Tuesday, 30 August 2016

A high old time in Highgrove

Highgrove's front door

Lovely gates reclaimed from an London yard

View towards the house
Highgrove House is the family home of Charles, Prince of Wales, and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, just down the road from Tetbury in Gloucestershire. 

England. Built in the late 18th-century, Highgrove and its estate was owned by various families until it was purchased in 1980 by the Duchy of Cornwall from Maurice Macmillan (Harold’s son).

HRH and a gaggle of well-known designers and a battalion of gardens have created an enchanting place to visit. The place is full of recycled bits and pieces, including hand-me-downs from Hereford Cathedral, stonework, figures, carvings all peer at you from out of the shrubberies!  HRH is chair of Hereford’s trustees so presumably gets first dibs. 

Each year 30,000 take the two-hour tour and afterwards tea and cake of course.

There is much to inspire and incorporate in one’s own perhaps less grand plot; a wild garden, a formal garden, a Sundial Garden, and a woodland garden featuring two classical temples made from green oak and a stumpery.  We would only have room for one temple.

Thursday, 18 August 2016

Orkney - Along the cliff tops with Ranger Alison


Near Marwick Head

A day again for Ornithology, the high point was another RSPB tour up to Marwick Head again with Tour Guide Alison. We were amongst some serious birds and those at the outset of this passion, like us, we quizzed Alsion constantly!

Morning occupied by colouring in and some life admin. Also, we made a micro jaunt to Waulkmil Bay moments from the house. The broad beach at low water not a place for dull weather but we discovered a good cliff top walk back to the motor.

Full Orkney Gallery on the Home Page www.timbaynesart.co.uk

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Orkney and Ranger Alison at the RSPB

Looking across The Loons 

TUESDAY and much fun in mixed weather: Sunny in the morning rain for the rest of the day! We went on our first bird watching expedition to the Loons. This is an area of wetlands with a hide all managed by the RSPB.

Before this timorous ornithological foray we had been on a proper RSPB walk around the Ring of Brodgar with Guide Alison from the RSPB and afterwards joined up on the spot!

Went to Library to collect email; later in the week, we joined Orkney Library, containing great books and a lovely group of staff being the desk.

Full Orkney Gallery on the Home Page www.timbaynesart.co.uk

Monday, 15 August 2016

Orkney and North Ronaldsay

Across the island, facinating former dewellings

A deserted harbour

The wonderful sheep on North Ronaldsay

Day 3 

To the island of North Ronaldsay, the most northerly island in this glass bead collection. The flight lasted 15 minutes, aside from the pilot had the best seats. A flat landscape peppered with farms and the occasional deserted dwelling. The latter being a great inspiration to paint.

The high spot of the adventure: Sandra, who runs the local Post Office and appears to own a quarter of the UK in property including places in Indonesia. From her we brought delightful silver bracelets made by her and her husband. Also bought (made by Sandra) a hat for Sian to keep out the fierce winds. Sun all day. Bicycle hire was good, and we covered the ground. Before the flight home (we the only people on the flight back – apart from the pilot.

Sunday, 14 August 2016

Orkney Sunday

Lovely Skail especially the sweep of sand

Day 2 
A languid start to the day and we drive towards the Ring of Brodgar and discover a chapel, lonely lovely with a view across the lochs. Hot sun. Passing Bridger’s ring, there are hoards of coaches.  We made lunch on the beach at Skail Bay and avoided Skara Brae for it was overrun by with a huge party from a cruise ship in Kirkwall.

Skail Beach, warm and peaceful.  Northwards we intended to go to Birsay. However we were distracted by the discovery of some extensive ruins of a disused Airfield, HMS Tern.

A spectacular tramp around modern archaeology. Rain in Birsay when we arrived so left it for another day. 

Full Orkney Gallery on the Home Page www.timbaynesart.co.uk

Friday, 12 August 2016

Orkney - Reconnecting with the familiar

A changing light governed by cloud

Day 1 All is peaceful; the stream babbles, and the swifts collide in the garden. We sit looking westward; the sun is still high. The hills are darkening in a changing light governed by cloud

An easy journey here, however, domestic traumas, the fridge is not working. And then as if by magic a new one is organised! We stock it with  food from Lidl and Tesco, our first port of call on the way to the house.

Fields green beyond belief
Now all fields are green beyond belief. Buttercups and other flowers are strewn like carpets (varieties which we will name across the week).  Oyster Catchers are incessant while we to continue to love this island and its siblings.

Full Orkney Gallery on the Home Page www.timbaynesart.co.uk