So What’s Missing Here?

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We were walking along the top of Wenlock Edge earlier this week – Edge on the left of this photo, Ironbridge Gorge right of centre. This is a circular walk that can include Windmill Hill as a slight detour, but otherwise takes you out of Much Wenlock before sending you up a field path (with fine views of the Wrekin) to the Edge above Homer village.

The final climb to the Edge top is quite steep and rocky, but once negotiated, you step out on a  pleasingly level track, farm fields on one side, hanging woodland on the other. I should say, though, that for those nervous of heights it doesn’t do to stop and look down into the wood. There, the huge ash, beech, oak, and sycamore trees grow hugger mugger on prodigiously tall, straight trunks that cling to several hundred feet of near vertical hillside. Here and there, between rare gaps in the canopy, you can just glimpse the fields of the Shropshire plain way below.

This is a winter’s day view of the Edge trackway, the seeming benign but beetling Edge wood on the right:

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There’s a point further along this track where a path hives off at right angles, taking us back and down to the town. There’s also a particular fence post here that I often use in lieu of the tripod. I used it to take the header shot, including the grass stem pointer,  but in the past I used it to capture these views – the cooling towers of Ironbridge Power Station, shortly to be developed into a very large riverside housing complex:

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Here’s another winter’s view with the cooling towers steaming away, and to the left a glimpse of the chimney beacon that finally came down this summer:

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All gone now. This may well be a good thing. On the other hand,  we need to think very hard and carefully how, and at what precise cost, we will heat and power our homes in the future. At present there is, to say the least, something of a technological shortfall. Nothing, it seems, is settled.

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16 thoughts on “So What’s Missing Here?

  1. At present there is, to say the least, something of a technological shortfall.

    This is true, Tish. But if the solutions are to lie with solar energy and wind energy -or whatever they lie with – the technological shortfall exists only because the large investment management companies and the venture capitalists have not yet thrown their money behind the advance of these technologies. The minute they do, that will be the end of the shortfall. It will be innovation after innovation in short order.

    In this regard, COP26 does not seem to have helped much. Senator Manchin of West Virginia has helped not at all in the US Senate. But I am hopeful and am hopeful if only because Manhattan is surrounded by waters which will rise. Soon. Sarah

  2. I wish they had kept those iconic pink towers. Could have been part of the Ironbridge museums I would have thought. Sigh… I suspect that a housing estate with everyone living there having to commute to Telford or Shrewsbury is not going to be very eco-friendly unless they build sustainable houses with heat pumps and electric charge points and throw in an electric tram to the nearby towns!

    1. Yep. Locals have lodged objections on grounds of unsustainable commuting to no avail. Physically it’s a real cul de sac, and although there’s talk of using the existent railway line, there a big problems with that infrastructure. I think the plan was for many hundreds of homes so maybe they can create some centralized power system???

  3. Wouldn’t it be nice if those that make these decisions would get the newer technology up and running before taking down the previous methodology? I often wonder if the separate parts of “government” bother to talk to each other. Each has an agenda — and no one asks us what WE want or need.

    1. That is my thought too. Dismantling one system without effective replacements that truly do work seems distinctly irresponsible to me. People – ALL people need to be able to afford alternative systems too.

  4. oh my what a change to the landscape – I wish there was a way to reuse these chimneys.

    There’s a huge new estate going in near us back in Winchester, and whilst some of the houses have solar panels most don’t, there remains no public transport yet onto the estate and it is evident the homes have not been built with sustainability in mind . . . . meanwhile in the Netherlands and Germany new homes are built with heat pumps, rain water collection, reduced reliance on cars and a sustainable approach to waste water too. Ooh better not mention waste water after the second sewage vote, I am still shouting about that!!

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