After essentially thirty years of the rat race of an employed working life, the realisation of something new being afoot suddenly hit me in Chicksands Wood on a beautiful June morning a couple of weeks before my early retirement departure from GSK

My mind was buzzing and I was enthralled to have taken some excellent pictures of some elusive White Letter Hairstreak butterflies – walking back through the wood with summer birdsong ringing in my ears I realised that very soon I would have more time to seek out the many places that are now established to give nature the room in needs to thrive…

White Letter Hairstreak, Chicksands Wood, June 2019
Where some of my love for nature was nurtured – a flock of waders, likely Knot or Dunlin wheeling away over the Parrett estuary as seen from Steart point (with Burnham on Sea behind), captured on a £30 Photax 500mm on my second-hand OM-1 with a mount secured by electrical tape! A great inspiration behind this and my Science was the late, great, Pete Brown who so loved this picture, taken in about 1979 on a Chew Valley School trip. The small hide remains – but now in disrepair – alongside the new magnificence of WWT Steart Marshes. How Pete would have loved these changes – not to mention the many more places for wildlife now preserved in Somerset.

The Journey will continue…