'Everyone needs nature' is a slogan of the National Trust and a very apt statement in these troubled times.

When I was at school our curriculum included nature study lessons, vital for children to appreciate the natural world.

How many schools include such lessons now I wonder.

In the first lockdown many people had more time to walk in open spaces for exercise and as a result, re-connected with nature, finding that by so doing, it lowered stress levels and improved physical and mental well-being.

The first lockdown took place in the summer and although winter is rapidly approaching, there is still much to see and enjoy if we look around.

Walking across meadowland and through woodland can have a calming influence. Autumn colours have lingered longer with some trees still clothed in glorious colours.

Even now a few lawn daisies are flowering in grassy areas and yellow gorse and jasmine look good.

Gulls are thronging lakes and rivers and it is amusing to watch them squabbling over bread thrown by passers-by. (pictured)

Mating swarms of winter gnats rise and fall above water, the sun glinting through gauzy wings.

With trees shedding leaves we can sometimes see bird's nests which we did not even know were there in summer.

Water birds are courting with mallard and mandarins seeking mates while swans do their best to chase away fully grown cygnets.

Squirrels breed early in the year and pairs can now be watched spiralling around up and down tree trunks.