Embleton Bay ~ April 2019

Sophie and I are both members of English Heritage and the National Trust (saves a heap of money as we visit so many of their places) and so we receive emails from both advising us of events and so forth. Consequently we were quite excited to get an email from NT exhorting us to visit Embleton Bay and see the bluebells that festoon the dunes there. Wow, we thought, bluebells next to the sea, how cool, lets go! So off we went on a sunny spring day to shoot the flowers.

To get to the bay you drive past the village and up to Dunstanburgh Castle Golf Club where there’s a free car park. You then walk past some sheep in a field and then across the golf course.

We are noticing Northumberland flags everywhere we go this year, this is a new thing!

A little trout stream, known as the Embleton Burn, begins in the inland moors, makes its way through an area of the old barony, woody denes, and channels, before reaching the centre of the bay.

Embleton Burn

We were not the only ones out with our cameras, and we stopped and had a nice chat on with this lady who had come over from the west coast to shoot Dunstanburgh Castle. But she wasn’t happy that there were no clouds so the sky was too boring.

Found some interesting seaweed that wouldn’t look out of place in a sc-fi/horror movie!

Codium Fragile (Deadmans Fingers)

A couple of lovey dovies

or maybe The Embleton Strangler!

The bay itself is really long and beautiful.

Looking North

Those little dark boulders at the bottom of the photo above are whinstone. Whinstone is a term used in the quarrying industry to describe any hard dark-coloured rock. Examples include the igneous rocks, basalt and dolerite, as well as the sedimentary rock, chert. There is also a whinstone reef which you can’t see as it’s under the sea 🙂

Looking south there is the rear side of Dunstanburgh Castle,

Dunstanburgh Castle and the boring sky 🙂

Apparently there is a large sandstone rock known as ‘The Vanishing Rock’. As the tides come and go and the sands shift to and fro, so this feature moves into and out of view, as befitting its name. Nothing unusual in that, you may think; but this particular rock has the name “Andra Barton” chiselled into its surface, in rough but distinct lettering. Sir Andrew Barton was High Admiral of Scotland around the turn of the 16th century, who, acting under the protection and in the name of the Scottish Crown, made something of a nuisance of himself to the Portuguese and the English upon the high seas. In short, he was considered a pirate by non-Scots, or a privateer, at best. He was defeated in battle with the English in 1511 – some reports have him slain in the fight, others that he was captured and beheaded. The loss of Barton did not go down well with the Scots – one of many grievances which led, eventually to the clash at Flodden in 1513. I have no idea why his name is on the rock.

However the rock was last seen in 1974 and it didn’t reappear this day!

Visible rocks

You may have registered that the last three photos are taken from a high point of view, and that’s because we were walking the length of the dunes looking for damned bluebells which had also vanished, if they ever existed.

We did see other things of interest though.

Peeping WW2 pillbox
A pillbox is a defensive concrete dug-in guard post with slits for guns to poke through (known as loopholes). About 28,000 pillboxes and other hardened field fortifications were constructed in England in 1940 as part of the British anti-invasion preparations of World War II. About 6,500 of these structures still survive.
Consolation flowers!

Some of the dunes were really steep, this chaps two mates had run down before him whooping and hollering, but he made a right meal of it!

Sophie and I went the long way round 🙂

Apart from the disappointing lack of bluebells it was nice to be beside the seaside 🙂 . We only did an hours walk but then went off to see Embleton Church which has some interesting features and we’ll visit that next time, so stay tooned peeps!


Teeside Nature Reserve~2017~part 3

Part 1 HERE.  Part 2 HERE.

After walking through the meadows we got to the coastal side of the reserve, and the mouth of the river Tees

of course there were doggies



came across a washed up crab whilst looking for sea glass

and we wandered up to the pier to take some shots of the sea which was a beautiful blue and green

After, we walked back to the car, and went off to see the seals at the appropriately named Seal Sands, and they’ll be the next post so

stay tooned!

Day 59~366

Phil and I went for a little stroll down on the coast by Souter lighthouse, sun was shining but low in the sky as it was late afternoon, and I got a few shots.




The two little shadows on the rock coming  up are us 🙂


This one is my shot for today


someone left flowers on a picnic table near the car park.


Tomorrow is my last day of B&W, and I’m over in Cumbria for work, so hopeful to get some shots of mountains!

The sunday Fraggle report 11/1/15

Christmas and New Year are well gone now, decorations are down and back to full on at work. The weather has been pretty meh so Monday- Wednesday were not inspiring for photo’s, but Thursday perked up with a clear blue sky and the sun out. It was cold though so I wrapped up warm and went for a walk on Littlehaven Beach at South Shields. This was my first chance to use the new polaroid outdoors, but like a twit I forgot to take a new film with me and only had 2 left in the camera. I did have my Iphone and the Nikon too so I got a fair few shots all in all.

So let me take you on my walk…

First through the dunes to the beach, taken with the VSCO camera app on Iphone.

pathway ~ iphone5

then looking left towards the groyne pier and lighthouse.

Littlehaven beach
Littlehaven beach ~ iphone5

walking towards the groyne, Tynemouth Priory in the distance

Ocean Rover~Nikon D700

and then on to see the Herd Groyne Lighthouse..

Herd Groyne Lighthouse
Herd Groyne Lighthouse ~ Iphone5

The lighthouse was built in 1882, and made of iron, the history of it is quite interesting ( and short!) so if anyone is interested CLICK HERE 🙂

Then I turned back to walk up the other way on the beach and to look for sea glass, which I’m collecting each time I go there, eventually when I retire I’ll hopefully have enough to make a mosiac garden table top or similar. Of course you can’t shoot directly into full sun and get a decent picture, but I took one anyway and processed the heck out of it!

into the sun
into the sun~Nikon D700

then along the beach looking for sea glass..

wiggley sand~Nikon D700
wiggley sand~Nikon D700
Harbour Mouth
Harbour Mouth~Nikon D700
seaglass! ~Nikon D700
seaglass! ~Nikon D700

Took a shot of the view back to the lighthouse..

lighthouse & gull ~Nikon D700
lighthouse & gull ~Nikon D700

and came across too old boys with a metal detector..

metal detectives
metal detectives~Nikon D700

I had a chat and asked them if they’d found anything, and they showed me some metal things and told me they were Roman tile holders. Wow I thought, how cool to find roman relics in the sand. When I got home and googled roman tile holders, they are not ancient roman relics at all, Roman is just a style name of some tile holders and you can buy them in any hardware store. Haha numpty me. 🙂

The Weebles live near Littlehaven beach so I went forf a quick visit, can never resist a few shots of them,

Weebles~Nikon D700
they came for the sun...Nikon D700
they came for the sun…Nikon D700

and then I found a new sculpture that has been put up nearby..

The eye
The eye~Nikon D700
the Eye
the Eye~Nikon D700

I like the view to the sea side best. The words are from an old traditional Northumbrian folk song.

As I walked back to the car the sun was sinking low enough to backlight the long grass..

Nikon D700
Nikon D700
Nikon D700
Nikon D700

and that was the end of my walk.

And the weather has been atrocious ever since. But I did some more polaroids which I’ve put in my SX70 project, and today did a collage of ‘tools of my trade’ for the Sunday Challenge theme.

Audiology! ~Nikon D700
Audiology! ~Nikon D700

Phil’s been on nights all week, so have had a quiet week, and he’s got a week off now whilst I’m battling the howling winds going to work, I used to be very jealous he gets 6 weeks holiday a year and I get 2 if I’m lucky, but now I work part time it’s not so bad. I still call him Father Christmas though. 🙂


laters gaters 😉