Walk round Sherborne Park and the Water Meadows – 21st July 2020

On an ideal day for walking Steve and I walked part of the Park Estate and then on towards Clapton on the Hill; Leaving the car park we walked downhill through some woods where there were tree carvings of a country gent and a sculpture of a deer.  Crossing a road, we followed a footpath sign which eventually took us over a number of fields to a road leading to Clapton on the Hill.  There was very little wildlife, which we both commented on, just a field with young bullocks in.  The estate has many dead trees, some still standing some that had fallen down; I find these trees very fascinating, the way their branches reach out in many different shapes,  the imagination is just endless.  Also, we wondered why the pathway through the fields stays green while the crops are golden.  Continuing we passed the North Barn which has been the base for Country/Autumn Watch and took the Sabrina Way footpath until we came to the water meadows.  These look very different at this time of the year as they are all dry. The water meadows are a series of channels and sluices running north to south to direct the flow of water.  In the wet season there are numerous species that can be seen including dragonflies, damselflies, Lapwings, wild fowl, Snipe, water voles, watershrews, herons, egrets and an occasional kingfisher.  We were soon in Sherborne village with its old cottages and beautiful gardens.  Of course, we bought a coffee at the shop and the cheeky blackbird came right up to us to see if we had any crumbs.  Walking back through the woods there were families out walking with young children, some picnicking and several dog walkers.  Improvements to most of the paths are being made throughout the year. It was a very enjoyable and peaceful walk.  Pam.