Honey Lane


The bright sunshine that tempted us out for an early drive through the forest was to last all day.

Beams searching their way into the trees picked out the browns, the golds, the greens, and the greys of the season.


while dog walkers shared the bracken coated moors with browsing ponies.

Holmsley road

Sunlight slashed the road skirting Holmsley on the way to Burley.

Cars passing

I am no good at cars, so I cannot identify either the old or the new models passing each other here. No doubt a reader will oblige. (Cue, Barrie). (Barrie responded to his cue and put this on Facebook: ‘As to the cars, the old one is what looks like a bog standard Austin 7 albeit quite an early one (1920s) as it does not have a rear fuel tank. The newer one at first I thought was a Volvo (new cars all look the same to me!) but expanding the picture shows what looks like a round red badge on the grill so I believe it to be some sort of Jaguar, but I stand to be corrected!’)

Golfer after crossing road

There are a number of golf courses in the New Forest. As we passed one just outside Burley, I notice both ponies and putters on the green. By the time Jackie had parked the Modus and I had walked back, the golfers were moving on, to another tee on the opposite side of the road. I pointed out to one that a ball lay in the ditch. He thanked me, hooked out the ball with a club, and joined his friends who were surrounded by a similar equine audience.

Undeterred, the sporting trio teed off.

Another group of three ponies dozing on the verge of Burley Street had not moved by the time I returned from a wander down Honey Lane.

The lane, pock-marked by pitted pools, was more hospitable to Land Rovers than to our little car, so Jackie parked up and left me to it.

We took a rest and a late breakfast at The Hyde-Out Cafe. My choice was a Full English, while Jackie’s was fried eggs on toast. That took care of lunch, too.


There were warning signs informing drivers that pigs were roaming free, but just beyond Gorley it was a cyclist who hogged the centre of the road.

Horse and rider

A more sensible female equestrian kept her steed to the edge of it.

Not so a group of donkeys, one of whom held eye contact through our windscreen until the helpful horse nudged it and its friends aside, and continued on its way.

Pony with Regency ringlets

A free Forest pony, sporting Regency style ringlets, observed all this with interest.


As we approached Godshill, a helmeted cyclist employed staccato stop-start attempts to lead his family across a road junction. He alternated between calling them forward and sending them back, as he made the same movements. To our relief, he was eventually successful.

Roger Penny Way

We made our way home via Roger Penny Way, one of the major thoroughfares traversing the forest.

This evening we dined on beefburgers with caramelised onions on a bed of roasted vegetables; mashed potato; carrots, cauliflower, spinach, and Brussels sprouts; followed by Jackie’s tried and tested pumpkin pie with whipped cream that had been bought and paid for. The Culinary Queen drank Hoegaarden, while I quaffed Cono Sur Bicicleta pinot noir 2015.


      1. Lord, I can’t tell one car from another; even my own! I cannot tell you how many times I am standing at a car, pushing my magic key fobb to unlock it, completely bewildered as to why it is not working. The worst is when the owners see me doing it. The other day, I went up to my little silver car that had a dent in it and I was so upset, because the dent was not there before. I was so busy looking at the dent that I didn’t see the owner sitting in the driver’s seat.

  1. lovely pictures though they do bring back hated cross country runs what with all the rain; up at teh golf course at Burley, I’ve left a few balls too. Have you been to Anthony’s Bees Bottom by the way? First left after you pass the cafe at the old station at Holmsey and then down to where the road crosses the river. There’s a cottage there which was once derelict – not sure about ti now – which used to be a bee keeper or as I recall?

  2. I’m trying to rise up out of my devastation over the election, and catching up on WP.
    This is such a fun series, Derrick. I love the various modes of transportation and the long shots of the road ahead.

  3. A lovely day to be out for animals, cyclists, and cars. Beautiful photos, Derrick. I particularly like the forest photos. In the top group, the trees look like they are dancing to me. (Yes, I have an active imagination.) 🙂 Further down, I love the light streaming in around the trees and also the path.

    1. Nearby is a place called ‘Slap’ and close to that is the wonderfully named ‘Slap Bottom’ ! What an address that would be.

  4. The ponies of Honey Lane could be the title of something. A slim volume of poetry about the joys of English country life? I’m watching the Netflix series The Crown and just finished the episode in which E Rex II waxes whimsically to Uncle Ed (ex king) how she wishes she could have been an ordinary English countrywoman. I felt that line was stretching credulity somewhat. As always, adore your posts of the ponies.

  5. I do like the road to Burley and the dozy horses on the road. And having been both a cyclist in the middle and a horseback rider on the verge, I understand what each was doing.

  6. I felt like I was in a dream strolling through your photographs of your day trip – several of these shots were magical. Your countryside is so beautiful Derrick – just love the drives you and Jackie take feels like I’m a free-paying tourist.

  7. What a glorious post; love all the pics and the running commentary. Be nice to be a passenger onboard your chariot Derrick. 😀
    As for the cars, looking at the wheels the vintage car looks like an Austin 7 from the 1930’s, ; the new vehicle appears to be a Volvo.

  8. You keep tormenting me with that pumpkin pie, don’t you. But “pumpkin pie with whipped cream that had been bought and paid for.” Does this mean you previously had whipped cream that you had shoplifted? You can tell us, we’re your friends.

    1. I am informed by the author himself that this was a ‘joke’ a word play on the fact that the word ‘whip’ can also mean ‘taken swiftly’, as in the action of the ‘five finger discount’ i.e. shop lifting

      1. A person has to get up early to keep up with that pesky author, Jackie.
        Hey, my son was drinking Hoegaarden t’other day. He said it’s good, but expensive. He didn’t share …

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