Dale Abbey - Ockbrook Wood
w/e 18 May 2014
All of this week's pictures were taken with a Kodak DX6490

Notice Board

I suppose it would be remiss of me to let the season pass without at least one photo of bluebells so with that in mind we set off one sunny afternoon to Dale Abbey.
Overhanging Branches

Parking in the centre of the village we walked past the Manor House, Abbey House and the semi-detached church (see Dale Abbey Village Trail) to the long distance footpath, the Midshires Way where we turned right to enter Ockbrook Wood. A notice on a post informed that some of the branches overhanging the adjacent farmland were to be cut back but this shot shows that the work is still to be started. Note the bluebells though growing in the long grass.
Marker Post

The Midshires Way runs along the edge of the wood and a marker post on the left indicates another path climbing up the north facing sandstone escarpment.
Path To Ockbrook

That path climbs up through the wood to the countryside above and eventually leads to Ockbrook.
Midshires Way

We continued along the Midshires Way for a little while almost to the end of the wood before turning to head back towards the village. Continuing out of the wood would have taken us past Columbine Farm and on to Dunnshill, a walk we have done several times in the opposite direction. (link)
Steep Hillside

On this occasion though we were more interested in the bluebells which were dotted about on the steep hillside.

They were even more in evidence as we returned through the wood towards the village.
Dale Abbey Village

As we left the wood, the village lay before us but it needs sharp eyes to spot the gable end of the Carpenter's Arms which can just be seen above the building with the solar panels.

On our way to Ockbrook Wood we had noticed that the path had been diverted and now passes through a field instead of the drive at the side of the church/house building. Years ago I remember passing through the yard adjacent to the house and it being full of farm animals- cows, pigs, geese, ducks, hens etc. - and returning from Hermit's Wood with arms laden with bluebells. This is not to be recommended now as I believe they are a protected species and it is illegal to pick them. The diversion however now means that it is necessary to take a stiff clime up behind the buildings and then to drop down again to the original path into Hermit's Wood. This view from part way up the new path over the village shows the Cat and Fiddle Windmill right in the centre of the horizon.
You Looking At Me?

We dropped down again to the diverted path through the field where one of the occupants gave us a superior and inquisitive look but the other paid us no heed at all.

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