Snowdrops, squirrels and sad cedars

Last winter, the (literally) heavy snowfall in December broke many branches off the lovely Lebanese cedars at Attingham Park. They will recover some of their former glory, I’m sure, given time. Elsewhere in the park, the snowdrops are coming out, and the squirrels are scurrying about trying to remember where they buried their nuts. It’s one of the floodlit days – when the sun shines, that is – it’s rather hit and miss…

Kirkham Abbey

Saturday 20 October: we’re in Yorkshire, exploring after lunch. The ruinous remains of Kirkham Priory stand beside the river Derwent, between York and Malton, and are worth exploring. The York – Scarborough railway passes through the valley on the other side of the river, crossing the minor road by means of a level crossing. It’s controlled by a mechanical signal box, “Kirkham Abbey”: the crossing gates swing out across the road when a train is coming. Kirkham Abbey is a now-rare survivor of a once-common scene.

Photo note: today’s outing wasn’t expected to have photographic opportunities. I took the photos using the smartphone – not the best tool for the job, especially considering the railway is in deep shade, mid-afternoon in late October. We’ll have to revisit…

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An Attingham autumn

Tuesday 9 October: an autumn wander around Attingham Park. The deer are busy with the rut (so we won’t disturb them), the leaves are turning nicely, and the squirrels are out in force making the most of the abundant nuts. There are some interesting fungi too (this is proving to be a recurring theme), though I’ve no idea what they are.

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