Forbidding skies


It’s strange how little you know of your own area sometimes, isn’t it?  Countless times I’ve ridden the bus along Seal Sands Road, with my nose in a book, blotting out the ugliness.  It’s a highly industrialised area and holds little appeal, apart from the seals that inhabit Greatham Creek.

I was unaware of the Brine Fields, where saturated salt was once extracted and processed by the local Cerebos company.  Nowadays the resulting salt caverns are used for storage of liquid gas for the process industry.   A forbidding sight, complete with warning notices.


If you look very closely you might spot a grey head bobbing along in the water.  The seal is apparently oblivious to the stormy skies and forbidding landscape.  For humans those skies mean it’s time to get a move on home.  Always assuming they have a home to go to, of course.


Paula is asking for interpretations of Forbidding on Thursday’s Special this week.  This is mine.   If you come along on my walk next Monday I’ll tell you a little more about the area, and we’ll go and find those seals.  Bit of a change from butterflies, isn’t it?


  1. Paula has brought out the dark side in your surroundings Jo. We do tend to just show the beauty around us but there is no denying the there is another side to life and you have captured and composed this scene in all its grim reality. Now back to the sunshine…

    1. The worst days for me, Pauline, are those with the heavy white or grey skies, where there isn’t any cloud movement. Although this is a bit of a grim area I really enjoyed these moody skies. 🙂

      1. You did capture the grim mood very well. I have a theme in mind for Paula’s challenge but tracking the photos down is proving difficult (and finding the time to troll through thousands!!!)

    1. One of my first sights in Poland, driving to my cousin’s home in the south of Krakow, was a large industrial pipe, alongside and overhead of the road. It seemed so strange to me then, because I expected it to be out of sight, beneath the ground, but now I have come to take it for granted. 🙂

      1. It just seemed so very incongruous, but financially I expect it’s a cheaper option than having them below ground? Yes- I would be interested.

  2. This is so unlike your usual posts I had to look twice to see if I was on the right blog. The intensity of your photos really conveys the way how old industrial sites take on a forbidding appearance.

    1. Was that a good thing, or a bad thing, Suzanne? 🙂 🙂 There was so much joy spilling out of the previous post, it’s kind of an antidote. I was feeling a little down and the landscape suited my mood.

      1. I think it’s great to let our posts reflect our moods. Life is so complex these days and I think it is false to present ourselves as always happy.

      2. I never falsify on my blog, Suzanne. Most of the time I’m genuinely happy when I’m writing my posts, though I do tend to focus on the beauty where I can. There’s more than enough misery in this world, isn’t there? 🙂

  3. I wouldn’t say this is forbidding Jo, more a fascinating industrial landscape that makes me think of boy stuff, engineering and things I can’t get my pretty little head around 🙂 🙂 🙂
    Seriously though the sky and odd built things makes bold dramatic scenery!

  4. Fascinating Jo! Amazing the things you find on your walks! I’m just playing catch up now as I was in Tucson all week. Maybe I will have to post one of my walks soon!

  5. Jo it may not be as pretty as your butterflies but if we want to heat our homes and drive cars and ride in planes and trains and such, these places are necessary too. This one likely happy for a little paparazzi action. 🙂

  6. Skies like the ones posted here make me very nervous, especially here in TX. Industry has its up and down sides – this is definitely one of them. Have a lovely weekend.

    1. There’s a lot of history behind this one, Mary, but it did make me feel a little uneasy looking at all those pipes. More to come on Monday. Thanks a lot, hon! 🙂

  7. Bleak but interesting, Jo – there are pockets of industrial decay all along the east coast – a stark contrast to some of the most beautiful places on the English coastline e.g. Bamburgh

  8. Such dramatically forbidding skies, Jo. I find it wonderful that the animals here also don’t rush for shelter when the rains come down. We humans are also waterproof, but feel the need for umbrellas and raincoats. 🙂

  9. You definitely manage to create beauty wherever you go darling. Just like you I do my best to ignore the ugly that the industrial market creates and I love those skies! Definitely my type of weather. Gorgeous captures! 😀 ♥

      1. And why wouldn’t I? There will never be anything about your lovely captures that I don’t like Jo and you do know that stormy skies, mist and fog are my favourites, and like I said, you always see the beauty in everything around you, so it’s always great visiting and going on your lovely tours. 😀

  10. Beautiful post about a “raw” site and dramatic skies … there is beauty everywhere it’s only that we can’t see it – but you truly done it here. Fantastic post.

  11. Since living in a Consett in the 1970s I’ve always found beauty in industrial landscapes because of what they represent. Look what happens when they are destroyed – very topical at the moment.

  12. Quite a departure indeed Jo…..I always feel a little sad around industrialised landscapes like this….there is a stunning stretch of coast not far from us which has been blighted by a cement works and a nuclear power station!! It means big stretches are closed off and inaccessible. 😞😳

    1. Very much the same with this stretch, Seonaid, and I do normally keep my head in a book. There is a whole other aspect to this area, which I want to share on Monday. 🙂 Thanks for sharing my gloom.

  13. Very different, but I really like it. I’ve got a post coming out this evening highlighting how we generally all write lovely positive stuff with pretty pictures, so love the fact you have done something ‘forbidding’ 🙂

    1. I did think it was a bit extreme after the butterflies, but I don’t want my blog to be bland and boring. I was feeling quite moody and broody when I went out but the skies really lifted my spirits. (and we just avoided the downpour 🙂 )

      1. Somehow don’t think anyone could ever describe your blog as bland and boring, how could we when it is your trips and travels. Do like the change though: especially as you avoided the downpour.

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