Wednesday 17 July 2013

The walk in my week...

It seems like a long time since I added a "Walk in my Week" blog post - I have still been walking but mostly in the evening as this bout of hot weather makes it uncomfortable to walk during the day.

These photographs  were taken on a walk through the fields near my home. The wheat is starting to grow really nicely and thanks to some  well placed footpaths, I can skirt round the edge of the fields without doing any damage to the growing crops...

Orrell Fields

As I walked along the paths there was a wonderful smell of wild camomile - its one of my favourite herbal drinks - so how wonderful to see it growing wild and natural. I didn't pick any - but I did have a drink of my favourite Twining's Organic Camomile when I got back home...

Wild Camomile

The added bonus of the walk was to discover these clay pipes fragments which must have been thrown away and abandoned by field workers as they went about their agricultural business in the early part of the century and maybe even beyond that date ....

 Clay Pipe fragments

Clay Pipes were used in England after the introduction of tobacco, by Sir Walter Raleigh,  in the 16th century, at first only the rich folk could afford to use tobacco as it was considered an expensive luxury. However, by the mid-17th century, the manufacture of clay pipes was a well established trade and most towns had their own pipe makers. Millions of clay pipes were used and because they were produced so economically and quickly, they were often thrown away after only a few uses. The first example of throw away society !

The local clay pipe maker was situated just a few miles away from this field where I found these pipe fragments.- Rainford is well known for its industrial past when it was a major manufacturer of clay smoking pipes - so these pieces could well have been made there sometime during the last couple of hundred years.

Similar pieces of clay  pipe can be found throughout the country - so next time you're out for a walk in the countryside or even along the banks of the River Thames in London,see if you can spot a little piece of history.


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