Wednesday, 28 May 2008

A minor diversion

Late this afternoon, on the spur of the moment we decided to make use of the late sunshine on go for a drive along the Ancient Highway to the Restharrow Scrape.

At this time of the afternoon the light is difficult but can help make interesting compositions. I discovered that in my haste to put my camera gear together I'd managed to forget to include a compact flash card. Fortunately Pam had her camera and became the official photographer of an eventful afternoon and evening. The water levels have risen with the heavy rain and the strong breeze was rippling the water. There were a good number House Martins and Swallows hawking over the scrape and occasionally a few Swifts came through.

Several pairs of Lapwings were around and there were a few chicks around the waters edge. As we left, this adult paraded directly in front of the hide. It was at this point that we made the fateful decision the return home on the A258.

When we got to Ringwould we found the road closed and traffic diverted down Sutton Lane. We followed the diversion signs and obviously so did everyone else. Unfortunately this took us down a series of lanes that were too narrow for cars to pass, except at a few places. It seems traffic coming from the direction of Dover was diverted down the same roads, travelling in the opposite direction. At one point we were stationary for 30 minutes, before managing to 7 point turn and slowly return to the previous junction.

I didn't really help because by that time every minor road in the area was full of frustrated drivers unable to get the final couple of miles home. I think I did have an opportunity at one point to do a larger loop round to get to the A256, but I took a wrong turn and rejoined to diverted hordes.

We joined the diversion at about 7 p.m. and two hours later we were further from home than when we started. Eventually we escaped, after turning round yet again and made our way to the A256 which, as usual, was virtually empty. Just to add insult to injury when we got to the A258 roundabout we were unable to turn down the road to St Margaret's. As far as I could find out the problem was a fallen tree, beyond the turn off to St Margaret's so this was particularly ridiculous. In all honesty the phrase relating to a drinks party in a brewery could be applied to the efforts of this piece of traffic management.


Kingsdowner said...

Phew, I must have just missed that chaos!
I've been caught like that before, and the 'diversion' defies all logic. Unless you can get onto the Pfizer road, you're stuck. It's even more fun at night.

Steve said...

What a nightmare Tony! some good pictures to record the event though!