RICHARD WILLIAMSON Country Walk...Nutbourne Shore

This stroll of 1.6 miles (2.5kms) is short and sweet on a summer day, to hear skylarks and smell the seashore and the saltings flowers.

Limited roadside parking down Cot Lane off the A259 south of Nutbourne SU788045.

Footpath west into hedge rue between fields, noting bristly oxtongue and the grass called wall barley traditionally associated with older human settlements.

After passing the fingerpost you will see other plants such as large scabious and agrimony. Shrubs include spindle and buckthorn; the first having pink seed cases to buckthorn black bitter berries.

At the end of rue large long leaves of horseradish mark this unusual plant.

Note sweet chestnuts off to the right.

Mind the deep-cut leaves of hemlock growing in the ditch to left.

There is also teasel, and the soft stemmed plants fleabane once used to dispel fleas. It has yellow flowers. Also great willowherb in the ditch.

The dense hedge to left with blackthorn is where chaffinches, linnets and greenfinches breed.

You come to the seawall now and pass a rare plant with wiry pale green stems, about a foot tall. This is corn parsley.

Nutbourne marshes nature reserve is home in winter to the diving duck red-breasted merganser and goldeneye. Also surface feeding ducks wigeon and teal.

At low water the mudflats hold large flocks of wading birds that feed on the rich fauna of snails, worms and other animal life.

You would see in autumn-spring, curlew, redshank, dunlin, ring plover, grey plover, green plover.

In summer, terns and black-headed gulls feed at high water.

Turn right along the seawall. Sea beet grows along seawall in dense clumps.

Sea rye grass in thick stands too, and large clumps of common mallow, which has purple flowers on long strong stalks.

Cinguefoil and stonecrop are growing very close to the ground.

Turn sharp right on fingerpost after 450 yards into the wheat fields.

Skylarks breed well in these arable fields and the male sing well into July for the second broods.

They start singing at 2.30 in the summer dawns.

Walking back to the road you should see field bindweed with its small candy-striped bugle flowers low on the edge of the field.

Turn right at road down Cot Lane back to your smart and dependable Eurobob which could last as long as the Morris did if it wasn’t for all those computers inside it programmed to shut down after ten years. Enigma had only just been invented when the Morris was planned.