Did you know that the season of spring moves south to north through England at the speed of a walking person?
In 2015 Graham followed the spring on foot through the whole of England, from Christchurch to the border at Gretna Green, planting an oak every mile. This book documents his journey; following Richard Jefferies, Edward Thomas and Robert Macfarlane into the wilder parts of our country, Walking through Spring is a book in the English pastoral tradition.
Graham connected a labyrinth of ancient footpaths into a new national trail, marking each mile travelled by planting an acorn in hedgerows of blackthorn, hawthorn, dogwood and hazel. He drew a line of trees stretching through the English countryside, nicknamed “The Oak Route”.
On the way many aspects of Spring are explored: how does the earth’s angle to the sun make the seasons change? Which plants start blooming first? Which birds survive the bitter winter in our hedgerows and which arrive from overseas? The joy of the natural world is seen, smelled and experienced as the season arrives – from dairy cows cantering and kicking their heels when released into lush meadows of the West Country, to galloping bands of lambs in the Peak District. England’s unique botanical, geographical and social landscape is mapped as Spring unfolds across the country.
‘Walking through Spring’ is out now – click here to buy the book from Amazon.
Want more details on the route and the oak trees? Coming soon…