countryside landscapes

Dawdling in the Derbyshire Dales – part one – limestone hills and old barns

We hadn’t visited Derbyshire for a long while so decided that a few days away in July would afford us the chance to walk a few of its dales and bring back memories while doing so. Limestone ridges, old stone barns and limestone walls as field boundaries are trademarks of the Derbyshire landscape. Well Dressing is an ancient tradition celebrated by the locals and friendliness an attribute of their characters. We found them all!

I kept trying to get a good photo of this old barn and the surrounding drystone walls, typical of the Derbyshire countryside. I moved around, tried all angles and am still not convinced I got it right. So here are my attempts for you to consider. My preference is the first shot because I like the way the walls lead the eye diagonally towards the barn. Do you think differently?

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This second barn nearer to the horizon seemed a little easier to photograph but I still tried several different shots. I enjoyed the challenge! I personally like the square format photo most of all but you may think differently.

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Limestone ridges are our second feature typical of the Derbyshire landscape and we were extremely lucky to have found a sunny bright day to view them. Their character changes with the light and on dull days they lack texture and sparkle. Shadows sit under the few trees stunted through lack of soil depth and lack of moisture.

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The farming landscape here is soft and friendly with its dry stone walls and a scattering of small trees.  It is an undulating landscape with occasional valleys which are in places heavily wooded.

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When tourists decide to visit Derbyshire many choose the Well Dressing season to make the journey. This is a traditional ceremony when villagers and often the children from the village school make fantastic displays created from flower petals. They make very colourful additions to the characterful villages of Derbyshire. We discovered these creations in one little valley.

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We can add another element to Derbyshire’s points of interest for the visitor. The locals are very friendly. These two ladies chatted away to us for ages as we relished our coffee and cake. As you can see the one liked having her photo taken to go onto my blog while the other claimed to be too shy!

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So with a smile from one friendly local I will finish this post about our week in Derbyshire. The coming posts will feature some walks along the dales.



By greenbenchramblings

A retired primary school head teacher, I now spend much of my time gardening in our quarter acre plot in rural Shropshire south of Shrewsbury. I share my garden with Jude my wife a newly retired teacher , eight assorted chickens and a plethora of wildlife. Jude does all the heavy work as I have a damaged spine and right leg. We also garden on an allotment nearby. We are interested in all things related to gardens, green issues and wildlife.

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