Farne Islands ~part 1

The Farne Islands are a  group of Islands off the Northumberland coast, scattered about 1 & 1/2 – 4 1/2 miles from the mainland, and Sophie and I went on a day trip with Billy Shiels boats, to Inner Farne. The earliest inhabitants were celtic monks, first recorded in 651, when they became home to St.AIden followed by St.Cuthbert. Cuthbert isolated himself on the islands until he was called to the bishopric of Lindisfarne, but after two years he returned to the solitude of the Inner Farne and died there in 687, when St.Aethelflod took up residence instead. Among other acts, Saint Cuthbert introduced special laws in 676 protecting the eider ducks, and other seabirds nesting on the islands; these are thought to be the earliest bird protection laws anywhere in the world. Today the islands have no permanent population, the only residents being National Trust bird wardens during part of the year: they live in the old pele tower on the Inner Farne, (the largest and closest inshore of the islands), and the lighthouse cottage on the Brownsman in the outer group. The pele tower was built c.1500, by or for Thomas Castell, Prior of Durham.

I love going on boats, so exciting 🙂 I took the Fuji XT1 with me, but also the Nikon S1 as I hadn’t yet got the new zoom lens for the XT, and the one I have for the Nikon is 110mm whereas the XT kit zoom is only 55mm.

This chap was sitting on the harbour wall before we set off.

Just chillin'
Just chilling’ (Fuji XT1)
In the harbour at Seahouses
a boat in the harbour at Seahouses (Fuji XT1)
Off we go
Off we go (Fuji XT1)
The Farne Islands
The Farne Islands (Fuji XT1)

all the white stuff down the cliffs is bird poo, and boy as you got nearer to it it really stank!

bird poo
bird poo (Nikon S1)
on the edge
on the edge (Nikon S1)
long lenses out
long lenses out (Nikon S1)
You must remember this A kiss is just a kiss... :)
You must remember this
A kiss is just a kiss… 🙂 (Nikon S1)

The islands also hold a notable colony of about 6,000 grey seals, with several hundred pups born every year in September–November.

seals (Nikon S1)
Site of the former lighthouse on Brownsman Island (Nikon S1)

The Farne Islands are associated with the story ofGrace Darling and the wreck of the Forfarshire. Grace Darling was the daughter of Longstone Lighthouse Keeper,(one of the islands’ lighthouses), William Darling, and on 7 September 1838, at the age of 22 years, she and her father rescued nine people in a strong gale and thick fog from the wreck of the Forfarshire, which had run aground on Harcar Rock. The story of the rescue attracted extraordinary attention throughout Britain and made Grace Darling a heroine who has gone down in British folklore

Longstone lighthouse in the Farnes from where Grace Darling and her father launched their rescue.
Longstone lighthouse in the Farnes from where Grace Darling and her father launched their rescue. (nikon S1)

We had a good journey out, variable weather, and took about an hour to get to the Island as the Cap’n took us on a tour around the Islands to start with before landing us on Inner Farne, the pictures from there will be on the next post.

laters gaters


15 thoughts on “Farne Islands ~part 1

  1. Wow Fraggy how awesome!!! Did I miss something? What kind of birds are those? Stinking up the rock;)) . I’ve seen other pics of this particular area, and I always though they were some sort of penguin…stop laughing;)!
    I’ll be waiting for your next installment;)! As I sit here trying to get mine together;))


  2. The new layout looks great! the old lighthouse photograph… there are so different layers of colors in the ground and the sea, in general I think this maritime places are so pictorial that photographs can look like, in the good meaning of the word, paintings, beautiful landscape, I love that kind of weather with wind. Thank you 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The white on the island gives it a “snowy wonderland” appearance. It’s hard to believe that’s all excrement!
    Forgive my ignorance…what kind of bird is in the first photo?
    I really like the “site of the former lighthouse photo” because it shows just how much movement was going on with the rough seas, the wind and the birds soaring above it all. Fantastic!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. You are putting out some really great photos these days! Sorry to bring up the bird poo, but that’s crazy!! I’ve never seen anything like it, and who would ever imagine it would smell? Though that does make sense that it would. Looks like you’re getting to do a lot of travel lately. That’s great!

    Liked by 1 person

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