Postcard of my photos of Hartslock Wood near Pangbourne in the Thames Valley

Great Chalk Wood and Hartslock Wood sit on the Chiltern Hills adjoining the Thames Valley near Pangbourne in Berkshire. Views as pretty as any in the hazy sunshine of late autumn, maybe a bit reminiscent of the valley of the Dordogne and Vézère in Perigord. Contrasts between the fine tracery of the trees and the geometric regularity of the man's interventions.

The Great Western Railway bridge over the river Thames was completed in 1840 and now looks part of the landscape. Railway electrification will reach this line shortly, with centenary wires and posts strutting above the metal rails.

The pill-box in Hartslock Wood was on the GHQ Line - Red  (General Headquarters Line - Red) which was part of a system of defensible positions intended to resist progress of an enemy invasion in the 1940s. Fortunately it was never tested; it’s easy to imagine the well-intentioned Home Guard of this affluent area feeling that they were doing their bit by standing guard in this attractive location in the woods alongside the river.