26 May 2016

in the footsteps of laurie lee

Travel Diaries - Walking with Rosie: Part 3

the cotswolds

A visit to Stroud should incorporate a diversion to the village of Slad and the once home of Laurie Lee, author of the famous 'Cider with Rosie'. This stunning little village looks out onto the valley in which the book is based and in 2014 a new walk was created. It's from just outside the village that you can undertake a journey into the books very heart with the 6.5 mile Laurie Lee Wildlife Way. So on a perfect Monday morning that is exactly what Sketches did. 

Gorgeous Gloucestershire 
Lets start by saying that the weather was absolutely stunning. Blue skies with the occasional cumulus cloud on a gentle breeze drifting across the sky. The clouds cut by vapour trails of aircraft heading toward the Atlantic Ocean and the US. The grass and trees as green as can be, apple blossom beginning to show and buttercups and daises mingling with wild orchids on top the hills. Really! It was like we were being transported into the book. Entwined with the rich tapestry of Laurie Lees poems it made me dream of his childhood running around the fields and meadows we were about to walk through. 

the cotswolds
Each post has a Laurie Lee poem

the cotswolds

Guided by Poetry 
Our little guide sheet (£1 from the Tourist Information centre) provided us with relevant information, along with signposts and information boards which had poems written by Laurie Lee. This is more than just a walk. So off we headed on our six mile jaunt. The walk takes you through wooded areas, across streams, up steep climbs (be prepared!) and through farmland and valleys. The landscape was simply stunning. Typically English? The meadows a blanket of yellow butter cups. The hills awash with late spring and early summer wildlife. 


There are ten posts on route that allow you to take a breather and to read Laurie's intimate thoughts. These certainly add to the walk, giving you an insight into his creative mind. It creates a nostalgic feeling of wanting to never leave! A time before TV and social media. Well that's how I felt anyway. A light lunch looking down on the valley and a final hike through the woods and the walk was done. 

the cotswolds
A Hamlet on route

the cotswolds
Towards Stroud - Laurie Lee Wildlife Walk
The Laurie Lee Wildlife Walk
This is a stunning way to see the landscape. It's well preserved and signposted. It did only open in 2014 so I suppose it should really. The guide was a great help and depending on your fitness it can be done in around 3hrs. If however you want to take your time, read all the poems and take in the surroundings, oh and perhaps visit the Woolpack pub, where Laurie Lee would frequent, (a little diversion towards the end of the walk) then this is a wonderful day out. Experience the Cotswolds and get close to the very heart of 'Cider with Rosie'. You won't be disappointed. I promise.

I hope you have enjoyed our little series on The Cotswolds. They really are one of the most beautiful places to visit on our wonderful planet. So I hope these articles have inspired you to visit them. Thank you for all your support, it really is appreciated. 


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