Walking (or riding a bike as I do) along the length of the Wom Brook as it passes from east to west through Wombourne, you may well see several rope swings. Having been brought up in a rural environment myself, it was a common feature during long school holidays to join with a group of other youngsters, track down some sturdy rope, and then the best climber amongst us would scramble up a suitable tree, tie the rope to a sturdy branch, while others in the meantime would find a thick branch to act as a seat for the swing.
As I recall there was little argument while we all engaged in that purposeful activity, and we all took turns on the swing later. No adults were on hand to urge caution, or to supervise us.
On a recent check of the bridges in part preparation for the signage to be fixed to some of them, I met the young people in the above photo-all enjoying the use of the home-made swing, quite happily engaged in their activity, with no one seeming in any hurry to return to a PS2, X-Box or engage in mischief!
How many of us reading this will recall a similar engaging experience, as no doubt would our parents and their parents before them. Such green spaces as adjoin the Wom Brook enable such activities to be perpetuated. Hopefully when the young people in the photo become parents themselves, they too will encourage their children to continue this age-old tradition.