Author Archives: solwayshorewalker

The acronyms’ stories: imagine.

‘Alphabet soup’: AONB, EMS, MPA, MCZ, NNR, SAC, SPA, SSSI – how many more of these acronyms for conservation designations can you recall? Do you know what they mean? (If you don’t – and not many people do – you … Continue reading

Posted in conservation, Marine Conservation Zone, mud-shrimps, peat, bogs and moors, saltmarshes, wetlands | Tagged ,

SACs, SPAs, SSSIs on the Solway Firth: Learning to love the acronyms

“Think of [the list] as not so much an inventory as a catalogue leading to compelling and interacting stories.” [1] Conservation designations: their borders aren’t marked by posts or buoys, but they are marked by lines on maps, and by … Continue reading

Posted in conservation, Marine Conservation Zone, mudflats, peat, bogs and moors, saltmarshes, wetlands | Tagged , , ,

“Look!”

“Look what I’ve found!”“Look at that!”“What’s this?” We do it automatically, hold out the treasure on our hand. For about 10 years I’ve been taking pictures of what people have found when they joined me for low-tide guided walks on … Continue reading

Posted in Found Objects, tidelines | Tagged

Memories of aurochs and oaks: the re-emergence of the submerged forest

“Mr Cash went to Beckfoot … the submerged forest was not visible and I regret to say the residents he inquired from had not even heard of it”. So wrote Brian Blake in his 1955 book The Solway Firth, which … Continue reading

Posted in peat, bogs and moors, sea-bed & undersea | Tagged , ,

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

Posted in conservation | Tagged , , ,

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

Posted in renewable energy, tide & wind | 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

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

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

Posted in conservation, saltmarshes, wetlands | Tagged , , ,

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

Posted in conservation, Guest Posts | Tagged , ,

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

Posted in mudflats, saltmarshes, Writing | Tagged , , ,