Today was glorious and sunny. The kind of sunny that actually feels warm. 🙂 I went for a walk down through the fields to the river. This is one of our usual dog walking routes, but I let Wil carry on ahead with Hugo ,so I could get a few piccies without a black labrador crashing through the undergrowth. 🙂
I also saw Sand Martins , back to reclaim their sandy nesting holes in the river bank, a male and a female Goosander flying down the Ribble and a tiny Goldcrest. I think I may do one post a month,following my wildlife sightings in this tiny corner of the world. 🙂
I have walked through my local park Brungerley Park in Clitheroe often enough, but Sunday was the first time I had picked up a leaflet for the area’s Sculpture Trail and tried to spot all the different Art works. The Ribble Valley Sculpture Trail can be accessed from either West Bradford Road or Waddington Road and takes you through woodland, grassland, a quarry and by the riverside. Roadside parking is available and the walk takes about an hour, so is short and family friendly. 🙂
Here are some of the sculptures we saw on the trail, our starting point was the Waddington Road Entrance.
As you can see the sculptures are quite diverse and many are inspired by the local area. It was good fun finding them all. There are free Trail leaflets at the Tourist Information Centre in Clitheroe which is situated inside the Platform Gallery near the train station.
Brungerley Park was first opened in 1876 and became the place for Clitheroe folks to enjoy their leisure time. Boating and Ice skating on the Ribble, band concerts, folk tales of River Spirits and Pendle Witches and even Victorian Bathing Huts on the river bank.
As we neared the river I spotted the first of the Spring Wild flowers that will adorn the trail. Another few weeks and there will be plenty more to see.
So there you have it. There are a few sculptures I forgot to photograph, including some more ceramics by Halima Cassell. She certainly gets around a bit on the trail! Also look out for various play areas for the kids and keep an eye out for wildlife. 🙂
One of my favourite places in Clitheroe to meet for a coffee or even a cocktail , is the warm and welcoming Escape Coffee & Cocktails in the centre of town. This attractive bar with it’s industrial yet cosy interior runs Cocktail Making Masterclasses for groups of 4 people or more, upstairs in a private bar space. When my friend Fi suggested a girly get together to celebrate ‘Galentine’s Day’ ( Yep thats a thing!) , I jumped at the chance to develop my somewhat non existent cocktail making skills. 🙂
Upon arrival we were treated to prosecco bellinis in the bar upstairs where our instructor Ben introduced himself and handed us our Cocktail Menus. We would each be making Five cocktails over the course of the evening, three classics and two that we had chosen beforehand. I must admit to feeling dubious about drinking five cocktails. But I was willing to try!
First cocktail on our list ‘The refreshingly popular Mojito!’ as modelled by Ailyn and Fi. According to the Masterclass menu ( which someone helpfully slipped into my bag, thank you 🙂 ), Mojitos first became popular in Cuba, where rum was in abundance. Add Lime juice,Crushed Ice, Mint and Sugar syrup and hey presto…the most refreshing combo ever. Our friendly Bar man demonstrated how to make every cocktail first of course, and even gave us a brief history of each. I’m afraid to say my memory is a little hazy. I totally blame the alcohol !
Porn Star Martini.
My favorite Cocktails of the evening were two, designed by ‘Escape Mixologists’ themselves. The ‘Happy holidays’ is a refreshing blend of Gin, Rose Liqueur, Grenadine,cranberry juice and freshly squeezed lemon juice. A sugared rim and lemon soaked strawberry added to it’s celebratory vibe. The ‘Delightful Trifle’ is actually a pudding in a glass. No pictures sorry but imagine a heady combination of strawberries, blackberries, salted caramel vodka and creme de mure , capped with fresh cream.
And a cocktail that everyone loved equally was The ‘Porn Star Martini’. Unfortunately it also gave me heartburn. 😦 But rest assured, I was swiftly created a heartburn cure. It worked and I was able to continue with the rest of my night. 🙂
At some point in the evening we were given a quick fun quiz on some of the cocktail related facts we had learnt along the way. A bottle of prosecco was our prize, which we decided to share after the Masterclass finished. That was not before we made our fifth and final creation ‘ The long Island Iced Tea’ , probably ( according to the Masterclass Menu) first concocted in NY to resemble an Iced Tea, when in fact it contains Rum, Vodka, Tequila, Cointreau ….and Coca-cola.
The Cocktail Masterclass at Escape costs £35 per person and includes five cocktails, tuition to make the five cocktails, a welcome drink and a fun quiz. It’s the perfect evening for getting together with friends. Just book the following day off! 🙂
Hey I’m joining in with Natalie’sSunday Sevens today and posting 7 ( or maybe more! ) photographs from my week.
Above is a photo from Instagram.I am trying to post a piccie each day as part of Kate Gabrielle’s #brilliantphotoaday challenge. Oneday the prompt was Polkadots so my whirly windmill came in very useful. 🙂
Tuesday was of course Valentine’s Day and Wil and I exchanged cards. I got him a humerous yet vaguely insulting card and he got me a lovely romantic card. Hurrah! I celebrate …because for years we chose cards for each other that we would rather have got ourselves. He likes funnies so he would get me something silly. I like pretty romantic cards so that’s what I would get him. We would joke that we should ‘swap’ cards. At last though, we have maybe got it right? Only taken us nearly 12 years! 🙂
On Thursday morning we took Hugo a walk up past Standen Hall, which was a good exscuse to look at all the lovely Snowdrops. It’s a private residence but I couldn’t resist stumbling over the cattle grid and taking a few photos. There were even some turkeys and a grey squirrel too! I hope those turkeys are not being fattened up for Christmas…
Friday night was a great fun night out with the girls…..but I have got to say, I am still recovering! Friend Fi arranged for 6 of us to try out a Cocktail Mixing Masterclass at Escape Coffee & Cocktails In Clitheroe. The class was upstairs in our own little private bar area and after a demo from Ben our Mixologist, we each got to make five very different cocktails….and drink them of course. After experiencing a welcome Belini, a Mojito, a Happy Holidays, a Porn Star Martini, a Delightful Trifle, a Long Island Iced Tea and a glass of prosecco, I may just not be able to remember enough to write a full post about it. ;). All I can say is at £35 per head it was great value for money, and a good time was had by all!
Yesrerday I did manage to emerge from the house and meet up with a pal for tea and cake at Callooh Callay in town. This Alice In Wonderland inspired tea room has had new owners of late, so we were a little worried it may have changed beyond recognition. Happily it is still devoted to all things ‘Alice’ ,though the new proprietor isn’t English, he presented us with some dates to try before our tea came. I guess that only adds to the quirkyness! 🙂
Sunday Sevens time again which means I’m sharing seven photos from my personal week.:) Last Sunday I found myself in the lovely Yorkshire Dales, staring at a table full of yummy looking cakes! No surprise there then.:) Wil and I had stopped for lunch at a cute little tea room in the town of Leyburn called kTea’s which has a bit of an Alice In Wonderland theme going on.
As you know I love finding quirky little cafes and this one is no exception. I had a savoury cheese scone with Wensleydale Cheese and chutney followed by a generous slice of Victoria Sponge. I was then ready for further adventures at the nearby Forbidden Corner
The Forbidden Corner in nearby Middleham is a country park with a difference. Everywhere you look there are amazing statues, kooky wood carvings, fiesty fountains, mazes to get lost in, secret tunnels and talking trees. We met up with my sister and her family for an afternoon of magical exploration. Having been once before 3 years ago and throughly enjoyed the experience, it was a pleasure to return …… and find even more to love.:)
Monday night was Halloween and a friend had bought me a ticket for the local Clitheroe Ghost Walk. The walk started in the Swan Courtyard and took in most of the Castle grounds, which looked especially spooky that evening…..
This tour was a family friendly one so my two god daughters were dressed for the occasion and here they are with Simon Entwistle who was our Top Hatted Guide in Victorian dress. Clitheroe has certainly had a lot of hauntings in its time, including runaway coaches, drowned scullery maids, spectres in paintings and the devil even props up the bar in the New Inn. 😉 We managed a quick half of cider in our fave Clitheroe local straight after!
Speeking of cider last night I made some mulled cider for a small Bonfire gathering in our back yard. Where I live, we do get the best views of Clitheroe castle’s Firework display from our tiny outside space. I totally forgot to take any photographs though.:( Anyway the mulled cider went down really well….. and is easy peasy to make. Simply pour a few bottles of apple cider in a slow cooker, add an orange stabbed with whole cloves and a couple of chopped apples. Let it simmer on low for a couple of hours and serve in mugs with a cinnamon stick. Perfect served with sparklers and parkin cake on the 5th of November….. or indeed any chilly Winters eve..:)