A quick 'better late than never' Five on Friday post
It was a beautiful day yesterday and we took a stroll along the Cromford Canal in Derbyshire in the bright afternoon sunshine.
We saw Dab Chicks or Little Grebes, just one pair unfortunately my photos were too blurry in the sunshine but it was lovely to hear their distinct 'whistling chatter' as they called to each other. We spoke to a couple of people who had also seen a water vole in the exact spot we'd seen them a few years ago. We weren't lucky enough to see one yesterday. The first post I ever wrote on this blog, on 14th March 2005, was about Dab Chicks on the Cromford Canal, we saw more then than yesterday.
Here are five things that caught my eye as we went along our way.
1. St Mary's Church
We parked in the main car park opposite the church and wandered through the trees to take a closer look. The church was originally planned as a chapel for nearby Willersley Castle, home of the mill owner Sir Richard Arkwright. It was completed five years after his death in 1797 and he and some family members are buried in the crypt under the chancel, whilst other Arkwrights are buried in the small graveyard. The church was closed but I've added a link to a photo of the inside - here. The wall paintings look wonderful.
2. Cromford Mill - this was the first water powered cotton mill developed by Richard Arkwright in 1771. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and considered to be the birthplace of the modern factory system. There is a new exhibition called 'The Arkwright Experience' which we didn't visit this time but we intend to go back soon to take a look. Here is a - link - to their website.
3. Wheatcroft's Wharf - N Wheatcroft & Son Ltd Coal & Coke Merchants used to trade from here. Part of it is now a lovely cafe and bookshop.
4. Leawood Pump House - still in full working order. Inside is a beam engine dating from 1849 and made by Milton Ironworks of Elsecar, South Yorkshire. It was used to raise water from the nearby River Derwent into the Cromford Canal.
5. Mallards - plenty of these along the canal, resting near the wharf or flying three or four abreast over the straight stretches of the canal. If we stopped at any point to take photos or chat to a passer by they would come waddling up to us obviously thinking that humans = the chance of food!
Joining in with Tricky and Carly at FAST blog for this week's Five on Friday.
Click on the link to see others who are joining in this week.