Day 8. Egg

That’s a very topical subject for today on Bradford Photo a Day Challenge – Egg – on Easter Sunday.

See here for my blog closer to the start of the challenge – marfell.me.uk/wordpress/?p=266

Egg shell

My photo for today is not related to Easter but is related, sort of, to what I am doing at 11am today. My photo is of a small piece of Lapwing egg shell that I found last year on Baildon Moor near Glovershaw. I found it near where Lapwings nest, which suggests that something had carried it a short distance. There are many things that make it difficult for nesting birds on the moor – dogs, people, horses, but probably the most damaging is the number of Crows. Perhaps a Crow had carried the egg off and eaten it? This photo below was taken on February 18 2012. Golden Plover, Starlings and Lapwings were collecting in numbers at that time.

Lapwings

Baildon Moor for its size is one of the highest used areas of moorland in the UK (citation needed). The Friends of Baildon Moor are a group of volunteers who want to promote and protect the moor. There is very little that is as nature intended on the moor since it has been subjected to Man’s influence for 5000 years. This has involved such things as grazing, mining and hosting a tank regiment. But more recently 4×4 and quad bikes churn the place up.

Ideally people who visit the moors would take their litter home with them. For those who don’t want to do that Bradford Council, Baildon Parish Council and Friends of Baildon Moor have all paid for rubbish bins at various locations. For those who are unable, for some reason to do either of these things various litter-pick sessions are organised. The latest one, today at 11am, was organised by the Friends of Baildon Moor. David Sturge and I met at the Upper Eaves car-park and spent a while picking up rubbish. I must say that it was not as bad as I had feared. I can think of 3 reasons why this might be

  1. Others have recently had letter-pick sessions there
  2. Malcolm Leyland (a Friend of Baildon Moor) had been past on one of his frequent walks with a bag picking up rubbish. Malcolm is amazing in his tireless work at things like this.
  3. People have started using the bins more or taking their rubbish home with them.

One of the things that was noticeable while we were doing the litter-pick was the sound of Skylarks in the sky. I frequently stopped and listened and searched the sky for a tiny speck, high up, fluttering its wings as it just hangs in the sky singing its song.

Skylark

Click on “Play” of this link to listen to the song. You will also see on the RSPB page that the Skylark is on the Red list as being a bird that needs protecting. It is amazing that the birds actaully survive on Baildon Moor. They don’t nest in the bracken, heather or long grass but in the quite short grass – such places as the edges of the fairways of Baildon Golf course.

It has been shown that birds will nest within 20 metres of paths over moorland but that this can increase to 200 metres if dogs are allowed to run free. Moorland is a great place to let a dog run free but to see startled Skylark take to the air as dogs run about is a worry. Signs are up at various locations asking for dogs to be on a short lead between March and July as per the Countryside Code.

As you can see here at the Upper Eaves car park, in this photo taken today, the area is well used –

Car park

There are plans to turn the Baildon Moor reservoirs into a diving, boating, education area but before some of the work can be done an investigation has to be done into the structure and make-up of the reservoirs. As you can see, in this photo that was also taken today, the water is now a lot lower than it was a few weeks ago.

Water level

This photo gives you an idea of the water level back on 22 January 2012

High water

If anyone is interested in the Friends of Baildon Moor then please visit their website at baildonmoor.org or search Facebook for Friends-of-Baildon-Moor. You can also watch the tweets of @BaildonVillage. Their AGM is on 24 April at Baildon Community Link. The Friends of Baildon Moor are also organising the Jubilee Beacon on the top of the Moor for 4th June 2012.

 

Day 7. Made in Bradford

We have now had day 7 of the Bradford Photo a Day organised by Hidden Bradford. See here for the first posting on this – marfell.me.uk/wordpress/?p=266

Today”s word (??) was “Made in Bradford”. I have seen some of the other photos that show that people have been creative and made things that they have then taken a photo of. Impressive.

For me it was enough to go out and take a photo of something that others in Bradford have made. I know Bradford is local but Baildon is even more local so I called in Pickles for a coffee this morning and had a look around for things made locally. I think Saltaire Brewery is reasonably local 😉 and it”s products are also tasty. Saltaire Brewery is actually closer to Baildon than it is to Saltaire. On foot is certainlay is. The border for Baildon (no passport required) is the river and the brewery is unfortunately just on the Shipley side.

Bottles

Seeing these bottles on the shelf, almost sparkling with their golden tops, was tempting but instead I went upstairs and had an espresso, a glass of water, and read the photographic magazine I had bought across the road at Martin”s newsagent.

The photo above is the one I submitted for the Made in Bradford day. I wonder how much my thirst was adding to the appeal of the photo?

I also took a few other photos inside. One was of the contents of a cold cabinet with locally made produce. It was difficult to get a view where you could still see the contents without the reflections getting in the way too much.

Loacl quiche

Needless to say I explained to Louise what I wanted to do and asked for permission. Others asked me what I was doing and this trio asked me to take their photo with Julie”s camera. I also took one of my own, see below. Julie, on the left, lives in Australia but when she was younger she lived in Baildon and Louise”s mum used to look after her. She really seemed to be enjoying herself. I hope she will let me know if she would rather this photo did not appear here.

Julie from Australia

On the way out, by the door, I spotted this hose reel – it is a bit big to miss. This is another contender for Made in Bradford.

Bradford Hose

This is the outside of Pickles Deli with the roundabout looking colourful with all the spring flowers.

Deli

After taking these I went down to get a photo of Saltaire Brewery on Dockfield Road. From Baildon it is quite easy to get to on foot. A bridge goes over the river at the end of Lower Holme. You can also get down to the river bank from the drive that goes into Green”s Gym. I walked along the path by the river for a few yards and could see and hear Chiffchaff, Chafinch, Treecreeper, Great tit, Blue tit, Wren, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Blackbird, Mallard and Goosander. I walked beyond the railway bridge for a few yards and looked up and down the river”s edges for the Black Bellied Dipper (very rare for Bradford) but no luck.

This is the photo of the brewery:

Brewery

As usual you can click on any of the images to see larger versions of them on flickr.

Day 6. Tree

A bit of an overcast wet day today. Not the best of days to be venturing out looking at trees for day 6 of the Bradford Photo a Day where, you guessed it, the word is Tree.

See here for the first posting on this – marfell.me.uk/wordpress/?p=266

This was my submission for the day:-

Crack Willow

It is, I believe, a Crack Willow (Salix Fragilis). It is on the River Aire in Baildon. There are several along the river bank. And many of them have cracked and fallen. Along the river bank there are also trees that have gone to pieces:-

All cut up

Others that were half naked:-

Stripped

Trees doing Yoga:-

Yoga

There are also plastic bag trees in various stages of coverage:-Plastic bag trees

Over the years some of the big stone slabs that make parts of the path have been tipped into the river by tree roots –

Roots

Some trees have also got a bit messy from the high water we have after heavy rain –

Mess

Some trees have hidey holes –

Hole

Some have split to show their insides, that then look as though they are being hollowed out by insects and birds –

Insides

This tree, stripped of most of its bark lower down is probably going to stay bare –

Bare

Next time we have high water on the river I would not be surprised to see some of these floating away –

Lose wood

When I first ventured out for a tree photo I went down to Thompson Lane. The field there has what I thought was a single tree, on its own, that would make a good photo. It turns out that it is actually two trees and there was no where that I could get a shot with the sky behind the tree – too much around it. When you look at it it is very easy for the trees behind to be out of focus and ignored, but when taking a photo it is a different matter. The trees behind would not let the tree stand out. It is in this tree that I heard, and then managed to photograph, a Great Spotted Woodpecker at the beginning of March:-

Woodpecker

When I got to the field at Thompson Lane I also went into the woods behind it for a few minutes. Again I heard and saw a Great Spotted Woodpecker. I didn’t get any shots of it because I had my small lens on the camera in preparation for taking photos of trees.

 

Day 5. Window

This is day 5 of the #bradfordphotoaday challenge and the word is window. See here for the start of it – marfell.me.uk/wordpress/?p=266

I have already had a photo of a reflected United Reform Church in a window, and the window was not the interest, come to that the reflection wasn’t much good either; the idea was there but not the light. 🙁

There are dozens of good windows around but what can I do today? I am 3 floors up on the canal side of Salt’s Mill. I have worked in the same area of the building for 13 years and I can’t remember the windows on the canal side being cleaned in all that time. I could take a photo of our windows to show what 13+ years of unwashed window looks like but it is surprisingly uninteresting. I suppose a pane of glass can only hold a certain amount of crap before it gets rinsed off by the wind and rain. If you ignore the muck on the windows then from my desk I actually have quite a nice view of Thompson Green and the Cricketers. This photo was taken from my desk at an angle of less than 90 deg to my right.

Thompson Green

And this one is through the window that is directly behind my monitors.

Windows

Those are the apartments across the other side of the canal at Riverside Court, behind New Mill. They get their windows cleaned a couple of times a year by people on a cherry pickers. Below is someone working on the windows at the fron to New Mill

Cherry picker

A few years ago a glass roofed area of Salt’s Mill (a later dye house addition) was removed and 2 floors taken out.

This is a photo of it before the work started. With the crumbling concrete water tank supports at the far end.

Before

Several water tanks at the far end were also taken out. They were on top of an ugly, crumbling, reinforced concrete addition to the mill. This left a few holes in the wall that now provide nesting holes for birds – the best of which are the Kestrels.

Kestrel

As you can see I managed to put my camera through the window and get a few photos.

This year though there seem to be more Jackdaws around and the Kestrels keep being mobbed by them. I have also seen them in the hole that the Kestrels use for there nest. I hope they get themselves sorted for when the eggs get laid.

Tower
A big circular stone tower that held a water tank was removed, and the stair way. Some of it was done using rather large machines.

Big toys

Over the last couple of years Pace has been refurbishing its offices and it is a good idea to clean the windows as part of that. At least with the glass roof gone this is now possible but not necessarily sensible. Looking at the ladder in the photo below is it any wonder that the task was not completed! It was probably decided that the benefit was not worth the risk – that is a long way down.

Preparation

I could enter ones like these as a window photo for the challenge but I think the one below, that I took in the evening may prove more interesting.

This is my entry for the Window topic:-

Balti House Window

This arched window is where John Wesley, the founder of Methodism, preached to a Baildon congregation that was out in the open. This was in 1876. At that time there were cottages on the other side of the road and not a car park.

 

Day 4. Statue

This is day 4 of the #bradfordphotoaday challenge and the word is Statue. See here for the start of it – marfell.me.uk/wordpress/?p=266

This morning the weather did not lend itself to happy snapping, but I wasn’t to know that things would be a lot better by the afternoon. A cold wind was blowing sleety rain into my right ear on the way along Thompson Lane. I had set off for work 2 minutes earlier than usual which then gave me 5 minutes to try for the obvious statue shot – well it would have done if I didn’t have to drag the wheelie bin out onto the footpath before setting off.

Before leaving for work, thinking that it would be most suitable, I put my 50mm lens on the camera; I didn’t want to be swapping lenses in the rain. I was taking my shoes with me in a small ruck-sack so I left my big back pack (the one I blogged about here) at home and used my small camera bag which is just big enough for the camera with 50mm lens fitted plus my 18-55mm and 55-250mm. I didn’t fancy using my camera in the rain so when I got to Robert’s Park I started taking shots from in the band-stand. I did think at one point that it would have been better with my wider 18-55mm lens but the larger aperture of the 50mm was an advantage because the light was not very bright. I didn’t like the composition of the shots from the bandstand so I went round the far side of the bandstand, away from Sir Titus, and took a few shots from there. I think that made the shots more interesting and you can see the results below. (As usual, click on the photo to see it on flickr) This is the one I submitted for the Day 4 Statue challenge. You can also see what caused all the fuss in the morning – Snow! Several people in IT did not make it in to work – but if you live out at Saddleworth, and work in Saltaire, what do you expect? They also had a power cut so he couldn’t, truthfully, say he was working from home.

Sir Titus

It was difficult to believe that it was only last Wednesday when I went into Bradford and took the photos, from Forster Square station, of the Kestrels, and spent some time in the Media Museum and Citypark in bright, hot, sunshine. I knew it had been reasonably sunny but, as often happens; it was at dinner time that I realised just how hot and sunny it had been. Several times a year the quiet of the dining table finally allows me to notice that my face is hotter and redder than usual – or is it because it needs that length of time for the sun burn to finally make itself noticed?

In the morning I had thought that I would not get a better statue shot than Sir Titus in the snow, but then I noticed our terracotta soldier in the Hub, our canteen. He is so much part of the furniture that I had forgotten about him. But then he doesn’t make a fuss. So before setting off for home I decided to take a photo of him – too late for the #bradfordphotoaday because I had already submitted my Sit Titus. Here he is with a copy of Pace Setter. On the back cover, top left, you can just see one of my photos of a Little Owl.

Terracotta Warrior

Between the feet of the warrior is a plaque which reads:-

Qin Shi Huang unified China and undertook some gigantic
logistics projects, most notably building the
Great Wall of China, a massive national road system
and a city protected by a life-sized Terracotta Army.

Uniserve are proud to present a replica Terracotta Warrior
to Pace plc to commemorate our partnershop and the
logistices service we provide from China and the rest of the world
UNiserve
www.uniservegroup.co.uk