Monday, 20 December 2010

Live and Let Live

Even if the roads to Norbury Junction are passable in the snow, the ice on the Shropshire Union is too thick to even think about taking Starcross out. So, instead, on Sunday Hilary and I went out for the day with the Hereford Mountain Club  That's not as adventurous as it sounds. The Club also organises a lot of low level walks such as last weekend's from the small, country town of Bromyard up onto Bromyard Downs and over to Bringsty Common.
It was a glorious sunny day with snow lying on the ground - but not falling from the sky. It was, however, cold: -9.5C when we left home and not getting above -4C all day. It was the Club's annual "Breakfast walk", which means  meeting in the Falcon Hotel at Bromyard for a full English breakfast before a seven mile walk.
Looking back at Bromyard from the top of the downs
 Or at least it should have been a seven mile walk, but two of those miles were through the grounds of the National Trust property at Brockhampton. A sign at the entrance said "closed due to weather", but we were on foot and just passing through so, obviously, it didn't apply to us! Oh yes it did: Half way along the route we were stopped by a jobsworth NT person and told it was "too dangerous" for us to walk along their road. Despite the fact that we were nearer our destination than we were to the entrance he could not allow us to continue!
Fortunately we were able to divert onto a Public Footpath outside his control and so reach the "Live and Let Live" at Bringsty Common. Originally a cider house, this isolated pub, reachable only by unsurfaced tracks across the common, was saved from closure and sale as a private house by a lengthy campaign by local people led by CAMRA. After a pint or two of delicious Ludlow Brewery "Black Christmas" ale or a glass of mulled wine according to choice we returned to Bromyard after a thoroughly enjoyable walk.

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