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(click on the down arrow for location of Ashford,
and sub-station at Knowlwater bridge)

March 24th 2011A walk round the southern part of  the Fullabrook Down Wind Farm.
  A walk from Ashford, up onto Ash Down, across to Pippacott  and back down again to Ashford. The walk was partly on the road, partly on footpaths.  Also included - some photographs and videos from earlier walks

Knowlwater bridge
This is a painting I did of Knowlwater bridge, back in 2005.
Christine Lovelock

North lane
This is a photograph taken from an earlier walk, showing the view as you come down North Lane, having turned off the road from Ashford to Heanton. The telegraph pole is ugly, but not as intrusive as a giant turbine. The view ahead is of the range of hills that are part of the wind farm site.

This is a short video made in November 2010, not long after work had started on the construction of the sub-station, beside the bridge in the painting above.  You can also see the bridge in the Europe's Ill Wind video (and the painting above)
Looking across at the same meadow
March 24th It was a very warm day. As in some previous walks, we took a bus from Pottington in Barnstaple to the Ashford turn (by Trelawny Garden Centre) and then walked up the hill through Ashford, and along the Heanton road to Windy Cross.  We then went down North Lane (see photo above) to Knowlwater bridge. This photograph was taken at the crossroads just before the bridge, looking across at the sub-station.  This sub-station has been built in the meadow beside the bridge.
Stile below Ash Wood
This is the stile at the entrance to Ash Wood.  The footpath goes across a field below the wood. Although this is a very quiet spot, it is only about half a mile from the edge of Braunton. From the time when we turned off the Heanton road, until we came back to it at the end of the walk, we were not passed by any cars, but we were passed by a runner on the road, and then another runner went by us as we walked up through the wood. Later we met two more runners, and a rider with two horses in Pippacott.
In Ash Wood
Higher up in Ash Wood, looking at the valley that runs beside it.
This path is especially beautiful as spring progresses, with the wild garlic and bluebells to follow on from the primroses.
turbine 1 or 2
Having left the wood behind at the top of the hill, we were on a high plateau (about 130 m high). To the north we could see the site of turbines 1 and 2  - this photo isn't very clear, but you can glimpse the mounds of red earth near the white building.
There is a footpath that goes across the hill, to Pippacott, and we walked on. All seemed relatively quiet and unspoilt, compared to the noise and activity I had seen the previous day up at Beara

A short video in which I recorded the sound of the skylarks singing above us. The hedge is the one you can see in the following photograph.

road towards turbine 3 or 4
Then. suddenly we went through a gateway, and everything changed... it felt like part Martian landscape, part motorway under construction.
You can just see a yellow vehicle, that was about to come roaring past us.  It was disorientating to say the least, and confusing - and we had no idea what had happened to the footpath! 

A video taken when standing by the hedge, showing the view seen in the two photographs before and after the video.

Road towards turbine sites
This was the view to the south of us, these roads were leading to the sites of turbines
Valley near turbine
Somehow we found our way across the "construction sites" and went down into the valley between Furse Park Plantation and Mark's Hill.

In the valley
This photo is one I took back in 2006, going up the slope out of the little valley, in the Pippacott direction.  This tree will be facing the turbine whose base you can see in the next photograph.

From the valley
This little valley was one of my most favourite places in the North Devon Hills, and I had not been sure whether the turbines would be visible from it, but if you look carefully you can see the white turbine base on the hill opposite.
Back at the bridge
The footpath led up to Pippacott and then we went down the hill. This was the view as we approached Knowlwater bridge from the Pippacott direction.  The once sweet meadow now looks like an industrial complex.