March 9th - Later on, in Lichfield, I cycled around the periphery of the market as it was winding down. There is a sad and unexpected joy here, that really shouldn’t be occurring. The cobbles here - laid only in 2006 at a cost in excess of £1,200,000 - are badly executed and in an apparently poor grade of York Stone. They have, in patches sunk - despite the relatively light traffic; about 40% are loose and rattly, and many have broken up due to frost, water ingress and abuse. As a consequence, when you ride a bike over them, it is to an accompaniment of rattles, clicks and clatters that really are joyful.
I doubt I’d find the enjoyment so great had my own borough council paid so much for such a dreadfully poor job.
January 19th - Fearing getting stuck and feeling a bit cold (not enough layers!), I took a train back from Rugeley Trent Valley Station to Walsall. The service was running well, and was fast, warm and comfortable. I wasn’t, however, overly enamoured with the station.
With four platforms and totally unmanned, the station could do with some attention. The footbridge and platforms were lethal as they hadn’t been de-iced. Must say, it’s quite lonely up there at night, too. Sill, the passenger information was good, and I didn’t have to wait long.
November 28th - This somewhat poor photo was quite difficult to take, due to the traffic, but after yesterday’s photo of the splendid Walsall Wood Christmas tree, I thought I’d feature the festive decorations in Shelfield. Yes, that’s a normal tree, one quarter covered with colour changing lights. That’ all there is. Utterly bizarre.