I've recently started a new job! I'll still be working remotely, but spent the first few weeks doing induction stuff and getting to know my colleagues in the actual proper office. In Kent.  This is very definitely not a commutable distance from Gloucester (I hate you M25/M26/M20...), so I was put up in an Airbnb for the duration.

The clocks had just gone forward - hurrah! - so what better way to fill my spare time than scouring OS maps for little blue triangles and/or other things to investigate.  Certainly better than spending all evening watching TV and eating chocolate (might have got fat and lazy over the winter. Again..)

Trig Points

First up, a walk to the Scene Farm trig point.  This is in the middle of a golf course in Hythe, and has some sort of ugly electricity box thing stuck on one side.  It's a mighty 97m above sea level - but then again, the sea is only about a kilometre away.

Scene farm trigpoint

Next trig point is Cheriton Hill, which is just north of the Channel Tunnel terminal.  I parked in a layby just above the Folkestone White horse (not as old or exciting as you might hope) and walked along the footpath (North Downs Way/Saxon Shore Way) for a bit until I found it.

Cheriton hill trigpoint
Not the most exciting of views on a cloudy grey evening

I hadn't seen a cylindrical trig before! You can also just about see France, which is quite cool.

I continued walking as far as Cherry Garden Hill, where I unexpectedly found a WWII pillbox. From here I returned via a lower path as loops are better than out-and-back - but with a steep walk straight back up the white horse (which it turns out is made of paving slabs) because I couldn't figure out where the actual footpath was supposed to be.  Possibly in a load of brambles...

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Serre Chevalier


We enjoyed our ski trip to Serre Chevalier a couple of years ago so much that we decided to go back and stay at Pinewood again - and take a few friends with us. 

handprints in the snow
touristing in Briancon

This was my first time skiing in a group (not counting skiing with new friends made in chalets, of course) and it was great fun.  Between six of us, we had abilities ranging from 'complete beginner' to 'could probably ski backwards with eyes closed' to 'not actually skiing on account of growing a baby'.  It was nice to all meet up for lunch though - and to stuff ourselves with cheese fondue and steak at Petit Pont on chalet night off.

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Turbulent Tewkesbury


Winter dog walks this year have tended to get quite repetitive, and not involved venturing too far from home.  February seems like a good time to change that, so we picked a walk from the AA '50 Walks in Gloucestershire' book - Turbulent Tewkesbury.  This is one of the few walks in the book that doesn't have a map, so I had a quick look online and found that someone had already roughly plotted the route on OS maps.  Very convenient.

We started in the Vineyards, and (mostly) followed the signposted Battle Trail, with an addition to walk through Margaret's Camp. I know basically nothing about battles of the civil war, despite a couple of visits to Tewkesbury Medieval Festival.  At least I recognised some of the fields, and there are plenty of information boards to read along the way.

Tewkesbury Abbey

After a bit of pavement walking, we crossed over onto the Severn Ham and wandered along the river, crossing back at Healing's Mill.  From here, it was just a case of wandering down the high street and back to the car park - with a sneaky pub stop that coincided with a brief rain shower!