Blogger: Aggie Rothon, Communications Officer

Of all the children’s programmes that I find myself sharing with my little boy, Robin, there is one that I seem to have a slightly sentimental attachment to and that is Postman Pat. It might be because I remember the programme from my own childhood (we even went to a Postman Pat theatre production once) but that isn’t the only reason.

Actually I think it’s because I wouldn’t mind living in Greendale with Pat, Mrs Goggins and Ted Glen; it seems a lovely place. The countryside is green and lush, the villagers spend their time attending village fetes, taking care of the farm or pottering around their local patch and the biggest news is perhaps only a lost parcel or two. Greendale is the kind of world I’d like to live in.

So this summer holiday I might take a leaf out Postman Pat’s book. Goodbye to watching the six o’ clock news or finding my week crammed full of errands and things I ‘must do’ and hello instead to taking the days as they come, tinkering about in the garden and enjoying the long summer days.

In fact, I have already started as the Reverend Timms (Greendale’s local churchman) would have me go on. The Rev seems always to be planting a crocus here, displaying his pot plants there or pruning his roses and currently I am doing the same. It’s the wrong time of year for crocuses but my lavatera is in full bloom, my hollyhocks are finally coming in to their own and the nasturtiums seem now to be winning the battle against the wet weather. It’s good to see the pollinators; the bees and hoverflies enjoying these open-faced flowers when the sun does shine.

The butterflies however, those delicate slithers of colour that flit through our gardens, haven’t had a good season so far. I’ve seen only one frilly-winged comma this year and the lime-green brimstones and striking red admirals certainly haven’t been as prevalent. So next year my garden will be one dedicated to the butterflies. There will be a newly planted ivy for the holly blue caterpillars and I’ll make sure to leave the forget-me-nots to seed for next year. I’ll give the buddleia priority too; it is far the best nectar plant and is favourite with eighteen species of butterfly.

I have also found out that you can build (or buy if your carpentry skills aren’t up to scratch!) a box for insects to hibernate in. Put one up in your garden and perhaps the local butterflies will have a better time of it next year. I’m sure Postman Pat would approve.  


Posted in the EDP on Saturday 4 August.