Greetings From Broome
A few months ago, my Australian friend Kevon Kenna went on a driving holiday from his home in Melbourne to Broome in Western Australia. He sent me a lengthy trip report and some postcards. I promised him I’d visit the town’s namesake, Broome in South Shropshire, and take some photos in return. Yesterday morning, I caught the Heart of Wales Line train from Shrewsbury.
Kevon travelled to Broome by car – a journey of several days via Alice Springs and Kununurra in the Kimberley. My journey to Broome took less than an hour, and passed through Church Stretton and Craven Arms. A party of ramblers on the train were also getting off at Broome, so the single platform was quite crowded. A few moments later, they had vanished onto a footpath.
The Railway Terrace dates back to Broome’s heyday as a rail depot. This was the nearest access to the rail line for the village of Aston on Clun, and Broome is little more than an offshoot of Aston, which is just up the road.
The post lady is delivering the mail from her red van. The man has walked into Aston to pick up his newspaper.
The pub at Broome shows the hamlet’s railway origins.
A few minutes walk along a quiet road with flowers and butterflies in the hedgerows brings me to Aston itself.
Aston on Clun has a couple of unusual round houses. This shot shows one of them, along with the garage, the village shop and the inn. It’s a view that hasn’t changed a great deal for over a century.
You can compare it with Old photos from Shropshire Archives
Aston is an attractive little village. Its main claim to fame is its Arbour Tree, which is decorated with flags every year in May on Arbour Day. The tree is a native Black Poplar, a cutting of the orginal tree which came down in a storm a few years ago. There are twelve flags decorating the tree this year.
Including these two, sharing a flagpole:
Yes, this is a small village in the Clun Valley in South Shropshire, not a pearl-fishing town in western Australia, but somehow it seems there is a touch of Down Under even here.