Two Counties View


A rather fine late summers afternoon walk….great views over  some mellow countryside, all with a backdrop of Bunster Hill, to the left and Thorpe Cloud, to the right.  Hiding in the shadow of Thorpe Cloud is Dove Dale with the famous anglers River Dove flowing through.

The River Dove also marks the boundary between Staffordshire on the left and Derbyshire on the right. 

The only downside to the evening, is that the sky does indicate yet another change in the weather….more storms due.

Please Remember ….

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

24th August

(C) David Oakes 2020



A Sunday Reflection…. and a Memory


One part of Facebook that I rather like, are the ‘reminder’ of events from a year previous.  The reminder that popped up this morning was of a visit to Ilam Church.  I thought that not only is this a fantastic piece of Art, hidden away in a side chapel of a country church…but also a message for today fragile environment we live in….. that family is precious as are the memories created.

So here is a repeat of  the  Facebook post from this day in 2019.

We were over at Ilam Village (Staffordshire) and paid a visit to the Church of the Holy Cross. Within the church is a Chapel that was added to accommodate a rather distinctive memorial. It is dedicated to David Pike-Watt (d1816) one time owner of Ilam Hall. It is the work of Sculptor Sir Francis Chantrey and represents Pike-Watt with his Daughter Mary and her 3 daughters. I thought it both beautiful and striking in a dramatic setting. It is I guess a hidden secret of Ilam


Please Remember ….

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

2nd August

(C) David Oakes 2020

On the Canal…..


Fradley Junction.

Fradley Junction and the Swan Inn on the Trent and Mersey Canal in Staffordshire.

Head north to the Potteries, then onto Manchester and Liverpool.  Head South to Nottingham and onto London.  Or turn left at this junction and head to the Industrial heartland of  Birmingham, The Black Country, Coventry.

Just one tiny part of the network of canals that criss-crossed our country before Trains,  Cars and major Roads.   It looks idyllic today but it was a hard life for those who worked these canals.

Please Remember ….

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

29th May

(C) David Oakes 2020

Life on the Canal…..


An Early Spring Morning…

Fradley Junction on the Trent and Mersey Canal, Staffordshire

I guess life cruising our inland waterways network of canals, could possibly be one of the safest places to be.   Whilst we struggle with the demands of corvid-19, some folk can be silently gliding along on their self-contained narrowboat, well able to keep a safe distance from others whilst enjoying fresh air  and on a day like today enjoying the sounds and sights of spring.

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

23rd March

(C) David Oakes 2020




Cees Fun Foto Challenge – Gardens

China 4

Biddulph Gardens, Staffordshire

For this weeks Fun Foto Challenge Cee has suggested “Gardens’ as the topic.  So I guess I could take you on a mini world garden tour…..but a tour with a difference as it will all take place in one small location in Staffordshire,  middle England.

Behind a large sombre Victoria mansion can be found this rather special garden.  Built for James Bateman a wealthy Victorian Industrialist the garden was designed to mirror his world interests. China, Egypt, India, Switzerland and the many regions of the UK are all represented in an eclectic mix but a mix sure to delight any visitor.

Pop over to Cees Blog to see more from others, the link is here:-


8th August

(C) David Oakes 2019