Yesterday I walked into Newcastle under Lyme to pop to the chemists. I have been working on the edge of the town for a few weeks and it seemed easier than calling into Longton on the way home. The town of Newcastle has wide streets with pedestrian only access during the daytime. There are also lots of trees around the town which gives it a character all of its own. Walking into the centre, I avoided crossing the ring road as there are lots of underpasses to help with safe pedestrian access. Though Newcastle abuts the city of Stoke-on-Trent, it guards its own identity with pride. It is not part of the Potteries, being on the west side of the D-Road (A500).
The chemist had to order my goods, so I retraced my steps today and was amazed to find in passing, that the town had been set up as a fairground overnight. No doubt this will attract a good number of Christmas shoppers for the weekend and late night shopping in the town centre.
Newcastle is quite a place for moderately interesting features and surprises. The previous week I chanced upon a lawn boasting a winter burst of Crocuses. These are Spring plants and looked quite out of place and somewhat taller than expected, flowering well out of their normal season.
The Autumn has been very mild and perhaps the temperature and chemical signals were making these plants develop earlier than they should. The frost did for them this week. Is this global warming in action?