There’s a lovely old hedge close to home – interestingly unkempt and a mixture of all kinds of trees, bushes and shrubs. Unusually for this time of year, this morning there were small birds flitting between the branches and singing as though it was already spring. There aren’t a lot of hedges here in Ribblesdale, where those iconic drystone walls tend to dominate the scene. The Dales just wouldn’t be the Dales without those ancient walls; man-made but giving off a natural feel and perfectly embracing their surroundings. Last year I took a number of photos featuring the walls of Ribblesdale; including the one above in autumn just out of Langcliffe village and the one below on a beautiful summer’s day along Watery Lane in Settle. Just as with the hedges, walls provide homes, shelter and vital corridors for all kinds of wildlife – long may they remain part of our countryside.