This morning I went out for 10k run number three, so now I am more than half way through the challenge! The weather is getting hotter and hotter this week, and as I really don’t like running in the heat I went out early – just before 7am.
I went down to the canal, and across it to a place called Warren Farm. Quite amazingly this is a recent discovery, since lockdown in fact. I kind of knew it was there, but had never actually been across the canal and field to find it. It is quite famous locally because the council basically tried to give it away on a 200 year lease to Queens Park Rangers football team for a training ground. The area would have been ruined, and access denied to the thousands of people who enjoy the fields for leisure and sustainable commuting. Several years of vigorous campaigning by local groups has resulted in the abandonment of the scheme – announced last month.
One of the most vocal groups to campaign recently is Hanwell Nature. Their argument against development was focussed on the wildlife that is found in this area. The first thing I noticed when I went there a couple of months ago was the sound of skylarks. I couldn’t quite believe it. I associate larks with open countryside, not semi urban landscapes with major motorways within earshot. It is truly fantastic. I have also seen kites hovering above the fields, and I saw a kestrel sitting on a fence post one morning too.
This morning the sound of larks was strong even before I crossed the single track railway that serves the industrial zone near Brentford. Right round the field is approximately 2km, and it’s 2km to get there. So I did 3 laps – twice anti-clockwise and once clockwise (just for a slightly different view!). As well as the usual dog walkers and runners, there was a man sat on a little stool painting the view, and some people from the council collecting 40 bags of rubbish litter-picked by volunteers at the weekend.
I was glad I went out early as even by 8 o’clock it was getting very warm. I think I will have to be up even earlier tomorrow!