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 🙂


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