Enjoyed a tour round the museum at Moira Furnace today. Even though the Furnace is a place that I often walk (so many great trails in the area) I'd never been round the museum before.
There was an open day today which was just what was needed to move me from 'I really must go and have a look' to actually doing it!
It's a lovely little museum - if you haven't been then I'd highly recommend a visit. There are a good selection of displays which tell you the history of both the Furnace and the canal in this area at different times. Some lovely recreations of a couple of workshops to reflect the trades of some of those who lived and worked at the Furnace, and upstairs some great models to show how the Furnace worked and how the area would have looked.
If you are our age (around 60) or older then you'll see some things that bring back great memories from your childhood. We loved the hopscotch grid along with rules on how to play it :)
I never realised that you could walk right through the building from the loading bridge to come out the other side - the views are amazing. A lovely day out - many thanks to everyone at the Furnace.
We explored the newly completed path at Willesley Woods this week - big thumbs up to the Woodland Trust for all the work that they have put into this over the last couple of months.
The work seems to be pretty much completed now - the second of the new gates had just been installed when we went and the compound at the end of the driveway dismantled. There were still a few reminders of the works waiting to be tidied away but I'm guessing that will all be done over the next few days.
For those that aren't familiar with the area, Willesley Woods is a Woodland Trust site (in the beautiful National Forest) and is a great spot for a ramble with the family or a dog walk. The circular walk around the lake takes 30 to 45 minutes. The downside used to be that in places it could pretty muddy and boggy after wet weather but over the last couple of months a brand new hard path has been installed that goes the whole way around the lake which will make it brilliant for walking in the winter months.
It should also be a fab place for those with mobility problems. The new gates look be fitted with RADAR key padlocks that should allow wheelchair users to open them fully and access the path - great idea. Mark has to wear oxygen for walking now and this walk is perfect for keeping his fitness levels up. The new path makes the circuit around the lake much more accessible for him as it gives an easier walking surface (previously we often used to have to restrict his walks here to the hard path up from the car park and back).
Big thanks for Woodland Trust for doing this - I'd highly recommend a visit.
I just can't resist a footpath sign. The lure of that little arrow just says 'explore me' and sooner or later I just have to find out where it goes. Happily the National Forest is just full of paths. Public footpaths, permissive paths, tracks, trails and long distance paths - we've got the lot!