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Sunday, 21 October 2012

Short Stop changes name and two sessions in the jungle

Tuesday was what used to be Short Stop and is now called the Grace project. The Grace project is the amalgamation of two linked schemes, Short Stop and Long Stop, both offering emergency accommodation for homeless asylum seekers, one for one night only, the other for longer. Now LASSN lassn.pir2.info has decided to merge the two schemes under one name the Grace project. Grace was an early user of short Stop many years ago; now, settled in Leeds, she has become a Trustee of LASSN and an enthusiastic advocate of both short Stop and Long Stop. Just one person to be placed this week, my first call is to one of our regular hosts, she is unwell, but tells me that if I can find nobody else she can help. It is with some relief, she has the awful cough and cold I have just got over, that my next call is answered with a cheery 'of course'; I phone PAFRAS www.pafras.org.uk back and that is all for the day. The nights are becoming colder and longer so the Grace project becomes more and more vital.

this bit's already been done
Wednesday dawned in gloom and pouring rain, however the forecast promised sun later, so on with the water proofs and off to Runswick Bay. Coasties www.northyorkmoors.org.uk were continuing to carve a path, which only seems to exist on the map, through bracken, bramble and our old friend blackthorn. It had been started with steps many months ago, more steps will be needed on this bit, but today it is too wet. However by 11o'clock the rain has stopped and by midday the sun and the midges are out.
the bracken jungle,
easier than the blackthorn!

Some of my colleagues become so enthusiastic that the path gets wider and wider and more and more blackthorn has to be somehow 'lost' in what remains. I have a minor rebellion and block their way, they move onward and upward, more to be lost, but at least the path gets longer rather than wider!

"What is the point of blackthorn?" one of us wonders, "well sloe gin" I point out, but we all agree although very good, not an essential for life. So, what is the point of blackthorn?


Now, see here on the right is a lovely path, it's almost parallel to where we are cutting, dragging and throwing. BUT it is on private land, this area of the National Park is not Open Access and we ordinary mortals may only walk on the public rights of way. It's a path for game shooters, I eat game and so I don't complain about the people who shoot, but the the revolutionary in me wonders why we can't all use the same path. There is some muttering about us plebs not using the path! Very topical at the moment, the rights of plebs. When I was younger I thought that one day the revolution would come, now older and greyer I know better.

Sunday was more jungle cutting, this time of nettles and burdock to find trees planted last year in Malton's best kept secret, the Castle Gardens. www.maltoncastlegarden.org.uk. Some trees had been discovered a few months ago, now more were found today.
Malton's jungle in the mist
Here's one I found











If the small society exists truly it does here, a few people, over many years, have made this the magical place it is now. We have come to it only recently and now hope to help more. The wet summer has contributed to the need for a massive cut back, there are still more young trees to be found and nurtured into more growth.

Last but not least, my good friends at Fairer World shop in York have just launched the first page of their website, it is a work in progress, but after some time here it is, http://www.fairerworldyork.co.uk/