In Which Celia and Isobel Go for a Walk in Search of Bluebells

I have so many posts half composed in my head, but unwritten and unposted: stray cats, blogging v WhatsApp, Brexit (again), amazing books, homelessness, climate crisis, MasterB. You get the picture. Maybe in time. But tonight, as we come to the end of Easter weekend, and the sun is shining, the blossom is still blossoming, the air has a gentle, mellow air, quite at odds with the political climate, I want to write about yesterday’s walk in Surrey.

Above the town

Above the town

Farm building

Farm building

Lush

Lush

I was born in Surrey and grew up there. I took its hills, its green fields, its bluebell woods for granted. You still get to enjoy these things in Surrey when your parents aren’t stockbrokers.

Bluebells

Bluebells

In leaf

In leaf

Celia has just returned from Crete, where the spring flowers are a byword, but when we spoke on the ‘phone on Friday night she was up for a bluebell walk on Easter Sunday.

Sunken path

Sunken path

Loseley House

Loseley House

The walk was a Guildford circular, around eight miles long, including a short detour to Watts Gallery where we planned to picnic and see whatever installations the current artist in residence, Mary Branson, had made. As it turned out, there aren’t any yet, so we need to go back. We did manage to eat our lunch and to do some shopping. It’s not every country walk that includes successful purchases of kaftans and a child’s dress.

Cosmoscope, Watts Gallery

Cosmoscope, Watts Gallery

The weather was glorious, the sort of day Browning was probably thinking about in Florence when he wrote Home Thoughts From Abroad. And we were aware of trees in tiny leaf, though not elms; they succumbed to Dutch elm disease some forty years ago.

The terrain was varied; woodland, field edges, sunken paths, open ground, hills. We came to groups of houses too small to be described as villages, saw one ‘cottage’ about the size of the whole block of flats where I live, met dogs and their owners, walked through a field adjoining Loseley House. I kept turning to Celia to say how perfect it all was. There field of wheat, fields or rape, fields of sheep. There were flowers we couldn’t identify.

Rape field

Rape field

Sheep and lambs

Sheep and lambs

Blue flowers

Blue flowers

The last section took us along the River Wey and into the town, where a brief stop at a pub brought our perambulations to an end.

The Wey

The Wey

Three Men on a Boat

Three Men in a Boat

I took far too many pictures to post in one go, but maybe these will give the flavour of our day, and if you haven’t already been on your own bluebell walk this spring, maybe they will encourage you to get your boots on and search out some sheltered woodland over the next few days.

11 thoughts on “In Which Celia and Isobel Go for a Walk in Search of Bluebells

  1. Thanks, Isobel, for some lovely photographs. I live in North Yorkshire now but it’s always a joy to see, or read about, some of my “old stamping grounds” – Pewley Downs, the Chantries, the river. I wonder which pub you stopped at? The Keep, perhaps, which you of course knew well as the Two Brewers?

    • It was lovely, and there were many, many bluebells; English ones, and some still unfurling their flowers, so they held that wonderful promise of plenty.

    • Ah, thank-you! I have some photos of other flowers we did know either. I shall post them and it would be great if you could identify them for us. Happy to send you the walk route if you are heading down to Guildford and Watts anytime soon.

      • I will try! Yes please to route….we do head down that way sometimes though not planning to in the near future but always collect routes of good walks! Thanks

  2. Bluebells galore, but I don’t think photos ever do justice to that sea of colour. It was a brilliant walk, and as ever I appreciate having the record without having to get my own camera out or put pen to paper or fingers to screen! Thanks Isobel

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