23 June 2021

Meerbrook

Field barn at Frith Bottom with Hen Cloud beyond

Yesterday all my troubles seemed so far away. Clint was  humming old songs by Cat Stevens as we tootled along country roads all the way to Staffordshire. He delivered me to the village of Meerbrook north of Leek. It was somewhere I had never been before.

Clint decided to park next to St Matthew's Church and asked me to collapse his wing mirror. As I put my boots on, I fell into  conversation with a sturdy road maintenance man clad in orange with a white helmet and yellow ear protectors. He and his colleague were clearing out ditches to address potential flooding problems. A nice man, he has just completed forty five years of work for Staffordshire County Council and will retire this summer. Sadly, he now suffers from worsening arthritis. 

Pub sign in Meerbrook

I waved goodbye to Clint and set off on a long circumnavigation of Tittesworth Reservoir. Most of the time I could not even see the reservoir but it didn't matter because I enjoyed a lovely walk in unfamiliar territory. I saw many things and thought many thoughts and I was glad that I don't suffer from arthritis. Not yet anyway.

After three hours and forty minutes I was once more rooting in Clint's boot (American: trunk) for my driving shoes. Clint was in a happy mood and as we headed back over the hills of summer to lovely Longnor and then on to beautiful Bakewell we dueted harmoniously:-

Remember the days of the old schoolyard
We used to laugh a lot, oh don't you?
Remember the days of the old schoolyard
When we had imaginings and we had
All kinds of things and we laughed
And needed love, yes, I do
Oh and I remember you...

The old school in Meerbrook

23 comments:

  1. I remember how lovely it was/is around that area. Back in the 1990s my employers' Head Office was based in Leek and I often had to pop over on business. I enjoyed the drive from Manchester Airport to Leek, looking out of the taxi windows at the scenery.

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    1. Well - I didn't know that you knew that area JayCee but you are a mysterious woman with many secrets.

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  2. So, you and Clint went to school together?

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    1. Clint was what is known as a "school refuser".

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  3. Funny, when you talked about singing harmoniously with Clint and I read that last lyric line, instead of the Cat Stevens song, my first thought was of another song--Frank Ilfield singing I Remember You. Amazingly, I even remembered the words. Good grief...1962.

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    1. I can remember that song too Mary..."You're the one who made my dreams come true..."

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  4. That was a beautiful post about a beautiful walk. Meerbrook near Leek - lovely place names, both of them!
    I was happy to walk for about 2 hours straight yesterday morning, the longest I have been since my operation. My pace was deliberately a bit slower than usual, as I am not yet allowed to do anything too strenuous. But I felt very good because of that walk and I know you can relate to that.

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    1. The operation and recuperation will have been quite stressful - even for a level-headed human like you. What better medicine than a two hour walk?

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  5. Your options for gorgeous walks are endless, Mr. P.

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    1. That is just about true. In this I know I am most fortunate.

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  6. Good walking and cycling weather at the moment, sunny but not too hot.

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    1. You are probably right but I would never complain about heat in England.

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  7. Interesting school building. It would be interesting to have a peak inside.

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    1. It is no longer a school. It's a youth hostel now.

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  8. Hen Cloud looks interesting and worth a climb. The old school is wonderful, the photo only marred by the witches hats.

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    1. I have never ascended Hen Cloud Andrew. I should make a point of doing that some time.

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  9. That picture is wonderful, and the stacked stone fence doubly so. Is the school house constructed of quarried stone?

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    1. The former school is built from local stone - quarried close by. Later the school became a youth hostel. I think it might be a private home now. You are not the only American who has referred to a drystone wall as a "fence" Joanne.

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  10. Love the Lazy Trout sign.

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    1. I doubt that that was always the pub's name but I also liked that sign.

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  11. Beautiful weather for a long walk, and scenery to match. Good to know that for once Clint's happy mood matched your own.

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    1. Together we were like Butch Cassidy and The Sunshine Kid.

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  12. Leek, Frith Bottom and Hen Cloud. I love English place names.

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