Very strong winds on several days this week blew the blossom off the fruit trees and ornamentals into the courtyard. It looked like confetti, as though we had had a wedding here.
My plea for rain was obviously heard. The ground has had a good soaking and the vegetable seeds sown last week have already germinated.
Village attention this week focuses on Footpath Sunday, which will be celebrated this year on May 10th. Tradition dictates that the footpaths within the parish are walked at least once every year in order for them to remain open. Of course, under present legislation once a footpath has been registered it is almost impossible to get it closed or diverted and there are strict rules in place which require that specific widths are adhered to and the condition under foot restored if cultivations have taken place. Nevertheless it is a good opportunity for excercise combined with socialising and is popular with parishioners as well as visitors from outside the parish.
In many parishes these walks are arranged to take place on Rogation Sunday, when, either before the walks start or during the walks, the crops are blessed. It is one of the occasions when agriculture and the Church are closely linked.
In the case of Epperstone groups of walkers return to the Village Hall and enjoy a delicious tea, prepared by the Women's Institute.