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After yesterday’s silly o’ clock start I had a lie-in this morning. I’ve only just finished scoffing the full English breakfast provided by my hotel here in Leamington Spa. Now I’m almost ready to face a day of variety. First off is a tour of HS2 construction sites around Warwickshire. Later on I’ll be getting the train into London where I’ll be staying the night with a friend. The weather forecast is looking interesting to say the least, so it may be a fun day. I’ll be blogging throught the day but initially that may be mostly pictures. Feel free to keep popping back to see what I get up to…


Whilst I wait for my contact and local guide to arrive I’ve some time to spend getting pictures at the delightful old GWR built station at Leamington where the staff obviously both enjoy their jobs – and have a sense of humour!


Now, where was I? Oh yes – abject apologies for the gap in blogging but I’ve had a fascinating day touring Warwickshire in the company of Penny McGregor, whose family have been farming land in Warwickshire for generations. Part of their land at Cubbington has been taken by HS2 Ltd as the fields have been used as part of the mitigation efforts to translocate soil and trees from Cubbington wood which the route of HS2 was unable to avoid. Originally anti the project and a supporter of the protests to stop HS2 Penny came to realise the protesters weren’t telling the truth about the project and became a ‘critical friend’ of HS2. Penny has great local knowledge and is very interested in the efforts made to mitigate the alterations HS2 is making to the landscape and track the success (or failure) of replanting and rewilding efforts. Here’s some of the pictures I’ve taken during the day…

Cubbington wood, showing the trace of HS2 which cuts through the area. This was the scene of many protests back in 2020, all of which proved futile. But then many were little more than publicity stunts.
Looking in the opposite direction to the previous picture.
Looking back on the last picture from the distance. Not all the new tree planting on either side.
Cut down after having over 30 new trees taken from it as cuttings the base of this tree was translocated and is now bursting into life once more. But this is no ordinary tree. This is the 350yr old Cubbington pear tree that the protesters made so much about.