Green fields and blue skies on the South Downs Way

A week of office work and meetings!

10th July 2015

The weather has been perfect for walking and ridding up on the South Downs Way, the sun has been out, a few showers have been enough to clear the air, but it's not been too hot. Perfect, and what have I been doing, well mainly sitting at my desk! Well you can't have everything.

It's still been a varied week though. On Monday I went up to London to meet with other Local Highway Authorities and Exegesis to discuss the future of one of our access management software packages. It was a really useful day. We are basically trying to converge our use of various version of the package into one common version to save us all time and money (hopefully). Tuesday was spent going though emails and catching up and much of the rest of the week has been spent updating our database with all the work we have done and pulling together quarterly reports. All done now. I've just been told that our volunteers achieved 152 man-days of work along the SDW in April - June in 29 separate work tasks. that's great, so thanks to all our volunteers.

Our resident poet Lizzie Ballagher is still enjoying the SDW. Here is another offering from Lizzie.



Before these fields turn yellow as a Van Gogh reverie,

Before those rooks descend and cast

Dark shadows squawking on the grain,

Stand here & watch the meadows grow:

The longed-for greening of the naked ground.


Before the harvester rolls down with sharpened shears,

See arrowed spears dart up—

Fescue & timothy in chalk & loam;

See blade tips bristle, soft as painters’ brushes,

A watercolour haze on fallow-field horizons:

Tufted, wafted, wavy in the mill-wheel of the wind;

Brush-stroked with milky strands of corn-silk,

Sap-streaked, gingered with bees, rain-washed—

A veil of sprouts & stalks (& later seed-heads)

Rising, cresting in a tide, a sea of green.


And afterwards, look! Grasses are studded

With thistle & poppy, spectrum-ends flashing

Violet, scarlet in the blaze of August’s arc-lamp:

Pixil-thin stems stripe an Impressionist landscape,

Luminous with absinthe light on grasslands’ stretching canvas.


© Lizzie Ballagher

If you like Lizzie' poems you can follow her work on her blog at

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