murdoch)

3 Responses to “outside – in the Country Park”

  1. Sinclair 3168 Says:

    So very calming, wish I was there. Enjoy the blackberries🙂

  2. ewix Says:

    I have such mixed feelings about England -which you evoke so precisely and tellingly….Super photos as ever.
    Such local vegetation -not to mention the willow herb.
    You MUST continue this blog even if only to amuse me.

  3. julia fogg Says:

    most kind and look forward to your comments – perhaps you could masterclass this side of the ocean?


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