Sunday, 9 July 2017

I Love Purbeck

The Pipit that Rocked....






It's been a week.... News of deaths, illnesses and major operations come in triplicate.





But on the bright side the weather is fine, and our trip to the Isle of Purbeck and surrounding area reminds us of how scenic this world can be.






And also how glorious the natural environment is.






Sea mist fringes the Jurassic Coast at Chapman's Pool,





But conditions are good for walking the South West Coastal Path.





The 100 metre cliffs are crumbling, 





But the Norman Chapel at St Aldhelm's Head still stands foursquare, its corners indicating the cardinal points of the compass, the door remaining open to allow swallows to feed their young in the nest they created inside.







Bird life here is abundant. This little Stonechat has found plenty to feed its chicks,









And this Rock Pipit appears to be teaching goldfinches to forage





In the sea cormorants and guillemots dive and feed,








And in the village of Worth Matravers the Square and Compass remains unchanged, a wonderful living example of how welcoming and refreshing a pub can be....






I waxed a little lyrical about this in 2012 in another Dorset piece: (http://www.richardpgibbs.org/2012/07/world-heritage-in-dorset-working-draft.html)

But it is one of my favourite haunts, and not just because of the link to my dad and RADAR, which was the big thing from 1940 to 1942 when the Telecommunications Research Establishment was here, with some 2,000 people working on creating the first map-like radar display, called the Plan Position Indicator....






I love Purbeck.  and the Jurassic Coast. And Poole Harbour.  We spend a perfect morning exploring RSPB Arne, where we see, among many other birds, two Ospreys, though geese, shelduck and gulls are more in evidence.





And cormorants fly past, their shape not so different from local fossils.





In the afternoon we inspect Lulworth Cove, where I swim in the clear cool water occasionally rippled by the shock waves of heavy gun fire from the nearby tank ranges.








Then, for old times' sake, and softer sand, we track back to Studland Bay, where Old Harry reaches out towards the Isle of Wight. I swim here as well in the warmer but slightly soupier waters, where I swam, and shivered, as a boy.






And then we head back to the Scott ArmsKingston, where supper is served with the sun going down through the ruins of Corfe Castle,








And then it sets over a glass or two of local cider.










Isle of Purbeck.....













In Memoriam 

George Pitman













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