Boldre Bridge


At 16 degrees, our incredibly mild period continues. It was therefore strange today to begin the winter clearing whilst we continue to enjoy blooms from spring and summer. We did so in rather desultory fashion.

It is difficult to think of winter when you can admire

roses Margaret Merrill, Penny Lane, Mamma Mia, and especially Summer Time;

or fuchsias, geraniums, dahlias, gauras and poppies, one of which harbours a hoverfly; and many more.

With the sun shining, we set off for brunch at The Friars Cliff Cafe. Unfortunately this was in everyone else’s minds. The car park at Steamer Point was crammed full, and shoals of humanity floundered on the beach. There was no doubt the cafe would be full to bursting like me after the Olympics breakfast. We therefore turned back and aimed for Calshot. We hadn’t travelled very far before the sky clouded over. It didn’t look very conducive to photography, so we brunched at Otter Nurseries. Only when I had chosen a liver casserole did Jackie tell me that was what she had planned for this evening. She happily did a rethink.

The walls at Otter contain some rather well-executed paintings for sale. One of these was Boldre Bridge. We wondered why we hadn’t seen the bridge, and realised that would be because we had always driven over it. So we went to look for it. I passed through a five-barred gate and descended a bank to find something approximating the painter’s vantage point.

I was intrigued to notice that the architect had made it possible to feature the Christian fish symbol. The five-spanned bridge, which dates from at least the 18th century is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) 1990, as amended,  for its architectural or historic interest.

A tree had fallen across the river, on which autumn leaves floated over reflections of broken, reeds, and still grey sky.

Just before we drove on, the sun began to light up the foliage on Rodlease Lane.

En route to Sway, I wandered into the forest, taking advantage of the light streaming through the trees, and exchanging greetings with a family of riders.

Forest scene 3

As I ventured further in, attracted by pinpoints of light in the distance, I was rewarded by this dramatic view across the moorland featuring

House in moorland

  a single dwelling in an idyllic setting.

Driving through Hordle on our return, Jackie spotted a cautionary notice for any witches inclined to take to the skies tomorrow night, and a cry for help from an underground prison.

Jackie’s rethink for tonight’s meal involved lemon-flavoured chicken Kiev, French fries, and baked beans, with which she drank Hoegaarden and I drank Reserve des Tuguets madiran 2012.


  1. Liver casserole twice would have been a bit much even for a liver lover! Late roses always seem on the miraculous side, don’t they?
    The light in the New Forest always fascinates me – a glorious mix of beams, gleams and soft, misty diffusion. It’s lovely to see it through your eyes.

  2. Derrick.. that was such a delightful array of photos..
    and I particularly love the last two Halloween ? ones..
    and those roses ? and mixed flowers ?…
    Just beautiful.
    And the history of that bridge was very interesting and educational..
    Happy halloween ?

  3. Ah yes the Witches of Hordle, otherwise known as the WI. Mum was Herr Oberleutenant there for many years. I must own to not remembering Boldre Bridge. I will have to look it up

  4. Great photos! The big difference between autumn/fall in the US and here in the UK and the Netherlands is the abundance of sunshine which makes the colours so much more radiant in the US. We are supposed to have some more blue sky tomorrow and I’ll try taking photos again.

  5. I love the streaming light and the old bridge. One of those crashing witches has crashed right down the street from me. Glad you didn’t have to have live twice…

  6. I really liked Boldre Bridge. I enjoy seeing elegant historical architecture like that. Presumably its being listed means it gets a measure of legal protection and so won’t be demolished to make way for a new concrete road bridge at some point.

  7. Part fall, part summer. Crazy weather. The same is true in Maine. Oh, I love those bridge pictures.

  8. This is such a great post! Amazing pics of nature and the flowers are just gorgeous together wtih that beautiful series of pictures in the woods

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