There they were gone …
When we moved into this Victorian terraced house 30 years ago it was among many 100s even 1000s of houses in the area bought by young people who wanted to climb onto the ladder of home ownership. Scraping together enough for a deposit, then struggling to make the repayments and ‘do it up’ at the weekends. So for two or three years they replaced, doors, windows, kitchens that had been lovingly placed in the 70s when we were so keen to remove Victorian fixtures and fittings.
Although, this was not quite gentrification as we are experiencing now it was looking this way but it was short lived; those who could avoid to move to the leafy suburbs went a couple of miles out of town. A few like us remained having made significant modifications like a new roof and added a garden shed and then settled with our avocado bathroom suite. A 1970s phenomenon we prefered not to replace.
Now young people are no longer able to consider a mortgage, so the houses were bought by landlords and these little homes were renovated again, this time to be places of multiple occupation; perfect student accommodation.
Meanwhile, residents have enjoyed making their backyards desirable too, but sadly as more and more houses became ‘rented’ so the gardens were neglected; ivy ran rampant and sycamore trees grew to great heights some taller than the houses ; cutting out light and of course spreading more and more seedlings.
My garden is a joy and my relationship with the trees was love/hate, While they were not in my garden they did provide a barrier between us and the neighbours, they did attract some birds and squirrels but they covered the sun and were like gigantic umbrellas. So I had to plant accordingly; looking for shade loving plants and those prepared for drought like conditions.
Then something happened quite by surprise; the trees were removed. Almost all of the trees of various sizes have be chopped as if by magic from all the houses that back onto our back yard. I cannot imagine how this occurred it must have taken enormous planning and timing. One day they were there and the next they were gone.
Like I said I didn’t object totally to the monsters; so at first I was sad then I sensed the light and quiet … I had not realised how noisy they were. The light was beautiful but I was concerned about the birds they were constant visitors but would roost in the shelter of the great limbs.
In my garden I have native hedging plants and some small trees so I am hoping they will perhaps make use of these in the absence of our old friends.
So far it would seem that more birds are coming to the garden that is so light and airy.