27 May 2015

Grindleford

By The River Derwent in Coppice Wood
The weather forecasters got it right on Tuesday afternoon. Grey skies gave way to sunshine. After visiting my desperate friend Higgy to deliver eight cans of "Red Stripe" lager and a "Guardian" newspaper, I set off for the Derbyshire village of Grindleford - just six miles from home. It was 5pm when I got there.
Scratching post
I parked up in the recreation ground car park, donned my trusty boots and crossed the village's old stone bridge over The River Derwent. Then keeping to the river bank, I set off along the edge of sheep pastures to Coppice Wood. The lambs are growing fat now as they munch on sweet spring grass.

In Coppice Wood I reached a junction of paths and headed up towards Grindleford Station. Just after the railway bridge I saw a wonderful carpet of bluebells in ground that must have been cleared a couple of years back. This was on the edge of Rough Wood which was magical in the late afternoon sunshine. The six o'clock train from Hathersage flashed past on the nearby track - heading to Sheffield via Totley Tunnel.

The eye of an old stone gatepost near Grindleford
Then I turned left on the path that leads to Kettle House where a white horse and a little black one were feeding on a bundle of dry hay that their owner had just delivered. Back under the Hope Valley railway line and along to a farmhouse called Harper Lees. But no mockingbirds there. Some sheep were using an old stone gatepost as a scratching place. It must be infuriating not having fingers to scratch with.

Then along through more sheep pastures and back to Coppice Wood. Along the riverside I noticed pied wagtails flitting from rock to rock and a yellowy coloured bird that I couldn't immediately identify and there were wild ducks too - swimming against the current.

Back through the pastures to Grindleford. A two and a half hour ramble punctuated only by photo opportunities and by the time I got back to Sheffield, Shirley was still not home from her "super late" shift at the medical centre. I am finding that if I don't get regular walks in, it's like missing a "fix" so the Grindleford walk was probably essential for my spiritual well-being as I hadn't been out and about since last Thursday when I wandered around Darfield, Thurnscoe and Great Houghton - once the very heart of The South Yorkshire Coalfield.
A carpet of bluebells near Rough Wood. This photograph has not been touched up in any way
Old cast iron footpath sign in Grindleford
Harper Lees
At Kettle House
Maaaay!
Derwent Valley View

23 comments:

  1. The bluebells are the best I've seen. The first image has a magical quality.
    If that gatepost is in the middle of a field it is a bull post. they were used for tethering bulls to.

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    1. Well the post was on its own Adrian - it could easily have been a bull post once upon a time. As for the bluebells, a cloud shaded them briefly while I was waiting for bright sunshine to fall upon them again and I think it was this passing cloud that brought out the blueness better.

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    2. It is generally better to shoot in the shade.

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  2. Well that was a lovely post in many ways.Your language was particularly poetic so your spirits must have been lifted. The bluebells are as stunning as any I can ever recall. As for the mockingbirds I think someone must have killed them.

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    1. Thank you for your nice response Graham.

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  3. How very pretty...one would certainly feel at peace with the world when strolling around there.

    I love the pic of the horses, especially...they look wonderful. The short and tall of it in black in white! :)

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    1. They were like friends tossing the hay up and down. At one point they appeared to kiss but I just missed that shot. I didn't realise that you were a horsey lady Lee.

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    2. I love horses, Yorky. I think they're beautiful, intelligent creatures.

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  4. Great pictures as always! Could your yellow bird have been a grey wagtail (like a pied wagtail but much longer tail, and yellow and grey)?

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    1. Thank you Robbiegirl. I just checked out a picture of one and you're right!

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  5. Some of the geographical names are such strange (to me) names. For example, what's a Grindle? Or a Froggatt? I guess I could go Google those things, but it often makes me wonder if there weren't really Hobbits in England at one time.

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    1. Grindleford may be named after “the ford where grindstones crossed the river". The name Froggatt may be linked with the springs that came from Froggatt Edge and in the summertime were alive with frogs but there are several other theories

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  6. Fantastic pictures from what sounds like a very good walk. I know so well what you mean about the fix! After I'd not been out for nearly 2 weeks because of illness (the 5 minutes to the bakery and the 10 minutes to the doctor's do not count), when I went home from work yesterday, I felt well enough to get off one station before mine and walk the rest. It was knackering because I am still not 100 %, but knackering in a good way.

    Thurnscoe is where my Yorkshire family originally come from. Steve's parents grew up there and moved to Wath-upon-Dearne after they got married. An aunt and uncle plus a cousin's son still live there. Did you take any pictures there?

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    1. I took a picture of the church (St Helen's), the pub - "The Butcher's Arms" and a rather ugly village theatre called The Little Theatre. Have I got your email address? I could send you them.

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    2. Not sure whether you have my email address, but if you click on my profile, it is there. Would be nice to have the pictures!

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    3. Meike - when I went to your profile and clicked on email I was led to starting up Outlook 2007 which I don't want to do. If you feel okay about leaving your email address here I will copy it and then immediately delete the comment.

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  7. I really had a hard time going on your walk with you today, Mr. Pudding. I just hate what they have done to Google Maps!! I stopped and took a peek at the Derwent Gallery, tho. How many miles did we cover? I am pretty exhausted. How about you?

    Your picture of the bluebells is extraordinary!! I wonder if the bluebells will be beautiful in Texas this year, what with all the rain. Hope so. That's about the only redeeming feature of Texas!!

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    1. Those bluebells are wild English bluebells. For a couple of weeks each year many woods are dressed in their lovely violet blue but they are extraordinarily hard to properly capture in photographs. By the way, for me it was just a gentle stroll. If there's a good sunny day next week I will be off for a proper long walk in unfamiliar territory somewhere. What has happened to Google Maps? I wasn't aware there's been a change.

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  8. Gorgeous photographs and a great post, Yorky!

    P.S. to Peace Thyme Garden from a former Texan - Texas doesn't have bluebells, it has bluebonnets. Not the same flower at all, and yes, they are always beautiful! But it's past time for them. They bloom in March and April.

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    1. You are a good judge of blogposts Bob! Thank you. As for my blog friend in Colorado - it is best not to agitate her as she has a fiery temper and eats fellows like you for breakfast.

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  9. England does Spring better than anywhere else in the world.....or I think so anyway but you know how I love it there. Great Bluebells pic. Not easy to get the blue to show up properly in a photo. Love the new look of the blog too.

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  10. It's been a good year for bluebells.

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Mr Pudding welcomes all genuine comments - even those with which he disagrees. However, puerile or abusive comments from anonymous contributors will continue to be given the short shrift they deserve. Any spam comments that get through Google/Blogger defences will also be quickly deleted.