The Bratch is a set of three locks on the Staffs and Worcs canal on the edge of Wombourne. There is only a tiny gap between each lock, unlike a staircase where each lock opens directly into the next. Because the gap between the locks is less than the length of a boat, the lock flight is more complicated to navigate.
The narrow building between the lower and middle locks is an octagonal toll house. The other building behind it is the lock keeper’s cottage.
When not in flower, dead nettles look somewhat like nettles, which they are not. Hence they are “dead”, that is, they don’t sting.
This small plant was growing from the mortar in the sandstone wall of Worfield church.
For two weekends a year there is free entry to National Trust properties including Wightwick Manor. These flowers were pictured during the March weekend.
Not wild, but too gaudy to resist.
Woodland flowers bloom early in the year, before the leaves on the trees cut down the light falling on to the ground. A small honey bee (top picture) was taking advantage of these wood anemones, one of the few sources of nectar in mid-March.
I suspect this is a seven spot ladybird: the most common species.
Overhanging the small stream which feeds the pools in Wightwick Manor garden.
Plants showing this year’s growth by the towpath of the Staffs and Worcs canal. In the top picture a varicoloured ivy leaf has landed on the foxglove.
This fish was in the larger pool in Wightwick Manor garden.
Carved into the sandstone at the top edge of Kinver, these houses had people living in them as recently as the 1950s.
The complex, on two levels, is now owned by the National Trust.
This common hedgerow plant has leaves which can range in colour from green to red, here seemingly on the same plant.