Exploring Bridgnorth. And Litterbugs.

posted in: Outdoors, Photography, Travel | 14

Doing your bit to look after our planet is as simple as picking up your litter. Or should I say not chucking it on the floor in the first place. But more of that in a moment… 

I love a good explore around a town that I’ve never been to before. Or rather in the case of Bridgnorth, an explore around somewhere I have been briefly but arrived so late that I was unable to have a look around (apart from the B&B dining room where I took delivery of a Chinese takeaway and ate it on my own in what felt like the middle of the night). Taking time to wander around somewhere new is definitely one of life’s pleasures, combining walking, fresh air, some education – it feels good to seek out some enchanting streets and new-to-me views for the memory banks (and Instagram).

River Severn, Bridgnorth, Shropshire - Splodz Blogz

View from the Castle Walk. All very brown. 

Exploring Bridgnorth

Bridgnorth Is a lovely old town that straddles the River Severn in Shropshire. Split into upper and lower town thanks to the steep cliff like hill, there are lots of cobbled streets, Tudor buildings, old walls, dominating churches, gardens and other things too. Because of the steep hill there are some great views across the valley and to the hills opposite, and up and down the river. When you are down in the valley you can’t see how dominating the hills are, but from the top you can see right across and appreciate the geography and the town built overlooking the valley.

River Severn, Bridgnorth, Shropshire - Splodz Blogz

One of the towns main attractions is it funicular railway – The Cliff Railway Company – a very steep bus like tram that takes you up and down the 100+ foot sandstone cliffs. It works using a counterbalance system – each carriage works to pull the other up the hill, originally thanks to a water tank system under the carriages but now via an electric motor. Simple yet effective engineering, it’s great to see something like this still doing it’s thing to help people move around the town. And at only £1.20 return it’s a no-brainer – it just has to be ridden.

Cliff Railway, Bridgnorth, Shropshire - Splodz Blogz

Cliff Railway, Bridgnorth, Shropshire - Splodz Blogz

Cliff Railway, Bridgnorth.

You might not get the wide views at the bottom of the cliff but there are plenty of quirky sights to keep things interesting. The sandstone cliffs themselves have a huge amount of history; there are caves and tunnels making up “Lavington’s Hole”, man-made hideouts and paths to allow people to live and move up and down the town unseen. I only know what I read on Wikipedia once I’d stumbled across the caves, but it reminded me of Cappadocia – except the rain and temperature – although you can’t actually go in to the caves or tunnels to have a look which is a shame.

Lavington's Hole, Bridgnorth, Shropshire - Splodz Blogz

Lavington's Hole, Bridgnorth, Shropshire - Splodz Blogz

Lavington’s Hole. Shame about the sign getting in the way. Although I’m sure there’s a life-lesson in that somewhere. 

The Severn Way runs along the river through the town and heads out into the countryside. I love river walks, they offer so much in terms of different views while being incredibly easy to navigate – bonus. The short part I walked was a bit of tow path, some muddy track, and a few steps – all fine with walking shoes. It sneaked behind houses and flats and provided some lovely river views, even if the river was typically British – very very brown! I admit I stopped at the kissing gate that took the route over a meadow and into the fields, the path got particularly squelchy at that point and I was not properly prepared for that kind of terrain (and didn’t have very long anyway).

Severn Way, Bridgnorth, Shropshire - Splodz Blogz

The Severn Way. 

River Severn, Bridgnorth, Shropshire - Splodz Blogz

View of the River Severn from Bridgnorth town bridge.

Back at the top of the cliff (via the funicular, of course), I walked along the Castle Walk towards a huge church and surrounding park. Except the park (or gardens, or grounds, or church yard – not sure of its correct title) was locked up at 5.30pm. It would have been nice to walk around but the grounds keeper obviously didn’t want me in there at that time. I’m sure there is a good reason. I had a look at the Severn Railway from the top of the hill, there was a train in the station but that also seemed to be shut up so I couldn’t get in to look.

Castle Walk, Shropshire - Splodz Blogz

Castle Walk.

What I could do, though, was explore all the little staircases dotted along the cliff. There were loads!

Steps, Shropshire - Splodz Blogz

Steps, Shropshire - Splodz Blogz

Stoneway Steps.

Exploring new places and wandering around town is to have a look and see what’s there is one of my favourite things to do especially when I’m away with work because I usually end up with an hour or so when I arrive before sunset just to make the most of being in a new place, and I am very pleased I was able to explore Bridgnorth a bit as it’s a lovely little and very slightly quirky town. Well worth the effort.

Litterbugs

But sadly the biggest thing I noticed when wandering around Bridgnorth wasn’t it’s beautiful vistas or cute surroundings. The thing that stuck in my mind was the litter. So much litter.

It didn’t just seem to be the odd crisp packet or coke can, either, it was whole bin liners of stuff strewn across the pavement and down steps, the perfect magnet for animals. Litter is a real bug bear of mine (I’m the person who will call you out if I see you drop something on the floor!) and it makes you wonder if the people who live and work in Bridgnorth care about their surroundings. Harsh? Maybe. And I know it’s not confined to this particular town – I mean here in Lincoln it’s just as bad – it’s horrible.

Steps, Bridgnorth, Shropshire - Splodz Blogz

There was one particular set of steps I took a picture of (above) because I thought it was so cute – really old with stone arches, old-fashioned lamps, stamped steps, metal railings, and like it would be perfect for a period drama (or episode of Dr Who). But I simply couldn’t get a photograph without rubbish in it. I know they say that instagram shows a perfect life but it was simply impossible for me to find a scene along this particular route that didn’t have litter in it and it was very disappointing. It made me so sad. And a little bit angry. I’m sure the people of Bridgnorth do care for their environment really, but you can see how my first impression might be slightly off. I saw someone did care – there was a laminated paper sign attached to some railings saying “please don’t throw your rubbish over here”.

People of Bridgnorth, people of England, people of the world… Have some respect. Show some care. Litter isn’t just horrible to look at but it’s also unhygienic, attracts animals, and is really bad for our planet. Caring for our environment is as simple as not chucking your litter on the floor (or over the railings, or down the cliff). Don’t be a litterbug.

Life is all about the journey. Go out and explore wherever you are. And take your litter home. 

 

Oh, and if you missed my tour of Bridgnorth in my weekly vlog, now would be a good time to watch it… and don’t forget to subscribe (and thumbs up, and comment, etc) – ta!

 

14 Responses

  1. Kezzie

    I totally understand your litter rage. I get absolutely incensed by it! I was on a train recently and this absolute animal got on and consumed half a chicken and chips one handed whilst chatting on his phone and spitting his food everywhere. He tied a knot in his bag and drank some blue liquid. When we got to Stratford, he got up to go leaving his disgusting bag of bones. He was a big burly bloke but I was furious and called him back. I said, “Excuse me, I think you’ve forgotten your litter,”.
    He said, “Oh, I didn’t forget,” and picked it up to take with him. The carriage all smirked at me and mimed clapping as they’d all clearly been disgusted by his manners.

    • Splodz

      It is a lovely town, definitely recommend it as somewhere to explode. But yea, the litter was a real shame, it was so noticeable.

  2. Angus and Vivian

    I completely agree with you feeling frustrated with the litter. Angus and I went to see Falls of Falloch in Scotland, and although it was a beauty, we couldn’t help but notice the random beer bottles and the like. It’s not that difficult to clean up after yourself! But anyways, love the post, especially the bit about the train/tram and how it’s engineered to haul itself up and down!

    • Splodz

      It’s such a simple things isn’t it – take your litter home with you. That’s it. I guess some people just don’t care. And thanks 🙂

  3. Sarah Irving | The Urban Wanderer

    Oh I do love a Funicular! Bridgenorth looks lovely (bar the litter) and a bit Chester-esque. I will have to add it to my ‘to visit’ list.

    I have to agree about littler, it does make you wonder how people can care so little. The amount of times I come back to the car with my rucksack packed with little that I have rescued is countless.

    We are lucky in Manchester, although there is a little problem, there are some amazing people who sort it for us (the unsung heroes!)

  4. TheHelpfulHiker

    What a quirky little town-I love places like that that have interesting nooks and crannies to explore. It’s such a shame about the litter. Our street was adorned with a mattress for what seemed like weeks, so it could be worse! But seriously, I hate it, I hate the fact that people care so little about their surroundings.

    • Splodz

      A really beautiful place, definitely worth exploring. Litter just seems so unnecessary to me – there were bins right there to use!

  5. Ashley Beolens

    I’ve not heard of Bridgnorth but it loos a stunning place, what a shame it is spoiled by so much litter. Sadly a sign of the times everywhere these days.

    • Splodz

      Certainly is a sign of the times, and not one limited to Bridgnorth. Noticed an awful lot of rubbish along the river at home this morning as I cycled to work. Time to organise a litter pick perhaps.

  6. Cerys Lowe

    We’ve pulled out old bikes from the river before today in our village. It really winds me up how some just clearly don’t give a damn. I sometimes drive through Bridgnorth on our way to visit family – I might have to stop next time and have a walk around {and ignore the litter!}.

    • Splodz

      It’s a lovely place, well worth stopping in, just a shame we have to enjoy anywhere with rubbish everywhere. Yuk.

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