Heather rocks!

Well, my little weather strop worked (to a degree) and we have had some sun since. We’ve also had some rain but c’est la vie. Sounds like we are no worse than the rest of the country which makes us feel a little better.

Do you remember that coffee advert from a little (long?) while ago? I think it was for something called Alta Rica. A lady is in the supermarket trying to reach a jar from the shelf. A hunky black guy comes along and gets it down for her. She smiles and says something about liking something exotic, like where he is from. He says, in a very camp voice, “Weally? Shwropshire?”. D thinks it might have been an Australian ad, but either way, about half of our readers should remember it!

Well, it might not be exotic, but the Stiperstones National Nature Reserve in the Shropshire Hills is certainly beautiful. Our campsite is a few minutes walk from the reserve (in Pennerley for those interested in maps) and we’ve done some beautiful walks in the area.

There is a campaign called ‘Back to Purple’, aiming to re-introduce purple heather to the Stiperstones range. It seems to be going well – there is a lot of heather, as well as cranberries and bilberries (called whinberries here).

We are just down the road from an odd place called The Bog. In the 1870s it was the centre of the UK’s lead mining industry and other minerals were mined there in later years. However, in the 1970s the village was demolished. You can see the remains of buildings like the Miner’s Institute which hosted numerous social events in the village’s heyday. The old school building (which was still a school until 1968) now houses a visitor’s centre and is the starting point for many of the walks. I understand that the local industry died out, but making the effort to demolish the whole village seems a bit strange.

I have discovered a new love – Test Match Special on the radio. I’m not even that interested in the cricket and don’t have a clue about slips and gullys, but Aggers and Tuffers in particular are very entertaining. I realise now why people would watch the cricket on TV with the sound muted and listen to the radio commentary instead. Roll on the next test match!

D has been working hard the last few days with one particular job causing quite a bit of frustration (don’t we all hate computer programmes which don’t do what you want them to do?), but first proof has been sent this evening so we are off to the pub to celebrate.


P.S. D has looked up the coffee ad on YouTube – it was an Australian one (don’t know how many Aussies will know where Shropshire is) from 1997 and was for a coffee called Mocha Kenya. So now you know.


Wooo…. lots of Bonny Purple Heather….I’d like to join you for awalk there.I have acard sent to Dad by great granny for his 21st with a sprig
of pressed White heather [ for good luck ].
We too have had weird weather,last 2 days 20 ‘C but cold 2day.

That looks a very nice place to have your office. And your front room. English place names are often intriguing and I am indeed given pause to ponder some of your neighbouring villages eg Snailbeach, Perkins Beach and Tankerville. I googled into Stiperstones and viewed the local inn which seems to have an open-air supermarket at one end. Good idea but what happens when it rains? Having asked that question, I now see things draped in blue tarps. Looks a bit like one of my camp sites. Then I went and had a look around Hogstow and Wagbeach. I saw plenty of places to stow a hog, but no beaches.

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