This post is inspired by the Haiku heights prompt word “Stone”
Golden meadows bound
With dry stone walling. Built by
The Cotswolds, where I live, is a very beautiful area in the heart of England, which covers the counties of Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire, Wiltshire, Worcestershire and Warwickshire.
Beyond the hedgerows
As far as the eye can see
Yellow rapeseed glows
There are gentle hills and wolds, meandering rivers rich with salmon, trout, roach, bream and eels, a coastline along the Severn Valley, ancient woodland in the Forest of Dean complete with wild boar and roaming deer, beautiful market towns and unspoilt villages, gorgeous thatched cottages, magnificent country houses, fertile farms, and even several castles!
One of the outstanding features of the Cotswolds is the beautiful stone which is used for building. During the time of the enclosures act in Britain it was cheaper for farmers to enclose their land with dry-stone walls than to plant hedges, and to this day one of the special features of the Cotswolds is the golden dry-stone walls about a metre in height which border country lanes and lush farmland
The limestone found in the Cotswolds is from the Jurassic period about 150 million years ago, a time when dinosaurs roamed over the earth and the area was once below the sea. It is still possible to find fossils in the rocky cliffs and quarries. In fact Huntsman’s Quarry has a superb collection of large fossils that were unearthed during quarrying.
Of prehistoric creatures
In limestone preserved
You can download a fascinating fact sheet about the quarry here
Quarrying has been carried out in the Cotswolds for many years, for sand, gravel and clay as well as stone. Some of the old quarries have been turned into the Cotswold Water park which covers an area of 40 square miles and has 150 lakes. All sorts ofwater sports go on here and it is a beautiful area to walk around enjoying the nature and wildlife. You can read all about it here
At the weekend I took my grandchildren to Warwick castle to enjoy the Horrible Histories. It was a great day out in wonderful weather. The castle was sold by the Greville family in 1978 and is now owned by the business group that owns Madame Tussauds. This has enhanced the visitor’s experience as every room is filled with models of the famous people who lived in or visited the castle. It must cost millions to maintain the structure of this impressive building. The walls are so think and the building so huge, that the bedrock is groaning under the strain. But there is 1000 years of history oozing out of every stone.
Stone steeped in stories
Of secrets and scandals in
Bedrock is cracking
Sinking under centuries
Of blood-soaked conflict
Enjoy my pictures from the weekend…