Monday, 3 June 2019


Halifax town centre, Calderdale, West Yorkshire. Wild flower embankment. View towards New Ebenezer Church and Job Centre.When I first visited Halifax - looking to see if it would be a good place to live - I was struck by the amount of ragwort. It sprouted out of pavements and walls and old chimneys and public planters. In particular there was a long embankment of it between a car park and part of the busy road system that skirts the quieter and partly pedestrianised town centre. I can't remember what was on this embankment last year but it wasn't ragwort. Earlier this year it was a yellow sea of oil-seed rape flowers. I assumed this was random. Who plants ragwort? Who sows oil-seed rape apart from farmers?

Borage, poppies and possibly chamomile on wild flower embankment, Halifax, Calderdale, West Yorkshire.

There's loads of ragwort around town this year too. . . but the bank is currently like this. Someone, surely, has turned it into a wildflower oasis - and bees are loving it. So am I. So, I guess, are the hundreds of people who walk past and maybe the thousands of people who drive by in cars and lorries or who look out from buses.

California poppy, forget-me-nots and white daisy-style flowers in Halifax town centre, Calderdale, West Yorkshire.
A health update:
Two possible bone marrow / stem cell donors have been identified so I am hoping to return to hospital for a transplant some time in the first part of July. Chemo has knocked back the leukaemia so I am feeling remarkably well but an underlying mutant something or other called FLT3 (I really don't understand what this is) is getting worse - so there's a bit of a race on. A drugs company is allowing me to take a medicine that is not yet on general release to help keep it at bay while I wait to return to hospital. What a weird and surreal life. It's very hard to realise all this frightening stuff really is happening.

Who can identify these flowers? Wild flower embankment. Halifax town centre, Calderdale, West Yorkshire.
In the meantime . . . I try to take up the reins of ordinary life. I wish I enjoyed housework! And I wish the beautiful grasses which have invaded my allotment weren't so tough, luxuriant and profuse. I have some very little tomato seedlings, runner bean plants and patti-pan squashes in pots. Radishes have germinated on the plot but not yet carrots. I mean, they should have but I've sown everything late. It will be nice when the weather becomes appropriate to June. Then though I will probably complain it's too hot!

Wild flower embankment between Cow Green and Bull Circus, Halifax town centre, Calderdale, West Yorkshire.

Thank you whoever is in charge of this bank. Halifax, it turns out, really is a very good place to live.

(Can someone say what the white daisy flowers are? I wondered chamomile but that doesn't seem quite right. And what is the purple flower in the second to last photo?)