Watergate Forest Park ~ October 2022

Sophie and I had our last outing for a while at the end of October, and we went to visit a park in Gateshead to see some Autumn colour, hopefully at least.

The Watergate Colliery pictured at the top there, started out in the 1800’s, and was finally shutdown in 1917. Unlike Washington, which as we saw last week got it’s own museum, Watergate was left alone until reclamation work began in the 1990’s, and the site was transformed into a recreational park having a series of trails and paths that take you through woodland, around the lake and through wildflower meadows.

It was a bit chilly, but still a nice day with some sunshine now and again, and we did get some autumn colours. I had my Fuji and my contax with me but have yet to finish the roll on that, so here are the few I took with the Fuji.

Details of a memorial to the miners.
a deer on the edge of the forest
Sunshine and doomcloud!
“Dancing of the autumn leaves on a surface of a lake is a dream we see when we are awake.” Mehmet Murat Ildan
fluffybum
“There is a harmony in autumn, and a luster in its sky, which through the summer is not heard or seen, as if it could not be, as if it had not been.” Percy Bysshe Shelly
“Autumn mornings: sunshine and crisp air, birds and calmness, year’s end and day’s beginnings.” Terri Guillemets

Be like a duck. Calm on the surface, but always paddling like the dickens underneath. Michael Caine

“Look with open eyes, and you will see the beauty of the waterfall.” Anthony Hincks
How beautifully leaves grow old. How full of light and color are their last days. – John Burroughs

So there we are. Not sure if Autumn has gone and Winter arrived yet, I can’t tell because of all the bliddy rain we’re having, and the forecast is for 2 weeks of it!

Stay tooned dear reader!

📷 😊

The Washington ‘F’pit museum ~ October 2022

So much of the North East is dedicated to its industrial past, none more so than the mining industry, and my regular reader will have seen various memorials along my photographic journies recorded here. The Washington ‘F’ mine pit has been restored so you can see it in action, and as Sophie was in Spain when it had an open day, I dragged Phil along with me and let him use my fuji XT2 whilst I did the iPhone shots and a couple of videos.

First though, as always,

The History Bit. ☕️ 🍪

In December 1775, a banking and mining tycoon from Sunderland called William Russell, leased all the coal underneath the village of Washington. There were two other leasers, those being the Lords of the Manor of Washington, one of whomst was Robert Shafto. Appropriate name thought I. Shafto ~ mine-shafts, you see? Robert Shafto was a member of parliament who used an old British (possibly Irish) folk song in his election campaign ~

Bobby Shafto’s gone to sea,
Silver buckles at his knee;
He’ll come back and marry me,
Bonny Bobby Shafto!

Anyhoo, I digress. A series of pits were sunk in the leased area, known as “the royalty”, and imaginatively labelled A to I, and they would comprise the New Washington Colliery.

They started hoying out the coal in March 1778 and transported it to Sunderland by waggonway; a horse-drawn railway. By 1786 another waggonway ran to the Tyne, meaning Washington coal could be exported by ships on both the Wear and the Tyne. The ‘F’ pit was sunk about 1777 but got flooded in 1786 after an explosion, and so was abandoned. Roll on 1820 and it reopened, presumably after the water had soaked in, and in 1856 it was deepened 660 feet, (200 meters) to reach the Hutton seam and it became the most productive of Washington Colliery’s nine pits. Seams were given names with a bit more pzazz than the pits. In 1954 it was deepened again this time to reach seam ‘Busty’ 🤷‍♀️. By the 1960’s new owners had taken over and modernised the colliery, and also by then a Labour government had nationalised the coal industry. The colliery was no longer owned privately, but by the National Coal Board (NCB).

By the mid-1960s it was annually producing 486,000 tons of saleable coal and had a workforce of over 1,500. But it was to be the pit’s last hurrah.

The NCB had a programme of modernisation which didn’t include Washington. All of its remaining pits including ‘F’ closed on Friday, June 21, 1968. Following closure the NCB presented the pit’s winding house (the building containing the huge coil of steel rope that raised and lowered the lift) and headgear to the people of Washington to honour their mining heritage. I’m sure they all appreciated that when they were queuing up at the dole. (The dole:- Unemployed and in receipt of state benefit.)

In the 1970s the Washington Development Corporation took up restoration of the steam engine. It’s recognised as a unique example of 19th century mining machinery: a twin-cylinder horizontal type Simplex for one of the earliest colliery shafts in England. In April 2013 Sunderland City Council took over the Grade II-listed building. Visitors can see the steam engine used to wind the lift up and down. It was once steam operated, but now works from an electric motor for demonstration purposes.

On with a few photo’s and a couple of short videos.

artwork in the entrance.
I have no idea what it does.
the huge coil of steel rope that raised and lowered the lift

the flux capacitor
Automatic Expansion Gear
shiny metal bits
more shiny things and the flux capacitor.

Two very short videos of what it looks and sounds like. The twin-cylinder horizontal type Simplex steam engine.

Mining was, is, such a hard and dangerous job even now, I wouldn’t want to spend all day 600 feet underground digging stuff!

All photos can be embiggened with a click.

Anyways that’s it, stay tooned for wherever next!

📷 😊

Guisborough Priory ~ part 2 ~ Oct 2022

As I mentioned in PART 1 the priory was home to the De Brus family cenotaph. That has since been removed and placed in St.Nicholas Church just by the priory. After we’d been around the priory Sophie and I toddled off to the church and were hugely disappointed to find that it was closed. I think that’s a first for us, so far all our church visits have had open doors. I suppose that’s because they’re mostly rural, so no-one around much whereas St. Nicholas is in a town. So we decided instead to go to lunch and I took a few pictures on our walk to the café.

This early 18th century building was a hotel called The Buck (hence the deer on top of it’s porch) before the Solicitors moved in.

The Buck

Formed in 1849 The Zetland Masonic Lodge is still going strong today. I was never sure what Freemasons are all about but learnt a fair bit from Fred and Barney 🤣

Zetland Masonic Lodge

Smokin’ Joe’s cocktail bar only opens at 4pm sadly, or I’d have been in like Flynn.

Smokin!

We had lunch outside by what I think was a rivulet coming out from under the road and going through a channel next to a footpath, I should have taken a picture but it was a bit grim, and after a nifty panini and cappuccino went back to the car to head for the Owl Center . As I drove down the road past the church I noticed the front door was open. Luckily there were a couple of parking spaces right by the church so I quickly parked up and Sophie and I hot footed it to the church. We met a chap inside and found out he was an electrician fixing something and the church wasn’t really open. I gave him the googly sad eyes thing and explained we’d come a long way to see the cenotaph and he said we could stay a little bit to photograph it. Which was cool, but we didn’t have time to explore the church.

The De Brus Cenotaph was possibly erected by Margaret Tudor, the Queen of Scotland, to mark the 400th anniversary of the foundation of Gisborough Priory. It was erected inside the priory church in memory of the De Brus family of Annandale and Skelton. Made of marble quarried at Egglestone, it takes the form of a Renaissance altar table, with exquisitely carved sides.

The north face of the cenotaph is carved with five figures of De Brus family members from Skelton, separated by the Four Doctors from the Bible; Jerome, Gregory, Ambrose, and Augustine. In spite of a childhood where Sundays were church~school days, I can’t remember ever hearing of the four doctors. I think maybe they were Catholics and we didn’t do them. So I’ve looked them up and in early Western christianity they were not Doctors of medicine or surgery, but rather great teachers of faith. (Edit:- the Doctors were not in the bible -thanks April- so that’s why I don’t remember them!)

North

The south face shows five de Brus family members of Annandale, separated by the Four evangelists; Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. I do remember them, just about.

South

The east end shows a prior with kneeling canons. The west end has been damaged, and I couldn’t get round to photogrpah it, but historians think it may have depicted a king, possibly King Robert Bruce of Scotland.

East

On the floor next to the cenotaph is a collection of medieval mosaic floor tiles found in the grounds of Guisborough Priory. 

And that is the end of our day out in Guisborough. Stay tooned for wherever we go next!

(photographs taken in Guisborough with my Contax Aria loaded with Portra 400, photographs in the church taken with my fuji XT2.)

Guisborough Priory, ~ October 2022 ~ Part 1

Sophie and I do like a good ruin, and whilst not overly spectacular in comparison to Tynemouth Priory Lanercost Priory, or Mount Grace’s Priory, it’s still very much worth a visit. The best bit about it for me, is the history, which has a lot to do with the Pesky Scots, and we’re looking at the ancestry of the Peskiest Scott of all, Robert the Bruce, though he had nothing to do with the priory sadly.

The History Bit ☕️ 🍪 *Long post alert*

Guisborough Priory is a ruined Augustinian monastery founded in 1119 as the Priory of St.Mary by Robert de Brus, 1st Lord of Annandale, (1070–1141)a Norman feudal magnate, Lord of Skelton, and one of the largest landowners in the north, owning more than 40,000 acres in Yorkshire alone. The priory became one of the richest monastic foundations in England with grants from the crown and bequests from de Brus, other nobles and gentry and local people of more modest means. The Bruce clan, are all descended from our Bob the 1st.

The family name is derived from the place name Bruis, now Brix, Manche in the arrondissement of Valognes in the Cotentin Peninsula, Normandy. Which means Bob was a Pesky Frenchman before his progeny became Pesky Scotts. Bob was mates with King Henry 1st and had been with him at The Battle of Tinchebray in Normandy, in 1106 which they won. He’s mentioned several times in historical surveys and documents witnessing charters from Lords to churches, and being gifted lands by an Earl and King Henry and it may bore you to death if I list them all but if you’re that way inclined you can click on the details arrow and see that.

What is known clearly is that this Robert de Brus is first mentioned during the period 1094 and 1100, as a witness to a charter of Hugh, Earl of Chester, granting the church of Flamborough, Yorkshire, to Whitby Abbey. Possibly the Earl of Chester in about 1100–1104 pledged Robert of certain portions of his Cleveland fee in Lofthouse, Upleatham, Barwick, Ingleby, and other places. Between 1103 and 1106 Robert de Brus attested with Ralph de Paynel and 16 others a charter of William, Count of Mortain, to the abbey of Marmoutier. In 1109 at a Council of all England held at Nottingham, he attested the charter of King Henry I confirming to the church of Durham certain possessions which the men of Northumberland had claimed. During the period 1109–1114 he appears in early charters in possession of numerous other manors and lands in Yorkshire, and in the same period he attested a charter of Henry I issued at Woodstock, Oxfordshire. He appears in the Lindsey Survey made 1115–1118 in possession of even further lands. There is a strong presumption that the King had given Robert his Yorkshire fee soon after the battle of Tinchebrai (28 September 1106). Robert was present at the great gathering of northern magnates at Durham in 1121, and sometime during the period 1124–1130 he was with the King at Brampton. About 1131 he was in the retinue of Henry I at Lions, in Eure. At about the same time he attested with three of his personal knights a confirmation with Alan de Percy to the monks of Whitby. It is said that Robert had been given some 80 manors in Yorkshire by King Henry. It is evident that Robert kept up his connexions with other Normans too. A member of the Feugères family, of Feugères, Calvados, arr. Bayeux, canton of Isigny, witnessed charters of this Robert de Brus circa 1135 in Yorkshire.

So our Bob was doing very well for himself in England and France, hob nobbing with Lords and Earls and the King, but had also become a ‘companion in arms’ with a Scottish chappie, brother of the Scottish King Alexander, called David FitzMalcolm, who was in France with Bob and King Henry in 1120. Dave must have got on well with the King as Henry allotted him most of the Cotentin Peninsula in Normandy. Our Dave then succeeded to the Scottish throne after Alex’s death in 1124, where upon he bestowed the Lordship of Annandale upon his good ol’ battle~pal Bob’s shoulders. There’s no evidence Bob ever lived there though, so he missed out on the Annandale Whisky Distillery and lovely scenery and hills with names such as Devil’s Beef Tub.

Well dear reader now it all goes to ratshit. King Henry died and we get King Stephen who I’ve written of before but here it is again as I know you’ve forgotten him. -Stephen was the grandson of William the Conqueror, and when Willy Conk’s son King Henry 1st died leaving the succession to the throne open to challenge, Stephen hot footed it over the channel to England and with the help of Henry, Bishop of Winchester, took the throne, before Henry’s daughter Matilda got her little graspy hands on it.-

King David was not a fan of King Stephen but supported Matilda so he took advantage of the chaos in England due to the disputed succession there, and he took the chance to realise his son’s claim to Northumberland. Our Bob was very unhappy at this, and the friendship was over, with Bob bitterly renouncing his homage to David before taking part on the English side at The Battle of The Standard in North Yorkshire in 1138. Bob pleaded with Dave, asking him to remember how earlier he and other Normans had persuaded King Alexander to give part of the Scottish Kingdom to him. But to no avail. Bob’s family split, witih Bob and his eldest son Adam fighting for England, whilst his youngest son, Bob 2, with his eye on his Scottish inheritance, fought for Scotland. Though only for 3 1/2 hours as Henry’s forces won that one. Bob took Bob 2 prisoner!

Two years later, at the grand age of 71, Bob died whilst at Skelton Castle. As the founder of Gisborough Priory, he was buried inside the church, in the place of honour between the Canon’s stalls in the Quire. Priory histories record his death and his burial there. He was survived by his wife Agnes, and his children. Robert’s son, Adam de Brus, Second Lord of Skelton, would be buried there in 1143, and his son Robert, Second Lord of Annandale, would be buried there after his death in 1194. Both the Scottish and English sides of the family would be laid to rest there, the last being Robert de Brus, Fifth Lord of Annandale in 1295. Eventually a great Cenotaph would be placed there honoring the Brus Family and commemorating its most famous descendant King Robert Bruce of Scotland, Bob 5’s grandson,


It was a dry day with clouds coming and going and Sophie and I had a good wander around the grounds. Photos taken with my Contax Aria, loaded with a roll of Portra 400.

The priory and the community prospered, rebuilding the priory on a grand scale at the end of the 12th century and again after a catastrophic fire in 1289. Then Henry VIII happened and the Dissolution of the Monasteries in 1540, and Guisborough suffered. The priory buildings were demolished and the stone re-used in other buildings in Guisborough. The east end of the priory church was left standing with its great window forming a distinctive arch, a well-known landmark used as a symbol for Guisborough. It became part of the estate of the Chaloner family, who acquired it in 1550. The east window was preserved by them as part of a Romantic vista adjoining their seat, Gisborough Hall, from which the priory takes its name. It is owned by the Chaloners but is in the care of English Heritage as a scheduled monument

Remains of the east wall of the priory church. Regarded as one of the finest examples of late-13th-century church architecture. 
the cellarium

The priory buildings stood at the centre of a walled precinct arranged in two courts, inner and outer with gatehouses at the entrances to both; the remains of the great gate of the inner court are extant but the outer gatehouse no longer survives. The gate comprised an outer porch, an inner gatehall and a porter’s lodge on the ground floor with chambers above the arch. It survived intact into the early 18th century but only the outer porch remains.

The remains of the outer porch of the great gate.

Land immediately south of the priory was used by the Chaloners for formal gardens attached to Old Gisborough Hall. In the early 18th century they planted an oval-shaped double avenue of trees, the Monks’ Walk, where stonework recovered from mid-19th century excavations was deposited. In between the trees was a manicured lawn used to hold musical and theatrical productions. The Monks’ Walk fell into disuse and became overgrown but is under restoration by the Gisborough Priory Project.

The Monks Walk
stonework recovered from mid-19th century excavations.

There is an octagonal dovecote just to the west of the grounds, built in the 14th century, it was modified in the mid-18th century with the addition of a pyramidal roof tiled with Welsh slate and capped with an open-sided timber cupola. The original nesting boxes have been removed and the dovecote is used as a garden store.

Well done if you got through all that!
Stay tooned for Part 2 next time.

Kirkleatham Owl Center (2) October 2022

We’ll finish looking at purdey burdies today , first part HERE if you missed it 😊.

I have no idea what this one is. He looks like a cross between a teradactyl and a porcupine.

Porcadactyl.

This one’s easy, Kookaburra. A chap was feeding them some fish through the wire cage but I’m not posting that as it looked quite disgusting, and smelled the same!

Chubbychops

This one was bobbing up and down on a branch like she was dancing

Lady Blue Eyes
The Yellow winged upside down tit.

Pelicans are so comical!

Burrowing Owls are found throughout open landscapes of North and South America. They can be found in grasslands, rangelands, agricultural areas, deserts, or any other open, dry area with low vegetation. And in North Yorkshire can be found in a drainpipe,

Leggy Larry

Focus was a bit off here sorry, but no matter, you can still see he’s a Spectacled Owl. They roost in the canopies of rainforests and gallery woods, where assailants are few. It eats almost anything; during one lurid encounter in Panama, one slaughtered a three-toed sloth, then feasted on its mangled body. The bird is aptly named for the bandit-like mask around its eyes—black spectacles on a fleecy white head for the young, white frames on a dark head for adults.

Mr.Magoo

No clue what this one is, definitely an owl though, and has a great name!

Fraggle 🙄

The beautiful Snowy Owl

Finally, blerk, I had the wrong lens on to get this Great Siberian Owl all in, so concentrated on doing a close-up. The bugger closed his eyes every time I took a shot. I still like this shot though.

Awkwafeather

So that’s it for Feathered Fauna with Fraggle. The rest of our trip into North Yorkshire was shot mostly on film, but will feature on this blog and the Fragglefilm blog. So stay tooned, have your notebooks and pens at the ready, we’ll be doing History again! Yay!

📷 😊

Kirkleatham Owl Center ~ October 2022

Sophie and I had a grand excursion Southwards to visit some places in North Yorkshire, and one of those places was the Kirkleatham Owl Center in the borough of Redcar. It’s a conservation place and they look after all sorts, guinea pigs, rabbits, snakes, reptiles, but mostly birds. I am not a fan of caged birds, even in big enclosures, but also love seeing the colourful birds we don’t have over here, owls and birds of prey, close up, so am always a bit torn about them. These people look after, and give a home to injured ones.

I stupidly forgot to write down what each bird is, though I can recognise a couple, so sorry for that, and if anyone recognises one, feel free to comment and I can add it.

Peacock
Bambino Peacock
Fluffy McFluff~Face
Fred and Ginger
Bunny
Mr.Blue
Black billed fancy pants
Lovebird
Tango

That’s it for this week, short and sweet 😊, I’ll be back next week with more purdy burdies. 🦆 🐓 o stay tooned.

North East Art Trail ~ 02

At last Sophie and I did an outing together yesterday, and we went on our 2nd Art Trail gleaned from the Art UK website, this time South of the rivers, and starting out in County Durham at a place called Ferryhill where we were to find 3 artworks. It’s a nice little town, built around the mining community in the early 1900’s. Of course the mining industry went tits-up ages ago, and the last mine at Ferryhill closed in 1968.

Our first ‘artwork’ on the list is Cleves Cross and I would beg to differ in it’s designation. It’s not an artwork in my lexicon, such as it is, as we’re looking at a lump of sandstone.

Cleves Cross

However, the lump of sandstone is a fragment of a 12thC medieval cross, set in the ground near the original site, and roughly shaped and with pecked marks. So there’s that.
Several theories exist as to how Ferryhill got its name and the most popular theory is that in the 13th Century, Sir Roger De Ferry (or Ferie), killed the last wild boar near Cleves Cross – certainly the seal of Sir Roger De Ferie still exists and shows a Boar passant. We parked up in De Ferie Court and saw these road signs ~ which do look more like artwork but are not listed on the Art UK site.

Sir Roger and the boar.

Our next artwork, has the lofty name of ‘Beacon of Europe’. Commissioned by the town council, designed by Robert Olley and Bill Kataky then built by the North Eastern Granite Company Ltd. Bearing in mind that County Durham voted overwhelmingly to Leave the EU, I found it rather sad.

No light left.
    The circular brick base has decorative paving, featuring the 12 yellow stars of Europe.
    On each side of the base is a rectangular, etched granite panel with images of a wild boar, a sunrise, a miner and pit pony and rail tracks.
    The centre of the arch contains a fibreglass relief of a miner inserted into the skeleton of the old town hall clock.

    We started working our way back up to Sunderland, (where Sophie lives when in England) with our first stop being at the little village of West Cornforth, known locally as “Doggie” though where that name came from is anyone’s guess. It may relate to the fact that dog irons were made there at one time, which seems good enough to me. We were looking for an artwork called Past and Future, by artist Philip Townsend, which turned out to be two large blocks of buff sandstone that are carved on their front faces with depictions of life in the mining community, set in what looked like a kids playground.
    The block entitled ‘Past’ is inscribed at the top with the words, ‘the past we inherit’.This sculpture, shows a ‘worm’s eye’ view of a scene from the past in which a miner, just returned from work, with his whippet at his feet, is about to release a racing pigeon into the air. In the foreground, sitting on the pigeon basket is his young daughter who is tempting another bird with bread, while to the left a factory chimney releases its swirling smoke, encircling the scene. The block entitled ‘Future’ is inscribed at the top with the words, ‘the future we build’. In this second sculpture, we have a ‘bird’s eye’ view: the years have passed and the young girl is now an elderly lady but still tempting the birds with her bread, while her skateboarding grandson has a pigeon feeding from his uplifted hand.~ Art UK “(He’ll be eating it next at the rate our country is going to the dogs).
    I’m glad they put that on the website as I wouldn’t have worked it all out for myself!

    The Past We Inherit.
    The Future we Build.

    Not listed on Art UK, but in the same park as the Past and Future, there was this..

    see you later…

    So off we went to our next place, Quarryington Hill, another mining village ( there’s a lot in County Durham!) for another mining related artwork, though this one was quite spectacular and informative. As with Past and Future, ‘Into The Depths’ is also by Philip Townsend, and the sculpture comprises two massive triangular blocks of Dunhouse Buff sandstone, base-heavy and tapering in thickness, which sandwich a central Iroko hardwood column.

    The column is surmounted by a depiction of a pit wheel with a tiny figure of a miner standing before it.
    running down the length of the timber, the coalmine’s shaft is shown to the same scale as the figure, with the eight coal seams worked during the mine’s long history crossing horizontally, their individual names and depths alongside, giving the viewer an inkling of just how far below ground these men worked.

    Back up to Sunderland, we went looking for ‘Delegation’, a sculpture by Tord Kjellstrom with glasswork by Creative Glass Ltd, of seven towering figures; the highest being 7.9 metres tall. Each is capped with a glass light box and shaped face. You would have thought 7.9 meters tall would be easy to spot, but it wasn’t. We went to the given postcode and ended up in the carpark of a business park. A little man in a yellow coat came out to see if we were lost, (um possibly) and when asked about the sculptures directed us to a wildlife park which had to cast iron obelisks at it’s entrance, which were not photographically pleasing. We did some more searching on the interweb, and headed back to the carpark to start again, but spotted them whilst we were on the way. Apparently “the sculpture really comes into its own at night, when the light boxes illuminate the eyes on the faces.” ~ Tony Campbell, managing director of Creative Glass. Might be easier to find as well!

    Delegation.

    We then went off to Doxford Business Park on the outskirts of Sunderland, to track down two artworks, Quintisection by Robert Erskine was the first. It’s a large, polished stainless steel sculpture based on the cross-section of a ship.

    A curved ‘hull’ is set on either side of three ‘boxed ribs’.
    This piece was awarded ‘Best Sculpture outside London’ by the Royal Society of British Sculptors in 1995, needs a bit of TLC now though.

    We couldn’t find the other one in spite of driving and walking around the park, so that will have to be tracked down on another day.

    Our last art work isn’t on the Art UK site, but Sophie had spotted it whilst walking to work at the university. There isn’t any information about it, it’s just appeared without fanfare in the garden area of the art department there, so Sophie thinks maybe it’s a student thing. The plinth is permanent, but the statue is new. It is quite powerful, it would be good to know the thoughts behind it, but then again, you can have your own.

    Unknown artist.

    All pictures embiggenable with a click!

    And that, dear reader, is that. Stay tooned for whatever comes next!

    📷 😊

    Scotland ~ 2006

    I was recently reminded (thanks Eddie) of a trip to Scotland Phil and I took during the holiday bit of my audiology training. One of the ladies I trained with had a rental flat (appartment) on the Royal Mile and let us use it for a weekend. I was a point and shoot photographer back then, knew nothing about photography and didn’t have a great camera nor any editing software overmuch so the photos are not up to my usual standard, but it doesn’t really matter to me, good memories are enough.

    a glimpse of the flat

    The flat fronted on to the Royal Mile, but the back of it overlooked a cemetery.

    We spent a day wandering about the Mile, and other bits of Edinburgh.

    We also decided to climb Arthur’s Seat. Arthur’s Seat is a mahoosive ancient volcano, now a big hill, and is named so because of the legends about King Arthur (although King Arthur was mostly Welsh but born in Cornwall by the looks of things, all of which is moot as he wasn’t a real person anyway). Anyhoo I presume in one of the legends he sat on top of this hillock and that was that. You can just about make me out in the first slide, then some views above the city.

    Also in 2006, a movie came out based on the controversial novel of the same name by Dan Brown, The Da Vinci Code, and though we hadn’t seen the movie, we had read the book and decided to visit Rosslyn Chapel, which became quite famous because of both the book and the movie. At the time we went the movie had only just been released, so whilst there were a few others there, it was nice to wander around, take photographs and enjoy our time. Unfortunately they were in the middle of renovations so the roof was under polythene, not making the outside of the building very photogenic. Fortunately, the influx of a gazillion idiots movie~tourists meant the chapel could then afford to pay off and finish the restoration. Unfortunately now you have a to book tickets prior to going, currently £9.50 per adult, and can only have a 90 minute time slot, and no photos allowed. Boo hoo. Of course they have a gift shop so you can by postcards of the chapel, and the Dan Brown book, they certainly did not look a gift horse in the mouth!

    Here are some reasonably terrible photos of the inside of the chapel, including a couple of the Green Men carvings, of which there are said to be over a 100 at Rosslyn.

    Phil wanted to visit the battlefield at Culloden. This was the final confrontation of the Jacobite rising of 1745. On 16 April 1746, the Jacobite army of Charles Edward Stuart was decisively defeated by a British government force under Prince William Augustus, Duke of Cumberland, a ruthless chap who was known as the ‘butcher’, on Drummossie Moor near Inverness in the Scottish Highlands. It was the last pitched battle fought on British soil and, in less than an hour, around 1,600 men were slain – 1,500 of them Jacobites. I am not going to expound on the huge history of it all, you can watch Outlander to get the gist. It started out as a row over who would be King and ended with a terrible aftermath and persecution of anyone with Jacobite leanings.

    When we visited we were the only ones there, parked up on a windy rainy day and wandered the battlefield, Phil told me the awful history as we walked round looking at all the commemorative rocks where clan members were buried. It was bleak. They were not so easy to see or find.

    Mixed Clans
    The memorial cairne at the centre of the battlefield.

    One year later the National Trust for Scotland took it over and from the website HERE you can see they’ve done a lot to the place, including an award winning visitor shop (there always has to be a shop) a visitors centre/museum with a roof garden, and a café. They’ve recarved the buriel stones and put up flags to show which clan was where and paths to show you around the field. Of course it would set you back £14 to get in now but I never mind paying when it goes to the upkeep of history. Might get to revisit one day, who knows?

    On our way from Edinburgh to Culloden we stopped at some places, firstly we pulled off to see a rainbow over Loch Lubhair

    then drove on to Glencoe, where the Glencoe massacre took place in Glen Coe in the Highlands of Scotland on 13 February 1692. An estimated 30 members and associates of Clan MacDonald of Glencoe were killed by Scottish government forces, allegedly for failing to pledge allegiance to the new monarchs, William III and Mary II.

    Our next stop before reaching Culloden, was at Urquhart Castle, on the edge of Loch Ness. We didn’t have time to explore as this journey was all done in a day, but I did call in to one of the shops and picked up a Nessie.

    Souvenir Nessie

    Then we headed back to Edinburgh, a long old day we had, and then home the next day. We packed a lot in 2 days! I would love to re-do this little holiday, with my Big Girl cameras so it’s on my bucket list!

    Stay tooned in case I do somewhere else for next week!

    📷 😊

    Pot Luck Travels

    Tynemouth Market ~ August 2022

    Regular visitors will have seen a few posts from Tynemouth Market over my past 9 years on WordPress, there’s always something to photograph and it’s a fab place for great coffee, interesting foods, daft purchases and funny looking people. For those who are new here, or have forgotten, the market takes place in Tynemouth Metro station, the station is also a Grade II listed building which opened in 1882 as a railway station. It later became the first section of the Metro network in 1980, making it a great attraction for local history buffs. (Metrospotters?) Anyway with Sophie back in Spain, I decided to go looking for vintage spoons for a photo I need to do, and Phil came along as there are plenty of vinyl record stalls to browse.

    I took my Contax of course, so there’ll be a Film Friday post at some point, but I also took my iPhone and used the Hipstamatic app to photograph anything/one I fancied that took my notice.

    Just at the entrance there’s a small section of floor tiles that are cracked and blue, which I hadn’t noticed before today

    the blues

    I love the light in the market, the glass panelled roof makes some great shadows when the sun is shining.

    shadows
    in the navy.
    got the blues
    in the pink
    decisions, decisions.
    wooden hearts.
    Bone Idol

    I think it takes a fair bit of courage to stand at the top of the steps on your own singing to a herd of people who are not interested and don’t give a monkeys, but she needed to be a better singer to grab any attention. Also The New Seekers songs are a bit beyond 🙄 .

    busker lady

    I accidentally pressed the shutter at the bottom of the stairs, but I like the result

    happy accident

    I have no idea what this musical dummy is for, I don’t think it can be for dressmaking judging by the boob area, you could rest your drinks on that ledge!

    Booby Doll.

    I am not sure why this fellow is dressed in the (pesky) Scottish National Costume, but he does look fetching I think.

    Foxy Scotsy
    actual health and well being.
    Phil purchasing tat 🥴 🤣 ♥️

    That’s it for this week! Stay tooned for where/whatever next time!

    😊 📱