Category Archives: lancashire

Photo An Hour ~ February 2020.

Hello, I haven’t done much blogging recently due to the weather and a persistent cold ( now happily on the way out) , so I thought I would join in with Janey and Louisa’s #photoanhour challenge on Instagram. Here is a photo taken every hour on a rainy Saturday in February.

8am ~ A bed full of pets. Hugo snuck up to wake us up this morning. Slinky sleeps upstairs anyway.

9am ~ After trying to sleep in we are up and Wil oven baked the Tesco frozen almond croissants from the freezer. A yummy breakfast.

10am ~ Out and about with Hugo in blustery wet conditions.

11am ~ That was a battle of a walk! Discovered my waterproof pants have given up and I’m sodden. We are back home and these are the snowdrops in the back yard.

Noon ~ Changed the bedding and no sooner had I done it……..

1pm ~ Tomato and 3 bean soup for lunch.

2pm ~ A few errands in town.

3pm ~ Half hearted attempt to tidy some drawers.

4pm ~ Just a chillin type of day really. Closed the curtains and shut the world out.

5pm ~ Hugo is also chilling.

6pm ~ Made Tuna pasta bake for tea.

7pm ~ Watching the film Dunkirk for the first time. Enjoyed it. My favourite characters must have been the father and son team who went out in their little boat to rescue allied troops, and of course Tom Hardy’s brave pilot.

8.15pm ~ But watching Dunkirk made me completely forget about my Saturday Night Guilty Pleasure! At least I caught the last 15 minutes of ‘The Masked Singer Final’ and saw Hedgehog & Queen Bee revealed…..

9pm ~ Bought this lovely candle earlier in town. Watched a bit more telly before bed.

Hope you are keeping safe in the stormy weather.

❀️

Birds, Cats & Squirrels ~ RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch 2020. πŸ¦†πŸ¦πŸΏοΈ

This is my third year of noting down the birds in my back yard for the RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch. I don’t know how, but I somehow ended up doing it a day early on Friday. In reality you were supposed to join in on Saturday or Sunday or even tomorrow, so there’s still time if you want to record the wildlife in your garden. You can submit your results online here. Anyway I don’t suppose it matters , me being an early bird. πŸ™‚

All ready with my mug of Bird & Wild Coffee. I somehow totally forgot to use my new RSPB mug!
Male House Sparrow.
House Sparrows.

Unfortunately I did not get the variety of species that I have had in previous years. The birds are definitely still around but chose not to appear in the hour. I ended up recording 9 House sparrows ( at least I can depend on them! ) and erm, 1 Mouse. Oh and I had to shew a neighbors cat away. My own cat Slinky was happily snoozing on the bed.

Just like last year I joined my sister, niece and nephew for their Big Garden Birdwatch, which we did this afternoon. We counted 4 Bluetits, 2 Coaltits, 3 Chaffinch, 2 Robins, 1 Great Tit, 2 Nuthatches, 1 Grey Squirrel and 2 Pheasants. Similar to 2019 except no Dunnock or Long Tailed Tits. A flurry of Long Tailed Tits typically showed up after the hour , but we of course couldnt include the latecomers.

Female Chaffinch.
Bluetits and Coal Tit.
My Sister’s families new addition. ❀️
Birdwatching. 🐦
Acrobatic Nuthatch.
Grey Squirrel.
Still tucking in.

Little Walt the new kitten joined us for the birdwatch. I have a feeling he might want to do more than birdwatch next year though. But isn’t he adorable! Maybe we can ask him to scare off the naughty squirrel who hogged the bird table…..

Are you going to do the RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch?

Sea & Snowdrops in Lytham.

Monday was one of those bright cold days, perfect for a trip to the coast. It’s been a long time since we visited Lytham so we headed for the Lancashire seaside town, parking not far from the windmill on the Green. The Windmill is open to the public in the Summer , so we could only admire it’s sails set against a winter blue sky.

After a walk along the marshy grass and pebbled beach ( Hugo racing round like a demented dog) we found a cute cafe on Clifton Street in town called Bijou for lunch.

Lytham Windmill.

 

Two anchors entwined. Caught in the nets of a fishing vessel in the eighties, these were from shipwrecks one hundred years earlier.
Black-tailed Godwits ( Limosa Limosa in Latin).

 

Lytham Windmill.

 

Friendly white faced Sea Dog.

 

Tractor.
Sea front Bench.

 

Welsh Rarebit.


It is the Clifton family that resided in Lytham’s grandest residence , the Grade 1 listed Georgian built Lytham Hall on the outskirts of town. After lunch we headed there as I had heard it’s grounds and cafe are popular with dogs and their owners. It’s a bit of a walk from Lytham, but there is a car park if you’d prefer to drive.

The snowdrops are just starting to bloom in the gardens and grounds. In February there are so many that popular Snowdrop Walks are held every weekend throughout the month. The Hall and cafe and gardens have a friendly community vibe with a gardening club, book and antique sales, park runs and guided house tours. I think it’s somewhere we will return. πŸ™‚

Lytham Hall.

 

Garden Courtyard.

 

Garden Hub.

 

Solitary Snowdrop.

 

And bunches of snowdrops. πŸ™‚

 

A pond in the grounds.

 

Lytham Hall from the Paradise Garden.

 

And from the Mount.

 

Bracket Fungi.

 

Look out for Lytham Halls Snowdrop walks in February..


So that’s my idea of a happy January day. Sea Air, Blue Skies and Snowdrops. πŸ™‚

Sunday Sevens 17th November.

Hey there I’ve just had a week off work ( not that I am putting in many hours at the moment, it’s the quiet period before Christmas) so I thought I would join in with Natalie’s Sunday Sevens.

We took a few days off to spend time at the caravan. Definitely noticing the cold more there now though. Having bought hot water bottles and an electric blanket ( oh yes!) we should be toasty enough on our next couple of visits, before we close it down for the winter. Did a couple of walks including a circular 4 mile route from the Bowder Stone at Rosthwaite to Grange. I can now tick this large Andesite Lava boulder off my copy of 111 Places In The Lake District That You Shouldn’t Miss. πŸ™‚

We also had a wander up to The Beacon Tower which stands on a woody fell above Penrith. That morning the skies were a brilliant blue!

Wil booked us into the Haweswater Hotel for a night as an early birthday present. Hugo here looks a bit like a Devil Dog. πŸ™‚

And here he is at the caravan watching Wil make a cheeseboard. His eyes are on the prize!

We gave in and bought a TV and blu ray player for the van. We don’t have WiFi up there so no Netflix etc. A chance to get reaquainted with our old dvds! Watched two seasons of the fun flatmates comedy Spaced from 1999-2001. It’s hilarious!

This aft I went for Bottomless Brunch at Escape in Clitheroe. My friend Fi brought her daughter Bronte ( here she is above with her god mother’s πŸ™‚ ) and she proved very helpful in ordering us our ‘ bottomless’ glasses of Prosecco from the bar downstairs. Without her I’m not sure our Bottomless Brunch would have been very bottomless! Not the best service but a pleasant afternoon out anyways.

All in all I have had a very nice Birthday week. πŸ™‚

Thanks for dropping by. ❀️

Everyman Cinema ~Holmes Mill, Clitheroe.

Although my heart belongs to small independent cinemas ( see my post about The Palace in Longridge) ,it has been hard for me to resist the twinkly lights of a shiny new Picture House , recently opened in my home town. The Everyman Cinema chain prides itself on its lifestyle choice ethos ~ watch a film from a comfy sofa with food & drink orders delivered straight to your seat. All this comes at a price of course. Including an online booking fee , a movie ticket will knock you back £12-85. A friend and I decided to take in a midweek Downton Abbey matinée, a guilty pleasure in itself. 😁

The new Everyman Cinema is situated at Holmes Mill , just a stone’s throw from my house. Already home to a beer hall, food hall, bistro & boutique hotel ,the sympathetically converted mill is quite the perfect location for a quirky three screen cinema.

My friend and I were a little early for the showing, so we sat and relaxed with a drink in the spacious lounge area. The decor here is retro chic. Having just watched The Shining on TV the night before, I giggled as I gazed at the funky floors and furniture, they really did remind me of the interior of the Overlook Hotel. 😁

We didn’t opt for food brought over to our seats, but if you do fancy eating, the menu includes pizzas, sharing plates and Spielburgers as well as sweet treats such as popcorn & ice-cream. You can even come to the restaurant just to eat, or enjoy a cocktail maybe, without seeing a movie.

And what of the comfy sofa seating? It is indeed very roomy and relaxing with cosy cushions, plenty of leg room and there are wide arms & small tables to place your food and drink on.

Unlike your typical Vue Cinema no adds were shown before the feature, just trailers. I do love trailers, almost as much as the film. 😁. Downton Abbey by the way was great, just like a double Sunday night episode with lots of Maggie Smith’s wit.

I was quite prepared not to love Clitheroe’s new cinema, but actually it is good that the town has one again. Save me a seat for an occasional treat, I might just turn up on the day though, and hopefully waver that expensive booking fee!

Chasing Butterflies at Salthill Quarry Nature Reserve.

My sister, niece and nephew have never seen six-spotted burnet moths before, so as I have spied them flying around my local nature reserve, we decided to take a trip to Salthill Quarry this morning. The weather here in the North West is hot and muggy, ideal it seems for butterfly spotting. Here is a small selection of what I managed to photograph, including the elusive and gloriously colourful Burnet Moths.

Brown Ringlet Butterfly.

Caterpillars ~ Are they Cinnabar or Six – Spotted Burnet Moths?

A bee like Hover fly.

Six-Spotted Burnet Moth.

Six-spotted Burnet Moth.

Common Grasshopper.

Meadow Brown Butterfly.

Female Common Blue Butterfly.

Male Common Blue Butterfly.

Small Skippers on Knapweed.

Whilst we were here we decided to use 15 minutes to take part in this year’s Big Butterfly Count. The idea is to note down what butterflies & moths you might see in your garden, local park, field or nature reserve and submit your findings online. It’s a nice way to spend a few minutes of your time and helpful to UK Butterfly conservation too. Here is what we saw.

Brown Ringlet – 4

Large White – 1

Small White – 2

Small Tortoiseshell ~ 1

Common Blue ~ 1

Six Spotted Burnet Moth ~ 4

Small Skipper ~ 6

There were other moths & butterflies too, some that we didn’t manage to photograph and from memory are finding hard to identify. Chasing Butterflies is a warm business, we decamped to a cafe for cooling icecream after. 😁

Will you be taking part in The Big Butterfly Count?

Entwistle Reservoir.

Sunny April days are perfect for a ramble round a beautiful reservoir. Lancashire has its fair share of man-made lakes that provide water to homes and industry in the county. Some like Entwistle Reservoir at Edgworth near Bolton have a good footpath meandering round them, making a great circuit popular with families, dog walkers, runners and just about anyone who wishes to immerse themselves in some lovely Lancashire countryside.

Inspired by a post on Eunice’s blog , Wil , Hugo and I made Entwistle Reservoir our chosen destination one Saturday morning. There is free parking on the car park on Batridge Road right next to the path entrance. It was a bright morning but a little chilly as we set off on our walk.

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The trail hugs the water and makes for a pleasant 2.5 miles, though there are plenty of opportunities to wander off the beaten track through woodland or up into surrounding moorland. We mostly stuck to the footpath though.

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Entwistle Reservoir has a rather lovely art installation on the Northern shore , a metal heron sculpture called ‘The Wader’ which stands in the water. I love finding sculptures so was very happy to see him. πŸ™‚ As for real life wildlife, we didn’t actually see any heron, though there were plenty of Canada Geese and cormorants.

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The wader sculpture by Marjan Wouda.

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A Cormorant.

And so back to the car park after crossing over the bridge. The Bolton Water Company plaque features an Elephant. Elephants have a connection with the nearby town because of cotton trading links between Bolton and India.

We still had a bit of exploring left in us before lunch. A footpath from the car park leads through a woody valley to another reservoir. Wayoh Reservoir also has a waterside path and seemed quieter than Entwistle. From here you can continue on walking to Jumbles Country park and really make a day of it. An idea for the future maybe…

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Nearby both reservoirs on Overshores Rd is the unusually named Strawberry Duck pub! It is here we headed for a dinner of huge fish finger butties, sat outside in the sun. The area of Entwistle is named from the Old English ened and twisla which means a river fork frequented by ducks. Not sure where the strawberry association comes from though. πŸ™‚

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The Strawberry Duck is very near a request stop train station on the route to Manchester , so we may catch the train instead next time.

Thanks for dropping by. X