Photo Blog Week 35 - Wed 03 September 2014With most children back to school, there was an eerie quiet about the Park today after the hectic days of summer holidays with children and families actively enjoying the open spaces. It is odd to think that this will seem to have been a busy day when I'm plodding the frozen ground in February.
I opted to check a section of wall and fence along the NW boundary today. A lot of this involves pushing through difficult access areas in the back of woods which are currently filled with brambles, nettles and flies. Tiring and hot work, at times somewhat unpleasant. One section is impossible to reach and I headed out of the Park onto footpaths in adjacent farmland to get a visual inspection of these sections.
Today's patrol was shorter than normal as it didn't start 'till lunchtime due to a meeting in the morning.
The Lyme Park Management Team do their best to keep volunteers informed as to the wider goings on in the Park and these occasional get togethers involve all the heads of departments presenting and answering questions. I appreciate the effort and, though I know very few other volunteers, it's nice to be able to recognise the staff and to feel part of the 'whole' team. The Park is doing well and the plans in near and longer term future all sound good.
I have seen some commentators speak negatively suggesting that all NT properties are interested in is money. (Twitter recently)
When I say, "doing well", above, I mean getting money in to at least address some of the massive effort which is needed to maintain The Park, Gardens, Hall and Collection. A couple of small examples: the work on the setts at the North Face of the Hall is costing about £9,000; with many miles of Drystone Wall which is deteriorating, a typical cost of stone for rebuild is £50 per ton. Now that may sound OK, until you consider that, in an average height wall, a single metre of contains about 2 ton of stone.
Others comment on 'all the staff' inferring the frittering away money on wages; I think few realise that most of the people they will encounter on a visit are Volunteers and that the remarkably few Staff are not particularly well paid, often work unsociable hours and are frequently on short contracts.
route: Hall North Face; Green Drive; drop across grass to Timberyard Cafe (lunch)
route: Across Mill Pond outlet race; Crow Wood; climb hillside to boundary wall; follow boundary wall through Crow Wood; exit wood and follow Boundary Wall ; enter Elmerhurst Wood; break off path and climb to boundary fence; follow fence as much as possible; rejoin path and exit over ladder stile.
It's interesting to watch how the whole tree doesn't suddenly move to autumn colours but individual branch ends across the tree start the process
route: exit Park by Elmerhurst Cottage; follow metalled track parallel to boundary; (to end of Elmerhurst Wood boundary); retrace steps to Park entrance
Out of The Park
Back in The Park
route: Leave Elmerhurst Cottage drive on small paths along brook; pass ladder stile exit to High Lane; Main Entrance; Cage Hill; The Cage; The Stables; Hall Estate Office
The StablesThe Stables rarely get a mention. The building and yard are not open to the public but house the Estate Management offices and workshops for Building, Conservation and Ranger teams.
Still a nice building with some interesting features above the entrance tunnel.