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BBC Countryfile Magazine September 2020

Countryfile Magazine inspires you to explore forgotten corners of the great British countryside and provides knowledge of the people and wildlife that inhabit it. We want to tempt you into trying new things, seek out new places and make the most of Britain’s beautiful landscapes.

United Kingdom
Immediate Media Company London Limited
$8.20(Incl. tax)
$69.37(Incl. tax)
13 Issues

in this issue

1 min
our ancestors’ footprints

“Near where I live in the eastern Brecon Beacons, a broad, easy path takes you several miles along the shoulder of a remote hill. Peregrine-haunted cliffs tower to the south, while to the north, a vast airy view along the Usk Valley opens up and invites you to admire distant peaks. While you appreciate the beauty, the peace and your own good fortune, you may not notice the regularly placed stones in the path itself, each with a drilled hole in it. They are not the ancient marks of a forgotten people, but the sleepers of a tramway track that ran through this desolate spot 150 years ago. Horse-drawn wagons on rails. And what of these small ruined buildings, home to sheltering sheep? Limekilns. And these strange grassed-over mounds? Spoil heaps.…

1 min
this month’s contributors

Melissa Harrison, “It seemed instinctual, a collective reaching-out for one thing we trusted and knew that we needed: the natural world and its changing seasons.” Joanna Blythman, “Since supermarkets got a grip on food retailing, farmers have faced a stark choice: abandon your farm or invest heavily to attract their business.” Richard Baynes, “Path builders have been here since first light, mending the mountain’s main ascent path because of the impact of hill walkers like us.”…

1 min
september in the country

GLOWING BEACONS A view from the final ascent to Pen y Fan towards the lesser peak of Cribyn. With Corn Du and Fan y Big, these peaks create a breathtaking horseshoe walk along almost cliff-like escarpments that fall hundreds of metres into the valley below. Both Corn Du and Pen y Fan are topped by strange cairns that were once burial chambers for a local Bronze Age chieftain or warrior. PINE PARADISE Glenmore Forest within Cairngorms National Park holds a remnant of Caledonian forest. This ancient woodland consists primarily of old Scots pines and many are characterised by their exposed tree roots – this is an extreme example. It’s a fantastic place for autumn walking, with lovely Loch Morlich at the forest’s heart. SILVER SURFER Exuberant and agile, the short-beaked common dolphin surfs the bow…

1 min
three to spot: autumn butterflies

SMALL TORTOISESHELL Despite being one of the first to emerge in spring, this medium–large butterfly also appears in high numbers in autumn. It is reddish-orange and black in colour with a line of blue spots along the edge of the wings. GREEN-VEINED WHITE This small, white butterfly with prominent greenish veins on the underside of its wings likes lush, damp gardens, as well as parks, hedgerows and meadows. Plant ivy to provide nectar and shelter for overwintering insects. SPECKLED WOOD Often associated with woodland rides and hedgerows, this dark-brown butterfly also enjoys gardens with dappled sunlight. It is easily identified by eight small eyespots – three on each hindwing and one on each forewing.…

1 min
from the bookshelf: rambling reads

JOURNEY THROUGH BRITAIN by John Hillaby A witty journey of discovery, walking the length of Britain from Land’s End to John O’Groats. Hillaby traces footsteps of legions, drovers and travellers to create a vivid picture. THINKING ON MY FEET by Kate Humble Humble records a year of walking and how this simple act helps her solve problems, lift moods and gain creative energy. On the way she finds wildlife, unique landscapes and inspiring people. WANDERLUST: A HISTORY OF WALKING by Rebecca Solnit The social history of walking, from Jane Austen heroines and Wordsworth to modern politicians and poets. Solnit reveals how prominent walkers have shaped social and political culture. THE OLD WAYS by Robert Macfarlane Not truly a book about walking, this is about how pathways are shaped by landscapes and then shape our cultures. Macfarlane makes…

2 min
the seasonal table: a taste of september

The autumn hedgerow-harvests seem to get earlier every year. What once was a task for mid-October now sits comfortably in September. We collect scrambling rosehips to turn into syrup from the streamside hedge, sloes for gin are gathered from the paddock blackthorn, and cobnuts from the copse are squirrelled away for cracking at Christmas. Most prolific though, are the wild blackberries. We pick them by the bowlful for infusing in vinegar, baking in crumbles and scattering into cakes. WILD BLACKBERRY AND ROSEWATER CAKE Serves 8 INGREDIENTS 150g caster sugar75g butter, melted and cooled75g plain yoghurt1 egg, beaten1/2 tsp rosewater50g ground almonds175g white self-raising flour125g blackberries For the icing (optional): 1/2 tbsp icing sugar150g cream cheese To serve (optional): A sprig of blackberries, or a handful of blackberries and dried rose petals METHOD: 1. Preheat the oven to 180°C and grease…