I was so sad when the hide at Alverstone Mead closed. It had become my go-to place for quiet, contemplative time, usually spent with with some of the Island’s tamer red squirrels.
It’s taken a while to complete the repairs, but this wonderful spot is now open again. I’m unsure as to whether the name is new, but it is now clearly marked as the Bern Thearle Hide. From the little I could gather up internet, he was a much loved man who spent many good hours there himself, feeding those who came to visit with him. How many thousands of people must have enjoyed this special spot over the decades?
The structure of the walkway and has been visibly strengthened, new planks restricting the view down one side. There was no sign of squirrel unfortunately, but plenty of tits and robins disturbing the air, raiding the piles of seeds someone had left along the railings. Not everything has changed; the man with the fancy photo equipment wouldn’t deign to acknowledge my presence alongside him, but was perfectly happy to disturb the peace by answering his mobile telephone without moving off.
Little worries though: once he was gone, the calmness of the woodland returned, the birds and the humans left to enjoy the admirable work of the Wight Fund for Nature.