Tag Archives: Bakewell

Books, Blue John and Bakewell Pudding

I had a bad night last night, waking up in the early hours with a pain in the elbow. I couldn’t lie on my back and I couldn’t lie on my side, and, most irritatingly, I couldn’t work out what I’d done to cause the problem.

Eventually I dropped off, but I slept a disturbed sleep and kept dreaming about having a painful elbow. I’m not sure what this signifies in the lore of the meaning of dreams, but suspect it might mean I have a pain in the elbow.

Finally I got up and started preparing for the big day out. We had to drop a prescription off at the surgery first, then set off for Derbyshire. We’ve been a few times recently, but we like it, and we wanted to get out rather than frittering the day away. That’s what normally happens if we stay at home – a few errands here, a few chores there and suddenly the day has gone. I’m an expert at wasting time, so you can believe me on this subject.

We stopped on the way to take a few views, including the tower of the Crich Memorial.

 

Apart from being a memorial to the dead of the Sherwood Foresters, the hill has been the scene of Roman settlement, an Armada beacon and an 1813 steam locomotive experiment. Today the village of Crich houses a Tramway Museum.

In the years leading up to 2002, Rolls Royce used the quarry at the back of the hill for dumping low level radioactive waste. The words “low level” aren’t much comfort in this context.

Florence Nightingale lived in the village of Lea, which is round the back of the memorial, so it’s been quite a busy place in historical terms.

Our main visit was to Bakewell, where I photographed the padlock bridge again, toured charity shops (the Air Ambulance shop is probably the pick of the bunch – much better than the one at Carsington). I bought some interesting books, which will be reviewed later and we looked at traditional Derbyshire Blue John jewellery in shop windows. It seems to be making a comeback.

I found a rotting tree stump covered in fungus near the car park, a Julia-sized jumper in the Edinburgh Woollen Mill and a Bakewell Pudding in a tea room.

 

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Bakewell Pudding with ice cream. It didn’t need the ice cream, but they insisted.

The pudding was excellent.

I also took a few other photos, including on of a dog’s footprint in cement. I bet that was a popular dog.

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Dog’s footprint, immortalised in cement at Bakewell

After that we went home, photographing a sunset on the way and buying white gloss paint  for a project in the Mencap Garden.

A Few Photos I Didn’t Use

I thought I’d cut down on Christmas effort by shoving in a few photos I haven’t used before. I may use them in the future, because I still have a few things to write up, but for the moment I will use them to save effort on a day when I need my energy for bickering with family members, over-cooking food and complaining about the poor quality of TV.

Some Christmas traditions are just too important to ignore.

The main photograph shows Julia walking across the bridge at Bakewell. It has an amazing number of locks attached to it, despite the article I read some months ago which said they were going to take some off. They are now so thickly clustered it’s starting to look a bit like Paris.

You may notice that Julia is carrying a basket.

It’s a sort of tradition with us – we go to Bakewell and Julia buys another basket. Like all the best traditions, the origins of this strange nehaviour are hidden in the mists of time. If there is ever a world shortage of baskets it is unlikely to have much impact on our family.

These are  afew shots of Bakewell. I have more, as you will find out later.

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Cottage Pie with a sweet potato topping, carrots and samphire. We know how to live.

The strange quality to the photograph is caused by steam rising from the meal. Most food in cookery books, I believe is cold to prevent this. However, considering what else they do to it, cold is the least of your worries. The carrots, for instance,would be coated with glycerine to make them attractively shiny. Samphire is getting quite fashionable and is actually being imported.

I first ate samphire when I foraged it on a camping trip in Norfolk. That would be around 1976. I enjoyed it so much that I had it again in 2016. I had it twice in 2017. It’s bitter, it’s salty and the last lot had some very fibrous stalks, but it’s crunchy after steaming and tastes like it must be doing you good. According to this article it’s also known as Mermaid’s Kiss and is loved by fashionable cooks.

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A brick from Watnall Colliery, Nottingham

This is a brick from a local brickyard – marked up as NCB Watnall (National Coal Board for those of you who aren’t familiar with the term). A lot of collieries also made bricks. There were 82 operating after the war and this example is from Watnall near Nottingham. The NCB indicates it was made after 1947. It’s a bit of local history we found when going through a pile of bricks at the Mencap garden.

 

 

The Birthday Present

Better late than never, as they say.

We went to Bakewell today and finally bought Julia’s birthday present.  We’d originally gone to the retail park just off the M1, then Matlock Bath, and finally Bakewell. Derbyshire seemed quite busy, with several Christmas events taking place.

We eventually ended up in a very nice jeweller’s shop and selected the pendant and chain in the main picture. It’s forget-me-nots in a silver mount. I’m not sure what the clear stuff is – it’s tempting to call it crystal but it’s probably some sort of plastic. This is the 21st century, after all, and it was very reasonably priced.

To sum up – Julia likes it, it looks good and it wasn’t expensive. What’s not to like?

When we left the shop they gave us a crystal angel decoration to celebrate their 15 years in business in Bakewell.

If you happen to be in Bakewell they are in Water Street and open from 10.00 until 5.00.

http://www.jewellerybystoneart.co.uk

They have a great selection of stock and I could have bought more, but Julia decided to be economical.

 

Too Old to Rock ‘n’ Roll: Too Young to Die!

Last week we had ice on puddles that lasted all day in shady spots. On Saturday night we had snow. I say snow but it was less than an inch, so hardly recognisable to those of you in Alaska, Lapland, or even Scotland.

At 5.30 this morning as I took my wife to work (enjoying the comforts of the new car – heated seats and an external temperature reading) I noted it was already above freezing point. Eleven hours later I picked her up and then snow had all melted. I don’t know what the rest of the winter weather will bring but this has been a lucky break.

Yes, you did read that right. After the problems with the Citroen we bought a new car, which allows us to be reliable once more. I tried not to shed a tear at parting with the money, and almost succeeded.In fact I tried to avoid parting with any money at all, but that was what resulted in us having such a bad time with the car in the first place. Miserliness is an unattractive quality in a man, I’m told by my wife, and causes more problems than it solves.

Mentioning my wife, I think it’s fair to mention her stoicism in working ten hour shifts on Sundays so that we can run Quercus Community and afford groceries, a car and children. If she ever has to give it up (or if the council carries through on its threat to take away the enhanced pay for working Sundays) we will have to cut back on something – probably the children.

It is, as they say, an ill wind that blows no good.

In case anyone in the Nottingham area is reading this I am looking for casual work if you have any.

I have no discernible skills, am sometimes described as “difficult” (though only by idiots) but will work for peanuts. At my time of life, summed up by Jethro Tull in the title of this post, you tend not to make too many wage demands.

Yes, they are named after  this man, because one of the band’s management team was a history enthusiast.  Robert Bakewell, to be fair doesn’t have that ring to it that suggests a prog rock band but  Turnip Towsnhend and Coke of Norfolk must be miffed to have lost out.

Meanwhile, getting back to what the blog is supposed to be about, I just have to set the finishing touches to the craft work for tomorrow – icy weather and a group with compromised immune systems dictates that we plan for being inside.

I’m happy with that: at my age I creak too much if I get cold. On Saturday night, as I fiddled with the new combination locks on the farm gates, I could feel my hands slowing down as the cold got to them.