After several weeks of rain, the forecast for a dry weekend inspired us to set out in search of Autumn colours in the Lake District. To our surprise it must be over fifteen years since our last visit, considering it is so near.
We had intended to go straight to Sizergh but as it was overcast we decided to leave that until the next day and made our way towards Windermere instead. Although cloudy, it was a reasonable day for a walk and a chance to explore the town. The area was busy and the autumn colours around the lake weren't fully out yet but the views were worth the trip.
Walking into town, we looked for somewhere to eat and soon realised that food and drinks were quite expensive due to being a tourist area. Venturing further, we explored the shops and several of the art galleries and craft shops. I always feel it's a shame that many of these are selling high priced prints when there are so many talented artists around that would welcome galleries selling their original work.
Eventually, we did find a gallery that had a range of original art and spent time enjoying the pictures before setting off for our hotel.
Having seen so many prints for sale, it was nice to find that the Gilpin Bridge Inn, where we were staying, showcased the work of Bob Sutcliffe who, after a heart attack, taught himself to paint and now raised over £50.000 for charity by selling his pictures, cards and prints. They were all reasonably priced as well.
Unfortunately because of the lighting in the Inn these were difficult to photograph.
On Sunday we woke early after a disturbed night when the fire alarm went off. If we are not careful we will be banned from staying in hotels etc. soon, as this is the third time that it has happened in the last year; none may I add, were our fault!
With the weather improving, we drove to Sizergh Castle and were lucky enough to enjoy the colourful garden in the sunshine before it clouded over. The Acers were in full bloom and the walk around the garden was impressive. I managed to get several images that I will be able to use for paintings and it is certainly a place we will visit again, hopefully when the castle is open as well.
Rather than rushing home we decided to stop on the way in Morecambe, again a place we hadn't been for several years. Like many seaside resorts it is having to adapt to changes in people's vacation choices. They have several improvements to the seafront and added sculptures to enhance the area. The most famous one is of Eric Morecambe but there are a range of others including several of birds.
Some of the shops are now empty but it was a nice surprise to find a recently opened café; come craft, come art gallery. Here, the lady in the Beach Bird has collected a wide range of craft items and work from local artists for sale. It was a really quirky place to sit and have food and drink. As we sat down another artist came in chatting to the owner and was encouraged to bring some work in to put on show. We had an enjoyable chat with the owner ourseleves and it was pleasing to see this type of establishment opening up and we wished her every success in her endeavour.
An enjoyable couple of days. An area, we decided, we mustn't leave it so long before returning.