Jo’s Monday walk : Thorp Perrow

The magical colours of Autumn

The magical colours of Autumn

It lasts for such a short time!  Already the Virginia Creeper, whose rosy hue adorns my wall in Autumn, is strewn across our drive and whistling off down the road.  So I’m glad that I made it to Thorp Perrow Arboretum when I did.  100 acres of woodland are surely enough in which to worship Autumn colour.  And you can take your eyes off that tearoom!  That’s for much later,

Let's get delicious with the daisies first!

Let’s get delicious with the daisies first!

Over a little stream and the colour is already beckoning

Over a little stream and the colour is already beckoning

But close at hand there are jewels to distract

But close at hand, there are jewels aplenty

As always, I hand the map to the other half, and set off to follow my nose.  Or, in this case, a lovely little stream which wends its way through the woods.  Signs promise ‘Henry’s Island’ and ‘Kate’s Island’.  Will I be allowed?

A plopping sound stops me suddenly.  From overhead something lands in the water, sending concentric rings dancing to shore.  High in the canopy, a mischievous squirrel is dispensing acorns for our entertainment.

Sunlight dances in the woods

Sunlight dances in the woods

And radiates from the leaves

Beaming from bronzed leaves

And then the lake, in all it's glory

And then the lake, in all it’s glory

It's a 'hold your breath' moment

It’s a ‘hold your breath’ moment

Just the lake and the leaves

Just the lake, and the leaves

The history of Thorp Perrow can be traced back to the Domesday Book, where it was listed as ‘Torp’ manor house.  The trees came much later. Planting began in the 16th and 17th centuries, and in the 1840’s the Milbank Pinetum was planted with seed brought over from America.  There are now 5 National Collections of trees (Juglans-Walnuts, Tilia-Limes, Fraxinus-Ash, Cotinus and Laburnum) and 66 Champion Trees (the largest of their kind in Britain).

But it’s not at all a stuffy place!  A sense of humour manifests itself in many forms.

See the shark's fin in the water?

See the shark’s fin in the water?

Throughout this month the children have been treated (or tricked!) with a collection of spectres and ghouls lurking in the woods. Eek!!!

Just hanging about

Just hanging about

Or sitting patiently on a bench, for Jude

Or sitting patiently on a bench, waiting for Jude

There is also a growing Wildlife Park, where you can ‘meet the meerkat’, watch bizarrely plumed fowl strutting their stuff, and gasp at the exploits of the birds of prey.  The flying displays are one of the park’s most popular features, and are well worth seeing.  I’ll let you discover them for yourself. For me the park is mostly about the landscape.

Trees and topiary

Trees and topiary

And gasps of acer colour

And gasps of Acer colour

Beautifully weathered statues loiter wistfully amongst the trees.  They mingle with newer wood sculptures, showing no apparent resentment.

Walks spiral off in all directions from the mighty Jubilee Oak, and another named for Catherine Parr.  You don’t have to follow a specific route but simply wander to wherever your eye finds most pleasing.  It doesn’t really matter.  It’s all lovely!

Despite it being a glorious day, the park is quite peaceful.  Strangers nod to each other, wearing beatific smiles in the unaccustomed October warmth.  Only when we reach the Autumn bays is there a sense of urgency.  Bathed in rosy colour, we gaze upwards.

This is what Autumn is all about

Autumn in all its splendour

I'm more taken with the Sycamore wings

I’m more taken with the Sycamore wings

I can sense you beginning to tire.  There’s only so much beauty the eyes can take in, and we’re not far from the promised tea rooms.  If Meg were here she’d be fingering the bark on so many of the trees.  But you’ve earned your bowl of soup, and some of that yummy cake.  Which one to choose, I wonder?  There’s a full menu on the website, all very reasonably priced.  (Dare I admit to having the pensioner’s special?)

The Arboretum is just beyond the lovely market town of Bedale, in North Yorkshire, and details of how to get there are also shown on the website.

walking logo

I’m feeling quite tired myself after all that exercise.  I’ll just say my thank you’s and get that kettle on, I think.  You’ve certainly brought variety this week.  Thank you so much to all of you who keep following me down this path.  I really value your company.  Anyone wanting to join in will be made very welcome.  Details are on my Jo’s Monday walk page.  Just click on the logo.


Scotland has some of the most beautiful gardens, and in wonderful locations too.  Thanks, Anabel!

Inverewe and around

And I can’t argue with this description from Violet, either :

The prettiest town

A little fog gives a nice air of mystery, don’t you think?

Monday Walk : Texas Countryside

A comprehensive guide- see the sights with Jackie!

Day 2- Berlin

Richard doesn’t mind being a beach bum.  With beaches like this, who would?

Cornwall’s Seven Bays in pictures

A ‘kick of happiness’ is what you’ll get if you join Drake this week!

A lake, peaks and a queen

Ever tried Australian salmon?  Ruth explains why you might not have :

Salmon Ponds

Not so taxing as last week’s walk, but still you might prefer just to gaze in admiration :

Rain, Rivers and Waterfalls : The Steall Falls

Next up, a nice relaxing stroll around Central Park (or a ride in a horse drawn carriage if you’re feeling flush)

Travel Album: New York City (2)

Tobias is showing us a very different kind of beauty.  Come and see!

A Short Walk in Saint-Saturnin-de-Lucian

I hope you enjoyed the walks this week.  I certainly did!  Where to take you next week?  I haven’t made my mind up yet.  I shall just wish you all a Happy Halloween week and hope the weather stays fine.  Bye for now!


  1. Beautifully written, Jo, and the photos are wonderfully composed to showcase all that delicious colour. Then there are daisies and skeletons, and squirrels and meercats offstage. What more could I ask for on a gloomy rainy day?

  2. What a beautiful arboretum, Jo! I love the fall colors, the beautiful hydrangeas and other flowers, and the sense of humor, was well as the Halloween skeletons and ghosts. Thanks for taking us along. 🙂

    1. I’m glad you found it, Cathy 🙂 Since I upgraded to Premium (I ran out of photo memory 😦 ) I haven’t added all the sidebar stuff. I prefer the cleaner look, but don’t know how easy my site is to navigate anymore? I keep meaning to have a play around and add some back, but knowing me I’d probably mess it up.

      1. I’m sure you’d do fine with rearranging, Jo. That’s why I decided to have a different blog for each region or area, because (at least in my eyes), it’s easier to navigate. If you want to read about Oman, you can go to my Oman blog, etc. Maybe not, though. It also spreads my pics out over many blogs, and often enables me to avoid paying for increased media space. However, on the bigger blogs, I do have to pay!

      2. I was just going to start RJ2, but I hadn’t left myself much time (I ran out in the middle of a walk post and had to scoot around deleting old stuff to post the photos for it). Typical eejit! (or even idiot 🙂 )

  3. What beautiful photos Jo especially of the lake and the russet coloured leaves – I always love autumn and your walk has taken me on nostalgic memories of crisp autumnal walks back in the UK! Have a wonderful week 🙂

    1. It’s been a lovely season, this year, Rosemay. This morning we have swirling fog, but I’m hoping for a few more days before the leaves are all gone. Thanks, hon. You too! 🙂

  4. I love the little Halloween touches they’ve made (assuming that’s what they are and not the remains of unfortunate visitors who couldn’t find the exit). It was also nice of that squirrel to entertain you by dropping nuts into the water. Of course, the really clever ones can skim them across the surface of the pond.

  5. That is a beautiful place, I must say. I would really get lost in there for hours, what with the autumn colours! However, I am not a fan of Halloween so I would not enjoy that 😦

    1. I’m not keen on Halloween, either, but I don’t mind the odd glittery ghost or some of the prettier decorations that seem to have taken over this year. 🙂 Not wild about skelies!

  6. Oh there is nothing better than a walk in the autumn sunshine is there? Your gorgeous photos bring this glorious season to life here perfectly. I did laugh out loud at those booted legs poking out of the water (had to do a double take on that one!) and the skeleton on the bench, perfect for Jude’s challenge. Love it, wonderful post Jo, thank you for bringing smiles to my day 🙂

    1. Hi lovely lady! 🙂 I was just about to go out of the door to meet a friend for coffee when your comment popped up, Sherri. I didn’t have time to answer it but it sent me out the door smiling. Isn’t it lovely to be able to have that effect on people? 🙂 It will never be easy to leave the world of blogging for just that reason. The rain is tippling down now, but I don’t even care- it’s been such a nice Autumn! 🙂

    1. You’re very welcome, Sally. I love that you come here. Sometimes when I visit yours I’m speechless. I remember thinking that I have unused graffiti shots but unprocessed. (my normal state 🙂 )

  7. Stunning photos capturing the magic of Autumn beautifully. Interesting about ‘Torp’ meaning manor house. It is a Swedish word and means a little house for a tiny small-holding. Totally opposite of the grand, rather a poorer farm with simple building. What fun with the skeletons although not sure I’d sit on the seat next to one!

    1. I imagine that back in the time of the Domesday Book it was a fairly small affair, Annika. It’s certainly had a lot of love and care to make it so beautiful. 🙂 Thanks a lot!

  8. immagini favolose! non saprei sceglierne una in particolare, straordinarie quelle sull’acqua, ma in particolare mi ha fatto paura quella horror dei piedi del bambino che sembra caduto nell’acqua, Ossantocielo! ho dovuto guardarla più volte per essere certa che era una installazione ha ha.Bello questo mix di fantasia, sembra di passeggiare in un giardino incantato
    🙂 🙂

  9. What a beautiful place Jo and I so love that garden with all the ghouly stuff. Now that I would enjoy! 😆

    Those daisies are just gorgeous and you’ve captured them so beautifully! I also love the autumn leaves. They do give so much colour to any surrounding, don’t they? I wouldn’t mind living there for sure. 😀

    Thanks for the lovely virtual tour and for sharing. I really enjoyed. ♥

    1. It had been quite damp the couple of days before we went to the park, Sonel, and I was thrilled with the weather. Everything looked wonderfully dewy and made for great photos. Glad you enjoyed it, hon, and thanks a lot. 🙂

      1. The best weather for sure Jo, especially when it was too hot. I am glad you could share it with us. 😀 ♥

      1. I couldn’t agree more! And what you’ve said reminds me that I keep meaning to post photos from a garden in Vanuatu that has both beauty and character (“missionary position” took on a whole new meaning!). When I get around to it … ^^’

  10. Jo, thanks for sharing this glimpse of autumn. My head says it’s October so should be autumn, but obviously here in Aus, it is spring. I’m loving seeing the northern autumn in blog posts along with your lovely photos.

    My contribution this week is a coastal walk.

    1. I’d love to make the jump straight from Autumn into Spring, Ruth, but I don’t suppose Ma Nature would approve. 😦 So far it’s been a lovely Sept/October here so I daresn’t complain 🙂 Thanks for sharing, hon.

  11. You promised me more autumn images and boy did you deliver. Big! And so many magnificent reflective ones. Love! Also, daisies are my favorite flower. And had a good chuckle with the image of the ‘unfortunate gardner’!

    1. But when the cold and the rain comes you’ll be happy to be in Dubai, Richard 🙂 Seriously- you’re very welcome, and yes, on a warm afternoon in Autumn there are few finer places. I love it! 🙂

  12. Thanks so much, Jo, for taking us on your walk today through this delightfully peaceful estate. You did a really fine job of showing us autumn in all its glory, the colors and the flora are breathtaking. Fun jokes too. 🙂

  13. Of course, I went straight to the menu! “Giant Yorkshire Puddings” sound to die for. 😛 Gorgeous photos, Jo. I would definitely enjoy walking here and admiring all the beauteousness. That bench was quite a find. I wonder if Jude would want to sit next to Mr. Bones. 😕

  14. your photos captured the beauty of the park, Jo! and fun, too! the autumn leaves seem to glow. so sorry about mr gardener; i wonder how he ended up they way he did 🙂

    1. This visit was 2 weeks ago and a good few leaves have blown away since then, Karin, but we had another lovely sunny afternoon and I’ve been out in some nearby woods. I’m clinging on! 🙂

      1. I know you’ve already visited, but for anyone else wandering through the comments and (also) fears claustrophobia, these caves are not undergroundI My heart couldn’t take the stress of that kind of adventure.

      2. I’m not claustrophobic, just a little cave averse. I don’t think it would put people off your post. They’d probably come out of curiosity 🙂 Your caves are beautiful 🙂

  15. Oh, Jo, you outdid yourself on this walk. Every scene is breathtaking and worthy of a day’s ‘sit, contemplate, absorb’. I am marking this for revisits 💖

  16. Seems like a very nice place – October colour, a lake, statues and topiary and CAKE! Oh, it is so nice to get out for a walk on a sunny autumn day (sadly grey here today) and I managed to drag OH out to find some trees yesterday so hopefully I shall have that written about some time soon 🙂
    Meanwhile there are a few examples on the blog to whet your appetite. Sorry, no pumpkin soup or cake, we’d just eaten a Sunday roast… 😀

    1. It’s a lovely place, Jude, and wonderful in Spring with the bluebells, too. 🙂 No walking up here today so far (though I might nip down the park in a while). Had jobs n stuff to do. Every time I see a pumpkin it beckons me. Would you believe I’ve never made pumpkin soup? Domestic goddess I’ll never be but I have got half a yen to make some. 🙂

      1. Bluebells are lovely, you are lucky to have a park nearby to see them, I always find them difficult to photograph though. I’ve made a few pumpkin recipes, but actually prefer to make Butternut Squash soup 🙂
        I can send you a simple recipe if you like?

      2. Go on then! 🙂 There’s heaps of squash in our local Aldi. I usually go to Durham for the bluebells. Thorp Perrow is an hour or so away but there are major roadworks in place stretching well into 2016 😦

  17. Wow Jo, this was a wonderful walk with you. I loved the park and Autumn’s beauty. Had much fun with the kids’ treats or tricks as well. And I am curious to know if you had tea with Kate and William….
    Thank you for bringing so much joy to my Monday.

    1. Lucile, you’re a sweetheart. 🙂 I did enjoy the walk enormously myself. I must have been grinning ear to ear the whole time. T
      There were quite a few of us ‘oldies’ enjoying the special. On a glorious day like that it feels a bit like playing hooky 🙂

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