Paul - who brings friendly nonsense (blur_kiwi) wrote,
Paul - who brings friendly nonsense
blur_kiwi

Stourhead on Easter Monday

Last Monday was Easter Monday, and a Bank Holiday here in dear old Blighty. I really wanted to get out somewhere but knew that just about everywhere would be swarming with people. Easter is usually miserable here with no sunshine, no warmth and nothing to do. But this year was very different, the weather was glorious and everyone wanted to be out doing something.

I hit upon a cracking idea. It dawned on me that, while everywhere of note would be very busy later in the day, there probably wouldn't be too many people around early. If I timed things right I could get my way and still do what I wanted in relative seclusion. So, I set off at sparrow's fart, while the rest of the world was still working out what to have for breakfast, and arrived at Stourhead just as the gates were creaking open. I was the first person through and had the place almost to myself for quite a while as I walked around, while the rest of the world was working out what to take away with them.

It was a glorious morning, sunny and still. Stourhead Gardens are a real pleasure at any time of the year but I have two favourite times - in autumn when the leaves are turning every imaginable colour, and in the spring when the blossoms of the rhododendrons and azalias are at their best and the leaves on the trees are still young enough to be vibrant.

It was the perfect morning to be there, the reflections on the lake were gorgeous and the colours were subtle and clear. It was only as I was leaving, a couple of hours later, that the rest of the world seemed to have made up its mind and descended on this small corner of Wiltshire.

I enjoy taking friends and visitors to Stourhead and have many happy memories of visits in the past; from my childhood right through to now. It is probably the finest landscaped garden in Britain and was designed perfectly with vantage poiints and breaks in the trees just where they are needed most. I will continue to show this wonderful place to anyone who comes along, it's always a winner. 

 

 


 
The fuller view

 


 


 


 


 


 
Oh, those reflections!

 


 
A family of coots. I'm assured that the children grow up to be much more attractive, they look almost alien or prehistoric as babies.



 


 


 


 
Baby ducks

 


 


 


 
A pair of grebes, a rare sight in my part of the world.

 


 


 


 


 
I thought these roots, through the Temple of Apollo were wonderful.



 


 


 


 
Magnolias adding their muted colours to the overall display. The only thing is, whenever I take photos like this there is always some bloody fly or other wanting to get in on the act.

 
This is the iconic view of the gardens, the bridge, the lake, the temple in the distance - all just about perfect in the wonderful spring sunshine.



 


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