Thursday, 27 April 2017

rolling downward

The significance of this light fitting above will become apparent by the time we hit the pub!!  Read on ....
Our picturesque start on a sleepy Winster lane
and the intrepid carolling crew about to embark on our day's hike
Up to the top of Winster first - stunning views across the hills in the April heat haze
plenty of uber-narrow stiles to negotiate
Spring lambs galore
and soon it's close to lunchtime and Bonsall beckons
and YES - here's the real Bonsall Cross in the sleepy village of Bonsall
The replica lights line the lovely bar of the friendly King's Head
Replete with hearty home-cooked food, good ale and an impromptu chorus of Hail Smiling Morn, we head off on our path back to Winster, mostly along the Limestone Way
Although inevitably there are moments of navigational indecision!
Beautiful spooky tree moments
and plenty of blackthorn blossom (have I got that right Ian?)
Bumpy remains of the old lead mine workings that scatter these hills
and 'are we nearly there yet?' - yes!

and back in time for tea ......
What a wonderful day with a great bunch of friends and here's to our 2017 carolling season!

Tuesday, 25 April 2017


So we started the birthday with a tasty breakfast at the wonderful Fingers' Crossed
Then a happy meander in the April sun around East London
Had hoped to peek inside Bevis Marks, the oldest synagogue in London built in 1701 and tucked away in a little courtyard in the City of London.  Sadly it wasn't open for visitors on the day we were there - another time I hope.
Always love the graffiti
and the daredevil building construction
and our next stop was the historic Toynbee Hall
then back for a cuppa and a spruce up before our unforgettable birthday nosh at the amazing Otto's
the birthday girl
and a final nightcap at the classy Fontaine's in Dalston
And all too quickly it was the next morning and we bidding a fond farewell
under skies of blue
to an early morning Dalston
and a magnificent-as-ever St Pancras
Hasta la vista - and happy birthday!!

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

signs of the times

Our Sunday hike was pretty amazing too.

And loving these old signposts dotted around S35 and the upper reaches of S6.  Always marvelling that we have such incredible places within our wonderful Sheffield city boundaries.
 and just in case you weren't sure, this was on the opposite side of the road!!
fabulous old gates as we passed Edge Mount, beyond Oughtibridge on the Onesacre Road
and a stunning view of Agden and Dale Dyke Reservoirs
Setting off on our walk from Broomhead Hall, in the parish of Bradfield, and, wow . . . some googling reveals that the old bridge in Glen Howe Park was originally dismantled and moved there from the Ewden valley, before it was flooded many years ago to create the Broomhead and More Hall reservoirs for Sheffield's water supplies. Read about it here.
We searched and searched for an enclosure marked on the OS map - but failed to spot the Ewden Beck stone circle which I think is what the 'enclosure' meant.  Also on the map you can see the long earthwork we were about to reach marked very clearly marked.
 miles and miles of stone walls standing sturdy in the middle of nowhere - incredible!
and finally our the jewel of our quest, the impressive and ancient earthworks spanning three quarters of a mile above the little brook
and we bravely transversed it's whole length - sometimes needing to dip down into the dry river bottom - spectacular and we had this whole moorland to ourselves!  For all the world it felt like we were hiking down a smaller Hadrian's Wall!  And I guess this was probably Bronze age like the other similar remains in the area and used for defensive purposes.
If you read this Sheffield History discussion thread but skip down to 'Jeremy''s comments on "IV. The Bar Dike and Other Earthworks at Bradfield" you will read some fascinating theories about this particular earthworks.
in my master's steps I trod - ha ha
base stones of the earthwork, at the level of the beck
the construction certainly went deep - way below the 'modern' dry stone wall on the top today.  I can't find anything more about this particular earthwork, although the nearby Bar Dyke, which we visited last year, is scheduled and listed.
and on a completely different note - right at the end we discovered this brutal trap but have absolutely no idea what 'they' were trying to capture?  Obviously some poor creature who innocently traversed the log bridge!
and so we came back to the start with views across to Ewden Height
Then, on our drive home, we noticed the Canyard Hills, curious little bumpy hillocks on the side of a cliff edge.  We assumed they were old mines - but interestingly they are a rare geological feature - see article above!

That will have to be our next exploration.  Loving these retirement options!!