Wild Ways lies roughly in the centre of a long, narrow stretch of semi natural, ancient deciduous woodland. It is around 80 acres and runs along the eastern side of the Borle Brook valley. Borle Brook is a tributary of the river Severn. Much of the area is unmanaged and has been maintained as a wild life reserve for many years.
Wild Ways is a place people can come to detach from their normal mode of living.
It is dedicated to the world of nature, delighting in the wildness and eccentricity of what was, what is, and what is yet to be. Thus we have marks of the past, through the energies of those who have gone before. Melting glacier water formed the valley. The mists of time lie gently over an age when a human being dropped a flint hand axe on this land, around 400,000 years ago, before the last ice age. A Saxon name was given to its upper reaches, translating to 'Giant's lookout'. The ancient and primal past is still capable of singing its song to those who can listen. The Romans came and based themselves up river at Wroxeter, the local population were the Cornovii at that time. Lady Godiva once owned this land. White Ladies order of Augustine Canonesses paid their dues to Wigmore Abbey for the Borle Mill, below us and several 'virgates' of land adjoining it. White Ladies were a teaching order, working with the local area.
In 1945 my Grandfather, Ben Page and my father, Rowland Spencer Gregory attended an auction of the Netherton Estate of the local Squire of Highley, John Oakley Beddard. They bought neighbouring land and parts of each purchase form the present day Wild Ways. It was a few years later that my father married Ben Page's daughter.. my mother, Ivy.
The house was built around 1953. At that time my father and his two brothers were timber merchants owning a saw milling business in the 'black country'. Wild Ways was then worked as a smallholding, mainly raising pigs and chickens.
In 1992 the land passed to myself and with Garth Reynolds, my partner we have progressively improved the outbuildings and land, to provide basic, warm and comfortable facilities for small groups seeking a tranquil setting.
In the present Wild Ways in an off beat, quirky and at times, busy place. It has a mix of regular people, with a variety of interests. Work on the land is controlled by the weather and by which particular group is present at the time. There is also a balance to be kept between the natural world and the feet of human beings and we are always mindful of this.
Garth and myself and our regular people are free spirited, and follow our own paths. There is a creativity in the woodwork, ceramics, painting, photography, music, drum-making and other art forms which weaves and blends in its own special way.
We welcome other spiritual paths and have international friends and visitors from many different countries.
BORLE MILL BANK
© Wild Ways 2021