Tag Archives: askham

Ambling round Askham.

Recently I spent a few days with family. The pretty village of Askham in Cumbria has been my Mum’s home now for over 25 years. It’s attractive white washed cottages surround two village greens. The top end of Askham climbs up into the fells whilst the bottom end is all about the river Lowther and the surrounding woodland. Some of the village is still owned by the land owning Lonsdale family, who now live in Askham Hall and once resided in Lowther Castle. There are two pubs in Askham, a lovely village shop, an open air swimming pool and lots of walking trails round the Lowther estate. Here are a few pictures from my ambles round Askham.

Village Greens.
Cuckoo Flower & Water Avens.
Stone bridge over the river Lowther.
River Lowther from the bridge.
St Peters Church.
The Punch Bowl is an 18th Century Inn.
Ramsons in the woods.
Sorry, just had to include Mums handsome cat ‘Biscuit’ who is recovering indoors from some heart problems. Aw. He’s doing ok now though. 🙂
Mum and I had a look round Askham Halls gardens. £4 entry.

Askham Hall was built in the 12th Century. It’s now a rather posh boutique hotel and restaurant.
A stone Griffin , originally from Lowther Castle.
The village shop is also a great place to go for a coffee, chat and doggy cuddles. 🙂
Lots of walking trails. I followed this footpath past Askham Hall into some beautiful bluebell woods.
Though I did encounter a miniature Dexter bull on the way. After a short stand off I edged my way past him. He was actually very small, but still quite mean looking!
I was glad to reach this gate into the woods unscathed.
Pink Purslane.
Dandelion Clock.

I spent a good couple of hours in the woods, just enjoying the sights and sounds of nature. There were so many flowers, giving the woodland floor a magical fairy land appearance. And I didn’t spy a single other human being! I did see two jays, several woodpeckers, two buzzards and a weasel. 😊

If your visiting the Askham area, here are some useful websites.

Lowther Castle & Gardens.

Askham Hall.

Askham Open Air Swimming Pool.

Punch Bowl Inn.

The Ullswater Way.

A Cumbrian weekend of wanderings and wildlife.

Chimney Sweeper Moth.

The recent weekend was spent gathered with family at Mums. She didn’t want a big celebration, just time spent together with children and grandchildren on her 70th Birthday. Country walks, playing games, visiting some lovely gardens, and a Birthday Cake. It was a happy couple of days!

Mum lives at the foot of Askham Fell near Penrith in Cumbria. Its a comparitively little explored part of The Lake District, but well worth a visit. On Saturday morning before my sister and niece and nephew arrived, Wil and I armed ourselves with a Askham Fell Marsh Kelpie Tale Trail Map, and headed for a walk up the fell.

There are various Tale Trail maps of different places in The Lake District, aimed at younger walkers ….and the young at heart. 😁 The Marsh Kelpie is a fictional character that lives on the fell. We didn’t find him of course, but we did see lots of wildlife and a stone circle.

Skylark, Askham Fell.
Small Heath Butterfly.
A herd of ‘Wild’ Fell Ponies live on the Fell. This one with Wil is not very wild and shaped like a barrel. 🙂
Cockpit Stone Circle ~ once used by villagers for cock fighting.
Linnet. 🙂
Pied Wagtail.
Common Bistort on the road side. Mum knows this as ‘Sweaty Feet’ and if you smell it…..it does whiff a bit. : b

Its a good job my family are all wildlife lovers , as we also spent a lot of the weekend pouring over Mum’s Bird book, trying to identify the birds we saw. 🙂 My sister and I forgot our phone chargers ( there’s not much of a signal or wifi anyway) , so it was nice to Id what we saw , the old-fashioned way.

Siskin on Mum’s Bird feeders.
Greater Spotted Woodpecker.
Wil’s photo of a rather dapper Dipper on the River Lowther.

On Saturday afternoon we took Mum to Holehird Gardens near Windermere. She loves gardens and this one which is run by volunteers, is home to the Lakeland Horticultural Society. June is a good time to visit for the rhododendrons and blue Himalayan poppies.

Blue Himalayan Poppies and Alliums.






I’m not very well up on my garden flowers, but as you can see the beds were abundant with colour. 🙂

On Sunday we visited somewhere closer to Askham. Acorn Bank gardens and Water Mill at nearby Temple Sowerby. The National Trust looks after the property and the manor house dates back to 1228, its first owners were the Knights Templar.

There is plenty to see at Acorn Bank. We walked along a forest trail to the working water mill, looked for frogs in the lily pond, found fairy doors, enjoyed the gardens, had a lovely brew and cake, browsed the second hand book shop and found Newtopia. 🙂

Fairy Door.
A freaky green spider on Bistort…or Sweaty feet. Is this a Cucumber Spider?
Imogen and Woody Woodpecker.
Acorn Bank.
Impressive Coat of Arms.
Hop It !
Looking for Newts!

There’s a pond full of Great Crested Newts in the Sunken Garden at Acorn Bank. We had plenty of fun trying to spot them!

Thanks for joining me on a fun family weekend…with lots of wildlife thrown in for good measure. x

Photo An Hour ~ Saturday 28th October. 

On Saturday I joined in with Janey and Louisa’s Photo An Hour on Instagram, posting a photo every hour, on the hour , all through the day.  It happened that I was staying with family in the little village of Askham near Penrith, so my piccies are all taken in Cumbria, instead of where I live in Lancashire.

8am. Woke up to  a view of a rather murky day .

9am.  Coffee and Toast for breakfast.

10am. Heading down the village  of Askham past one of the  Greens to the Village shop. The shop has a great community feeling and serves coffee too, so we sat in and enjoyed another brew. 🙂

11am. We had been told about a local photography art exhibition in the Village Hall so walked there for a nosy. I bought a few cards and will no doubt frame them, when I get round to it. 



12pm.  Pie & peas for an early lunch.

1pm. Off to Keswick in the car so a pretty boring shot of the road. Still murky out there, which I guess is appropriate for the time of year. 🎃

2pm.  In Keswick Wil finds a new jacket…..and some walking pants. I prefer to admire pumpkin ornaments! 

3pm.  Enjoying a blood orange tea and a slice of Cherry Chocolate cake in Merienda , a fave tea room in Keswick. 🙂

4pm.  Back in Askham and find Biscuit the family cat relaxing on the bed. He is  a gorgeous boy but is petrified of dogs. So we couldn’t bring Hugo !  I spend most of the weekend seeking out random dogs to stroke. 

5pm.  Admiring the flowers in Mum’s garden. 🙂

6pm.  I bought a Lake District & Cumbria magazine in Keswick so I’m having a glance through. Lots of walks and useful info in here! 

7pm. Tea over, Wil and I head to one of the two pubs in Askham , The Queen’s Head. There is a tempting cocktail menu. Later I do have  an Expresso Martini ! 

8pm.  I wish I had taken a better photo of Floyd the Cocker Spaniel. Here he is at the bar with his owner,  after hoovering up the entire pub. His owner said he was at the village Halloween party, the night before too. Floyd is a party animal! 

9pm. Just  a short of Wils glass. Spooky! 

So there you have it, some random shots of a day in my life. Hope you are having a spooktacular Halloween, and I’ll be back in a few days with more  Autumnal pics of a couple of places we visited on Sunday. 🎃

Cumbria is Open ~ Rheged Centre and Little Bird Gallery.

I am lucky in that I have family who live in the Lake District, so I never need an excuse to visit. 🙂 My Mum’s home is in the picturesque village of Askham , not far from Penrith in the North of the lakes. We’ve travelled up twice over the Festive period. That dratted rain never stopped!

Like lots of places across the UK , Cumbria has had it especially bad weather wise with homes,shops and businesses literally swept away in those deceptively friendly of name but merciless in nature, torrential storms.

Those that survive face an uncertain few months, as visitors stay away. Some roads are still impassable and a few old bridges which provide access, such as the one in Pooley Bridge and the one in Eamont Bridge , both near Askham,have been condemned or crumbled away.

So eager to support local attractions, we decided to bob into the Rheged Centre to buy Mum a gift before our recent visit. Rheged  is a great place to take the kids as there are indoor and outdoor play areas, pottery painting, a 3D Cinema, a wonderful toy shop and various family inspired events throughout the year. Several cafes, a small selection of lovely shops, art exhibitions, theatre and spa facilities complete the venues attributes. It can be found just off Junction 40 of the M6 motorway.

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After a spot of shopping we headed to Askham. Usually we would drive through Eamont and over it’s bridge, but due to the floods we had to head back down the motorway and get off again at Shap ( Junction 39) to continue the short journey to Mum’s.  After a lovely lunch ( Thanks Mum!) a few of us headed to a hidden gem  in the village called The Little Bird  Gallery   opposite the green.

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This pottery studio/gallery/gift shop displays and sells many beautiful pieces of art, ceramics , jewellery and unusual quirky gifts and is a must if you are in the area. Some of the artists live very locally, one of the owner’s creates beautiful pottery in his studio here.  I spent my Christmas money from Mum on a snug and colourful crocheted bobble hat , handmade by someone in the village. I’m sure it will appear in future posts. 🙂

The bad weather and bridge closure at Eamont has really affected local businesses here. In some cases footfall is down by 80% which is such a shame as there are quite often alternative routes to those places. I guess what I am saying is, please don’t stay away from areas that have been affected, whether they are local to you, or day trips out. We are already planning a day out in Keswick this month. Watch this space!

ps the pubs in Eamont Bridge are still open and both serve food. We recently had a yummy sunday roast at the very welcoming  Beehive Inn  with our dog Hugo.


Wildflower walk to Whale.

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On a recent trip to visit family in the village of Askham in Cumbria I was intrigued by the above road sign. I wondered what I would find if I walked to Whale. So I took my camera to record what wild flowers I would spy on the way. Yes I am a bit of a nerd!

Delicate water avon.
Delicate water avon.
Dandelions everywhere.
Dandelions everywhere.
Cuckoo Pint. Also known as Lords and ladies.
Cuckoo Pint. Also known as Lords and ladies.
I spy a Heron.
I spy a Heron.

I came to a river and managed to take a picture of a heron, but i couldn’t get very close. I also saw some flying geese honking away and a hare shot across the road into a meadow of vibrant yellow rapeseed. To quick for my photography skills though 😦

Sunshine yellow for as far as you can see.
Sunshine yellow for as far as you can see.
Cuckoo flower aka May flower.
Cuckoo flower aka May flower.

On the approach to Whale there were cute lambs playing in the fields. It didn’t take me long to get there.

Playful lambs.
Playful lambs.
Lamb standoff.
Lamb standoff.

Pied wagtail.
Pied wagtail.

Whale turned out to be a tiny hamlet. Just a few houses and a post box. I think I had expected to see a huge whale sticking out of a house roof or something. ; )

Wandering round Whale.
Wandering round Whale.

I followed the road back the same way then came across a public footpath which ended up in the churchyard in Askham.

Askham Hall.
Askham Hall.
Pink blossom.
Pink blossom.
Back into Askham.
Back into Askham.

I was back in time for tea at Mums. And then this visitor came to the garden. A Great spotted Woodpecker.

Mr Woodpecker. :)
Mr Woodpecker. 🙂

I quite liked my walk to Whale. 🙂

A Perfect Spring Day. :)


Mothers Day and the family headed for Mum’s house in the picturesque Cumbrian village of Askham. We were all spoilt (yes she cooked for us! ) with a delicious home cooked Sunday roast and one of Mum’s famous trifles. Afterwards we went for a walk down the village and along a country lane. Of course I couldn’t resist taking a few photographs as the place was blooming with dancing daffodils.

Pottery studio frontage.
Pottery studio frontage.
The perfect place to take a rest.
The perfect place to take a rest.
Pretty bird. :)
Pretty bird. 🙂
More Daffs.
More Daffs.
Which way to Whale?
Which way to Whale?
Mum, my niece Imogen and Sis.
Mum, my niece Imogen and Sis.
The cleaner the air, the greener the lichen.
The cleaner the air, the greener the lichen.
Village Green.
Village Green.

It was a lovely family day. 🙂