Sunday, 5 May 2013

Walkie 3 - An historical walkie

About 7km ish

In Bedwyn and also seasonally at the beam engine in Crofton. During the summer they have very nice BBQs and also a Cafe. There is a licenced bar seelling local ales and cider too for the hoomans. I had sossige and was very nice.There are also pubs and small shops in Bedwyn.

Several areas for parking in Bedwyn and also Crofton.

Why should I do this walkie?
How often does oyu get to see the oldest of sumfing in the werld? Not that often I would guess, but on this walkie you go to Crofton Beam Engine, its the oldest working beam engine in the whole werld! An for those that hasnt seen one before it moves water from the canal to the top of the hill using a coal fired steam pump.

Its a nice flat walkie but if you cross the canal to the beam engine you does have to walk over a lock whcih might not be suitable for very big furfriends or those hoomans you might bring who arent too steady on the pegs. Worse case though they could stay one side of the canal and you fetch them noms from the tea room, its a very pretty spot to wait. If you does like more 'istory then you also get to walk through the churchyard of St Marys in Bedwyn. Inside is the tomb of Sir John Seymour, father of Edward & Jane Seymour, Jane being one of the wives of Henry VIII's (a very norty man).

Wild Lifes
Red Kites,Geese,Canada Geese,Frogs

So onto the walkie...

I started at Bedwyn and ended up back there to, you could start and end at Crofton but for the description we start at Bedwyn, is my walk so I am telling the story :)

So, set off down the canal on the opposite side to the railway and the railway is on you right. You is allowed off your leady on the toepath but you needs to be careful as there are locks and steep sides to the canal so you doesn't want to go swimming cos you wont get out :(

As you down the canal bank you will see lots of pretty plants and intersting anipals. I did see lots of king cups and a very big frog.

There doesn't be many instructions now as you cant go too far wrong if you just keeps walking so enjoy the views and think about what noms you want at the halfway stop. 

You will see the steam beam engine in the distance and if you is lucky it will be a "steaming" day and you can see the chimney smoking. If you want to walk even further there is a footpath up to the left to Wilton Windmill but for me I had smelt the barbeque and windmills didn't sound so exciting from where I was standing.

Bar and Noms at Crofton Beam Engine

Your final half way challenge is to cross the canal., here is a picture of where you walk, I dussnt be joking, you has to walk over the little bridge at the side of the lock gate. 

Yes, you does need to walk across...

Once you has made it across you just follows the signs under the railway line and up the steps. There is a bar,cafe and sometimes barbeque. You best check their website for the different times in the year. Dogs aren't allowed inside but then I can see why, there is alot of things you could falls in or get stuck in and people shovelling coal. If your hooman wants to go in they can have a tour at certain times but they does have to pay for that. Its free to walk around the grounds.

Inspecting the coal

Moley was worried about the water pump

So after your rest stop its times to walk back, cross back over the canal and back the way you came. You can carry straight on but we made a detour to St Marys Church, you can see on my map you will need to cross the bridge down to the railway line. Then you needs to be super careful and on the lead even if you are very well behaved because you need to cross the railway line. The trains are mainline Great Western and go very fast so we did wait to be extra sure and then walked very swiftish over the railway line. Once safely over follow the path across the grass into the churchyard. Once though the churchyard you are on the main street where there is a little shop if you need more supplies. Walk along the high street back to your starting point and probably a well earned rest.

Happy Walking 


Tuesday, 16 April 2013

My Friend Ted

Hello everyone, hope you are all havin lot of fun and enjoying the little bit of sunshine wot there is now!

I wanted to share my friend Teds blog wiv you all but looks like Teds bloggy is a bit posher than mine or he is better with the IT paws... as there dusnt seem to be an easy way wiv mine.... :)  

But so you doeant miss out anyway if you click the link it will take you there and you can read all about his pawsome adventures!

The Life and Times of Ted

In other noos, walkie 3 is in production, its going to be a walk to a Roman Villa, v cultural! :) But I leaves you with a picture of me and anuver friend, a Giant Tortoise I met at the weekend.

Take care 



Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Walkie 2 - A nom-stop tour around Southwold

About 6km according to the iBone

Loads! This walk has to have the most nom stops ever, there be several pubs,cafes,delis,a bakery and 2 chip shops most on route.

There is free parking near the Water Tower or Rugby ground or worse case down by the harbour. You needs a bit of patience if its school hollibob time but you is a terrier (probably) so show determinashun and you will find somewhere.....

© OpenStreetMap contributors

Why should I do it you ask yourself...
Noms. Nuff said.

But if you does be thinking that's a bit shallow then here's some other reasons. It does be a nice flat walk and you can take anything from about 1 1/2 hours to all day if you do all nom stops. (If you doesn't like "berds" then maybe its not for you, sometimes there are lots, I think the tourists might feed them. (When I last went it was a bit like Alfred Hitchcock film set just without any sadistic humilatshuns what I seen on the tele program.) 

Anyways, moving swiftly on...this walkie takes you from town centre where there be an 'orse on sundays and in school holidays that can take you (yes well behaved doggies can go!) in a cart down to the harbour, there is a big beach,sand dunes, a working fishing harbour and a common. I has sometimes even seen seals in the harbour but you has to be patient to see them (bit likes the parking).

Orse in background

Wild Lifes
Seals (maybe if you is v lucky) there also be a speedboat can take hoomans to see them if they want to down at the harbour. Lots of berds, Avocets,Redshank,Shoveler,Lapwing, Starling clouds.

I thought I would share some history about the town before we gets started. Southwold was mentioned in the Domesday book in 1086 as a fishing port and was very impawtant after Dunwich fell into the sea (old fishing town along coast). On a hill over the beach (and located near one of my nom stops) is Gun Hill. There are 6 cannons there to comemerate the battle of Sole Bay in 1672 between the English and French on one side and the Dutch on the other. In WW2 the guns had to be buried so they didn't make the town a target for specific bombing. Many celebrities have houses in the area ( we has seen some) and its often referred to as Islington on Sea.

maybe I need a yacht?

So once again, time for the walk.....

Start out at the Market Square in the town centre. This is conveniently located by the butchers ;-)

If you need some noms for the hoomans there are lots of delis,cafes and a bakery that you can buy take aways from. If you is impatient for the sea head down East Street and to the seafront past The Nelson Pub (nom and drink stop). Otherwise cross over from the market square into Lorne Road. At the end of the road is one of the free car parks and this is where we will end up after our big walkie. There is a big stone opposite comemorating the life and bequest of William Godell who left land to the town.But for now head downhill following the trees on the right.

 If you prefers to you can go into the trees, called Waters Copse, as they run parallel to the road. Either way you will end up at a junction onto Ferry Road. Go down Ferry Road leaving the sea to your left and very soon you will see a footpath up to the left going onto the dunes and Gun Hill Cafe on the beach (nom stop and the guns I mentioned) if you hasn't stopped for noms take a right and walk along the dunes so sea is on your left. This part of the beach allows us doggies on all year around :---) but always check in case they change that...

Beach on a windy day - note blown about ears..

That should be a nice walkie which will bring you to the harbour entrance, here there is another nom stop! (you gets the idea now there are alot) and also for the hoomans some erherm "public conveniences". If you want a bit of local history by now you can look at The Alfred Corry Museum here who is kind enough to leave water out for their doggy friends.  

The Alfred Corry was built in 1893 and was Southwolds first lifeboat.  The boat has been renovated and you can see it in the boathouse there. Opposite is the modern RNLI Lifeboat station and a little gift shop. Some of you may have been to this area as its also a popular hollibob stop at the caravan park next door.

Head down the road now leaving the lifeboat station to your left. The tarmac now goes a bit stoney but still flat. On the opposite bank is Walberswick, a place very popular for hanging bacon in the sea and catching crabs. I hasn't done it myself as heard they are a bit bitey but its a very popular occupation and they has competishuns in the summertime. On the right at the end of the caravan park is a footpath, if you is feeling tired you can head back into town, but if you is an intrepid dog you can keep going :) On the left then is where hoomans can go on speedboats for the seals. 

Then just after that, you guessed its some more noms! There is a fantastic fish and seafood shop also which does cold seafood platters indoors but you can also take away. Next door is a smokehouse and a chip shop.

The "Berds"!

If you can still move after all the noms then keep walking along the harbour. There's yet another nom stop at the cafe then another fish shop, closely followed by the Harbour Inn (all this in space of about 10 min walk so don't be peaking too soon with the noms). The Harbour Inn is very famous and a nice place to sit down for a drink if its sunny. To this point you will have walked around 2.7km.

a pint of Adnams and some cheese and onion crisps  please,
what does you mean they aren't good for dogs?

Potential for needing a bath....

Once again if you is tired you can take a right on the road next to the Inn back up into the town, but otherwise head straight on and onto the public footpath. Follow the path along the riverbank to a bridge, here you can cross over onto the Walberswick side of the river. I has gone over there a little way to show you the view as there's an old windpump but the proper route over there we save for another big walkie day over that side.

Come back over the bridge, you now have two options, take the roadway directly opposite or the footpath which would be leaving the bridge behind to the left. Both is about the same distance.

Gorse on the common

 Either way you will will have the choice eventually to go up onto the common, The common is mainly gorse and in spring is very pretty.

If you take the footpath you come to this gate,take a left though it to get to the common

or another way onto common through this...
At around 4km from the start assuming you has taken my route you come across a signpost, straight on you go to Pier Avenue and from there you can go to the Pier (more noms) or if you choose the common you will cut off the corner and come out by the water tower and pub (noms again).

you is looking for this

If you go across the common just be carefuls for the golf course...there are some signs but you does take your life in your paws a bit that way but does give walk an extra frisson of danger and excitement ;-) 

You will then come out at the junction of Godyll Road by the rugby field and you can follow that back to the big stone and the free car park. If you still has room or the hoomans want a drink by now head up Lorne Road to the Red Lion for noms and beers. You should then be back near the Market Square where started out.

I hopes you enjoy the walk or even if you does find it too far to have your chau-fur drive you that its given you something to smile about today.

I does be signing off for today as very tired after all the nom testing and walkies. 

Take care pals


@Hetty_Bear, proudmember of the #BTPosse

Sunday, 7 April 2013

Hetty's Walking Guide - Walkie 1 - A gentle stroll near Walberswick, Suffolk UK

As many of you pals know I does like to travel. I been lots of places in the United Kingdom but I has also been to foreign parts thanks to my doggy passport, France, Belgium and Holland. I specially like Holland as they has a lot of cheese (there be pictures in one of my older postings if you be interested).

I is also a very lucky doggy as I get to live very close to the seaside and also quite near to forests what I does like very much to go running in. Sometimes I has been asked where I does go for walkies, so I has decided to start documenting some walkies so as my fur pals can also have a route if they does come on hollibobs or lives nearby and wants some ideas of where to go.

All of my walkies has been given the official paws up from me and they will range from little walkies to big walkies so somefing for everyone. 

I has tried to note down what doggies and their hoomans might like and why to do it, if they be easy or not easy walkie and if there be noms nearby ( v impawtant).

Just remember though that sometime spaths does change so if you be doing my walkies checks that there is no signs telling youse not to and stay on a leady if there be wild anipals around. They do be fun to chase but I has been told that if we chase too many then we does run out of them and that be no fun for anyone.

Have fun and happy walking!

So here we go, this the first walkie...a little one.

Walkie 1 - A gentle stroll near Walberswick

Length 3km (approx)
Terrain, grass and boardwalk, some fallen trees and narrow paths

Lots of noms nearby but not on trail, Dunwich and Blythburgh both good for these. This area is also good for a picnic if the weather be good. There are nice delicatessens in Southwold and Halesworth where you can get your provisions.

Parking & Accessibility
Free parking, start at the car park. Its just off the B1125  (Dunwich Rd) which is a few minutes and about 2 miles off the A12 at Blythburgh in Suffolk. The car park is on the corner on the left soon after a water tower which be on your right if Blythburgh behind you. Tells me if you does need more directions.

The walk is flat but there do be trees down and mud along the route sometimes so not perfect for those doggy pals and hoomans who might find that a problem although maybe in summer you be ok, best check with me and I can take a look for you before.

Here is a map, there has been a bit of artistic license in the making of it but hopefully you gets the idea.

Why should I do this walk?
This is what I would say is a nice gentle stroll. It doesn’t be too long and is a good walk if your hooman has had a bit too much Sunday lunches and needs a stroll to walk it off. Even if the wever isn’t so good you will be ok as there be trees which keep off the rain, or if its hot keep you cool. You does really need to be on a lead though, there be lots of  berds nesting in the undergrowf and on the ground, apparently they are rare ones and although it might be fun to chases them if we chases too many there wont be none left and that will be no fun for anyone. There also be deer so if you is a bit partial to Venison then definitely stay on the leady. At the side of the boardwalk there be boggy bits, if you strays into those it be a one way ticket to bath night and none of us likes that! I know because I has been there and done that although it was almost worth it as v stinky….

Wild Life
There be lots of wild creatures here, its next to Dunwich forest which do have lots of creatures including Dartmoor Ponies. If you want to go on a longer walkie you can go into the forest by taking the right hand turn marked “the big forest” (well it do be marked that way on my map anyways).
Theres lots, I isn’t an expert by you might see some of these:

Dartford Warbler


So now (finally) onto the walk…

Start at the free car park (directions at the beginning), walk away from the road and where you see a small plaque about The Sandlings there be three ways to go. For this walkkie you does want the middle track. Walk into the trees and after a bit you come onto a boardwalk raised up over the boggy bits. Follow the boardwalk along. You will go deeper into the trees and there be interesting fings for your hoomans to look at like dragonflys in the summer, wild honeysuckle an flowers in spring. There also be some hooge trees fallen over what plants now be living under and hoomans seem to like. It does be very very boggy though, more than Terrier deep boggy and quite stinky so does be careful not to stray off the path even if there be tempting animals and smells.

Here we are inspecting the boardwalk, note the stinky mud to the right ;-)

After a while you does find a little bridge, after the bridge the path does widen out and go under trees and there often be squirrels, one of my favourites, or maybe just my nemesis I hasn’t quite made up my mind. Carry on through the trees and you will come to the marshes. This little stroll do finish here and you needs to turn back the way you came but for those adventurous doggies can walk further through the reed bed if they likes.

Guarding the bridge

For those who is getting a bit tired then just turns back and retrace your paws back to the car park or for those with lots of energy you can go into the forest of the beach at Dunwich.

So thats all for walkies number 1, I be going out laters to map out a longer one for you around Southwold and will be reporting back in due course.


@Hetty_Bear on Twitter

Thursday, 26 April 2012

Dogs Less Fortunate Than Ourselves

For once a serious post.Earlier this week while I was travelling I met a young woman sitting quietly crying in the corner of a pretty deserted park hugging her small terrier dog. I stopped to talk to her to see if she was ok and it transpired she and her dog were living rough as she had recently escaped an abusive relationship and had hoped to find work and a new life in the city far from her ex partner. She had no family or friends to turn too and most refuges will not accept dogs. They both looked as frightened as one another and were clearly the most important and loved thing in each others lives.While some might say she should give up her dog for the chance of somewhere safe to sleep I can understand hearing her relate her story exactly why she hadn't, the dog being the only security and comfort she had in a time where she had made a difficult decision to run away and for the dog she  was the only stability in an unfamiliar and frightening world. She was not on drugs, drinking and was pretty well educated.
There are always two sides to any story but from what she said I believe her and cant imagine how difficult life must be. She wasn't begging or asking for anything yet most people walked by without a second glance. Particularly in the economic times we live in now many people will be in similar situations very often through just making misjudgements of situations or people. I haven't forgotten her and her story and it made me look at what support is available closer to home.
In the UK some hostels will accept dogs but only a very few and space is limited.The Dogs Trust Hope Fund works to educate hostels/shelters on the importance of the human canine bond for vulnerable people and encourage them to allow dogs in. It also offers advice for those unfortunate enough to find themselves in that situation plus subsided veterinary care and advice for their canine companions.Next time you see a collection tin for them or in other countries those providing similar services please spare a thought for people like her. I've found many things to complain about recently but this really puts it into perspective.

Monday, 19 March 2012

The Biggest Doggie Show on Earth

Once more brought to you by the furry paws of Hetty the Bear (now slightly less furry thanks to the grooming parlour)

Some of you know I like to do my running, running and Terriers go together so I will be honest it comes naturally, although more naturally if squirrel's or bunnies are involved..... Anyway, as the culmination of my running year so far I went running at Crufts last week. Running and Birmingham I hear also go together as I am told some parts are a bit rough and you best be running if you want to escape but I didn't see any of that luckily.

As Crufts is on the television I had to be looking my best, this meant a trip down to the grooming parlour,  somewhere I am not a great fan off not least because its run by poodles and painted pink but apparently it was an important part of the preparations what with HD filming and the fact the camera puts pounds on you if you have not had your hair stripped recently.

More sensitive dogs than me might have taken offense at being bought this

Then we were off to Birmingham. Birmingham is quite a long way from where I am living and even for a travelling dog like me I get a bit bored. On the way we developed a puncture on the car, due to the cost cuttings where the staff is working there was no spare tyre and just a can of foam which to me didn't look quite up to the job and also like it might be a bit messy for those of us who have just had their fur done. This meant we had to go to a tyre repairer. Luckily being near to the big doggie show they were very kind to me and gave me crisps and a nice warm place to sit.

Waiting for the puncture to be mended, bit dull....

Then it was time to go to the hotel, I have never seen so many furry friends in a hotel before (apart from the places people call "hotels" but are actually kennels, don't be thanking I am so stupid as to fall for that). There were little furry dogs, huge great dogs and more Red Setters than I thought there were anywhere. The nice people at the hotel were well prepared though, there were 3 bowls of water in reception ( tried them all because you cant be too sure) and they gave me a dental chew when I checked in. After all that excitement I needed a little snooze.

I am liking the Holiday Inn thank you

Next morning I had to get up early which is not one of my strong points but I was smuggled some bacon from the breakfast buffet and sat under the table so things could have been worse and I was excited to be going to see my running friends, particuarly Mitch, he is a Border Terrier too and he has to drive all the way from Scotland which I hear is a very long way.

I am open to royalty payments for allowing myself to be have my picture taken next to the controversial Crufts logo

So then it was time for getting ready for the running...After I had collected my race number there was lots of time to look for things I never knew I needed. Everyone was very keen to get me to try their treats and sell me dogs beds. I don't think I have been fussed so much in one morning.

I was very excited!
I had to be very quite backstage, it was very difficult because all I wanted to do was run and everyone was barking but I tried my best.

See, trying best not to bark, honest

Then it was finally time for my running!! I ran around the arena and More 4 did film me because apparently I was quite amusing being quite little.

Then I was running outdoors... For those that have time on their paws you can see me running about 5.5 minutes into this clip...

I was running quite fast as I have heard there be gangs and such around Birmingham so I was taking no chances ...

After all the running I was tired again, even after my bacon breakfast and lots of free dog treats so it was time for a bit of a swim in the lake.

We are all having a drink and a swim in the lake after our sprinting

After all that excitement there was time for a bit more doggie retail therapy, although I wasn't too sure about some of the things on sale..

Not sure there would ever be a time or a place for a cowgirl outfit thank you

Finally it was time to head home but not before I claimed my free picture from the nice people at Venture Photography, not sure they captured my best angle but I can safely say its different to my other pictures!

Thanks for reading, signing off now for a snooze,