14 April 2016

Parklife

After a month's break for refitting, the Oxfam shop where I work every Wednesday is scheduled to reopen on Saturday so I was in the shop yesterday afternoon helping with the restocking. Before then I had a spare hour to saunter within the boundaries of nearby Bingham Park. Above you can see the embankment of daffodils near the park's Rustlings Road entrance. And here's a gang of backlit blooms:-
In the park there are a couple of millponds that hark back to past industry in the valley. Across one of these ponds I noticed a grey heron patiently seeking nourishment. These are the most widespread predatory birds in the British Isles and are generally very skittish, flying away the minute I get my camera out. But this one carried on with its hunt for unsuspecting pond creatures.
Same heron given the HDR treatment
Sitting on a rock in the middle of the babbling Porter Brook I spotted a lady duck doing what most ladies do - busily preening herself:-
On slopes to the north of the brook there are numerous vegetable gardens or allotments with ramshackle huts and other tumbledown constructions. I spotted this allotment tenant taking a cigarette break in the spring sunshine. Perhaps his name is Frank Lloyd Wright:-
By the little River Porter (Porter Brook) there's a very old mill complex. It is known as The Shepherd Wheel and it first started milling corn through water power in the sixteenth century when Sheffield was just a village and the south western suburbs were but farmers' fields, woods or rough moors. In the nineteenth century the mill's power was used in metal industry:-
And so back along the valley path where joggers, cyclists, pensioners with walking sticks and young mothers with pushchairs were travelling, enjoying the warm spring morning. Soon I was back at the park entrance before my afternoon shift at Oxfam:-

28 comments:

  1. That park is so beautiful! I love the daffodils and the birds. Gregg and I used to live beside a small pond and the herons and ducks were a lot of fun to watch.

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    1. Nature helps us to put the stresses and issues of everyday life into better perspective.

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  2. The heron is totally absorbed in its hunt for food. Is that a stone wall by Frank Lloyd Wright's magnificent abode?

    Ms Arianna Soup

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    1. I guess it's a little boundary wall to define his allotment and keep out the eccentric hippy woman who has the adjacent allotment. I believe she's called Arianna and she grows funny looking tomato plants that bear no fruit.

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  3. Nice little tour round YP and superb photograph of the heron.

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    1. Glad to have taken you round Mrs Weaver. Next time can you bring some sandwiches?

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  4. Frank Lloyd Wright! LOL! You're terrible.

    When I first moved here I was so surprised to find herons. They're all over Florida but I never knew they were so common in Britain.

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    1. Okay then not Frank Lloyd Wright... maybe Le Corbusier.

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    2. Hello Steve, herons are very common even in my heavily industrialized part of south Germany.

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  5. Lovely photos, YP - thank you for that tour. A lovely feeling of Spring in the air,

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    1. No problem CG but next time remember your walking boots!

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  6. It can't have been Mr. Wright, as I can't see any womenfolk nearby. But then again, they might have been inside the "house" at that moment.

    Did you see the heron being successful in his hunt for dinner?

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    1. Yes I think they were preparing Mr Wright's lunch... I did see the heron catch something and gobble it down but nothing as big as a frog or even a baby rabbit.

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  7. You covered a lot of goood stuff in your hour walk. You also provided a lot of history about the area.

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    1. I like to give value for money Red.

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  8. Ahhh...I've got my desktop tower back...updated and up and running. In the interim I had to use my laptop that I very rarely use (and discovered why!)...so nice to have been re-united with an old friend!

    Great pics as always, Yorkie. How is your hip coming along?

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    1. Nice to hear that The Tower of Babel is back in action. Thanks for calling by again Ms George. Still a little nervous about the hip and haven't undertaken a really long walk since that fall. Thanks for asking.

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  9. Haven't heard of Oxfam...what were you restocking?
    The park looks lovely, but I want to see inside the mill.
    Your heron and duck look very much like the ones around here in the Pacific Northwest.

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    1. The mill only opens at weekends Mistress. Oxfam is England's biggest charity. There are shops on an every high street selling second-hand clothing, books, music and bric a brac. Oxfam raises millions every year mostly to help people in the third world - especially where there are famines or natural disasters.

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  10. Your remarks about dances in 'the old days' made me smile YP and also brought back memories. My friend and I (who really thought we were the bees knees) used to go every other Saturday to a village out in the sticks called Wasps' Nest (says it all doesn't it?). We went with three lads from our village who had formed what could loosely be called a 'band' - in their car. The Wasps' Nest lads thought we were really sophisticated and queued up to dance with us, while the girls there more or less ignored us. Did our egos no end of good.

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    1. The Wasps' Nest? Sure it wasn't called The Honey Pot? I wish that handbag dancing would return. Perhaps they could feature it on "Strictly Come Dancing"! I hope you didn't get stung in Wasps' Nest!

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  11. The photos of the heron made me smile. My neighbour has a large pond full of carp that make a tasty snack for passing herons. He goes mad at his wife who spends her time trying to photograph them instead of shooing them away!

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    1. Your neighbours may not be compatible. I hope he doesn't possess an axe.

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  12. I once watched a Heron on an Island in a park lake in one of the Potteries towns. I was stalking on the Island not in the water and that fascinated me. All of a sudden it caught a rat, carried it into the water, drowned it and then swallowed it head first. When we drove away it was still standing there with the rat half way down it's neck.

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    1. They may look elegant but their design is all about killing.

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  13. Can I use your photo of the heron in the water as the inspiration for an oil painting? I assume you took the picture.I really like the altered version!

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    1. Jan you are very welcome to use my image but I would love to see a photo of your finished version. Please leave me a note when it's done. I hope you realise that when you click on my heron picture it will enlarge. That may help you. Happy painting!

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    2. I will let you know when I finish and Thank you for such a great photo to work from!Good to know about the sizing feature I was working from a 4 " square. I'm using a large 18X36" canvas....it may take a while!

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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.