Monthly Archives: May 2013

Tuesday 21st May 2013.

The demolished site of General Engineering caught my eye yesterday and, not far from that site, another, similar site, is still as it was when roughly cleared of a building – years ago! The East Lanc’s site, behind main roads, is reasonably out of sight (and mind?) but these other two are at prime, main road locations.
Time for some tidying-up eh?
And no, this native plant is not the invasive and introduced Giant Hogweed. This one looks much better and is blooming about now around the hedgerows. Name? Anthriscus Sylvestris – Cow Parsley.
Goslings seen this morning. The Canada Geese are invasive, but this year gosling numbers seem to be lower around here. This isn’t entirely bad news.
Swans are native birds and only rear what they can feed where they are. These five cygnets were fine this morning.

Monday 20th May 2013.

Went along Bury Road and General Engineering is rubble.
A fire gutted the place last year (I think) and, at last, they’ve demolished the old building.
Further along Bury Road, at Warth Bridge, the Irwell is at fairly normal levels; the screw, next to the weir, turning steadily.
Going along the pebbles, (a cyclists nightmare!) toward the Lattice Bridge, the Giant Hogweeds are ‘bubbling under’ with some of last years flower stems still ten or more feet high.
On the homeward run, along the canal, the facts that General Engineering, Radcliffe, is no more yet the Warth Archimedes Screw was made…somewhere abroad…didn’t seem to make good sense. But obviously, they must.

Sunday 19th May 2013.

A little damp this morning but a longer circuit was done and there were quite a few out on two wheels. The first picture is called ‘Spot the Heron’. Some of us do struggle with things photographic.
The top overflow is in water at Elton, so we must have had quite a drop of rain the past few days. It’s usually dry.
All cygnets, from the wharf end, okay this morning.
Hogweed, at Hinds Lane, is doing well – getting-on for five feet in height one batch, and other clumps are appearing from nowhere along and around the old cobbled lane. The tallest plants are usually close to water – Irwell banks, especially at Warth, so more pictures of the tall ones as they grow.

Saturday 18th May 2013.

A shorter ride around the old town hall and back this morning – might be ‘busy’ soon – best to get back. It was too a bit rainy, the single rugby/football goal-post, at Coney Green playing-fields, more than a little rusty – the grass just that bit too long, showing little use and/or care…
Thinking of ‘white-elephants’, for some reason, the return slog, up Banana was done, in order to keep-fit so that I can cut our grass – which is also little used at the moment!

Wednesday 15th May 2013.

Little Lever, via the Radcliffe Canal, was on the cards for a ride this morning but the rain is (on and off) torrential. So a good skive is happening.
A few months ago an engineering factory, locally, was badly burned-out and I read today that the remains have been demolished. Folk are already petitioning that the land is re-developed as a park rather than more ‘flats’. Either way, imo, it’ll look better for the local inhabitants. There are, now, several large ‘derelict’ land areas locally yet folk want to build new homes around Elton Reservoir, thus destroying a leisure and wildlife area. Far better, surely, to use-up the vacant land first?
The weather ‘eased’ a little this afternoon and a ride to Little Lever ok although wet and muddy with some great puddles along the tow-path.
It was hissing-down at Radcliffe Wharf (where they take fishing very seriously, as you can see) and, across the road, the cobbles down to the canal from the main drag were wet and slippery.
The first half-mile is bone-shaking cobbles but then much smoother old coal-dust tops the cycle-path.
Under Nickerhole Bridge – praying it doesn’t collapse – and onward through the mud…
The trees help keep the rain off but much of the ride is fairly open.
After the Steam Crane and the puddles and several old bridges the Meccano Bridge nears just after the breach site. The area has been landscaped, plants planted and it looks pretty good. The old bridge next to the Meccano Bridge, over the Bolton side of the canal, is still totally blocked but quite a bit of work has been done here and will be great if we get a bit of sun.
From here it was a muddy ride back but the wind was behind.
From the Meccano Bridge there are some great views across ‘Prestolee’ etc.
The weather was a bit rainy, the tow-paths puddled and muddy, but a good two to three miles along a flat route.

Tuesday 14th May 2013.

Damp this morning but the rain held-off and the sun came out for a while. At Elton Reservoir being bombarded by flocks of Swifts or Swallows was quite something. I actually ‘caught’ one or two with the camera as they shot overhead.
At Hinds Lane the Giant Hogweeds are thriving nicely along the hedgerow and in between the cobbles!!! so walkers/cyclists are advised to don a space-suit before going along there! (Joking!)
A bit of a breeze coming back along the canal, but not as bad as yesterday and the steep bit up Banana Walk, this year, doesn’t seem as bad as it did last!
It could be worse – snow has been forecast for some areas…??

Monday 13th May 2013.

Mainly sunny for the circuit this morning but the wind was strong and from the south – the homeward straight was a nightmare!
The River Irwell, pictured above, is a touch ‘higher’ and the Giant Hogweeds are thriving along the far bank just above water’s edge.
Elton Reservoir was noisy with the wind and there were many Swallows around the northern part of the embankment.
…where the lone female is looking after them.

Sunday 12th May 2013.

A bit dull early-on but traffic-free along the Radcliffe streets.
Ventured some old-ish streets that were, at one time, quite famous, and photographed some (nowadays) ooparts…
Interestingly, along the still-cobbled lanes that were at one time busy day and night with industrially-booted feet and HGV tyres, Giant Hogweed is the only thing thriving…
…by Pioneer Bridge…
But then, later by the canal, a pair of ‘new arrivals’ (?) stretched their wings…
…but I must check on that possibility.
The top picture is of the triangle at Bright Street.