Friday, 8 January 2010

Snowy Thirlwall Castle plus Walltown Quarry

This is Thirlwall Castle (a Reiver castle built from pinched Hadrian's Wall stones) - to be found just over a field or two away from us...I am always writing about it because I love it so...
i) Imagine the scene...
ii) Rack and Ruin....
iii) Wild Visitors....
iv) Legends and Spells...
v) Where the rooms are...
vi) Layout of the Castle...



















A scenic view from one of the Castle's "windows"












































The nearby village/hamlet of Longbyre complete with snow...(where the B&B is)...












Sledging...to a man/boy/dog....













The "new" versions of the sledge. We do have a "Rosebud" wooden number which belonged to me and my sisters...which I must dig out!












Patterns in the snow...















Lookout Santa's hanging about! (Front view of the B&B)...














The icy back view of our little Four Wynds B&B....

















My obsession with the haybales in the field behind the house continues...they remind me of giant "Swiss Rolls". (Perhaps only people of a "certain age" will remember these. They were one of the highlights of being little in the 1970's in the UK. Dragged out of the freezer...rolls of sponge cake filled with vanilla and strawberry ice cream (made by Bird's Eye? Yes...Troy and Catharine Withenay have just reminded me that they are called "Artic Rolls".). Probably pretty frightful to any gourmand or gourmandeuse but they represented a seventh heaven for a seven year old!)




The B6318 (ungritted)!


















Looking down the main street of Longbyre...just in front of the B&B. We do have a lot more snow than this. This photo was taken before the recent deluge of snow.......
By the way...school has been cancelled for the last four days. Our archaeology day which is part of "Know your North Pennines" has been called off. It was set for next Wednesday but nothing, absolutely nothing can be seen of Whitley Castle/Epiacum. Whitley Castle is buried beneath the ground at the best of times...but it is under several feet of snow right now.











A Snowy Walltown Quarry, which is literally up the road from us, on the Whin Sill and a view from Hadrian's Wall.















Walltown Quarry again. The ducks on the lake are surviving (just)!


If you are interested in the geology of the area I recommend a book called "Ancient Frontiers" ISBN 085272541-8 (Exploring the geology and landscape of Hadrian's Wall area) and produced by the British Geological Survey with the Northumberland National Park Authority. (A very reasonable £8.00.) It covers: Beginnings, Limestone, Sand and Mud, Building with Stone, Coal, Whinstone, Minerals, Hidden History, Ice and the Evolving Landscape. (Hopefully I'll have another chance to talk about the geology of the area in more detail.)






































Atmospheric shots taken at Walltown Quarry. They are views taken beside the remains of a very small opencast (limestone - I think) Roman mine . We were on a "geology" day here last March and our very knowledgeable lecturer did an alkaline test here to show us the presence of limestone. The Romans mined limestone, sandstone, coal and much more all along the corridor of Hadrian's Wall. Enormous quantities of sandstone were used in the building of the Wall. The Roman construction teams excavated huge amounts of loose dolerite blocks to establish their foundations but did not want to use this for the Wall itself. They used the more "workable" sandstone for the Wall and associated buildings. (N.B. "Limestone Corner" which is not made of limestone!..[NY825 706]...evidence of the failure of the Romans to excavate the Whin Sill dolerite. You can see several wedge holes testify to the abortive attempts to break the rock!)














4 comments:

Mark said...

Haybales make good images - I like to see them dotted over the fields in the autumn

Great photos on this and your other post

Hadriana's Treasures said...

Thanks Mark. Just seen your comment over at French Fancy's blog about Eddie Stobbart. BTW - Hunter Davies has written a biography on him. Have you read it? Am intrigued by that subject now....

Strawberry Jam Anne said...

What a lovely set of snowy photos Hadriana - always worth a look. I love haybales too! Ax

Gill - That British Woman said...

those first couple of photos of the book remind me of school, when we were taught about the Roman's etc. Great photos.

Gill in Canada