London’s largest Royal Park

It’s taken me half of my life to finally visit Richmond Park, London’s largest Royal Park in fact. Perhaps its only now that I tend to go for long walks with faithful Hound in tow that I have come to appreciate the beauty of nature – and it doesn’t come better than this beautiful park….

A sea of Bluebells

I wonder what it is about that deep blue, almost lilac, hue that sets pulses a-pumping? If it isn’t travelling miles to see a field of lavender, it’s doing the same to see a field of bluebells in a woody glade. So this being bluebell season, and as I’m located in the heart of Hampshire,…

Autumn comes but once a year

Autumn is the cruellest month.  OK, I know, that should read April but having put my back out quite badly recently, it’s stopped me from wandering around with The Hound and enjoying my favourite season of the year. So to accompany this post, here’s images from the past two years from lovely Hindhead Commons, Surrey….

Hundred Acres, Hampshire

I have to admit to an intense interest in anything historical – the annoying child who always asks the question, why? So when heading to the woods with my more knowledgeable historian brother, I asked the inevitable question – wonder what the reasoning is behind that road name – 100 Acres Road. This is what…

Portsdown Hill – best viewpoint over Portsmouth

When you visit a new city, don’t you wish you could see its situation and understand it from the air?  You can do so when travelling to Belfast of course but it is quite rare. In Hampshire, it’s uniquely possible, thanks to the long chalk ridge of Portsdown Hill.  The highest point lies within Fort…

Café culture experienced!

I wrote recently about the sudden influx of cafés arriving on Southsea Beach and I have finally made it to eat at the newest, Southsea Beach Café.  We sat outside with The Hound who was immediately made welcome and offered a bowl of water which of course, he turned down scornfully. He was waiting for…

Café culture finally makes it to Southsea!

It’s like waiting for a bus for ages. First one comes and then another in close succession.  So it is with the former catering wilderness that was, until recently, Southsea Beach in Portsmouth, Hampshire – even The Guardian picked up on the new Southsea buzz a few weekends ago. Taking The Hound for walks along…

Hinton Ampner Bluebell Walk

As the recent and very sad fire damage of Clandon House has shown, the treasures protected for us by the National Trust are not here forever and we should take advantage of them when we can. It was with this in mind that I re-visited Hinton Ampner in Bramdean, Hampshire – one of my very favourite Trust properties…

Quintessentially English – it’s Bluebell time!

Nothing shouts Englishness as much as a bluebell does – a sentiment outlined in today’s Daily Telegraph. They are early, they are bright as a button and it is said that half of the world’s population of bluebells are based right here on our soil. So where can we spot them? Probably in your nearest…

Pawprint Series: Wimbledon Common

Every time I come up to town, with my faithful four legged friend in tow, we make a point of visiting Wimbledon Common – it is quite simply the most beautiful oasis of calm in the bustle of South London life.  When I lived in London, this was my safety valve and I value it enormously –…