Monday, 28 March 2011

Sykes Memorial at Sledmere

Sykes Memorial at Sledmere

On this pleasant spring evening we decided to get Fish & Chips from Harpers at Wetwang then drive up to the Sykes Memorial at Sledmere to eat them whilst enjoying the view.  

The memorial sits in a commanding position and is visible for miles around. From the base you can probably see a good 20 miles to the south and if you could get to the top much further I expect.

The tower was built as a memorial to Sir Tatton Sykes 4th Baronet. Sledmere Estate and village is still in the hands of the Sykes family. 

Sykes Memorial at Sunset

Tree with a Twist

Tree with a twist
Tree with a twist
Whilst driving near Southburn I noticed this tree with a twist in a small planted copse next to the road. Quite how this tree had managed to grow down then back up again I've no idea.

Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Signs of Spring on the Yorkshire Wolds

An early finish gave me the opportunity to enjoy some early spring sunshine in the garden. Signs of spring where everywhere.

Blossoming Apricot Tree
Fruit trees are beginning to blossom. This photo shows the blossom on our apricot tree. Bees were busy buzzing from one flower to the next performing their essential function whilst seeking sustenance after a long winter. In the next few weeks many other trees and bushes will begin to blossom. I always enjoy the sight of hedgerows covered in Hawthorn and Blackthorn blossom as I drive across the Yorkshire Wolds.

Unfurling Horse Chestnut Leaf
In the field behind our house an old Horse Chestnut is springing in to life. Leaves were carefully unfurling from their buds. In a few weeks the tree will be in full blossom. It's "candles" on display. Beverley Westwood with it's avenues of Horse Chestnuts is a good place to see these trees in bloom.

I look forward to seeing many other signs of spring in the coming weeks. Particularly, as the lighter evenings following this week's change to British Summer Time will allow me to get out about more and enjoy the countryside of the Yorkshire Wolds.

Sunday, 6 March 2011

Yorkshire Wolds Walk - Brantingham Wander

Brantingham, Yorkshire Wolds
With a family member to pick up from Brough Station in mid-afternoon the area of the Yorkshire Wolds for today's visit and short walk was pretty well set by circumstance not choice. However, that fact did not leave me disappointed as it gave us chance to visit a part of the Wolds that's a firm favourite of mine - Brantingham. This attractive and pleasant village sits at the foot of a dale of the same name. It's a collection of individual houses many built in the local Oolitic Limestone that crops up locally in the otherwise chalk wolds. On the edge of the village is the grand Brantinghamthorpe House but this is not easily visible from the environs and an internet search for images is more likely to satisfy any curiosity you have about it's appearance. 

All Saints, Brantingham,
 Yorkshire Wolds
We parked our car in the car park of the "Triton Inn" as we would be returning there later for lunch and headed up in to the village. We passed by the pond but kept to the right and then as the road forked headed up Spout Hill for a short distance. Before long we reached a public footpath that took us down to the start of Brantingham Dale. At this point All Saints Church sits nestled against the edge of the wooded dale. If there is another church in the Yorkshire Wolds with a finer setting I do not know where it is. We headed up the road that goes up the dale noting as we went the numerous birds including Chaffinch, Long-tailed Tits and Wrens flitting between branches in the sunshine. My camerawork isn't quick enough to catch such fast moving birds however hard I try. However, I was soon to photograph birds of a different type.

A few hundred yards up the dale we took a path to our left. The path is fenced on both sides and whilst commenting on why this should be so we noticed that everywhere we looked there were clusters of Ladybirds clinging together. I don't know whether it was the fine weather bringing them out from hibernation and they cluster together whilst they regain their strength but it seems like a reasonable explanation to me. Before long the path takes you up the side of the dale and brings you out of the woods to stand at the top of another dale. 

Woodale, Brantingham,
Yorkshire Wolds
From this point you can see down in to Woodale and to the flat Humber Head area beyond. We headed down in to the dale noting that the house at the bottom had Peacocks in the garden just like ours did a week or so ago.  Although I expect these ones reside there.  It wasn't long before the path had turned in to a road and we were heading back towards Brantingham.

Brantingham, Yorkshire Wolds
As we approached Brantingham we turned left in to the village and passed by the pretty lifeless pond. I did note later in the pub a leaflet proposing that some attention be paid to the pond to improve it's appearance and the habitat for wildlife.  It'd certainly be a worthwhile initiative.

Triton Inn, Brantingham,
 Yorkshire Wolds
So all that now remained was to return to the Triton Inn and try their fare. The Triton is an attractive pub with ample parking. Inside there is a traditional bar, large restaurant area and separate function room or  ballroom as they call it. The place was busy but we were accommodated without any trouble. Our table was in the restaurant area which was large and bustling with staff and customers.  If I'd been given a choice it would have been for the bar which had much more of a pub feel.  It was good to note that one of the beers on offer was the local Wold Top Cask Bitter by the brewery of the same name situated further north on the Wolds.  I did avail myself of a couple of pints and can confirm that it was of the usual high standard. Being Sunday I opted for the roast beef dinner and my wife had the pork, both reasonably priced at £8.95. They both came with a large Yorkshire pudding and the usual vegetables. The beef came well cooked and not pink as it is now often served. Neither of us had any complaints about our food it was just as you would expect from a pub of this nature  - competently produced with nothing fancy.  If in the area again in need of sustenance then a return would certainly be a possibility.

Whilst in the pub the sun well and truly came out and it was a pleasant short drive to the station and then back across the Wolds to home.