Jersey’s network of country lanes is largely unappreciated, especially by the extraordinary number of people owning huge 4x4s and similar monster vehicles, usually carrying only the driver. To them the tranquillity and windiness of the byways, compounded by the odd runner, is a nuisance to be tolerated before they emerge at last onto a wide, fast road.
Even though it’s just up the road I don’t believe I’ve ever been along Rue du Radier on the western edge of Grouville. It’s set on the higher ground with Longueville and St Helier falling away on the left as you head towards Boulivot. The first and most impressive property you come to is Radier, a huge old granite farmhouse and outbuildings that looks as if it will stand for another 1,000 years, mocking modern developments and office buildings which seem to have a shelf life of 30-50 years at best. A little way along and down to the left through eagle guardian gateposts is Radier Manor, home of Lord and Lady Jersey. You can’t see much of it from the road really, but the main house is in the Georgian style, angular and austere, painted an old-fashioned Jersey pink. The grounds are apparently very nice and it’s turning into a bit of a commercial venture down there. Pity it’s not open to runners (though one could innocently get lost I suppose.) Petit Radier is next, undergoing extensive refurbishment and extension and finally there’s Radier Barn which has already been tastefully modernised.
Over into the peaceful hamlet of Boulivot and its alpha building the typical Jersey farmhouse of Boulivot de Bas. Few visitors find their way to this quiet spot though the house named Maison du Soleil was the home of one of Jersey’s best known and infamous characters Edward Paisnel. From 1960 – 1971 there was a virtual curfew in Jersey’s countryside as a series of horrific night attacks were carried out on young women and children. It doesn’t say much for the standard of police work in those days – he was only eventually caught because he panicked when chased by a patrol car after jumping a red light.
But my running is rubbish just now and that’s it for today and I head home. I’ve already written off next Sunday’s 10k club race, no point in struggling around. And unless there’s a marked improvement the half marathon in three weeks time is also unlikely – but marshals are always useful! But I’m still enjoying my little barefoot strides session on Sunday mornings – again this morning (Sun) in gorgeous conditions at a virtually deserted FB Fields. 4(5x100m) with walk recovery this morning, concentrating on the forefoot drive-off and doing the final set at a 90%-effort sprint.
Miles on the week – 19.7
Miles ytd – 1,182.4