It’s often wet in what was Westmorland … wet, windy, woolly, sometimes wild, yet on occasion wonderful, and for one somewhat scatterbrained family, home. Can a now ‘RuralDad’, long from the city, wringed out, bleating, poor as a church mouse – dreaming of adventure and a challenge – with boisterous youngsters in tow, regain the energy, passions, romance and carefree approach of youth?
The ‘grand idea’ or challenge – to bake for the family, to get out and about and walk the Fells, and in the countryside around us far more, have fun exploring Britain with ‘Sweetpea’, ‘Sweetpotato’ and ‘SHE’, to keep mentally busy and active, to use my SLR camera, and to try writing for sheer pleasure. Having long been intrigued by the landscape around us, and the influences on its ‘making’, shaping and history, learning in depth about a new subject area – Britain’s landscape, its past and social history – appeals. How to summarise what we see, find out about, and enjoy ‘North by Southwest’ in our ‘British journey’? Ahh – and why not – a combined personal website & blog would do the job, surely a ‘web-a-blog’?, comprising:
- An ongoing resource, guide, pointer to, summary (and in due course synthesis) of literature on landscape history, landscape archaeology, settlement development and vernacular architecture.
- An occasional ecclectic, personal blog, describing ‘life along the higgledy piggledy lane’.
- A miscellany of remarkable (as well as very normal) places, along with images of them, from around Britain – the focus being on the landscape and natural history of Cumbria, the Dales, North Lancashire, Dorset & the islands of Scotland.
- A reflective resource on orchards and apples, and ‘how to develop an orchard from scratch’.
Will anyone read this web-a-blog as it develops over time? Should you come across ‘North by Southwest: A British Journey’, and like it, please do on occasion revisit, follow the webablog, leave feedback, or suggest ideas to include or add anew.