I have a bad habit of rolling my eyes whenever my mother makes a suggestion on a day out. I believe this may be something I picked up when I was a teenager. One day I will overcome it and respond with "gee mother, that sounds like a terrific idea!".
My most recent eye-rolling occurred whilst halfway up the climbing wall at Brighstone playground on Wilberforce Road. It's only a small playground but we like it as it's rarely busy, it has free parking and it's alongside a pretty little stream.
My mother's suggestion was that we visit the famous Dragon Tree, since it is only about three minutes walk from the playground.
My eyes rolled before I remembered that the Dragon Tree had been on my to-do list for some time. I had seen photos of it in the last few years but couldn't remember an actual visit.
The tree in question is a short walk along a footpath off New Road, near to the junction with Wilberforce Road. It's footpath number BS23 for anyone currently unfolding an OS map onto a dining table.
It gets its name from the local story that a dragon was slain in Brighstone and was immediately transformed into a tree. Needless to say, this is flim-flam, but it's certainly a very cool tree which appears to be growing sideways.
The Woodland Trust gave it third place in its tree of the year competition in 2019. I announced this fact as we arrived, but the children had already walked off and were paddling in the stream.
A visit to the Dragon Tree requires wellies, as the main attraction is paddling in the stream, climbing on stepping stones and falling over in the mud. When we visited, the water was ankle deep and there was a tyre swing. I am assuming it is not so easy to paddle in after heavy rain.
I was wearing walking boots, which weren't really good enough so I had to offer arm's length support to the wobblier child. They both had wet socks within a few minutes, but it filled half an hour nicely.
Perhaps I will get my eye-rolling under control for the next suggestion from my mother.
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