Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Scilly sunshine

Our first week in Scilly has gone very quickly and we’ve certainly been spoilt by the weather – everyday until today has seen lots of sunshine and even felt warm and spring-like at times. A great antidote to all that freezing weather on the mainland in December! Today however has seen more in the way of grey skies, cool winds and slight drizzle, probably because we put our washing on the line to dry…

We are living in the ‘Woolpack Battery’, an interesting semi underground building built around 1900 on the Garrison to protect St Mary’s from a perceived threat of invasion by the French. It’s now been converted into the Wildlife Trust’s volunteer accommodation and as it’s currently only us staying here at the moment we’ve been enjoying having our own home again. We have great views from on top of the Woolpack across to St Agnes, the Western rocks and the Bishop Rock Lighthouse and have been treated to several stunning sunsets already. We’ve also been playing lots of table tennis, and I need lots of practice as Laura keeps beating me!

We were eased in with only one and a half days work last week before the weekend. This gave us the chance to make the most of the weather and gave us a few days to explore St Mary’s. We’ve been doing lots of walking and have already covered most of the footpaths and coastal walking on the island. I also managed to find the graves of my Great Great Great and Great Great Grandparents in the Churchyard at Old Town.

Despite the fact we didn’t know many people here when we first arrived we’ve soon got to know several people and it seems nearly impossible to head into Hugh Town without meeting someone we know on our way! We’ve soon settled into ‘island life’ and have been enjoying trying out the pubs and cafes and with the help of Jim (who volunteers full time for the Wildlife Trust) we even managed to come third in the weekly quiz at the Scillonian Club on Sunday night.

Yesterday we spent the day working with Jim on the ‘squares’ (old allotment sites) on the Garrison just down from the Woolpack. We were helping to clear back overgrown brash and trimming back the hedges where they were overgrowing the path.

Today we had a fantastic day as we had the opportunity to visit one of the uninhabited islands, ‘Tean’ with Darren (warden), Jim and Patrick (another local volunteer). We spent the whole day fighting our way through bracken and brambles, bouncing across tufts of thrift and also scrambling over rocks at low tide to ‘Old Man’ and ‘Pednbrose’ all in the name of checking on rat bait stations. The bait is left at various places on the island in an attempt to eradicate any rats as they have a damaging effect on the bird population.

No comments:

Post a Comment