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I really think there is something magical about the lush upland areas of Great Britain on a summer’s evening.  Take this view for example.  I have stood on this spot and admired it many times and yet on this particular day it was as beautiful as I have ever remembered.  The low evening sunshine brought to life every colour it touched, from the lushness of the grass to the bronze and gold of a field of barley.

Rolling countryside in evening sunlight sloping up to hills in the distance

The distant hills are a patchwork of pink and purple heather.  Carrying on the breeze is the faint bleat of grazing sheep and, if I’m lucky, the raucous ‘craak’ of a heron.  And there, tying it all together, is that most powerful component of all: the river.

From where I stand I cannot see the flies dancing over the surface in the fading warmth, the trout and salmon parr hurling themselves skyward in pursuit.  Neither can I see the fronds of Ranunculus waving in the sunlit margins, nor hear the kingfisher before it flashes past in a smudge of blue and red.

But I know they are there nonetheless, and that is enough.