Thursday, 20 November 2014

A tribute to June my next door neighbour.................. and the hole in my fence

My next door neighbour passed away a few months ago and I think it's time I gave her a tribute.
We shared a fence... a fence that stopped her little dog from running away.


A fence that has been shared all over the world.
June was in her 90's when she passed away... nursed at home she died in her own bed.

I first met June chatting over our garden fence in April 2005.
90+ years of age but what a past... a Vogue Magazine model in her youth.

She passed away in May... we didn't even know she was ill.
She had called around one morning and gave Mandy this lovely little pottery wren.
" I am having a tidy up" she said... " It's for Andrew I know he loves the birds"
It now sits on top of my PC and I will treasure it for ever.

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

How many lakes are there...................................... in the English Lake District?

Our boat trip on Windermere... on the last day of our recent break.

The English Lake District is well known... but how many lakes are there in the National Park?

The largest lake is popularly known as Lake Windermere... it's correct name is just Windermere.
Our trip was on one of the smaller launches.

Lake Bassenthwaite.
The only named lake in "The Lakes" is Lake Bassenthwaite in the north.
So the answer to the popular question "how many lakes are there in the Lake District" is one!

Crummock Water.
The larger lakes are known as meres or water, with the smaller ones named as tarns.
Well known examples are Coniston Water, Ullswater, Buttermere and Blea Tarn.

There are almost 100 named bodies of water in the district... with many more unnamed small tarns.

Windermere is over 11 miles long and they have bigger launches doing longer cruises
 We had fantastic weather on the day... a great end to our holiday.

Skywatch Friday

Monday, 17 November 2014

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Hawkshead......................... walking in the footsteps of Wordsworth and Potter

During our recent trip to Cumbria we caught up with some of the local history.
The South Lakes are full of historic places... our day out to Hawkshead was like a school day

Hawkshead Grammar School dates from 1585

The Grammar School with the village church behind.
William Wordsworth was educated here from 1778...  his desk with his carved initials is on display.

The church sits on a hill behind the school with views over the village to the mountains beyond.

It has a wonderful interior... the pillars are whitewashed but not over the ancient script and design.

Hawkshead has some really quaint cobbled streets to wander around.

The local pubs are well worth a visit... bed and breakfast accommodation is everywhere.

This was the office of Beatrix Potters husband William Heelis a solicitor.
It is now a museum and gallery showing off some of her possessions and art works.

Hawkshead has some wonderful shops...this is Mandy emerging from one to tell me she has just tasted the best home made marmalade ever... and we need to buy some.
We did and it was!

Linking to Skywatch Friday and Our World Tuesday

Monday, 10 November 2014

Views of Morecambe Bay......................................... from our holiday apartment

A few weeks have passed since our holiday in Grange over Sands.
I am still sorting through my images.

This was the view from our living room window.... Morecambe Bay.

 We had my scope with us and watched the Gulls, Curlews, Oystercatchers, and Little Egrets feeding on the sand banks from the comfort of our sofa.

The view of the bay from the promenade at low tide.

Grange has pay telescopes along the promenade... it made me smile to see they were made in Crewe.
Crewe is just a half hour drive from my house... which is over 100 miles from this spot.
Hopefully I will have more holiday snaps to share soon.

Saturday, 8 November 2014

At last!........................................................................................................................

My local garden centre was selling off some novelty bird feeders a while ago.

I bought this one and filled it with peanuts... and for a few weeks saw nothing!

I replaced the peanuts with a couple of fat balls today... and instant success.
A Blue Tit feeding on a Blue Tit.

Linking to Camera CrittersThe Bird D'pot and Wild Bird Wednesday

Thursday, 6 November 2014

John Lewis stores 2014 Christmas advert.............................................................

Monty the Penguin and Sam

I have shared the Christmas adverts of the John Lewis store for the last four years.
This years is another lovely watch and a great piece of marketing.

Just released today (6th Nov) it has already had over 4,000,000 hits on Youtube.
Sung by Tom Odell who squeezes every drop of emotion out of the lesser known John Lennon song "Real Love"

Our World Tuesday

Sunday, 2 November 2014

Another new feeder for the garden................................................. Flutter Butter

 I have just bought a new bird feeder that hopefully will be a favourite of the Tit's visiting my garden.

 Flutter Butter

The jar screws onto the hanging feeder... and the birds just peck away.

 I hope to share some images of my garden birds feeding on it... but it will have to be next weekend.
It's now dark when I get up to leave for work... and dark when I get home.

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Ulverston....................................................................... birth place of Stan Laurel

Ulverston... images from our recent holiday trip.

The town is well known for the Hoad Monument (it's a replica of Eddystone Lighthouse)

Stan Laurel was apparently born in Ulveston... he is their most famous son.

There is a Laurel and Hardy museum in the town... it's in an old cinema.

Mandy wiggling Ollie's tie... he didn't blink an eye.

Linking to Skywatch Friday and Our World Tuesday

Sunday, 26 October 2014

My gardening companion........................................................................................

I haven't been out and about this weekend... just chilling at home and tidying up the garden.

Robins love it when you disturb the soil and bring up worms and grubs... so follow you around.

Wonderful little garden friends... always lovely to see.

Linking to Our World Tuesday and Wild Bird Wednesday

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

A day trip out...................................................................... to Lyme Hall and Park

I am still catching up with sorting through images of our recent holiday... 
...the first week was spent up in the Lake District and week two visiting local attractions.

Lyme Park is only an hour from home and as members of the National Trust it's free to visit.

The 1995 BBC series Pride and Prejudice was filmed here... 1995? Wow! time really flies.
If you know the series this is the lake where Mr Darcy takes a swim.

You aren't allowed to use cameras in the house so I can only share the exterior.

It was raining on and off... but they did loan out umbrellas.

Mr Darcy even gets a mention on the brolly... it does rain a lot in Manchester.
Lots more to share... and hopefully more of the deer rut this coming weekend.

Skywatch Friday

Thursday, 16 October 2014

The Red Deer Stags preparing for the rutting season..........................................

It's taken me ages to edit this down to a watchable couple of minutes.
Noise from the airport and dogs barking... it's driven me mad.

The opening shot shows the deer park at Tatton... it's over a 1000 acres and dates back to 1290.

Red Deer Stags wallow in the mud... get grass on their antlers to make themselves look bigger and roar and bellow to see whose the loudest to impress the ladies.
If all goes to plan this weekend may bring some real aggression between the big males.

Watch the last few seconds to see how impressed this female was... she made me smile.
 Fingers crossed I hope to get back this weekend and record some of the action.

Linking to Saturday's CrittersCamera Critters and Our World Tuesday

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

A cheap camera and not a care in the world................... it's a wonderful image

This is one of my partner Mandy's images captured last week... 
...she isn't here for a few days so I might get away with sharing it.

I introduced her to photography and she snaps away no problem but has no real interest in the outcome.
I show her the results and blog comments when shared and she is chuffed to bits (pleased) but that's all.
Her pleasure is all about watching nature...and enjoying the great outdoors.

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Not afraid to get pecked.......................................................................... or bitten!

My best friend Mandy has no fear of wildlife... these images were captured over the last 24 months.

The jetty is at the bottom of her dad's garden on our local waterway the River Weaver.

 On this trip to Reedesmere we ended up giving away the breakfast cereal we had just purchased.

The swans enjoyed their treat...

... some a bit more than others!

Juvenile Herring Gulls like biscuits... they really do peck!

The squirrels in Chester are so trusting...

...though we don't encourage doing this in the garden.

 Feeding the Black-headed Gulls during our latest holiday to Cumbria.

...too quick for me this time.

Bar-headed Geese... another greedy species and very vocal.

Mandy does insist on wearing gloves sometimes... and not just to keep out the cold.

She also enjoys being behind the lens... and is getting some fantastic images.
I hope to share some of those soon.