No matter how long the winter, spring is sure to follow…
We like to have a stock of snow scenes which we use most years for Christmas cards. It involves a little bit of forward planning (too late thinking about it in August!) so three or four years ago, when we knew there was snow in the Peak District and Staffordshire Moorlands, we set off in search of it. With a flask of coffee, snow shovels and travel blankets, just in case, we headed towards Buxton but it was only when we were beyond Leek that we found the much sought-after snow.
Greetings from Flash, the highest village in Britain. This was once disputed by a village in Scotland but ordnance survey and the BBC got involved and confirmed that Flash was indeed the highest. Needless to say, it’s very cold here with a good covering of snow. The sun is shining thus giving us ideal conditions for photographing the snow. We are not venturing off the main road as the minor roads are not so good. Also staying fairly close to the car. Off to Buxton now for hot food and drinks!
A holiday on the Yorkshire coast never seems complete without a visit to Bempton Cliffs. The area is particularly popular with bird-watchers and its easy to see why. Choose a fine day though; it can be very windy on the cliff tops. (My ‘minder’ usually reminds me not to get too close to the edge!)
An enjoyable walk along the impressive cliffs at Bempton on the yorkshire coast. They run from Flamborough Head north towards Filey and are over 100 metres high at points. Over 250,000 sea birds flock here each year, many to find a mate and raise their young. From April to August the cliffs are alive with nest-building adults or young chicks taking their first faltering flights and from April to July the much-loved puffin makes its home here.
It’s always interesting for us to walk through Beresford Dale and enjoy the unique and tranquil atmosphere. Are we walking the paths our ancient ancestors once trod?
Beresford Dale is a beautiful part of the Dove valley on the Derbyshire Staffordshire boundary. It is associated with Izzak Walton and Charles Cotton, and the 17th century classic ‘The Compleat Angler or The Contemplative Man’s Recreation’. Here is Pike Pool, so called, as Cotton himself tells us because of the rock pike that rises out of the water.
A postcard from St George’s Park, the National Football Centre in Staffordshire. The extensive grounds are beautifully maintained and the overall impression is that of a centre of excellence, wellbeing and perfection. It therefore seemed strange that this tree had escaped the woodcutter’s axe (or chainsaw). I couldn’t help but think of The Crooked Tree story.
Once upon a time there was a crooked tree and a straight tree. And they grew next to each other. And every day the straight tree would look at the crooked tree and he would say, “You’re crooked. You’ve always been crooked and you’ll continue to be crooked. But look at me! Look at me!” said the straight tree. “I’m tall and I’m straight.” And then one day the lumberjacks came into the forest and looked around, and the manager in charge said, “Cut all the straight trees.” And that crooked tree is still there to this day, growing strong and growing strange.
Tom Waits. From the film Wristcutters – A Love Story
A quiet Sunday afternoon at St Pancras Station. The train home isn’t due for a while and there’s chance to enjoy the surroundings and photograph the interesting statue of Sir John Betjeman.
St Pancras Station is the gateway to London from the North and Midlands and also, as home to Eurostar, from mainland Europe.
It was opened in 1868 and is a masterpiece of Victorian Gothic architecture. Sir John Betjeman was largely responsible for saving it from demolition in the 1960s and this larger than life-size statue of him looking up at the magnificent roof is a fitting tribute.
The statue is standing on a disc of Cumbrian slate inscribed with Betjeman’s name and dates and the words “Who saved this glorious station”.
And here’s what he is admiring…