Saturday, March 21, 2020

Lochore Meadows 16th March



14 of us left the church at the usual time and headed of to Lochore Meadows where we were having our latest walk. Surprisingly the car park was a bit  full despite the current climate. I guess people were out because it was recommended we stay in. We are a  funny lot.
There was still 14 of us when we set of, led by Carol, who with some encouragement from Bill, was taking the walk. W e left from the new  Willie Clarke Visitor  Centre  opened in 2018 and named after the Mr. Clarke, a local councillor who was instrumental in pushing for the development of the  country park and ultimately the new Centre. He is perhaps less well known for the fact that he was the last Communist councillor in Britain. We started off around the loch in a clockwise direction, heads down as we had the benefit of a gale force wind in our faces. This part of the path also forms a short part of the Pilgrims Way although the park wouldn’t have been there when the Pilgrims came through. We were accompanied on this stretch by a little pug dog who trotted along behind us taking advantage of the shelter the group were providing. It was a bit of relief when we reached the tree line and nature reserve where we stopped for one of Mary’s sweets and a photo or two . It got a bit muddy at this point but most of us didn’t bother  much as we had plenty to talk about as usual.  After the mud came the only raised part of the walk up to Cluna Craig, but nobody needed to use our emergency oxygen. As we crossed the bridge over the river Ore we noticed a strange phenomenon (and that’s a strange word). Two little whirlpools had formed in the water above the bridge and we all stopped to have a look. If the whirlpools were strange, the sight of 14 adults looking over a bridge at whirlpools is very strange. We must be getting old. From there it was back to Communist councillor Willie Clarke’s centre for tea/coffee and various scones, pastries and cakes. It was about then the torrential rain came on. We do time things well. Much thanks to Carol and Bill. On our next walk we need to walk 6 feet apart, like a parade. No talking, just shouting.

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Kinghorn


Today saw the first walk of 2020 for our walkers. It was looking promising as there were 18 of us in total, a good start to the year. The gloomy weather obviously hadn’t put anyone off, whether or not the rain would stay away was another matter.

Our cars parked at the Bay, the leisure complex attached to Pettycur Bay Caravan Park, we set off along the main road heading towards Kinghorn High Street, cars whizzing past us at speed to start the urban part of our walk. We turned left zigzagging our way along various streets commenting on the number of new houses that seemed to have sprung up recently on the outskirts of Kinghorn heading towards The Ecology Centre and Craigencalt.

Once reaching the Ecology Centre we were welcomed by a giant troll.

We headed past the Loch and unfortunately bypassed the cafe at Craigencalt since this wasn’t todays coffee stop. We were all cold by this time so a nice cuppa wouldn’t have gone amiss but we pressed on. Moving on uphill we were delighted to see the first flurry of Snowdrops.


Further along the route we crossed the main road into farmland providing gorgeous views of the Loch
Here the Highland Cows roam freely but seemed totally unperturbed that their field had just been invaded by a new herd. It was at this point the rain appeared albeit a short shower so fortunately we didn’t get too wet. Just around the corner the last downhill stretch led us back to the Bay arriving slightly ahead of schedule leaving plenty time for tea, coffee scones and chat.

Sunday, December 15, 2019

Kirkcaldy

We had a lot to get through today so as soon as we could, the ‘15 walkers walking’ set off like an added addition to the 12 days of christmas on our local walk leaving Dianne and Ian behind at the church to make the preparations for the crafting we had to look forward to on our return. 

We set off from the church heading towards the old  Forth Park Maternity Hospital briefly pausing to have a look at the demolition work that has been started on it’s transformation into luxury flats.  Heading towards Longbraes we carried on, uphill all the way until we reached the top stopping to look downwards over Kirkcaldy, then downhill and a left turn bringing us onto Oriel Road. Here we began the journey back to the church, weaving through various streets until reaching our destination. Thanks to Hilda for planning our walk.

Crafting time was about to begin


        




Stephen and Ian had been tasked with creating a rustic christmas tree from old pallet wood with a very successful end result. 


Luckily Dianne had already started to prepare our wooden boards with stag templates for our string art session saving us a fair bit of time and showing what we should be doing. 





It certainly wasn’t as easy as it looked and unfortunately most of us ran out of time as our food was due to arrive. However we were able to take our crafts home to finish at our leisure. 


Valente’s delivered directly to the church, a variety of puddings, fish and chips which was enjoyed by everyone. 



We still had our fun quiz arranged by Ian and Sybil to look forward to. Allegedly easy but only easy if you knew the answers (which I didn’t). Once the quiz came to an end, it was time to tidy up the church hall and wish everyone a Merry Christmas before we headed home. 

Yet again, another great day spent with lovely people. A big thank you to everyone who arranged a part of it and to all those who attended making the event as enjoyable as it was. And yes, when I got home I did finish my stag!

See you all next year. Merry Christmas Everyone!

Kerry

And the finished articles - well done Kerry and Isobel







Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Glenrothes

Sunday 24th November,

Twelve walkers set off a bit earlier than usual at 12.30 and made our way to the car park behind Boots in Glenrothes where we intended to start our walk. When we got there we encountered our first problem as sneaky Fife Council have introduced a 3 hour limit on car parking in Glenrothes car parks. I might add that they have done this without any consultation with our group whatsoever. We decided to take the chance that we would be back within the time allowed and set off. We had agreed to begin by stopping in at Studio 8 as there was a craft fair going on but once we got there we were all keen to get off again due to our tight schedule. We crossed over Lidl's car park and into Town park passed some unusual looking totem poles no doubt erected by a tribe of Indians in the early 1900's. Actually the 14 poles are a sculpture created by artist David Harding in 1976 to represent architectural styles of early civilisations including Egyptian, Greek, Roman, Inca and Aztecs.  We carried on through the park alongside a very high and fast flowing River Leven before an impromptu photo while Dianne had her picture taken sitting on the back of one of the stone hippos littered around the park. 
A bit further on , after some muddy boots bits we came to the main Glenrothes to Leslie road and walked up to the roundabout by the giant irises which appeared first at the Glasgow garden festival of 1990. We had arranged for our coffeeand scones stop early in the Fettykill Fox except that they didn't do scones, but not to be outdone Dianne had brought a fine scone selection, some butter and jam with her. We all tucked into them while chatting about nothing in particular and were served tea/coffee by a very helpful member of staff. It was getting a bit when we got ready to continue with our walk and started to leave. As Janice was getting up to leave she got her foot caught on the leg of the table and fell onto the fireplace injuring her back. The result was that an ambulance was called by a staff member. However when the attending paramedics arrived it was decided that Janice was able to go home without a hospital visit as she thankfully wasn't badly injured. By this time it was obvious that darkness was falling and our walk should be cut shortThere have been some bumps and scratches on previous walks but this is the first time anyone has been injured during our coffee break. Roll on our next one.

Sunday, November 03, 2019

Coaltown of Balgonie circular







Meeting at our usual spot, we were prepared for a bit of a wet one today, not at all like the last time this walk was done in June 2017 when looking back on the last blog we were wrapped in “hoodies and scarves” this time it was hoodies, scarves, hats and brollies! A bit of a dreich welcome for our two new walkers Elizabeth and Irene.

Parking on the Main Street of Coaltown of Balgonie we headed up the path running beside Lady Nina Cottages onto a farm track. We followed the track pausing briefly to stop at the bridge which takes you over the railway line just in time to give a cheery Bennochy Walkers wave to the train passing below us. Much to our enjoyment the driver recipricated by a toot of his horn! This farm track forms part of the Balgonie Estate which according to the signage is a conservation area for the grey Partridge which has suffered a 91% decline since the 1960’s.

We carried on battling against the rain, through the mud and glaur, slipping and sliding along the remainder of the circular route until we reached the housing scheme at Milton of Balgonie with its welcome mud free pavements. Before long we were back at our cars stopping for a quick photo before heading back to Kirkcaldy Garden Centre which was our coffee stop for today.

Once the tables were organised to seat the 14 walkers, it was time for our coffee and cakes. Whilst enjoying our refreshments we were joined by Ian and Sybil for the coffee and chat. 

One things for sure however damp the weather, it never dampens the Bennochy Walkers chit chat!

Until next time, 

Kerry




                         

Sunday, September 08, 2019

Pilgrims way stage 3

It was a lovely sunny day, just perfect for the dozen walkers who were about to embark on what was very possibly our shortest ever walk, the two mile stretch of the Pilgrims Way which runs between Dunfermline town centre and Queen Margaret Hospital.

The group reached the starting point after bussing it from Kirkcaldy to arrive at Dunfermline Bus Station. A short walk brought them to Dunfermline Abbey which was to be a feature of todays programme. Unfortunately, unknown to us it was closed due to Communion being held. Not to be disappointed, we opted for coffee and cake! A good move as there is definitely an obvious lack of refreshment stops on this Pilgrims Way although I am sure the original Pilgrims would have been hard pushed to find a suitable latte stop.

Once on our way, we ventured up to the High Street then weaved our way past the retail park which eventually brought us to Leys Park where the path to Queen Margaret begins. Again, not much to see on this stretch but a pleasant enough walk along the path which runs between the back of the cemetery and the back of the Dunfermline Football ground before reaching the end where a left turn brought us to the hill leading us to Queen Margaret Hospital where we went our separate ways. 
Until next time.

Pilgrims’Way Stage 3


Seven members of the Walkers Group boarded the x27 bus, a couple of stops further on Carol joined us, our bus group was completed when another three joined us at their stop. A warm welcome to Marion Lackie on her first walk with us.
On arrival in Dunfermline we headed to the Abbey , we met with Kerry & Stephen, then found the door was locked !!!
We managed to try to visit on a day that there was a special communion service being held in the afternoon.
It would have been rude not to visit the cafe in the Library, nice coffee & cakes, a bit earlier in the day than usual, but Hey Ho !!!
Grace left us to head home , we joined The walk , a tree lined avenue, passing behind East End Football ground, before we knew it, we were at QM hospital, where today’s walk finished, K&S went walking back to their car, we walked down to the main road, a minute later a Kirkcaldy bus arrived. Perfect.
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