Saturday, February 9, 2013

Out and About Around Dorset, Hampshire and Wiltshire

September to October 2012
The summer in UK wasn’t the best but at least it had been good for the duration of the London Olympics in August, and it didn’t stop us getting out and about.
On the 14th September to celebrate my niece, Janine’s birthday, my sister Joy and I drove to Bosham in Chichester Harbour to meet up with Janine and her sister, Louise for lunch at a pub on the waters edge.  It was lovely to visit this area again as we used to sail our Nicholson 31 here from Yarmouth for a weekends away and it was always a favourite haunt of my father’s.
Although it was raining when we arrived the sun broke through after we eaten and we had a lovely walk along the harbour edge and through the village.

Hashing with the HOV at Farley

Whenever I go back to England I love to go Hashing with the Haunch of Venison Hash House Harriers (HOV HHH) and meet up with my very good hashing friends.  It’s like I’ve never been away, I always feel so welcome.  The runs which start at 7pm on a Wednesday, summer or winter, are laid from Pubs on a wide circumference around Salisbury, Wiltshire, and are usually on footpaths through beautiful countryside.

Jules and Nicky Wooland Hill
Nicky and Diane overlooking the Blackmore Vale

Early October, our son Jules and his girlfriend Nicky came to visit us for the weekend.  The weather was good so we took the opportunity of doing some good walks. On the Saturday we drove up to Bulbarrow, North Dorset, a very special place for me having spent many of my school holidays here with my grandparents and aunts, uncles and cousins, many of whom farmed in this area.   Bulbarrow is a very high spot overlooking the Blackmore Vale and it is said that on a clear day you can several counties.  Having parked at The Rose and Crown Pub at Ibberton, we climbed up the track past the old church where many of my relative are buried, then walked along the ridge and then down Wooland Hill to the village before completing the circle back to Ibberton and a very good lunch in the Pub.  It was a wonderful day.

Jules Nicky and Alan at Hengistbury Head - Isle of Wight on horizon
The next day, Sunday 7th October we drove to Hengistbury Head near Christchurch for a walk.  This is a very popular walking area with fabulous views over the sea and Mudeford Harbour

Overlooking Mudeford Harbour from Hengistbury Head with the many attractive and popular beach huts on the sand spit between the harbour and the sea

Alan and Di looking towards Bournemouth from Hengistbury Head

Bickerley Common

Christine at one of the old sluice gates along the River Stour
Whilst back in England Christine and John, our very caring and wonderful friends allow us the use of the annexe to their home .  We spent many enjoyable hours together, mainly working in their large garden, but also Christine and I had some lovely walks.  One was across the marshes of Bickerley in Ringwood, along a section of the River Stour. We were limited as to how far we could walk as it was very flooded everywhere.

One of the last photos I took of Alan's Mum, Dotti with Amanda and Diane,  two of her three daughter in laws.
Very sadly whilst we were home Alan’s Mother, Dotti, had a serious stroke and was admitted to Frenchay Hospital, Bristol where she had the very best care, but sadly a couple of weeks later she passed away.  She was 92years old and physically and mentally very fit so despite her age it was a big shock to us all.  Soon after her funeral we made plans to fly back to Phuket and return to Moonfleet

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