In this episode of the Sound Vault: Voices podcast, we join residents of the civil parish of Yateley in north-east Hampshire, as they revive the ancient custom of “Beating The Bounds” of the parish.
The event took place on Rogation Sunday (29th April, 2018), and as well as explaining the history behind the custom, and talking to some of the organisers and participants, the podcast captures a soundscape of the walk – footsteps, birds, water, breeze, urban and country life and other interventions.
Join us as we walk through avenues and alleyways (many lined with bluebells); alongside and through common land, farmland and heath; across runways and between gorse; along and over ponds, lakes and tracks – and a railway line and a river. And past many people’s homes.
Listen out for some of our favourite sounds at around 19m 57s (bird song at the the bottom of Fry’s Lane); 20m 51s (the faster flowing river under the bridge at Mill Lane); 26m 41s (the railings and the buzz of the electricity pylons near Moulsham Lane), 29m 25s (runways and gorse); and 29m 38s (flying machines – insects, and what for me is one of the signature sounds of Yateley, small planes flying above Blackbushe Airport).
A big thank you to the Blackwater Valley Countryside Trust for organising the event, and giving us permission to record the podcast; to Tony Spencer (the Mayor of Yateley) for the original idea to record the soundscape (and for much of the information contained within it), and to Andy Teo, for his permission to use many of his photographs. While recording the soundscape, a lot of participants mentioned the Yateley Walking Group, so it only seemed fair to give them a ‘plug’ too.