Derbyshire 99 - Chesterfield / No news is good news/ The Wingerworth Sheep Dip/ Five ways to stay happy

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May 4th 2020
Published: May 4th 2020
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Yesterday was Day 45 - Our five o'clock briefing was delivered by the less than charismatic Mr Gove who told us more of the same . He spelled out the numbers of deaths, the numbers of tests that had been undertaken. The numbers rolled off his tongue . Traffic was down. The numbers in hospital and the numbers of acute beds . He warned us there was no news of the lift of the lockdown. Not until next Sunday . Another week of the same. Perhaps schools will re-open but not for all pupils . Maybe the younger ones or those on the verge of leaving Junior school and going up to Secondary education in September . Possibly children with special needs . Perhaps we will see more businesses open . People returning to work but staggering their hours . Starting earlier or finishing later to avoid crowded trains . The lifting of the lockdown is going to be one major headache and one I would not like to solve . Day 46 - the start of another week . Week 7 and we are still trying to remain cheerful and busy . The sewing has come out and things that needed repairing but were put off are now being done. The gardens are looking better than ever . The skip companies must be making a fortune . Everyone has returned to proper cooking and baking . And then there is exercise . The world is now full of joggers, walkers and people trying to keep fit . I wonder what it will all look like if and when we return to something near normality .

It is a pretty dull day today. The sky is just leaden grey with not a cloud in sight . It is as if mother nature has taken a woollen blanket and draped it over the land . The word is out that the sun will come out later but that could be a promise that will easily be broken. We need our coat on today and a woolly jumper to keep warm .

I am heading towards Central Drive which was the main access to Wingerworth Hall . As I look down I can see in the distance the entrance with its impressive pillars and twin gate houses . I look back - the hall must have been somewhere around that area . I wondered who had walked the drive in the past and how many carriages must have driven up to the hall. All gone now . What a shame the National Trust did not invest £60,000 in the buying the property for the nation . Even if English Heritage had purchased it they could have left it roofless as they have at Sutton Scarsdale nearby . Hindsight is a wonderful thing .

Day 46 - that takes me off in an odd direction . The Doctor . The G.O.A.T . 46 the number bike rider Valentino Rosso has always used since he started his career in motorbike racing . Nicknamed the Doctor he has given us so much pleasure watching him and this would possibly have been his last season racing . At 40 the legendary G.O.A.T - the greatest of all time would probably be saying enough is enough . We may not see him race again .

Our walk is going to continue - just me , my thoughts and you if you are walking with me . We are covering old ground but at least we are in the countryside with no-one to disturb us . We are going to stop on the old bridge that crosses the Trickets Brook . It is not a large brook and it does have an unusual feature I have never noticed before . A sheep wash . Sion is not going to like this . Our favourite travelling companion dislikes water intensely.

The parish sheep wash was was constructed in 1860 and was still in use as late as the 1920's. The sign attached tells us that over 1000 sheep were dipped at a cost of 1 shilling (old money ) and 5p new money. . The sheep wash and the road bridge are both Grade II listed . Who would have known that ? My walk is certainly educating me on the history of the village . I learn something new every day .

On our return we walk past the ramp for the wash and up the hill . It is a fairly steep hill and at the top we come yet again to more reminders of the Hunlokes as we walk through their deer park . Over 5000 acres of it . With an island pond, a Paddock Pond , a boat house and a couple of fish ponds . We can still enjoy the ponds with their bullrushes , the swans , home to coots and ducks .

Back home and over coffee the post man arrives bringing with him my copy of Benenden news , A mutual medical society that I joined many years ago . It makes for interesting reading over the coffee. Five ways to stay fit and happy . Take stock of yourself . It tells me that being in isolation can make you feel that you need to be busy all of the time . No not so . Take time to be calm . Get some good news . Now with all that bad news were being subjected to then this sounds good to me. Read something cheerful - Benenden suggests The Happy News. Might try that later and see what it is . Live and learn . Teach yourself something new . Stay social , Facebook , Zoom , Skype . and finally work out . Try The Body Coach with Joe Wickes . How about Yoga with Adriene on You Tube .Thats it then after dinner I have my plan . A bit of exercise with Jo , have a look at the yoga . Start to read Les Mis. One or two pages of that hard to read novel and perfect the Plank . They have given me full instructions on how to perfect something I fail badly at when at the gym . Then there is tomorrow ..................


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