Tag Archives: Norfolk

Signs of life under a white cloudy sky : 2020

‘Look at all that.   Looks like someone has dumped a load of rubbish next to the footpath?  That’s terrible’  I said.

Approaching the rubbish just off the path in Winterton Dunes

We got closer and then a small group of people appeared, all lounging on the ground amongst the heather below a few small trees.  They were drinking tea from flasks and dressed in scruffy clothes.  Scattered about them were colourful crates and sacks and heavy duty garden tools.

‘Hello, we thought we’d seen a whole pile of rubbish but now we can see you are actually people!’ Tim said.  Thankfully they seemed to find that amusing.

‘Have you seen any Rhodededrums?’ someone asked.  ‘Er, no I don’t think we have’, I said, looking back and hoping that was the right answer.  ‘That’s good – that’s what we are clearing….’ came a reply.

After a short (now we understand) pause we smiled, it seemed like we could all be friends!  Then, because we couldn’t think of anything else to say, we gave them a cheery goodbye and we carried on walking.

‘Didnt know Rhodededrums were a problem’ Tim said.  Neither did I.

You learn something every day.

Sunday 5th January 2020

Walking is how Tim and I got together.  Loving the outdoors, wherever we are, on foot.  It’s true that connecting with nature helps when other things in life are tough.

A walk we do often is a short drive from home and is the first walk we ever did together.  It’s about 5 miles long and can be enjoyed year round.  For blowing the Christmas and New Year cobwebs away this is perfect.  It’s a circular which usually starts at the small coastal village of Winterton.  Winterton is popular at weekends, especially with dog owners, so be warned….the parking can be tricky to say the least.

We parked outside of the village and walked a track through the Burnley Hall estate.  It’s easy, dry underfoot and very very quiet.  Eventually the concrete runs out and small footpaths are followed to the beach.  I noticed catkins appearing in the hedgerows. In mid winter, with some berries still in the shrubs, this might sound a bit crazy but I feel like this is the first sign of Spring.

There’s a small enclosure with two small lean two barns at either end protecting the animals from the weather where cattle are kept during the winter months.  These are beautiful beasts with short legs and brown or black coats – I have no idea what breed they are.  They were busy feeding but didn’t mind having their photo taken.  They are, as all cattle seem to be, very nosy.

Cattle eating

Cattle being nosy

On we went to the dunes and sea.

Track to the dunes

We stopped to have a bite to eat and drink and watched the seals on the beach.  Seal pup births have again been very high this year.  There were fewer today than a few weeks before Christmas.  Looking up the beach however we could see a huge mass of people on the beach at Winterton.  Out for a quiet stroll?

View along the coast to Winterton. Church just visible.

We took one of the many dune paths to the village and this is where we found our ‘rubbish’ people.  I have since found out that this group were volunteers working for the Norfolk Conservation Corps.  Doing some good work each weekend in some really special places in the Norfolk countryside.

Further along I photographed the path – here you can see small oaks and birch trees that skirt the dunes.

Through the village we passed through the church ground, past the allotments and onto a very muddy ‘low road’.

Winterton Church

Through the church yard

Allotments vegetables

Muddy path!

Though the village was busy we didnt see anyone along this bit!

Nearly back at the car the owners of these converted barns are in a wonderful spot with views out onto open countryside and a ten minute walk from the beach.  Not a bad spot.

Happy New Year.  Hoping for good walks, good health and good times.

 

 

Word/Photo Challenge White

First line of defence

Two days of walking on our local beaches here in Norfolk has really made us worry about the state of our sea defences.

Our coast is made up of sand with dunes which leaves large stretches vulnerable and at risk of erosion – and the erosion seems to be happening more and more often and at quite a speed.  Cliffs crumble away and can be dangerous, often collapsing without warning.

Yesterday we walked from a small village called Walcott to another village called Happisburgh – out along the beach and back along the cliff. The two and a half mile stretch of beach is something we’ve never done.

This is what most of it looks like.  There’s quite a high cliff just here.

There are lots of groynes.  Some running into the sea and others (as above) running in lines parallel with the sea.  Unfortunately, but not surprisingly, after a few years the metal bolts start to become loose, the wood rots and bits break away.

Here is Happisburgh church just peeking over the cliff (see photo below).  It’s getting closer and closer to the edge.   Great chunks of land and homes have fallen into the sea.  The static caravan park between the church and the edge of the cliff has closed and the site has almost been cleared.

This all sounds a bit grim, which is unlike me, but it’s how it is.  The photo below shows an old pillbox – once a cliff top lookout during wartime now resting on the beach quite a way from the current cliff edge.

On a positive note the view from the path on the way back is still a nice view – with the church in the distance.  And the farmer is still watering the crops.  We had to do a strategic run to avoid the spray!

We will continue to walk the coastal path here and monitor any changes.

Today we did a longer walk along the beach from Waxham to Eccles on sea. Sea Palling beach is between the two and is well protected by man made reefs put in place in 1995.  As a result the small village is protected and visitors flock here to enjoy the wonderful sandy beach.

Seals love this place too.  However they are usually born during the winter so this youngster, in the photo below, was a surprise to us.

The line of reefs can be seen in the photo.  As you can see, the beach has some rocky groynes which will hopefully last a little bit longer than the wooden/metal structures.

A few miles on and we reached the lifeboat ramp at Eccles and our turn around point.

There are several newer looking groynes here in amongst some rusting old defences.

I think it would be far better if more reefs were built.   I know it means bringing in lots of rock but this seems to be working as our first line of defence.

 

 

Photo Challenge Line-Up

Sailing away on a very warm day

Sunday 25th August 2019

It was almost 30 degrees and we had to leave our simmering garden for somewhere cooler.

Instead of heading to the beach (our nearest being about a mile away) to join the masses we went to our closest river, The Thurne, and took a slow stroll along it.   Here we found a gentle breeze.

Yes its been a warm couple of days and we really shouldn’t complain about that but it’s what happens in this country isn’t it?  We’ve always got the weather to talk about.

In full flow of the school summer holidays the population of Norfolk swells as the holiday makers come to enjoy beaches, waterways and open countryside.  It was certainly busy busy on the river bank at Potter Heigham.

Hire boats and privately owned boats of all shapes and sizes with assorted passengers are a fairly normal sight on the waterways in this part of the world but it was the bigger sailing yachts and their crews (just beyond the red sailed boat) that really caught my eye.

On board were several groups of teenagers who were probably doing something they had never done before – experiencing a bygone era when telephones were a luxury.  These wonderful wooden boats were from Hunters Yard, Ludham which is about 2 miles from this spot.  I’ve had a quick look at their website and they promote youth sailing which I think is fantastic.

Here they are a little closer before raising the sails.

A few set off from their moorings, heading in the same direction as us.  I couldn’t help but take a few photos as we travelled along.

The Thurne heads north to a large broad called Hickling.  The first of the large sailing yacht with the youngesters onboard, legs over the edge in the water, headed that way and we watched them disappear while sitting on the bank near the footpath.

Another came along shortly afterwards but the teacher (skipper) wasn’t sure whether to go straight on or left.  A frantic radio message finally had a reply that he needed which was just before I was about to shout out ‘left’. They circled and headed away…

How strange that he didn’t know the route.  Was he a teacher or a hired skipper I wondered.

The last to come past us before we left this spot was a small sail boat with a couple on board.  They appeared in the first photo.  They sailed straight on – to a quieter waterway with an air of experience.

Their boat was called ‘Serene’.

When comparing these boats which is best and which would you prefer, the large yachts or the smaller boat?

Size Matters

 

Weekly Prompt : Sphere

A weekly prompt with the word Sphere.  A bit of a test from GC and Sue.

I was about to give up on this but just as we finished a long walk yesterday, up along the North Norfolk coastal path, I stopped and thought, well I wonder if this might do.  A wall made of Flint with the occasional red brick.

It’s the flints that caught my eye.  If you could see those ancient cobbled stones as a whole (not half hidden in the wall) lots would be spheres wouldn’t they?

Not knowing enough about architecture or building materials I have googled ‘Flint’ and ‘Norfolk’ for a bit of information.   Wikipedia often helps…..

Flint, knapped or unknapped, has been used from antiquity (for example at the Late Roman fort of Burgh Castle in Norfolk) up to the present day as a material for building stone walls, using lime mortar, and often combined with other available stone or brick rubble. It was most common in parts of southern England, where no good building stone was available locally, and brick-making not widespread until the later Middle Ages. It is especially associated with East Anglia, but also used in chalky areas stretching through Hampshire, Sussex, Surrey and Kent to Somerset. Flint was used in the construction of many churches, houses, and other buildings, for example the large stronghold of Framlingham Castle. Many different decorative effects have been achieved by using different types of knapping or arrangement and combinations with stone (flushwork), especially in the 15th and early 16th centuries.<\em>

I will do my best to photograph a few more Flint buildings in future.

Photo Challenge Sphere

Under big skies : Norfolk

Our home country of Norfolk is known for big skies. The land is generally flat so I suppose it gives you more sky to look at.  Nothing or not much to block the clouds or blue view!

This posting includes photographs taken only in Norfolk with, what I hope, are some nice looking skies.

This first one is a misty view of dunes and sky with the village if Winterton on Sea as a distant backdrop.  The church is the only thing visible as a silhouette.  It was taken on one of our regular ‘home’ walks back in January 2017.

Just last weekend we saw the sun setting at the end of a long walk near Waxham.  Once again taken from a dune which I had frantically scrambled up (through brambles!) from a lower footpath.  Not hugely dramatic but i was pleased with it after my efforts.

Sometimes it’s what’s moving through the sky that grabs your attention!  A lunch stop on the beach near Horsey. Had to be quick with the camera.

If we’re just out for a picnic we take our trusty Sportbrella and pitch it wherever we like.  That orange glow looks best under moody skies!  This is Weybourne in North Norfolk.

More often than not its that typical Norfolk scene that we love, it’s how Norfolk is recognised.  This is Horsey Mill recently renovated to its former glory.

Photo Challenge Sky

Stepping back in time : The 1940s in Sheringham

Time for something a little bit different.

The seaside town of Sheringham has been hosting a 1940s weekend for several years. It seems to have kept the feel of that era in its buildings and railway.

Launched as a ‘wartime on the railways’ day in 2003, the forties weekend started life as a celebration of the role the railways played in the Second World War, from transporting troops, to taking more than three million evacuees to their temporary homes.  It now sees a huge influx of re-enactors, which may see silly but actually it’s keeping history alive.

We have of course included the town on many of our walks including this one :- https://itslovelyout.wordpress.com/2016/05/04/twixt-pine-and-sea/

In the above linked post you can see a photo of the steam train pulling away from Sheringham and making its way to Weybourne.

This time Tim and I decided to drift through yesterday to see get a flavour of this festival.  Camera in hand we stepped into the day of our grandparents and parents. Into every film based in this era, including all those black and white war movies.   This what we saw …..

Shame about the red plastic chairs!

Behave yourselves

There were several evacuees but I felt this little boy walking away was the better photo

One pram had a dog, the other a real life baby!

Can I sell you a watch

F.F.I (French forces of the interior) – known as the resistance

Looking out for enemy aircraft

WordPress Challenge : Silence

Silence

I thought long and hard about this photo challenge.

There’s been so many beautifully quiet places we’ve been to and stopped at on our hikes or travels.   Hill tops or mountains covered in snow with all sounds muffled.

So I could have searched for a snowy shot but instead went for a photo I took only yesterday.  This one taken in our home county of Norfolk which is currently ‘snow free’ and many miles away from any mountain!

The remains of Honing Station, Norfolk

Only the platforms and the tiled footings of a small building on either side remain.  It’s actually closer to the small village of Briggate but this is all that is left of Honing Station.

Imagine the steam trains coming through, the whistles blowing, the travellers arriving or departing. “ALL ABOARD”

Today its a quiet place.

Wikipedia say this :

The Midland and Great Northern Joint Railway ran through the parish, part of a line that linked Great Yarmouth to Sutton Bridge via Stalham, North Walsham, Aylsham, Melton Constable, Fakenham and King’s Lynn. It opened in stages between 1865 and 1933. The line closed in 1959, although some sections survive and are now part of the Weaver’s Way footpath. Other remnants of the line that can still be seen in the parish are a cast iron, steel and brick railway bridge of 1881 on the Dilham road south of the village. At Briggate there are still the disused platforms of Honing Station.

Here is the above mentioned iron railway bridge a little way along from the platforms.