Author Archives: solwayshorewalker

Merse-bergs and Mudshrimps

The samphire, Salicornia, looked grey and wizened, worn down by the winter and there were still traces of snow on Criffel’s northern slope. It was a cold, windy day in March on the Solway Firth, and I was heading out … Continue reading

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A Solway small-holding

Yesterday I stood leaning on the pitchfork by the glowing ash-pile, just looking around at the trees and the hedges and our sheep. Two weeks ago, on a blue, still morning, there had been a sound like a gun-shot from … Continue reading

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Tidal Power proposals on the Solway: an update

When I first blogged about this topic, back in October 2015, I explained why the Solway Firth is being considered as a suitable estuary for the construction of tidal power schemes, and the basic ideas and technology behind the schemes. … Continue reading

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Where ships meet …

Goldilocks would have liked the tanker Zapadnyy’s cargo: molasses, at just the right temperature, not too hot and not too cold. Transporting molasses is tricky – it must be kept fairly fluid, so heating coils warm it to 24oC in … Continue reading

Posted in coastal heritage, ports, ships | Tagged , , , , ,

Port Carlisle: canals and ships and trains

When the tide is out, Port Carlisle’s former life is laid bare in stark, dark shapes. A line of rotten wooden stumps, marching out across the mud, scarcely hints that here was once the steamer pier. Out beyond the whale-back … Continue reading

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Tracking Triops, the elusive Tadpole Shrimp

In August, after the long weeks of cloudless blue skies, and heat that shimmered over the cracked mud of the merse, the rain came. The jet stream had looped into another orientation, and the rain fell day after day for … Continue reading

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“What’s the point of them?”

I was handing round photos of various colourful marine worms – polychaetes with euphonious names, Lanice, Sabellaria, Pectinaria and Arenicola: like the names of operatic heroes and heroines, to be sung aloud. It was still early – the best low … Continue reading

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Recording the Solway’s amazing nature: a guest post by Deborah Muscat

Why we need to pay attention to the other living species with whom we share this area, and identify and record them. My thanks to Deborah Muscat, Manager of the Cumbria Biodiversity Data Centre based in Carlisle, for writing this … Continue reading

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Capturing a saltmarsh in words: a creative writing day on the Upper Solway

Saturday June 8th 2019, 10am-4pm; RSPB Campfield, Bowness-on-Solway, CA7 5AG When you think of Cumbria you probably imagine the Lake District; you might even think of the Solway’s beaches like St Bees’ or Allonby – but it’s highly unlikely that … Continue reading

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The Solway saltmarshes 2: Rockcliffe Marsh

“The marsh is not set in the way that the English landscape is set.” Continue reading

Posted in coastal history, conservation, Foot-and-Mouth epidemic, saltmarshes, wetlands | Tagged , ,