Shipley - Signs Of Autumn
w/e 16 October 2016
All of this week's pictures were
taken with a Kodak DX6490
There have been several mornings recently when it's
really felt like autumn and it's what we Ilkeston folk call "Fair
weather" but the Annual Charter Fair doesn't arrive in town
until this coming week so for this set of images we went to Shipley
Country Park on the lookout for more signs of autumn.
We entered the park near Osborne's Pond and although the views
across the water were as pleasant as ever, the quest for autumn
colours did not look too promising.
We ambled up Shipley Lane where the signs were a little more
encouraging but the predominant colour on most of the trees was
still green, albeit in various shades of the hue.
At a hedgerow halfway up the lane we did spot one sign of the
season - brambles.
And in the same hedgerow there were also plenty of rose hips.
As we neared Derby Lodge, one small tree stood out but we were
beginning to think we were wasting our time and had come too
early to see the autumn colours at their best.
Rather than turning back though we decided to persist and turned
right into Bell Lane which, since our last walk in the park,
has been resurfaced with a fine tarmac covering. The trees and
hedges though that line the lane were still all green and it
was not until we turned right again to follow the path towards
the Visitor Centre that we encountered a single splash of autumn
Reaching Cinderhill Coppice things did look more promising with
both red berries and golden leaves becoming the more predominant
A closer look at some of the leaves in Cinderhill Coppice showed
the various stages of the transformation.
As we crested the brow of the
hill though we were greeted by a truly lovely autumn scene. A
wildflower meadow with a backdrop of a range of seasonal colours
was the sight that greeted us. The meadow is Shipley Park's "Living
Bird Table" and provides a natural source of food for a
wide range of birds. According to a small notice at the edge
of the meadow (right), the land is cultivated and sown each spring
with a variety of seeds to encourage insects and invertebrates
and provides food for the birds well into the winter. The success
of the scheme has resulted in flocks of up to two hundred yellow
hammers and various finches being seen in the area during the
As we made our way on to the Visitor Centre and then back to
the start of our walk through the park, a last look back at this
seasonal scene and the wildflower meadow showed that our quest
for some signs of autumn had been worthwhile after all.