Tuesday, April 26, 2016

The 'Tour de Yorkshire' Is Coming To Doncaster

A short walk visiting the villages of Pickburn, Brodsworth, Hooton Pagnell, Stotfold, and Thurnscoe.

The 'Tour de Yorkshire' cycle race is coming to Doncaster on Saturday and I was hoping to walk through several of the pretty villages along part of the route. It's forecast to rain pretty much all day and so I decided to do the walk today. Unfortunately, after a glorious start, the weather deteriorated and by the time I got off the bus back in Doncaster Town Centre it was hailing, followed by sleet.

So...I only reached one of the villages along the route, Hooton Pagnell, one of my favourite places; it was bedecked with blue and yellow bunting and there were blue and yellow spray-painted cycles everywhere. I had great fun tracking them down; I photographed all of those I found and have included most. I had intended to keep a tally but I forgot to take pen and paper with me; I lost count in my head after two quite long conversations with a cyclist who was doing this stretch of the route in the reverse direction, and the jolly old lady who lives in Corner Cottage, possibly the most beautiful cottage in the village. 

I got off the bus at Pickburn and took a roundabout route using a couple of footpaths to reach Brodsworth.

I walked through the village and then took a footpath which zigzags up the hill to reach a field of rapeseed. The path continued in a straight line through the crop; it looked as though the path had only just been cleared by the farmer because there was a significant amount of stubble remaining. A field of rapeseed is not nice to have to walk through, it ruins your clothes with the oil and the unpleasant smell. I doubt this field would have presented a problem though since there was a fallow field only a few yards away which could be walked across.

There's a shallow valley across the middle of the field, interestingly the rapeseed on the south facing slope was in bloom and bright yellow, whereas the north facing slope wasn't. Fascinating...for me to observe anyhow.

More photographs of Hooton Pagnell now, this time not featuring any bikes.


I'd made an early start this morning and so although it was only eleven o'clock I ate my sandwiches sitting on the seat at the top of the steps which lead up to the church. You can see them in the bottom left corner of the final photograph.

I could see, and feel, the bad weather approaching, and so made a decision to cut the walk short and take the footpath to Thurnscoe to catch the bus back home. 

Sunday, April 24, 2016

A Week Of Nice Weather

There's been some lovely days this past week and I've not been out walking. I've been busy; I had somewhere to go, or someone to meet, every day. I'm not complaining though...that's just how I like it.

I've been to Leeds twice to meet friends in a couple of different pubs, spent all one day in a meeting at Rotherham, helped with a presentation at Sheffield, stayed in Doncaster on Thursday because my brother was visiting me and it's my usual day to meet up with Justin [who features on the previous post about Bakewell Book Fair] and today I'm going to the theatre here in town; I've been invited at short notice.

I had planned to visit North Lees Hall at Hathersage for the Open Day today, but obviously I'm sitting at home tapping my computer keyboard. 

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Bakewell Book Fair

My friend Justin is interested in buying and selling antiquarian books and so when he found out about this year's Bakewell Book Fair he invited me to join him. I checked online and there would be several stalls selling the type of books [and maps] that I'm interested in...so I decided to join him for the day.

Justin said the book fair was quite small; nonetheless we still spent an hour there and I bought an old [1960s] Ordnance Survey map of the Doncaster area for £2.

We then had a fish and chips lunch and looked round the shops; I even snapped Justin enjoying himself on the riverside just after he'd been tormented by several dozen ducks and geese.

The next time we have a meal in Bakewell Justin mentioned that he fancied trying the Tiroler Stüberl; it certainly looks attractive from the outside.

Monday, April 11, 2016

A Day Out To Derby On The Train

I went with my friend Justin, who's slightly disabled and struggles a bit at times. We used Derbyshire Wayfarer Tickets which were able to purchase for half price, £6.15, because we have ENCTS passes. 

The first photograph was taken in the old market hall, which was half empty; the second photograph was taken in the large indoor shopping centre with a name that I've already forgotten which consisted of a three letter acronym beginning with the letter 'I' and sounded as though it might be an offshoot of the Islamic State. The three kidney-shaped objects I photographed in the shopping centre, I think they're seats, but they're very low; so low that I used one of them to place my foot on so that I could re-tie my shoelaces.

By lunchtime Justin was really tired and although I knew that there were several suitable pubs up the hill towards the cathedral we needed to eat at the earliest opportunity, and so popped in to Walkabout, an Australian-themed pub. The meal, and the soft drinks, were rather poor.

I took a photograph of a display of surfboards attached to the wall.

We visited all of the charity shops; I bought a new pair of trousers for £5.79 and a couple of secondhand jumpers for £1.99 each, and Justin bought a video, 'Bikini Ski School' [which I've struggled to say correctly every time I've tried.]

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Second Visit To Chatsworth House

I had a lot more success photographing the interior of Chatsworth House today; the first two photographs were actually taken in the public toilets though, but don't look out of place.

I was the first person to enter many of the rooms and so took the opportunity to ask the members of staff some questions. I received very detailed and informative explanations which covered such wide-ranging subjects as tulipmania and the problems caused by long frilly sleeves when eating with a fork.

Conditions outside in the gardens were poor for photography, it stayed fine, but at times was quite dark....the sun did briefly pop out though.

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Pikehall, Ballidon, Parwich, and Newhaven

Another walk with Chris from Leeds; he only walks with me during the summer months. As usual I travelled to Fox House where I met up with him; he arrived just as the bus was pulling in to the bus stop...good timing that.

We drove down to the free car park on the High Peak Trail at Pikehall. This section of disused railway line is also a short stretch of the Midhires Way, and the Pennine Bridleway. We walked in a southeasterly direction for about a mile before taking a footpath which led to a tunnel going under one of the railway embankments.

It was still raining when I took the first two photographs; it cleared up later though and by mid-afternoon was a glorious day.

The top photograph is an old crane that was used on the railway, the other one shows a building known as 'The Chapel.' It's not a chapel though, even though it looks like a Methodist Chapel; it's actually an old pumphouse where a steam engine was used to power the drills in a nearby quarry.

We walked down a quiet picturesque dale and then a quarry road to reach the small village of Ballidon. The next section was across the fields to Parwich, it was very muddy in places; Chris doesn't like the mud and is very careful where he puts his feet so not to get mud on his trousers. He was more successful in this endeavour than I was [I wasn't trying that hard though - I knew I wouldn't get the car seat dirty because I'd put on my overtrousers when we got back to the car]...but he was still splashing himself with mud and dirty water. 

A change of route was needed, a change that ended up adding three miles to the walk. 

It had stopped raining by the time we reached Parwich. We ate our sandwiches sitting on a bench in the churchyard; the area of the village near the church is pretty, but the rest isn't particularly attractive.

We left the village and walked along the Limestone Way to join the Tissington Trail just north of Tissington itself. This involved crossing a pretty valley, finishing with a strenuous climb up to the disused railway.

By now it was getting quite bright and I was able to take some good panoramic shots of the countryside as we walked in a northerly direction for the next four miles.

Just east of Biggin we left the trail and walked along a short path to reach Newhaven; there's a nice building here that looks like a hall, but that's it really...it's just a busy crossroads , a pub, and a few houses. We walked along a narrow country road for about half a mile and then reached the High Peak Trail, which we followed back to the car park. At one point I commented that the countryside over to the left looked like the steppe country of Eastern Europe, Chris said he thought it resembled the Prairies in North America...I think they are probably very similar landscapes.

We got back to the car just after five o'clock; several hours earlier I said the plan was to finish the walk at this time...so I'm happy with my pacing.