Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Hardley Mill: Setting sail again

BY MY reckoning it's 62 years since Hardley Mill last looked this good.
The new sails are on and this entire stretch of the Yare Valley looks the better for it.
As I walked back along the river towards Hardley Dyke this evening it made me think about how else this landscape had changed over those six decades. The answer, I suspect, is not a lot.
Farmers were still out harvesting - though with more machines and fewer people than they would have had in 1947. Geese still gather in the dusky stubble and warblers still hide in the reeds. I guess the Chinese water deer which bounded away from me, might not have run wild in those days, and there are certainly plenty more boats moored along the dyke. The major difference is how we use this environment. A major trade route has become a watery playground. Windpumps were once essential, now they are picturesque. But there's no denying that a Broads scene always looks better with one in the background A huge well done to everyone involved in the Hardley Mill project for reaching this major milestone.

* Earlier posts chart the moment the cap went on, and later the stocks.

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