Unsung Heroes

My apologies for getting somewhat out of synch, but this was written (ball point and paper) while we took a break.

Hope you appreciate it:

On the allotment this morning, with a pair of hand shears, clipping the long grasses, dandelions and various self-seeded herbs along the three paths that separate the plots. The paths were (a) very untidy and (b) sheltering too many snails and slugs! Hand shears? Because I have failed to understand (so far!) in typical fashion how to rewind strimmer line on the machine that might make the going faster. Then in to the car and a patient drive to the overnight Premier Inn stop in Carlisle en route to the Isle of Skye. Once settled in the right room I drove down some amazingly quintessential English (and so far north) country lanes (sunken single track roads bordered by ferns, bluebells and cowslips with bank-top hedges of bright quick thorn or splendid elephant leg grey beeches.) to stand and think for a travel-weakened hour or so on Hadrian’s Wall.

But back to the way station in time to catch Gardener’s World: A Chelsea Flower show Special.

It’s the centennial show and there is a thought-waking exhibition featuring wheelbarrows. There have been wheelbarrows working at every Chelsea Flower show, the designer (whose name I can neither recall nor find on Google or Ask Jeeves !!) explains to the camera. Used to build the gardens … indeed used to build much of the world: gardens, canals, roads, railways, houses, factories (sorry, I won’t go on, you must have the idea by now)… and there is an early wooden wheeled, wooden hulled model there (iron-tyred) and the one they used to move the materials for this garden. Beyond the low box hedge there are barrows inserted into the ground by their handles (thus becoming representative of the people who have pushed (should that be followed?) the barrows around; the handles are legs, the wheels heads. From above they  form a triangle: the single one at the top is gold, the two below it are silver, then three bronze (anyone remember the Olympics?) – the remainder are green.

wheelbarrow wheelbarrow1 wheelbarrow2

Barrows and the people who pushed them over the years: a fitting tribute.

 Our current wheelbarrow at the allotment is one our next-door neighbour let us scrounge. It need some nuts and bolts (recycled of course from things I have carefully dismantled in the past) and the inner tube is probably more patches than original now. But it works, is comfortable to move and carries a good load. It had been a building site barrow. The body is plastered with, well, plaster and cement which occasionally flakes off and adds to the soil (but usually not).

Dave and his wheelbarrow; fame at last!

Photosource: Daily Mail


2 responses to this post.

  1. The Chelsea Flower Show is my favourite place on earth….and although I’m prone to exaggeration I’m not doing it on this occasion…..honest.
    When I last visited the UK I went to great lengths to obtain a ticket and, as in the past when I lived in London, spent every possible minute snapping photos. These shots regularly pepper my posts even when flowers are not relevant to the subject at hand…..as demonstrated by my latest post!
    Love to read anything about the UK….would visit every year if I could. Keep up the good work on the allotment…and thank you for the wheelbarrow photos. 🙂


  2. Thank you very much.


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