Spring is now moving forward…..


A Spring Wood, Derbyshire

For a few days now the sun has been rather elusive. Yesterday start very grey and unpromising, so it was a surprise that we actually enjoyed some breaks in the cloud allowing a few glimpses of a hazy sun.

It was enough to cast some shadows over the woodland path, it will not be long before all that new growth on the tops of the trees starts to exclude the light. At the moment the new leaf growth is sparse and a yellowish green.  There are also Bluebells hiding within the green carpet below the trees, it is a race to produce there flowers before the leaf canopy casts it dark shadow.

Away from the woods we were surprised to see small groups of Red Deer on the move.  Going nowhere in particular, just unsettled, grabbing a quick graze then off again.


Something was in the air creating this nervous, watchful, movement.  It is some time till the Rutting season so it shouldn’t be unwelcome attention from the Stags.  It is also a little early for the Deer in calf to be giving birth…. so who knows.


Out on the meadows many of the fields are turning yellow.  Oilseed Rape is the crop.  I always find it rather incongruous that we have all this fresh over blown yellow seeds set against a stark background of bare skeletons of trees yet to leaf..


The hazy sun kept on coming and going throughout the day……  But it did end on a high with a rich after glow lighting the evenings clouds and a clearing sky.


 16th April

(C) David Oakes 2019


Moody Monday…… Cold and Blue!

Blue Door

It is colder outside than we ‘enjoyed’ all winter…… and this Monday Morning it also very grey….. so don’t blame me for feeling moody and blue.

It is rather ridiculous being so unseasonably cold, when the forecast for the Easter weekend to come is 21c…. very hard to believe.

15th April

(C) David Oakes 2019

Silent Sunday…… Off to a Very Different Church


The Nether Largie Standing Stones,  Kilmartin, Argyll

We are not visiting a conventional Church this Sunday but none the less a place where over 5000 years ago, in the Neolithic era, people gathered for communal ceremonies.  Burial and Tribal occasions plus celebrations and worship related to the seasons.

The Standing Stones are covered with what are known as “Cup and Ring”  marks. Many theories relate to there interpretation but none seem definitive.

Nether Largie is just one of over 350 ancient sites in an area no bigger than 6 miles around Kilmartin…. and part of Kilmartin Glen.

Standing Stones, Burial Cairns and Kist’s can be found all across this Argyll Peninsula that pokes out into the Irish Sea.


Temple Wood Burial Cairn and Standing Stones


Kilmartin Glen and Nether Largie

The Religious significance of Kilmartin has continued through the millennia from those early Neolithic times. Over the centuries the changing generations have sought to discover Religious solus in Kilmartin and the surrounding Glens.

Today many visitors seek out Kilmartin Church and the nearby Visitors Centre.  The Church itself is also  host to a number of carved stones from a different age. Intricately carved Crosses and  elaborate Memorial Stones dating  from before 1300AD through to the 1600’s AD.  Many are in the open within the Church grounds whilst the most precious have been taken into shelter.


 Kilmartin Church is still the Parish Church and retaining the link through religious time back to the Neolithic worshipers.

Even in todays busy world Kilmartin Glen is a place of tranquillity and peace.

14th April

(C) David Oakes 2019