Wednesday, August 08, 2007

The National Forest - 4 August 2007

The National Forest
Appleby MagnaThe National Forest sounds impressive, but there seems to be less forest in the National Forest than in many places in the UK. When they dreamed up the idea in 1980s, this area was one of the least wooded areas in the country. So, if it weren’t for the many signs proudly proclaiming that you had just driven into the National Forest, Breedon on the Hillyou would have no idea that it even existed. It is a bit like the “New Forest”; it was ‘new’ in 1079, nearly a thousand years ago. Perhaps the National Forest has a thousand years to grow before it takes any real ‘national’ significance.

Abbots BromleyWe spent the day having a good look at the area, and one of the most impressive features was the old and interesting churches.

We planned a visit to Melbourne Hall, and also did a walk from there. Melbourne in Australia was named after the owner of the day, Lord Melbourne.

Keeping the links between the landed gentry families straight is a mammoth task not helped in this instance by Melbourne Hallthe fact that none of the family names associated with Melbourne Hall are pronounced the way one would expect: Coke, is pronounced “Cook”; Cowper, is pronounced “Cooper”; Kerr, is pronounced “Car”; and Lamb, naturally, is pronounced “Lam”. So the Thomas Coke (pronounced Holly Bush InnCook), who landscaped the grounds, is not to be confused with the Thomas Cook of travel fame, another of Melbourne’s famous sons.

Dinner was at the Holly Bush Inn, which is apparently one of the oldest licensed pubs in the Country.

We finished the day at Stone, a pleasant canal side town.


Craig (mars-hill) said...

Wow, I don't think I'll go hiking in the National Forest...although I think that photo should make it's way over to the Signs of the Times.

Murray said...

I must confess, although we saw another lone tree by a National Forest sign this weekend we did not stop and take a picture so this photo is a recycled one which first appeared on Signs of the Times in Nov 05