About Me

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Bristol , United Kingdom
I'm co-director of the Leaping Word Poetry Consultancy, which provides advice for poets on writing, editing and publishing, as well as qualified counselling support for those exploring personal issues in their work - https://theleapingword.com. My fifth poetry collection, Learning Finity, is now available from Indigo Dreams or directly from me.

Saturday 26 October 2019


Been doing a lot of errandry* lately, but at least it's involved some getting out and about to interesting places. I get a bit depressed cooped up in Bristol, especially this time of year when some bugger's pulled the plug and all the light's draining away.

*Now I'm wondering if errandry should be errantry, which has the benefit of being an actual word, but that might just be wandering about without the service element. Hmmm.

Anyhow. My mother was in Bristol for ten days or so recently, following a sojourn in Cornwall, and briefly fancied going to Clevedon, so we took her there before she could change her mind. There's a pub right on the front where you can have something to eat and look out over the estuary and there's light and interest even when the weather forecast is poor, which it was. 

And by the time we emerged, it was into unexpected afternoon sunshine, and a plane, which you probably can't make out in the photo, was doing loop-the-loops and things. 

We made our way to the pier.

I took time to admire my favourite thing about Clevedon which is its less than genteel trees ... 

... though there was no walking the steep cliff path of Poets Walk, of course.

After a flying visit to the pier's gift shop, we manoeuvred our way through the narrow lane that leads from the front to Copse Road, emerging alongside the Royal Oak Pub, which was run by my Great-Great-Uncle Joe Rich during the first half of last century. There are lots of family stories associated with this time.

My mother happily told several passers-by and a couple of workmen about the times she used to pull pints there, aged 14. 

The lane hasn't changed much at all, apparently.

A couple of days later we ventured deeper into Somerset to visit my mother's only surviving elder brother, Noel, in Shepton Beauchamp. They did a great job of bringing their childhood misdemeanours to life, details of which I shan't repeat here.  

The next day, my birthday, the Northerner and I were in Wells for the gathering of shortlisted competition poets at the Festival of Literature ... 

... and then suddenly that was enough Somerset, and my sons and I were off to Sussex for a belated birthday jaunt - my daughter's birthday, not mine. And it rained again.

But then it cleared up enough for a little wander around Brighton Marina ...

View to Ovingdean Gap

... followed by cake. 

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