A murderer has gone to ground in these wilds, one who knows this landscape well and will be difficult to catch. Many other murderers, robbers and pillagers have preceded him. Let us hope that none follow.
As read this story, it took me back to 2006 and our own visit to the area. On our last day there, Ruth and I drove out towards the Northumberland National Park. As we drove west from our holiday home in Craster we came to sharply defined hill rising up out of the undulating landscape. Ros Hill – also known as Ros Castle – this was.
It looked like a good place to get a good view of the surrounding landscape, so we climbed the fairly steep hillside pathway and found ourselves at the top. Evidently we were far from the first to appreciate this vista.Sir Edward Grey no less – considered the author of the famous quote "The lamps are going out all over Europe. We shall not see them lit again in our time". Another reminder of violent times. Did Sir Edward find these views of this much fought-over land peaceful or quite the opposite?
These stone walls were erected simply as farmland boundaries. Most likely with stone pilfered from Hadrian's Wall. But this site was indeed a prehistoric fort, and the overlook in those days was probably quite different from today's neat fields and villages.To the east, the view stretched all way out to the North Sea, just visible on this overcast and hazy day.When traveling you have to take what light is available, and this place joins an almost endless list of others that I'd love to photograph under better conditions.
We lingered for a while, watching the clouds crossing the land. England is at its narrowest in these parts. You do not have to travel that far east to find the Irish Sea.As I climbed down, I felt very glad I had shared Sir Edward Grey's view. Perhaps looking at this land had given him the clarity of thought to foresee the carnage that World War One would bring. Today, I think of that murderer. Perhaps now he is caught and the little but just as hurtful and just as deadly carnage he has wreaked will have ended.