Yes, I'm back blogging! It's been a while I know but, to be brutally honest, like many folks, 2020/21 pretty much kicked the stuffing out of me and it was hard to find things to write about that were chirpy and positive when we were stuck indoors all winter, but now we are out and about and things are looking up (at least for now!)
What better way to bounce back than with a quick blog about benches? I flipping love a good bench - who doesn't? Actually, I'll tell you who, because benches are more controversial than you'd think. One of the most important things we can do to help the older population is to help them keep walking - it's great exercise, plus it's a social activity, giving them a chance to meet and talk to other people, thus staving off loneliness. But, in order to encourage them out more, we need to give them more benches to sit on, where they can pause and catch their breath, and the problem with that is that in many urban areas they are actively removing benches as they are a natural gathering point for ne'er do wells and rowdy youths.
Tis true, I found out about it a few years ago when I was working just outside Preston. As per usual I'd packed my sarnies and headed out at lunchtime to a nearby park, planning to sit and eat my lunch in the sunshine, but this lovely park didn't have one single bench - so I asked why and that's when I found out about the conundrum. Scary isn't it? I wish I had an answer, but maybe highlighting it so more folks are aware and talking about it is the best first thing I can do.
And now - onto my favourite benches in Cumbria... (Yeah, I know you'll disagree, but that's part of the fun. Plus I am not including *that* bench on Friar's Crag as it's already too popular by far! 😀 )
1. The one with the view of Blencathra
A friend recently stumbled upon this bench and reminded me of this fabulous walk - it's pretty out of the way but the view is utterly spectacular. Don't be fooled by the idyllic image though, after we left this bench we got a little bit lost in a very big bog, and I had a proper dodgy old pair of walking boots on and had to wring my socks out at the end. Still a great bench though!
2. The one on Scout Scar