Day 26: Gosport to Southampton – Range & Refinery

3 comments
England, Hampshire
Container Ship in the Solent from Gilkicker Point, Hampshire.

Container Ship in the Solent from Gilkicker Point, Hampshire.

Golden morning light illuminates golfers and container ships passing between Fort Gilkicker and the alleged spy training centre at Fort Monckton.

Browndown Range I, Hampshire.

Browndown Range I, Hampshire.

Browndown Range doesn’t have a flag flying – first time I’ve been lucky on the walk so far and not had to detour around an MOD site due to live firing.

Browndown Range II, Faggots & Queers, Hampshire.

Browndown Range II, Faggots & Queers, Hampshire.

Browndown Range III, Lookout, Hampshire.

Browndown Range III, Lookout, Hampshire.

Browndown Range IV, Outfall, Hampshire.

Browndown Range IV, Outfall, Hampshire.

Browndown Range V, Sand Ladder, Hampshire.

Browndown Range V, Sand Ladder, Hampshire.

Browndown Range VI, Butts, Hampshire.

Browndown Range VI, Butts, Hampshire.

Beach Huts, Lee-on-the-Solent, Hampshire.

Beach Huts, Lee-on-the-Solent, Hampshire.

Decorator / Handywoman Van parked outside the Hovercraft museum

The Solent from Hill Head, Hampshire.

The Solent from Hill Head, Hampshire.

Glistening jellyfish two feet across, a sandy footprint neatly placed on one side of its body.

Private Beach, Hill Head, Hampshire.

Private Beach, Hill Head, Hampshire.

A row of precious houses each with variously phrased notices all stating the privateness of their tiny strip of beach.

Dummy & Mitten, Hill Head, Hampshire.

Dummy & Mitten, Hill Head, Hampshire.

Shore at Brownwich Cliff, Hampshire

Shore at Brownwich Cliff, Hampshire

Erosion at Brownwich Cliff, Hampshire.

Erosion at Brownwich Cliff, Hampshire.

Man complains in a pub that his medium rare steak is not rare enough.

Solent Breezes, Holiday Park I, Hampshire.

Solent Breezes, Holiday Park I, Hampshire.

Solent Breezes, Holiday Park II, Hampshire.

Solent Breezes, Holiday Park II, Hampshire.

Approaching Southampton water the forest of chimneys at Fawley oil refinery emerge. Three vast tankers are moored alongside.

Fawley Oil Refinery, Hampshire.

Fawley Oil Refinery, Hampshire.

Wreck steel, Hook Park, Hampshire.

Wreck steel, Hook Park, Hampshire.

Fawley Oil Refinery from Hook Park, Hampshire.

Fawley Oil Refinery from Hook Park, Hampshire.

Lost myself in the picture making process and exclaim “Fuck Yes!” with the camera pressed to my face as the perfect scene contrasting the oil refinery and nature reserve unfold. As I lower the camera I notice a couple of previously unseen dog walkers right next to me studiously looking in the opposite direction.

Bunny Meadows mudflats, River Hamble, Hampshire.

Bunny Meadows mudflats, River Hamble, Hampshire.

At river Hamble masts stretch to the horizon. Acorns thud to the path as they fall from the trees.

Hamble station, Hampshire.

Hamble station, Hampshire.

Frantic cheering of children and parents at Hamble Community Sports College as students run around a field. A train passes close. A van marked ‘Badger Cleaning Services’. 

WW2 Anti-aircraft gun emplacement, Hamble Common Hampshire.

WW2 Anti-aircraft gun emplacement, Hamble Common Hampshire.

I admire a yacht held aloft in a boat hoist. A lady notices my interest “Oh she’s mine – there’s one bit I can’t reach myself when she’s on wooden blocks and last year the seaweed stuck on there”
She breaks off suddenly to address the painters “I think you’ve just painted over the echo sounder”

Ryley & Ethan / WW2 EXDO (Extended Defence Officer) Post, Southampton Water, Hampshire.

Ryley & Ethan / WW2 EXDO (Extended Defence Officer) Post, Southampton Water, Hampshire.

Glimpse the ruins of Netley Abbey as sunset. Night is cool immediately, I put on an extra layer and a head torch and press on.

Heart Tree, Royal Victoria Country Park, Hampshire.

Heart Tree, Royal Victoria Country Park, Hampshire.

A metallic clanking sound carries across Southampton water as cars embark a ship in the distance, nearby the gentle lapping of waves.

On the outskirts of Southampton now, a pub called the Victoria has the whole building painted with a huge St George flag. Car pulls up to a smoker in the entrance who says “You after Gary? he’s in the khazi mate”

Weston Towers I, Southampton, Hampshire.

Weston Towers I, Southampton, Hampshire.

Itchen bridge flies over the houses lit handsomely in neon blue.
Walk over the silent water far below, passing Samaritans notices and help points at intervals.

In a dark industrial estate one building has the shutters up revealing two boxers sparring in an orange glow.

Weston Towers II, Southampton, Hampshire.

Weston Towers II, Southampton, Hampshire.

I enter the Southampton through the student village “I’m 19 years old! not a baby!” I hear from a window.

“Can I spare any change?” I’m in the centre now. It’s late but Southampton uni gym is busy with ponytailed girls on step machines staring at a TV screen.

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British Architectural & Landscape Photographer.

3 thoughts on “Day 26: Gosport to Southampton – Range & Refinery”

  1. Discovered your great blog this morning. Being an architect I do love your compositions, not to mention the interesting subject matter! The reason for my comment on this section is simply to note that you passed right by the former house of my great aunt and uncle, who lived on School Lane, Hamble. I have fond memories of visiting there in the 70’s, and having a drink with my uncle at the Old Whyte Harte on the High Street just around the corner. Best of luck with the remainder of your journey. P.S. have you read John Hillaby’s book about his walk from Land’s End to John O Groats?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks! I’m very grateful for having studied architecture for thinking about the geometry of objects and how they look both in 3d and 2d – very handy skills for photography. Hamble was lovely so I can imagine you have great memories from there. Yes I read John Hillaby’s book while I was walking Land’s End to John O Groats 20 years ago – best book on the subject IMO, I should give it a reread

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