July 3rd - Ragwort is one of those plants that everyone recognises, but few ever stop to look at. It’s rather beautiful. This plant was growing in Mill Green, and looked gorgeous as I passed this morning on my way to work. The buds are gorgeously dainty, and the shades and complexity of the flower parts themselves is wonderful.
At this time of year, it provides a welcome boost to the other, fading yellows of the hedgerow and verge.
Another weed that really deserves a bit closer study.
May 23rd - I noticed something today I’d not spotted before. Cycling back up the Chester Road from Mill Green, as the land rises and undulates (from about 130m AOD to about 175m AOD) the plant life on the grass verges and in the hedgerows changes. At the low end, there’s birds foot trefoil, ragwort, ox-eye daises and clover in abundance in lush green grass. Higher up, these plants peter out to campion, dandelions and spiky grasses. Wonder if it’s changing soil or height?
The trefoil - called egg and bacon by us as kids - is lovely this year, and always looks nice after rain.
May14th - I was back in Telford, and shut in an airless building with no natural light, so I missed a sunny, gorgeous day. This made it nicer to be out when I left though, and cycling home from Four Oaks in the evening sun I was struck by how green and verdant everything now is.
At Mill Green, the cottage looks lovely cloaked in it’s summertime shroud of greenery, and I noted the elders were flowering beautifully up the lane.
A wonderful evening ride.
May 9th - The journey home was a tad challenging. I elected to return from Blake Street, to best employ the strong wind that had built up. When I got off the train, the rain was horizontal. Even with waterproofs and wrapped up, it was vile. I’m just glad it was mostly blowing me home, and not against me.
Mill Green looked good, though, and this rain should provoke a growth spurt in the flora.
Let’s hope for a better day tomorrow.
February 19th - A beautiful, sunny, frosty winter morning. I love days like this. It was cold, but the warmth in the sun was tangible, and felt good on my shoulders. In Little Aston, mist quivered in the hollows, before being burnt up in the sun.
A great start to the day.
January 22nd - A gorgeous morning. It was bitterly cold, but the sun was out, and small patches of mist hovered in the hollows. Today, it was a real joy to be cold, on such a fine winter’s day. The road through Mill Green was challenging, but better.
I couldn’t think of anywhere finer than here and now.
January 22nd - One of the more revealing things about snowy weather is that you can see the trails of your local wildlife. On a gorgeously sunny, but very, very cold morning commute, I stopped at Mill Green to take pictures, and noticed two convergent trails of animal footprints. Clearly a fox, or foxes, there was evidently something interesting near the fence, judging by the trail.
Even in the bleak cold of a winter’s night, old Reynard does his rounds.
January 21st - I was expecting traffic chaos, so I left it until late to leave for work. As it was, I needn’t have bothered, as the schools were closed, and the traffic was light. The trains weren’t too bad, either, and the only bad aspect of the commute was the atrocious state of Mill Lane at Mill Green. It’s only a backlane, but I thought it would be OK; however, the snow had compacted, then started to break up and it was like riding on slippery shingle, even with the studded tyres.
Stonnall, Grove Hill and Castlehill looked beautiful in the snow. It’ll be interesting to see how we cope as the cold snap, predicted to last at least a week, begins to bite. After all, it’s not got too cold yet…
January 8th - The house that stands on the junction of Mill Lane and ForgeLane in Mill Green, Little Aston is still lying derelict, unloved and appears to be falling into ruin. This is a very large house in an exclusive, rural area. When occupied, it must have been worth at least £500,000, maybe more. I can’t even work out how such a property comes to be abandoned and left to vandals. This was once, clearly, a family home. Someone must own it, their must be a backstory. Nothing has changed here for years. Anyone know anything? It’s a crying shame.
December 12th - I had hoped for a few days of cold, clear weather - but it seems the mist and murk has settled back in. Still, I don’t mind as it makes for variety and the cold adds a welcome urgency to the commute. Today, I flew through the journey along icy backlanes, the hedges and skeletal trees dusted in rime. A peculiarly grey and silent day, it was an eerie commute, and the crystal-encrusted spiderwebs on the fence at Blake Street were fascinating.
November 19th - Country Gardens Garden Centre, Chester Road, Mill Green. Bugger off, it’s too early…
October 26th - I was out and about early, and off to Tyseley. It was the first really cold, wintry mining of the season, and the east wind was a bitter as only it could be. The air, however, was clear and clean, and the sunrise gorgeous. I stopped at Mill Green to take pictures, then quickly remembered the winter faff of having to remove gloves to handle the camera. These cold mornings are going to take some getting used to…
October 9th - Dawn was excellent today, and it continued to be gorgeous as the sun rose. I don’t often get chance to record the sunrise, as usually, I’m in a hurry, but today at Mill Green it was so lovely, I had to. Autumn has finally started to reward me. A real pleasure.
October 1st - A splendid evening run from the station, through Little Aston and Mill Green. The sunset was terrific, the skies pink. These kinds of sunset make autumn almost worthwhile. I do hope we have a few more.
August 14th - Dawn was stunning. At 6:10am as the sun rose over Stonnall and Mill Green, it caught the light mist settled in the hollows and fields beautifully. Grove Hill looked amazing. People ask me why I ride a bike everywhere: this is why. To be out, experiencing this in the fresh air makes you glad to be alive.