Welcome to Northumberlandia

A serene profile

A serene profile

Not a trip back to an ancient county, but a lady on a very grand scale, Northumberlandia is a very unique landform sculpture.  My visit, on a harsh day in March, at least assured me that the site would not be crowded.  I was in the company of a very grand lady myself, known to some of you as Viv in France.  Viv has a daughter who lives in Northumberland, and it was with some excitement that I travelled north to meet them, despite the atrocious weather.

In fact. I was surprised to find anyone there at all

In fact, I was surprised to find anyone there at all

Introductions made, and warm clothing donned, we defied the weather to do its worst.  And it did!  But still, Northumberlandia was an impressive sight.  100 feet high and a quarter of a mile long, the female form is made from 1.5 million tonnes of rock, clay and soil.  She resides in a community park with 4 miles of footpaths.  Be warned- some of them are almost vertical!

The sun even peaked out for a moment!

The sun even peaked out for a moment!

A lake surrounds the sculpture to add interesting reflections

A lake surrounds the sculpture, for interesting reflections on a sunnier day

There are twin viewing mounds if you’re not up to the climb, but Viv was determined that she would make the most of her visit, and ascend we did.  As we climbed higher, the wind was more than fresh, but the views to the Cheviot Hills and the distant sea were great compensation.

More of the sculpture becomes visible as you ascend

More of the sculpture becomes visible as you ascend

There's a seat at the summit, if you're prepared to linger

There’s a seat at the summit, if you’re prepared to linger

But it was a little damp

But it was a little damp

And did you see the snow?

And did you see the snow?

From time to time the heavens opened, but still we were enthralled.  The footpaths were a sea of mud and it was time to start our tricky descent.  Just time for a few more shots.

The sculpture at the summit- proof we made it!

The sculpture at the summit- proof we made it!

The mound provided good shelter for some photos

The mound provided good shelter for some of the photos

But the clouds were closing in again

But the clouds were closing in again

And soon the umbrella came into its own

And soon the umbrella came into its own

Time to head for a warm cuppa, and a sad farewell, but it was surely a day to remember.  Do have a look at the link to the website, which will provide many more details than I can.  Northumberlandia lies next to the Shotton Surface coal mine and was constructed in conjunction with the Blagdon Estate, who donated the land for this project.  We agreed that an aerial view of the site would be pretty spectacular.  Maybe in years to come it will be possible to take a helicopter flight or a balloon ride to see it from on high.

An aerial view

An aerial view

Meantime, Viv will be heading back to France on Friday.  Safe journey, my dear!   I’ll be joining up with you again on Six word Saturday.

80 comments

      1. I hadn’t seen this either – two fabulous walks in one day and I’m late for both 🙂 This place is truly extraordinary, Jo. I’m sorry about your chum, Viv.

    1. Now, how did you end up here? 🙂 🙂 It was wonderful but I could have wished for a warmer day! Meeting Viv was really nice, too.
      Charles Jenck, the landscape architect, was featured on somebody’s post the other day, and he’s done some terrific stuff. Thanks for your company, Ann 🙂

      1. Yes, I came to your post via a comment you made to JF on his post the other day. You can’t escape the long arm of the blogosphere. 😀

    1. Well, you know, I’m getting good at meeting bloggers now, Madhu? I have a couple of offers in the next month or two. I’m starting to feel like a destination. Feel free!

    1. In Krakow they have a tethered hot air balloon over the summer and it gives superb views over the city. I asked Mick if they would be expensive, as I think it would be a great little money spinner. I already suspected the answer! Ah well, I’ll never be an entrepreneur.

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