It has been a while since I updated our River Avon river walks to Black bridge, Chippenham .Mouse had chickenpox the week before the last week of term, meaning I had to postpone our walk along the River Avon in Chippenham from the pitch and putt golf course, along to Black Bridge and out towards Stanley lane.From next week we’ll be going back to Bird’s Marsh woods as I read some pleasing news on the management of the woods, but I’ll talk more about that when we go next.
Now all 3 kids have had chickenpox, I no longer have to worry and hope that Mouse will eventually catch it.It was actually a breeze third time round.At 38 weeks pregnant with Mouse, Cat had chickenpox at aged 2 and 1/2.Just days before Mouse’s arrival Kip, then aged 6, who had extremely bad eczema at the time, resulted in the spots becoming infected.This resulted in the ex having to cut off his pajama top in order to apply the calamine lotion.
It was, as my past post births have proved, a bit of a turbulent time.I had a very uncomfortable, itchy 6 year old, a very jealous 2 and a 1/2 year old and a newborn getting over the traumatic breech birth she had endured.This time round, my 6 year old, was itchy, lethargic and went through bouts of feeling cold.When she came to me on the Saturday, she was well as ever but by Tuesday she wasn’t herself.Unlike last time, I had my faithful internet friends across all social media platforms to provide me with their ‘chickenpox wisdom’.
– Piriton helps with stopping the itching.
– Place a couple of handfuls of oats into a sock and tie.Use this to dab the spots whilst the child has a bath.
– Add a few drops of lavender oil to a few mls of milk.Add this to a warm bath.
– Apply calamine cream NOT lotion to spots.
– Keep your child hydrated.
Since this photo was taken Mouse lost her other front tooth, which was a focus of some amusement as she would walk around doing her Nanny McPhee impression as she constantly played with it.It resulted in her first day back at school after being off, in blood being spilled across her desk as she pulled it out.
Now much better, the first Sunday after (the day before the tooth falling out), we went for a walk past the pitch and putt and towards the sea cadets meeting place.Unsure how to get there, we stayed on the opposite side of the river and headed towards an open piece of land, where a proposed marina is planned.A marina, to me makes sense.Not only would it bring life to a much underused stretch of river, it would bring much needed regeneration and employment to Chippenham.The piece of land will also be used as a place for small shops and a cafe.But as with any proposed area where there’s green land, it’s very much a proposal and it’s not even in proper planning stages.The latest developments are that the man who owns the company The Range is looking to build houses.There’s a whole argument on his development ideas as he is also proposing a large distribution centre and shop on the outskirts of Chippenham.
Passing the proposed marina/housing site, the sea cadets are on the opposite side of the river to where we were walking.
This is what I call Buckthorn avenue.It a month’s time it’ll be full of white flowers, which are then proceeded by leaves of the Buckthorn shrub.Once fertilised, we’ll have sloes to pick from October onwards.I had forgotten about this and wished I had come here when we were picking sloes for making Bramble Brandy. To the top right of the photo, the path veers off to the right.This takes you through a housing estate and along the river to Black Bridge, but we left that walk until last week.
We then headed back along the top of the cycle path, behind Seymour House and the crazy golf course.Under all the trees along the top of Monkton park were hundreds of crocus flowers.
Last weekend we headed out towards Black Bridge, outwards Stanley lane then onto Pewsham, where my mum lives.I guessed that it would take us an hour, maybe an hour and a half.It was another gloriously sunny Winter’s day, so we’d all be in a good mood.We had to take a diversion from the off as I’m busy decluttering our house, I wanted to drop off a load of books to a local charity shop.We started off by walking around the back of the council offices and police station, past the Olympiad sports centre and through the top of Monkton Park, where last week we past the crocuses.Going around the back of the crazy golf course, past Seymour house and along the cycle path to the left.We are away from the river and pass many hedges of rosehips and hawthorn and the unmistakable naked red stems of Dogwood.We passed the top of the Buckthorn avenue and head along back down to the river, where many joggers and people walking their dogs are out too.The ground here is heavily muddy, carrying on up a little embankment where we pass a crab apple tree.Once at the top of the embankment, we see a row of private housing.
Once we were safely over Black Bridge, it’s a nice long walk along country lanes, pass Hardens Farm.It’s a bit derelict, despite being a working farm.We were lucky to have another dry day like the previous weekend, although not as sunny.It’s been nice to walk past all hedges and compare them to how they looked the last time we visited, full of blackberries, hips, haws, elderberries and crab apples.
Just after the main farm buildings is a small house, surrounded in sprawling fields.Next to the house is a gate, where a dirty white pony is always poking his head out of.We were just coming around the corner when I noticed he was ‘a bit excited’.Fortunately, the sight of us soon made him calm down.The kids quietly approached and patted and stroked his head.I think he was expecting food and started showing his teeth.Being a bit wary, I took a few photos and we walked away.
You either pass over the cattle grid as we did, taking you out behind Abbeyfield Secondary school and opposite London Road Cemetery.Or you can carry along the path which takes you to an old railway bridge out to Stanley Lane.You’ll still be opposite the cemetery but a few 100 yards up the road.This is a much longer route, as we were already delayed we stuck with going over the cattle grid.The fields stretch for miles on either side of the road.Only a few abandoned and fallen down farm outbuildings, interrupt the view.As we near the end of the road before the junction, Abbeyfield Secondary stands on the left.From here you can see London Road cemetery across the road and a bus stop.The main road to the left goes towards Bowood and Calne, the right goes into Chippenham town.I’ll be coming to Stanley Lane in a months time to carry on the walk up Stanley Lane, so for now that’s the last of the River Avon Walks To Black Bridge, Chippenham for a while.
I know it’s a bit of a long post, but life is throwing all sorts of lemons at me at the moment, the last one being without a washing machine for 5 days.
Linking up to Fiona’s Country Kids .