Category Archives: Pictorial

Callanish Standing Stones

Callanish-Standing-Stones Callanish Standing Stones

Circles of stone
The main monument is extraordinary – a cross-shaped setting of stones, centred on a circle of tall stones. At its heart stands a solitary monolith 4.8m high. Lines of smaller stones radiate from the circle to east, west and south. From the north runs an avenue 83m long, formed by two lines of stones that narrow as they approach the circle. Within the circle is a chambered tomb.

Numerous other ritual sites lie within a few kilometres. These are mainly more modest rings of standing stones, or single monoliths. The most impressive – Cnoc Ceann a’ Ghàrraidh and Cnoc Fhillibhir Bheag – lie just over a kilometre SE of the main Calanais ring, and originally consisted of rings of stones at least eight in number.

Ancient centre of power
Archaeological excavation in the 1980s proved that the main circle was erected 4,500–5,000 years ago, and the chambered tomb a few generations later. Around 3000 BC the climate in the Western Isles was warmer than it is today and the sea-level lower. Salmon ran in the rivers, deer, sheep and cattle grazed the surrounding hills, and barley grew on the broad ridge where Calanais stands. A cult or religion seems then to have swept through the British Isles, involving the building of large earthen enclosures (henge monuments), and impressive circles of timber or stone.

Astronomical observatory?
Why did our Stone-Age ancestors build Calanais? Our best guess is that it served as a kind of astronomical observatory. Patrick Ashmore, who excavated at Calanais in the early 1980s, writes in his insightful guidebook Calanais: The Standing Stones, published by Historic Scotland in 2002: ‘The most attractive explanation … is that every 18.6 years, the moon skims especially low over the southern hills. It seems to dance along them, like a great god visiting the earth. Knowledge and prediction of this heavenly event gave earthly authority to those who watched the skies.’

Lost and found
Around a thousand years after it was constructed, Calanais was abandoned. The area inside the circle was levelled. This may have been just ordinary agriculture, but it may conceivably have been ritual cleansing, ensuring that no inconvenient ancestors would return! The climate was changing around then too, becoming cooler and wetter. Gradually a blanket of peat covered the site, drawing a veil over the ancient power centre.

Renewed interest in the ancient circles emerged in the 17th century, by which date the people of Lewis were calling the standing stones fir bhrèige (‘false men’). Gradually a more scientific attitude took hold, and in 1885 the main circle was taken into State care.


Info from historic Scotland

The Italian Chapel – Lamb Holm

The-Italian-ChapelThe Italian Chapel – Lamb Holm

This small but very ornate Catholic Chapel was built on the small uninhabited island of Lamb Holm on Orkney during World War II by Italian prisoners. It was restored during the 60’s and received Listed building status A.

In my usual style of “must get the shot” I sneaked in and removed a table chairs and flowers to get as close a symmetrical shot as possible, much to the dismay of the American and Japanese tourists looking on, obviously never met a Yorkshire man before! I of course put everything back where I found it…I’m a good boy really, don’t believe what they tell you.






Vatersay Pebble Beach Stump

Vatersay-Beach-StumpFriday woohooooo!!!!!

Thought I’d finish the week off with a beautiful shot from Vatersay Beach on Barra Island, Outer Hebrides. Probably one of the most beautiful of all the islands areas Vatersay has white sands, stunning pebble beaches and green blue seas all round it, I couldn’t resist the sea washed stump, I’d have brought it home if I’d the space in the Husky MoHo.

I didn’t realise how many decent shots from this area I had taken as the weather wasn’t exactly perfect but at least it wasn’t boring blue skies. I also managed to get the MoHo stuck in the sand dune, thank goodness for a lovely couple from Bristol and a retired gen t who together with Jo managed to help rock the van free, still don’t know how they managed it and I really didn’t fancy my chances with telling Green flag where we were stuck…..15 miles down a single track road/lane!

Anyway flying practice with the drone this weekend weather permitting and donating platelets on Sunday, haven’t done this for a while because of my knee op so it will be nice to catch up with the nurses my reading and choccy biscuits, oh yes choccy biccy’s, has to be done




Hackfall Pt 3

Hackfall-Pt-3-2Hi all

as promised another part to the Hackfall Woods commission shoot from a few weeks ago. Lovely bluebells throughout the walk not always in the best location to shoot as they tend to like the shade of the canopy but when you’re given lemons and all that! Still stunning though and so so very English.


Hackfall-Pt-3-3 One of the many little waterfall features along the walk, got a little wet on this one as I didn’t want to get the bank in in front of my feet.

And finally today the lower end of the walk involves a steep climb up a wooded path and opens into a spectacular view with a place to take a well deserved rest, flask out time…..

Hackfall-Pt3-1Hope you have enjoyed this brief walk through the woods, I’ll do a special at some stage just on the follies.


Hackfall Pt 2

WTH26-SkyEvening all

ooohhh Dixon of Dock Green for those old enough to remember, seem to remember it ran into the 70’s but lately I’ve been listening to it on the radio but with David Tennant as his sidekick Andy Crawford, Dixon being played by David Calder, worth a listen….anyway  I appear to have gone off at a tangent!! you can tell it’s almost the weekend.

Here we have a couple more images from my Hackfall Woods shoot that I was commissioned to do recently. Beautiful paths adorned with wild garlic and stunning bluebells in full bloom and we had it all to ourselves, I get some really nice jobs to do. This one is sunrise at 4:55 the sun just hitting the trees to the left.

As you walk along and up the paths you are drawn ever higher through the canopy of the trees and eventually you are presented with wonderful tree top views.

WTH23 Stunning tree tops bathed in the sunrise with such beautiful colours.

Part of the walk takes you past what I thought was just a folly called ‘The Ruin’ it is in fact ‘The Banqueting House’ which has been restored and is let out as a holiday cottage by The Landmark Trust. WTH24-Sky

The view looking up towards ‘The Ruin’ holiday let, it command spectacular views across the whole woods and beyond. Apparently you have to come out of the door on the right across teh balcony and into the door on the left to use the toilet, could be a little dodgy in the depth of night, quite a long drop if you get it wrong!……

Hackfall – Pt1

Hackfall-River Hi all

a couple of shots from my recent commission shoot at Hackfall Woods in North Yorkshire, probably the best woods in the country, and you can even kayak there in the main river. Had a fabulous 5 mile walk round it though carrying all my kit was truly a pain I will remember for quite a while.

There are follies galore as well as all manner of flora and fauna to view, I was in search of bluebells for my commission but could resist the other attractions Hackfall had to offer.

Me and Wayne my trusty sidekick were on location at 4:45am ready for sunrise, unfortunately it didn’t materialise as predicted, darn BBC weather!

Hackfall-Bluebells-Rays-FBAnyway after parking in the nearby free but SMALL car park we headed along the path and into the woodland. I won’t spoil the beauty of the surprises you’ll encounter but let’s just say you won’t be disappointed with the views of the follies.

Hackfall-Bluebells-woodHere is the view from the main path high up above the woods.


More to follow


Saint Ina’s Church Llanina Bluebells

Church-Bluebells-2-skySaint Ina’s Church Llanina Bluebells

A beautiful little church near New Quay overlooking the stunning seas of Cardigan Bay. It has an amazing coastal walk taking in all manner of scenery and wildlife as well as great little stops for refreshments and a bit of shopping for tea.

This weekend will mostly be about practicing with the Inspire 1 and reading my Pilot Theory guide all 200 pages of it! in readiness for my course and exam in August at which stage we (royal we) will be insured as a company and be able to offer aerial photography and 4k film to my commercial customers, can’t wait.

Have a great weekend all



St Catherine’s From The Beach

St-Catherine'sThis one is St Catherine’s at Tenby, a must if you’re ever down that way, open to the public but not so for our fury friends so they get a big fat ZERO from me because of this. They are however allowed on the beach and what a beach it is, huge and goes on forever…..a bit like me. lol but not today very busy with drone practice simulator, honest it’s work guv!


anyway check it out HERE

Snowdonia View From Talybont

CatleMorning All


hope you all had a wonderful relaxing weekend. We did the usual, long dog walks though Jo has a poorly foot so she had to take it real steady. I managed 2 short runs with the pack and I’m suffering for it now! NO I will never learn.

Today’s image is from Talybont on the Welsh  coast, lush beaches and gorgeous green meadows with Snowdonia as a back drop (Am I selling it to you?). This was a decent circular walk that was recommended to us by the owner at Benar Beach Caravan Park, lovely little site,  basic but clean and trouble free, we had a lovely overnight there and would certainly include it on our list of stay overs.

Managed to get all the bookings sorted for our forthcoming trip to the Outer Hebrides and Orkneys, must admit we are both really excited about going and especially taking the Husky pack too, they are going to love it.

Plenty of photography lined up whilst up there, I’m still compiling my list of shots to achieve plus Jo’s getting ready to pilot the drone so I can film sunsets on the beaches and ancient monuments.

Jo’s ma and pa are moving on to look after the place and keep things ticking over bless em.

Quick thankyou and congrats to Lisa Morgan who got married on Sunday, she bought a picture from me for her husbands best man, hope it went well and have a lovely happy healthy life together…much love.



Dyffryn Burial Chamber

Dyffryn-Burial-ChamberDyffryn Burial Chamber

The oldest stone structure in Britain?

This double burial chamber, known as a portal dolmen, is considered to be one of the earliest examples of its kind in the British Isles. Believed to date to around 3500 BC, it is one of several such sites close to the village of Dyffryn Ardudwy near Barmouth. It has many features in common with similar sites in Ireland.

Originally covered by a large cairn of stones, the present monument consists of two exposed chambers with entrances facing east. Excavations carried out in the 1960s discovered numerous fragments of deliberately broken Neolithic and Bronze Age pottery, suggesting that the site was in use over a long period of time. Other finds here included a fine, though broken, stone pendant and two polished plaques made from nearby Mynydd Rhiw stone.

It is possible that Dyffryn Ardudwy’s proximity to the sea connected its people to other communities who shared their tombbuilding traditions. They were part of a wider culture, and similar tombs have also been found in South Wales, Ireland, western France, Portugal and Spain.

This wonderful tomb has been designated a Scheduled Ancient Monument and is currently being cared for by Cadw.

Dyffryn-Burial-Chamber-1A beautiful walk up from probably one of the most beautiful stretches of beach Wales has to offer, it’s very well kept and the wild flowers are stunning in the sunshine.