Places where wildlife has been, or can be, seen.


Spurn Head

Here is a dramatic tale – of shifting landscapes, lost settlements, abandoned military installations and wobbly legs.  It features the spindly, exposed, crooked finger of Spurn Head on the East Yorkshire coast.  Spurn is an enigmatic, fascinating and slightly scary place, a low-lying spit of glacial clay, sand and shingle, washed on one side by […]

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A Silverdale saunter

Silverdale cave

This walk round Silverdale began as a bimble, but in the interest of alliteration became a saunter. Silverdale, for those not in the know, is a small, almost modest, parish nestling close to the Kent estuary on Morecambe Bay in the northern English county of Lancashire.  As you would expect, it possesses a little natural

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Ten of the best places to visit in North East England

Bamburgh Castle

Frankly, you’ll be spoiled for choice if you’re looking for things to see and do in North East England.  From dramatic, wild coast and countryside, to wildlife, castles, Roman remains, the simple grandeur of Durham and the culture and vibrancy of Newcastle upon Tyne, there is something for everyone.  To start you off, here is

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What really happened at Orford Ness?

Orford Ness, a ten-mile long shingle spit on the Suffolk coast, is one of the most extraordinary places in Britain. Its environment, part natural, part man-made, provides a perfect, and in places rare, habitat for an enormous variety of flora and fauna. But, more than that, for the greater part of the 20th century it

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Marsden Bay isn’t quite the Algarve

Marsden Rock, Marsden Bay, South Tyneside

The wind whips words away, yet the incessant piercing cries of thousands of seabirds all around Marsden Bay cut through every sound.  To the best of my knowledge, England’s north east coast between South Shields and Sunderland features in few guide books to Britain, whose writers seem to skip from the North Yorkshire Moors to

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On top of Seven Sisters

Seven Sisters from Seaford Head - the classic view from just above the coastguards' cottages. In the distance is Beachy Head.

Before anyone gets carried away with gratuitous salacity, the Seven Sisters are chalk cliffs on the south east coast of England.  Do not confuse them with another Seven Sisters, an area of London in N15, near Tottenham.  Exciting and attractive though the latter undoubtedly is, today – today we’re striding out across the cliffs, perforce

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St David’s Head

St David's Head, wild ponies, Pembrokeshire

Everywhere in Britain, we walk in the footsteps of the past; it’s just not always that obvious.  However, a relatively short, lung-bursting, stagger up to St David’s Head (Penmaen Dewi) in Pembrokeshire will take you to a reminder of a 5th century saint, the remains of an Iron Age settlement and field systems, a feature

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Souter lighthouse

Souter Lighthouse, Tyne & Wear

I journeyed to Souter from Gateshead through seemingly endless housing estates.  The drive seemed curiously out of time, as though my car was in a bubble of the past, a mood somehow pricked at the first, innocent, exciting, sight of the sea.  Souter is easy to find; but you shouldn’t miss spotting a lighthouse, should

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Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum

Kelvingrove Museum and Art Gallery, Glasgow

Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum comes under the heading, ‘Not to be missed in Glasgow’.  A Spitfire rubs shoulders (or undercarriage/trunk) with Sir Roger the elephant; there’s a stuffed eagle (and other animals), lumps of rock (aka ‘geology’), ancient Egyptian coffins, suits of armour, guns, Charles Rennie Mackintosh bits, fearsome dinosaurs – and loads and

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Caerlaverock Castle

Caerlaverock Castle, Dumfries

Here is a fortress on the edge.  Caerlaverock is a mighty Scottish stronghold on the banks of the Solway Firth, in the border battleground of the two old protagonists, Scotland and England, and which finally came to grief in the civil war of the 17th century.  On first seeing a picture of this most photogenic

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Lulworth & Durdle

Lulworth & Durdle sounds like a law firm.  Commissioners for oaths; adversarial specialists; rip-off fees; incompetence guaranteed – that sort of thing.  I have known at least four firms that should have been called Bungle, Overcharge & Obfuscate. Anyway, close by the Dorset village of West Lulworth on England’s Jurassic south coast is Lulworth Cove. 

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The sweetest spot that fancy can imagine

Levens Park, Cumbria

This was the opinion of Thomas West (1720-1779) when referring, not to a lady of his acquaintance, but to Levens Park, in Cumbria. The quote appeared in West’s ‘Guide to the Lakes’, allegedly, the first tourist guide to England’s Lake District, published in 1778. Levens is in the south of the county, just outside the

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