April 2020

Wednesday – Leominster – I head out early. it is not yet 6 o’clock and still dark. One of the major disadvantages of British Summer Time for someone like me who is a morning person is that it is still dark when I get up. I appreciate many people prefer lighter evenings but I would prefer the light to be at the other Loveliest of trees, the cherry now
Is hung with bloom along the bough,
And stands about the woodlands ride
Wearing white for Eastertide.

Now, of my three score years and ten,
Twenty will not come again,
And take from seventy springs a score,
It only leaves me fifty more.

And since to look at things in bloom
Fifty springs our little room,
About the woodlands I will go
To see the cherry hung with snow.

end of the day. A good number of Blackbirds and Robins are in song down the street – all discorporated voices. A flowering cherry by the former cycle shop is in full blossom. Over the railway to Butts Bridge. The path is dry, the first time it is not been slushy with mud for some considerable period. Even in the darkness I can see at the River Lugg’s water level has fallen since I was last here. It bubbles and gurgles now over an obstruction which is closer to the surface. More Blackbirds and Robins sing. A cow lows in the distance. A Song Thrush joins the chorus.

Round to the Millennium Park. The dawn chorus is more intense here. A Great Tit and Wren have joined the others. I gather a few more Wild Garlic leaves for the hens. The water level in the Kenwater has also fallen. Blossom is beginning to open on the plum tree on Pinsley Mead. A magnolia is in flower in the garden of the Vergers House. The sky is lightening by the minute.

Wood Pigeons and a Carrion Crow call from the ornamental conifers that line the path that leads to the Minster east door. The grass is beginning to grow on the Grange. Jackdaws chack from the trees around it.

Home – The street outside is eerily quiet. A few cars pass as does the occasional pedestrian. The Chinese takeaway and fish and chip shop opposite have both ceased trading. The newsagents has erected a barrier at the front door with a hatch in it so customers and owners do not come into contact. Unfortunately, they have not been able to arrange a resumption of newspapers yet.

It is grey outside but for the first time in months I would actually welcome a little rain. The surface soil is drying which is not good for the seeds I have sown. Something has unearthed some of the peas I sowed last week. The row has a wire mesh over it so it cannot be birds and I would have assumed if it were mice the peas would have been eaten – a mystery.

Thursday – Home – The morning is dull and cool. A light wind makes it just a little uncomfortable. The Blackbirds’ nest is laying on the patio. I do not know if the Blackbirds or wind have dislodged it, but it is no use now. Clouds build up around midday but there is no rain. By the end of the afternoon the sky is almost clear.


Saturday – Home – It is relatively mild at dawn but drops a degree or so by early morning. The forecast is for sunshine and warmth but the sky is overcast. A Song Thrush is singing from the top of the Ash tree and the Chiffchaff is still calling continuously from a few gardens away. I venture out into the almost silent streets to get a newspaper but then we are confined to barracks for the rest of the the day. The sky clears slowly but there is no rain. It seems I will have to break up the dried, hard clods by hand. I harvest the last of the purple sprouting, a rather pathetic crop for a year’s cultivation but that is the way gardening goes. Next year’s purple sprouting is just beginning to sprout in the greenhouse. However, I am concerned that little else has sprouted but I may just be getting a bit impatient. Snake’s Head Fritillaries have flowered on the lawn from bulbs Kay planted in the autumn. They are beautiful with drooping purple bell-shaped heads with markings like scales.

In the early evening I water the vegetable bed that I seeded last week. A male Wood Pigeon is trying to attract the attention of a female in the Horse Chestnut tree. She is having none of it and flies off to the Ash. Here she is joined by another who is clearly her partner as they bill and coo contentedly. Above them are several pairs of Jackdaws sitting silently. The Horse Chestnut is glowing gold in the setting sun. It has little nubbles of flower heads and the green leaves are just bursting through the sticky buds. A glossy Blackbird with a brilliant orange bill moves through the branches. The Chiffchaff is still calling and a Dunnock sings nearby. A half moon is high in the sky.

Sunday – Home – A Dunnock sings at the top of the old, ivy-covered pear tree surrounded by white blossom. I dig out dense growths of Creeping Buttercup from a vegetable bed before digging trenches to put in second early potatoes, Kestrel. A Robin then finds numerous small worms and other grubs and is chirruping contentedly. The Chiffchaff is calling, Jackdaws chacking, House Sparrows chattering and several Robins sing. A cock Chaffinch gleans seed dropped from the feeder. I rake another bed which has rock hard lumps of chicken run diggings on it. When I move away a female Blackbird comes to inspect but the ground is very dry and any eatables have gone deep. A small black bee visits the primroses. Half a dozen lettuces are transplanted from the trough in the greenhouse to the bed. Collars made from cut up rings from yoghurt pots are placed around them to try and prevent slugs getting to them. They are watered in and a cloche placed over them.

The afternoon is sunny but a strong, blustery wind blows up and clouds start to roll in from the west. Fat Wood Pigeons hoover up spilled grain from the feeder. A ladybird is on a Swiss Chard plant, first I have seen this year. Two Tortoiseshell butterflies feed on primroses.

Tuesday – Leominster – The first Blackbird start singing shortly before 5:30 in the morning. A little later sky begins to lightening with a pink glow over Eaton Hill. The moon is fat and almost full as it descends into the west. It is cold, there has been a light frost. A bright star in the south is Jupiter. On to the railway bridge. A large metal box has been installed beside the railway, presumably electronic gear for signalling. The River Lugg flows with a barely changed water level over the past week. Easters and Lammas meadows are both pale with frost. Lorries rumble up and down the bypass, the A49. The dawn chorus is loud with Robins, Wrens and Blackbirds.

Round to the Millennium Park. A rabbit bounces off across the grass. Blackbirds and Great Tits dominate the song here. I gather another small bag of Wild Garlic, which do not look so good, spotted with rust, a common fungal disease of alliums. A Chiffchaff calls. The Kenwater flows steadily, it is hard now to imagine that this river was something like six feet higher not so long ago.

Through the churchyard on to the Grange. A magnolia is covered in flower in the small knot garden of Grange Court. A Song Thrush and Blackbird search for food in the grass on the Grange.

Home – Carrot seed in the greenhouse has germinated but I am getting impatient with a tray of lettuce and one of celery. Purple sprouting has germinated and the seedlings look good. The tomatoes and peppers are all doing well, if slowly. The male Dunnock is in the white snowy blossom at the top of the old pear. A Great Spotted Woodpecker must have been lurking around the Yew, it flies out and over the wall in a whirr of wings.

Wednesday – Leominster – A cool morning but no frost. A Blackbird is on top of a television aerial singing lustily. Down to the Millennium Park where many of the apple trees are coming into leaf. Wren, Chiffchaff, Blackbird and Great Tit are all marking their territory in song. There are far fewer daffodils this year at the foot of the churchyard. The moon is low in the western sky. It is a “supermoon”, this one called a “Pink Moon”, a name from the US referring to the pink prairie flower, Phlox subulata, known as Pink Moss.

Wood Pigeons are noisy in the graveyard. A chest tomb is inscribed to John Ward, gent. who died on 30th October 1773, and Sarah his wife, who died on 30th January 1786. It notes they are the grandparents of Mrs Siddons, the actress, and to members of the Kemble family.

Home – In the evening, Venus shines like a gem in the western sky, the fat moon is shrouded in cloud giving no light. A satellite passes; I think it is Starlink 1269, launched from Cape Canaveral on a Falcon 9 rocket on 7th February this year. These are a controversial satellite constellation being launched by Elon Musk’s Space X project to provide internet access.

Thursday – Leominster – A Chiffchaff calls by the railway in the Millennium Park. The grass-cutters have been at work. A Bird Cherry is in flower, fingers of white blossom. Wood Pigeons have a mournful desperation about their insistent cooing. Marsh Marigolds flower around the now dried out pond.

MonumentMarsh Marigold

Into the graveyard. I find a monument to John Bradford who died on 21st June 1875. He was late of The Royal Oak and would have been mortified to see it now in its dilapidated condition. A noisy flock of Rooks circle the southern entrance to the graveyard attracting the attention of Jackdaws who fly over to see what all the fuss is about. The flock breaks up and the Rooks disperse in different directions. Chuckling Lesser Black-backed Gulls fly over, circling languidly.

Home – Mid afternoon in the garden is anything but peaceful. House Sparrows are chirping ten to the dozen, Dunnocks chasing each other through the shrubbery, Coal, Blue and Great Tits dashing out of the trees to the peanut feeder and back, one of the last keeping up his monotonous two note call, a Wood Pigeon lands in the feeder with a crash and a Chiffchaff calling nearby. A cock Blackbird hops through the flowers on the lawn and a female noisily digs through the flower bed.

Saturday – Leominster – I am woken before dawn by yowling cats. The morning is mild with a fair scattering of cloud in the sky. Lesser Black-backed Gulls yelp in the distance. The flowering cherries in the street are now covered in blossom. House Sparrows and Wood Pigeons are noisy, Blackbirds sing in the distance.


The usual array of birds are singing and cooing in the Millennium Park. Wayfaring trees are coming into blossom. A Yellowhammer is calling from the other side of the railway. Several rabbits are out on the grass. Cowslips are in flower near the pond. Into the graveyard. Wild Arum is flowering a chocolate brown spike in a pale green sheath leading, for obvious reasons, to an alternative name of Lords and Ladies. I have mentioned before many of the graves stones have now been removed and the rest seem lonely and neglected as trees and undergrowth grow around them, and in some cases in them, and Ivy begins to subsume them. Samuel Fletcher’s grave, dated 1920, is inscribed “Gone But Not Forgotten”, but that seems not to be the case.

Home – An order of fruit fly traps arrives through the post, the only way to purchase most items during this lock-down. One is for Plum Moth, Grapholita (Cydia) funebrana, the other for Codling Moth, Cydia pomonella, which attacks apples. They are placed in plastic “houses” on a sheet of sticky cardboard and then hung from the trees. Flower buds have appeared on the Worcester Pearmain. It is very warm this afternoon, the sun beats down and the air is motionless. By early evening the air reeks of barbecues.

Easter Bank Holiday Monday – Home – The lockdown continues. The number of deaths in Great Britain caused by the Covid-19 virus has passed the 10,000 mark. It appears the country, and by definition the Government, was woefully unprepared for a pandemic and then acted too late.

A stiff wind sprung up overnight and brought a period of rain although not enough to give the garden the good soaking that it needs. The cloud clears during the morning and the sun shines down again. I sort out the compost bins, a back-breaking job but all three of the small plastic bins are now empty and one of the wooden bins has been turned into the other and the contents of the plastic bins now reside in one of the large wooden ones. The Gladstone apple has blossomed there are tiny pink buds on the Howgate Wonder.

A worry is that the automatic door opener on the chicken house failed. I let out some hungry hens. In the afternoon I fiddle with the settings and it seems to be working now, but it is a concern if it cannot be trusted. The lawn and smaller areas of grass get their first mow of the year. An area on the main lawn is being left this year as a small wild flower meadow – it is the patch that has the Snake’s Head Fritillaries. I also leave a small patch in which a number of lovely little Violets are flowering. In the back part of the garden, I leave the patches where Primroses are still in flower. Bluebells are beginning to flower.

Tuesday – Leominster – There has been a frost overnight. The sky slowly lightens, over Eaton Hill there is an orange glow. Songs of numerous Blackbirds fill the air. A half moon and Jupiter lay in the southern sky. Saturn and Mars are in line with Jupiter but I am too late and they have disappeared in the morning light. Over the railway to the River Lugg. The water level has dropped considerably and the shingle banks and spits have re-emerged. A pair of Mallard fly off. A Chiffchaff, Wren, Blackcap and Blackbirds sing.

Through to the Millennium Park. A pair of Mallard fly rapidly northwards. A harshly barking Carrion Crow flies over. A rabbit lies dead on the grass. More rabbits rush for the safety of the warren by the railway. The level of the River Kenwater has also fallen. The newly planted Victoria plum on Pinsley Mead is coming into leaf. Its nearby big sister is covered in blossom. Round to the Priory churchyard. A fat Wood Pigeon waddles across the grass. Five Blackbirds are searching the ground.

Thursday – Leominster – The sky is almost cloudless. It is cool but not freezing. A waning moon lays south-east with fingers of high pink and grey cloud. The Minster bells toll 6 o’clock. Most of the apple trees in the Millennium orchard have now displaying their blossom. Large beds of Stinging Nettles are rising fast. The Ransoms have finally flowered. A patch of Cuckoo Flowers, also called Lady’s Smock, Mayflower or Milkmaids, stand at the top of the bank of the Kenwater in the Peace Garden. Cuckoo Flowers were said to be sacred to the fairies and it was unlucky to bring them indoors and they would not be used in May Day garlands. A very light ground frost pales the Grange.

Home – Tomato plants have been planted out by the frame in the greenhouse. Changing the batteries in the chicken door automatic mechanism seems to have solved the problem. It does mean that the batteries last nowhere near the advertised one year!


Friday – Leominster – High grey clouds drift northwards in a breeze. It is milder this morning. Leaves are opening of the great Plane tree outside the Duke of Norfolk’s former home. Seed balls still dangle from the branches. Clouds in the east suddenly glow brilliantly orange. Into the Millennium Park where a sound like two pebbles being tapped together indicates a Blackcap is in the thicket of bushes beside the orchard.

Home – Bluebells are now in flower – a glorious drift of lapis lazuli on dark emerald. Last week the pond had a couple of small patches of duckweed, today the surface is covered. The surface ripples as frogs dive. The frogspawn laid last month seems to have all disappeared.

Saturday – Leominster – The morningGrave is overcast with grey skies. This seems to have had an effect of the local birds, only a single Blackbird is in song. Several Wood Pigeons coo and House Sparrows chatter excitedly in garden hedges. Down to the Millennium Park. Birdsong is much more intense here, a drumming woodpecker, a wheezing Greenfinch, the loud song of a Wren out of all proportion to its tiny size, Blackbirds, Chiffchaffs and Wood Pigeons. A Magpie seeks food in the grass. There is rain in the air.

Into the churchyard. A large headstone has been thrown aside by an Ash tree. Other tombs are vanishing under bushes and Ivy. It is strange how some graveyards are so respectful of their dead and maintain them almost obsessively e.g. Undercliffe in Bradford, whilst others, like here, are left to decay and slowly disappear. I do not know which I prefer really. It is raining steadily by the time I reach home. Hopefully the water butts will start to refill.

Sunday – Leominster – The sky remains overcast with a light breeze. However, this morning Black birds are in the song all down the street; at least half a dozen different birds. There are also several Wrens singing from gardens. The flowering cherries are losing the blossom, covering the pavements in white spots and snowy drifts in corners. Into Worcester Road where the chorus of Blackbirds continues. The occasional worker is going into the plastic film factory which now apparently is called “Berry”, a more media friendly name that does not mention plastic! Up the old closed section of the original A44 onto the railway bridge. A Chiffchaff calls loudly from trackside trees and a Common Pheasant croaks in the distance.

Over the A49 and along the short section of the old road. The only flower in blossom is White Deadnettle. Onto the A44 proper. A field of sheep contains a number of fully grown lambs which are chasing around in a small flock. A few much younger lambs stay near their mother. On to Eaton Bridge. The River Lugg is flowing slowly, its water level has dropped considerably. A Blackcap sings in the hedge leading to West Eaton. Garlic Mustard flowers along the roadside path. There are rabbits everywhere. A Great Tit sings its two note song loudly as I climb the old drovers’ trail up Eaton Hill. Ground Ivy grows and flowers profusely everywhere.

Up onto the hilltop. The set-aside area of the big field here is much larger than in previous years. I am not sure whether this is an environmental consideration or the simply fact the soil is in pretty poor condition as one approaches the hedgerows. Burdock leaves have spread widely, covering the ground along with large clumps of Spear Thistles. A Great Spotted Woodpecker calls from the trees then starts drumming. Loud screeching calls I do not recognise comes from somewhere on the hilltop solar farm. I then realise it is a recording of distress calls designed to scare birds off of the solar panels.

Down the track from the hill. Red Campion beginning to flower beside the track. Blue mists of Bluebells are in drifts along the foot of the plantation. A Green Woodpecker yaffles loudly. A Grey Heron flies over. A large area of the field at the foot of Eaton Hill has been cleared and is being flattened by groundwork equipment. The long threatened chicken concentration camp is about to be built. Over Cheaton Brook and into Mill Street. Over the River Lugg on Ridgemoor Bridge. The plants on the riverbank which not so long ago would deep underwater have all recovered and are growing green again. A Song Thrush sings by the railway crossing, the first I have heard today. Across the car park of the temporarily closed DIY store and along by the River Kenwater then up the Priory. A large flock of Jackdaws flies around the Minster tower.

Home – I am still unsure I have labelled the tumbling and bush tomatoes correctly, the original labels faded into unreadability. Still, what I think are the tumblers go into hanging baskets which will stay in the greenhouse for the time being and the possible bush tomatoes are potted on. Another row of peas are sown, the last sowing seems to have disappeared. The nearby broad beans are doing well. Radish, spinach and spring onions have all sprouted but the rows of beetroot look pretty disappointing. Blossom has almost finished on the Conference pear. It is just about to come out on the Howgate Wonder. There is a lot on the cherry in the fruit cage. Small green red currants are appearing. The afternoon is warm as the sun shines down. A Raven and a raptor, possibly a large old Sparrowhawk, tussle high above. Grey Squirrels are being their usual irritating selves on the bird feeder, daring me to chase them off, which I cannot resist. They depart temporarily allowing House Sparrows, Great and Blue Tits and a Robin the chance to grab some seeds. Blackbirds fly to and fro, occasionally emitting alarm calls for seemingly no reason.

Monday – Leominster – The sun is a blazing disc rising over the top of Eaton Hill. A wind cools the air. Down to the White Lion. A Song Thrush sings by the railway. Rabbits bounce away as I pass through the Millennium Park and the churchyard. Over the Grange a pair of Collared Doves fly past in emitting their strangled call.

Home – Just before ten o’clock at night I venture into the garden to watch the sky. There is a lot of light pollution but I can see a few satellites heading west to east. They are probably all part of the Starlight constellation. I was hoping for a few meteorites from the Lyrids Meteor Shower. The April Lyrids are one of the oldest meteor showers recorded. Chinese historical records note that in the fourth month of 687 BC, “stars fell like rain”. They were identified as a modern shower by Johann Gottfried Galle in 1867. Their source is comet C/1861 G1 Thatcher, which orbits the Sun every 415 years and is projected to return around 2280 AD. In the event, none appear!

Wednesday – Leominster – Apple blossom in the Millennium Park is at its peak. All but a couple of trees are clothed in white and pink. Blossom A Hawthorn begins to flower. Rabbits lope away, they seem rather less worried about me now. Several pairs of Wood Pigeons fly off towards the east. Into the churchyard. An evergreen has a broken trunk, one of many, rising with a white scar. On it stands a male Sparrowhawk, barred breast and slate blue back, surveying the graveyard below. As I approach it turns and flies through the snarly branches of the tree. It is always a delight and wonderment that these raptors can move at speed through seemingly impenetrable tangles of branches without touching any.

Home – The afternoon is warm, the sun hot in a blue sky. The various pots and trays of young plants are drying out rapidly in the greenhouse. I water them, with the overflow laying in the trays under the pots. Within an hour the water has all evaporated. The young Blackbird still follows its dad around the garden. However, the parent has obviously decided offspring can manage on its own and ignores him/her.

In the evening I venture out into the garden in another attempt to see a Lyrid meteorite and the train of Starlink satellites. I fail on both accounts. It is not really dark enough yet, there is too much light pollution and intermittent cloud cover. There is, however, the occasional bat jinking over the apple tree.

Thursday – Leominster – The pale blue dawn sky has streaks of pink and grey cloud, some rippled like mackerel skin. Just a few Blackbirds sing. House Sparrows chirrup around Waverley House. Into the Millennium Park where the mowers have been busy again. A Chiffchaff, Wood Pigeons, Blackbirds, a Coal Tit are all vocal along with the croak of a Carrion Crow. The water level in the Kenwater continues to fall slowly. The minster bells toll 6 o’clock. The Grange has also been mown. It seems strange that such mundane jobs continue whilst much of the rest of life is in stasis because of virus lockdown.

Home – I sieve some compost and sow a lot of seeds – callaloo, courgettes, squash, leeks, celery (the first sowing failed), runner, climbing and dwarf French beans – in pots and trays and put them in the greenhouse. Another row of beetroot goes in, the first sowings have been very intermittent. Everything needs watering and our butts are almost empty.

Friday – Leominster – There is still a coolness about the early morning air. Thin high cloud scattered across a blue sky. There is a gauzy mist above the log. The area of grass at the junction of the street and Worcester Road is covered in Dandelion clocks and closed Daisies. Over the railway to Butts Bridge. The River Lugg’s water level has fallen considerably, exposing the large shingle banks again. I gather Dandelion leaves for the hens. The mist hovers more densely over Easters and Lammas meadows although still ephemeral. Into the Millennium Park to a chorus bird song. A lone Canada Goose flies north. The small patch of Wild Garlic is now completely subsumed in a bank of Stinging Nettles. Red Campion starts to flower around the dried up pond. The sun edges above Eaton Hill and the stones of the Minster start to glow. Flower heads are beginning to form on Elder.

Home – A whirring ball of Wren shoots across the garden. A calling Collared Dove flies up to the top of the Ash tree. Below it a Great Tit sings its two-tone song. It then drops down onto the peanut feeder. House Sparrows fly in to the seed feeder. I have mixed some chilli powder with the seeds today in an attempt to discourage the squirrels. Birds do not have the receptors for chilli but the spice has the same effect on mammals as it does on us. A Wood Pigeon’s refrain of “My Toe Bleeds Taffy” comes from three different directions. A Grey Squirrel comes down to the feeder. I watch with malicious delight as it starts chomping bird seed then suddenly dashes away. A second approaches the feeder and it takes a very short time before it too to decides it does not like what is tasting. Two young Blackbirds are causing us much amusement as they wander around the garden, unsure of what they are supposed to be doing. Their father studiously ignores them as they squeak pitifully at him.

Sunday – Home – Mid morning and cloud is beginning to thicken. It is still high and the sun is shining most of the time. Our young Blackbird is hopping around the garden somewhat unafraid of us. It explores all around the patio where I am sitting, checking the numerous pots and then hopping into a large, yellow plastic trough we use to soak trays of seedlings. Wood Pigeons are coming and going. There is little finesse about a Wood Pigeon – they clatter in and out of the trees, crash land on the seed feeder and chase around in the trees. Also chasing around are Grey Squirrels. One briefly checks out the feeder but clearly the taste of chilli is till there and it departs swiftly. House Sparrows and Blue Tits are then able to return. High above Lesser Black-backed Gulls are moving westwards. One will circle for a short time, yelping. Jackdaws come and go. A Robin checks me out every time I move, just in case I do something useful like dig up some worms, but no luck today. A female Blackbird has discovered the treasure trove of the chicken run and is now in there frequently, tossing the straw aside in her quest for invertebrates. Rocket the hen has still not come back into lay, so we barely have enough eggs.

Monday – Leominster – The weather is changing. Sky is grey, the clouds molten zinc. A breeze ripples the tree tops. Down to the Millennium Park. Some of the apple blossom already beginning to fall. Stinging Nettles are growing higher and domed mounds of Cranesbill leaves have appeared. Into the churchyard where I find a hidden patch of Wild Garlic and pluck some for the chickens.

Home – The lawn gets its second cut of the season. The female Blackbird is now regularly in the chicken run, tossing aside the straw in her search for food. She should not really be there as she can introduce disease, so I may have to block the gap she squeezes through. The few cabbages that have survived are getting bigger. The tray of purple sprouting has not done well, it is too hot in the greenhouse, so they are moved to the little plastic greenhouse on the patio and another tray is sown. Shoots are appearing in the potato bed. We had our first asparagus last night, albeit just the one spear. Several more are growing steadily.

Wednesday – Yesterday was a day of near continuous rain, very welcome for the garden. It is now 5:30 in the morning and the dawn chorus is in full flow. Songs are mainly Blackbird. The sky is overcast and there is a cooling wind. Into the Worcester Road. A few cars are taking people to work. The lack of cars on the roads these days because of the lockdown means the air quality has improved greatly and the exhaust fumes from each passing car can be smelled strongly. The constant noise of air conditioners and extractor fans come from the factories along the road. A large flock of Jackdaws flies past. Up onto the railway bridge. All around are billowing, white flowering Hawthorn bushes. Chiffchaffs, Wrens, Blackbirds, Dunnocks and Robins are all in song. Cow Parsley is in flower.

Onto Eaton Bridge. The water level in the River Lugg is low and it flows slowly. Rabbits scatter as I set off up Widgeon Meadow go towards the top of Eaton Hill. The cereal crop on Eaton Hill is growing rapidly now. A Great Spotted Woodpecker drums at the top of the hill and a Pheasant croaks in the fields far below. A Great Tit calls and a Blackbird sings. A Raven cronks in the specimen trees above the large house, Eaton Hill.

Down the hill and back along Mill Street. The DIY superstore is opening on a limited basis and tape has been placed across a section of the car park to manage queuing. I suppose being furloughed from work means many will turn to doing household maintenance jobs. Over the River Kenwater and up The Priory. The Rowan trees in the churchyard are coming into flower. A Blackcap sings in one of the trees overlooking the war memorial.