Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge – Houses


Poplar Row, Darley Abbey, Derbyshire

Much sort after property with big price tags…that may be the case today but these terraced houses and there neighbours had a very humble beginning.

They were built for Mill Workers in the nearby Mill Darley Cotton Mill complex.  The mill dates back to the 1700’s and the houses above are just some of about 130 houses of various sizes and style built by the mill owners, the Evans Family. Over about 50 years they built in effect a factory village complete with school and the usual village amenities.

Look at the top floor and the row of windows…shorter than the lower floors.  Invariably in these workers houses that top floor was one long work room, often for weaving and spinning.

Not all the houses were as large and that variety adds some extra charm to the village. But the majority are in the terrace style…

Darley-StreetDarley Street Cottages 

Darley Mills, like most of the mills of that era required a guaranteed supply source of water. Darley Mills is just one mill complex built alongside Derbyshire’s River Derwent. Darley Mills is part of the UNESCO Derwent Valley World Heritage Site.


Darley Mills and the River Derwent, Derby

World Heritage status has attracted many visitors but don’t rush to explore the interior.  Darley Mills has not been a working mill for many years and has had a reincarnation as a business complex for many smaller companies. There is a Restaurant and a Wedding Venue but otherwise todays businesses range from Insurance Companies, Martial Arts Studios, Tool and Pattern Makers and Motor Engineering specialist.

I hope you like my suggestion for this weeks B&W Photo Challenge.

Ban W Cee

You can see what others have suggested on this link:-


8th December

(C) David Oakes 2017


Not worth Writing Home About…


Well as predicted we did get some snow…..but as my mum used to say “it isn’t worth writing home about”.

You could of course say that we have got off very lightly as not many miles away there are reports of very much thicker covering of snow.  More often that not this last year we seem to have enjoyed a healthy and placid micro climate in our immediate part of Derbyshire.

Even though the scattering of snow is only a light covering, put it together with the low morning sun and blue sky, it added a welcome fresh dimension to our mornings walk.

Temperatures were of course much lower.  We started at 0c and that sunshine managed to lift the mercury to a dizzy 5c…. but the wind chill made it feel much colder.

8th December

(C) David Oakes 2017

Winter(ish) Weather


Wednesday night we went to bed with severe weather warnings ringing in our ears. Now whilst it is true that on Thursday morning many folk to the north of the UK woke after a night of gales and wintery showers, in some places there was a good dump of snow, we in our small corner of England woke to a calm morning.

It had of course rained overnight and there had also a been blustery wind. The morning started dull but soon the sun came out to play. Great for Busters walkies but you could see that the wind had at long last striped the trees of their leaves…. even the Oak that is reluctant to  let go was now a skeleton on the horizon.


The biggest change was the temperatures.  Since Saturday they had been rather unseasonably warm but today they  plummeted to 5c. Distinctly cold by the Lake…


Surprisingly the cold did little to discourage the morning rowers on the River Derwent….


But we cannot be smug at escaping yesterday storms as I guess by the time you read this we will be ‘enjoying’ our first covering of snow… well that is what we are told. Not that we can complain it is after all December

8th December

(C) David Oakes 2017