Marine Lake – West Kirby


Spent a glorious afternoon at Dunham Massey, here in the North of England. By the time we arrived back at our base, Moreton, nobody wanted to prepare a meal. So we took off down to West Kirby, where we picked up some Fish n Chips. Then headed down to the promenade to eat them. What could be better on a warm evening than taking in the views, looking towards North Wales over marine lake and the Dee estuary.

There were many sail boats on the lake, which was about as flat as a mill pond.

And with little wind it made for a very tranquil scene.

Sadly the Welsh coastline was obscured by mist with just a few twinkling lights managing to break through the murk.

As for the Fish n Chips, they were superb. We got them from Marigolds in West Kirby

Limousin, France – Day 14


The morning started with heavy rain and thunderstorm surrounding the gite. With breakfast and the storm all done by 09:15, and with the sky brightening, we took to the car and set off. Todays target was Bort des Orgues but as usual we made detours or stopped off en route.

After filling up the fuel tank at Bugeat we pulled over to take in the beautiful vista that is le Lac de Viam. This is an artificial lake which now provides beaches from which many water based leisure activities are launched. And, as well as a feast for the eyes, the lake is an integral part of the French hydro-electricity network.

le Lac de Viam
le Lac de Viam, Correze, France

After enjoying the view we continued on our way, but not for long. Another small detour took us to Le Mont-Bessou just north of the town of Meymac.
Here we climbed the viewing tower

Viewing Tower, Le Mont-Bessou, Correze, France
Viewing Tower, Le Mont-Bessou, Correze, France

which I have since discovered

is built of Douglas fir, braced with steel cables, and is triangular in plan. 188 steps and six intervening landings, take the visitor to the main viewing platform, which is 26 metres (85 ft) above the ground.

Which probably explains why I came close to being seasick so far away from the sea. The tower resonates with every step as you ascend and never quite seems to settle, never quite stationary. Presumably that is why they have this mounted on the top deck in the middle of the floor.

Swing-O-Meter, Viewing Tower, Le Mont-Bessou, Correze, France
Swing-O-Meter, Viewing Tower, Le Mont-Bessou, Correze, France

I’m pleased to say that I did not see the pendulum swing out of the center circle.

All that aside, the views were, despite the clouds, spectacular.

View from viewing tower, Mont-Bessou, Correz, France
View from viewing tower, Mont-Bessou, Correz, France – Looking towards Meymac

View from viewing tower, Mont-Bessou, Correz, France
View from viewing tower, Mont-Bessou, Correz, France

All the fresh air, scenery and climbing the tower had made us hungry. So on we travelled to Bort des Orgues where we sat on the terrace of the Central Hotel overlooking the river and ate a superb lunch.

NB: I just discovered this post, in draft state. I don’t feel it is complete but have submitted it as is because my memories of that day are truly hazy.

Petersfield Heath Lake


Petersfield Heath Lake
Petersfield Heath Lake

Petersfield is a market town in Hampshire, England. It is 17 miles north of Portsmouth.

Petersfield Heath Lake is a popular spot for mums and their kids as there are playgrounds and a cafe along with nice walks around the shoreline. Boats can be hired and the lake is also popular with fishermen.

Blenheim, Bampton and Burford


Earlier in the year, we had the rellies over from Oz. During their stay we traveled up to visit Blenheim Palace, stayed overnight in Woodstock and did a small vaguely Downton Abbey related tour of the locale. The following are a few photo’s taken over the weekend.

Winston Churchill - No visit to Blenheim is complete without an acknowledgement to the great man himself.
Blenheim Palace – Winston Churchill – No visit to Blenheim is complete without an acknowledgement to the great man himself.

Blenheim1
Blenheim Palace – Water Gardens

Blenheim2
Blenheim Palace – Main Entrance

Blenheim3
Blenheim Palace – The view below the Water Gardens

Blenheim4
Blenheim Palace – Tranquility

Blenheim5
Blenheim Palace – Rose Gardens, a blousy pink.

Blenheim6
Blenheim Palace – Rose Gardens, I can still smell the scent.

Blenheim7
Blenheim Palace – Rose Gardens, a luscious red, which is just how I like my wine.

Blenheim9
Blenheim Palace – Rose Gardens, for shear exuberance. Reminds me of the Can Can

Blenheim10
Blenheim Palace – towering, or is that lurking, above The Boat House

Blenheim11
Blenheim Palace – Hidden Treasure

Blenheim12
Blenheim Palace – Dainty

Blenheim13
Blenheim Palace – view of the lake, from The Boat House

Blenheim14
Blenheim Palace – Butterfly House, resident.

Blenheim15
Blenheim Palace – Butterfly House, fancy some fruit ?

Blenheim16
Blenheim Palace – Butterfly House, cheeky chappy.

Blenheim17
Blenheim Palace – Butterfly House, this cheeky chappy followed us around and harangued us from every perch.

Bampton

Bampton in Oxfordshire is the “real” name of  Downton, a name familiar with all Downton Abbey fans. As one would expect the real thing looks very different to the images presented on screen.

Bampton - Church View  appears regularly in the series. It is here that two pubs, The Grantham Arms & The Dog and Duck are located.
Bampton – Church View appears regularly in the series. It is here that two pubs, The Grantham Arms & The Dog and Duck are located.

Bampton - Church View - Apparently No. 2 gets quite a makeover to become a pub in the series.
Bampton – Church View – Apparently No. 2 gets quite a makeover to become a pub in the series.

Bampton - Church View - A real cottage garden.
Bampton – Church View – A real cottage garden.

Bampton - The old Grammar School building, which now houses Bampton Community Archive, served as ‘Downton’ hospital. Unfortunately closed when we were there.
Bampton – The old Grammar School building, which now houses Bampton Community Archive, served as ‘Downton’ hospital. Unfortunately closed when we were there.

Bampton - St Mary’s Church, renamed for the series as St Michael and All Angels
Bampton – St Mary’s Church, renamed for the series as St Michael and All Angels

Bampton - Cottages
Bampton – Cottages

Burford

Burford is a small town on the River Windrush in the Cotswold hills in west Oxfordshire, England, about 18 miles west of Oxford, 22 miles southeast of Cheltenham and only about 2 miles from the Gloucestershire boundary.

Burford14
Burford – With a name like Huffkins and the crooked windows this place looks like something out of a Harry Potter film.

Burford13
Burford – Going down to the shops is a doddle. Coming back is the real issue.

Burford12
Burford – Just popping out to the shops is part of the local fitness regime.

Burford
Burford – Alms Houses, Founded in 1457 by Richard Earl of Warwick. Rebuilt in 1828.

Burford10
Burford – Nearly at the summit. The locals must feel like planting a flag each time they make it to the top.

Burford9
Burford – Minutes just fly by here. So much so that the minute hand has flown away. Obviously the right place to sit and while away the hours.

Burford3
Burford – Hope you have left the handbrake on.

Burford2
Burford – I wonder what’s down there ?

Burford4
Burford – Something quaint and interesting round every corner.

Burford5
Burford – Nothing is straight.

Burford6
Burford – Hidden charm.

Burford7
Burford – More Wonky Windows

Burford8
Burford – I was holding the camera straight, honest I was.

Burford11
Burford –