Wednesday 30 September

Out for a walk today, trying to finish by lunch time as heavy rain was forecast. We started at Crockham Hill church and discovered that Octavia Hill, the founder of the National Trust, is buried in the churchyard. It is a very unassuming grave, shared with her 2 sisters. Inside the church is a memorial, and also a more recent stained glass window, placed by the National Trust.

I had not realised that she was an ardent social reformer, and worked with the inner city poor, striving for better housing and better working practices. Much of her work is seen today as the basis for our social services. Almost as a sideline she became one of three founders of the National Trust, believing that historic houses and places of natural beauty should be preserved for the enjoyment of the British public.

The landscape now is beginning to feel autumnal, a few of the trees are changing colour, and hips and haws are much in evidence. In places we saw beautiful autumn cyclamen. It is quite undulating, Mariners Hill, around Chartwell, through the curiously named Puddledock. After five and a half miles, we made it to the Carpenters Arms by 2pm just as the rain started. Luckily the pub was open and serving food. In fact they seemed to be doing pretty good business which is gratifying for them after a long closure.

Some of you may have seen the following which has been doing the rounds: I like it very much because it seems to pinpoint how ridiculous panic buying is, and seems to have summarised the talents of the various supermarkets very accurately!

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