A Lingering look at windows


Paula’s Thursday’s Special is full of wonderful images this week.  Life around here has been exceptionally busy and, scrolling back through myriads of photos, I chanced upon the above.  To me, it says ‘confined’, within those windows.  How about you?  I’d better explain that I was at the Sage, Gateshead, attending a song and dance show entitled ‘Remembering Fred’.  Astaire and Rogers always put a twinkle in my eye.  Quite a few people were confined, very happily, in the theatre that night, along with reflections of the Millennium and Tyne bridges.

I think this is a good fit for Dawn’s Lingering Look at Windows too.  I’m hoping Paula won’t mind.

Peering through Yorkshire village windows


What a nice gesture!  The village hall in Boltby, North Yorkshire, is left on the latch.  There are no amenities in this lovely village so, if you’re passing by and need to use the loo, you can pop in.  There’s a kitchen too, and you’re welcome to put the kettle on.  If only I’d thought to bring some cake!

Boltby is on the western edge of the North York Moors, and I was there to follow Gurtof Beck in the direction of Gormire Lake.  There’s a wonderful humpbacked stone bridge for pedestrians at the centre of the village, and right beside it, two mosaics.

They are part of 23 such markers on the  36 mile long Hambleton Hillside Mosaic Walk. Now, don’t worry!  I didn’t undertake the whole distance, and I stopped to admire a few cottages along the way.  And Boltby’s pretty 19th century chapel.

Beyond the village it’s a pleasant rolling landscape, with impressive Whitestone Cliff a distant backdrop.  Sheep gambol in the fields, and overhead, gliders ride the thermals.  I’d love to have their bird’s eye view.

Gormire Lake is accessible only on foot, and was formed after the last Ice Age, when an ice sheet covered the Vale of York.  I’ve previously only seen it from the cliff top, a dark and mysterious green expanse, surrounded by woodland. It’s not a place to go after dusk, for it’s said to be haunted by a knight who plunged from the cliff to his death. He was riding the white mare on whom the famous White Horse of Kilburn is thought to be based.


I never much like to retrace my steps, and so it was that I found tiny Thirlby.  The village nestles round a ford, always a source of delight to me.  No stepping stones for this one, just a huddle of pretty cottages.  Apparently James Herriot, veterinarian and author, once lived here.  Pear Tree House, home to a master cabinet maker, came as a real surprise.  Bob Hunter uses the symbol of a wren to distinguish his furniture.

Boltby and Thirlby are just a couple of miles apart, and easy walking.  A short drive away, the village of Kilburn was home to another, more famous, craftsman.  Robert Thompson, or Mouseman as he became known, came from a family ‘as poor as church mice’. Astonishingly, he taught himself the craft of carving and joinery.  I’ve long promised myself a visit.

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There are tearooms too, but you really don’t want to see another scone with jam and cream, do you?  Just picture it!

Have you seen Dawn’s A Lingering Look at Windows this month?


Life is full of choices


Windows, or doors?


Old, or new?


Real, or imagined?


But the hardest choice of all?  Which challenge to enter!  And I’m spoilt for choice this week, because Klara Bach has given me choices in Thursday’s Special.  I’ve promised Dawn I’ll linger by a few more windows, and then there’s Norm’s Doors!  I ask you- what’s a girl to do?  Enjoy the challenge, I guess.  I hope you do, too.  Every picture tells a story!  Do you have a favourite?

Clifton windows, Bristol

Who'd live in a house like this? Me, please!

Who’d live in a house like this? Me, please!

I probably shouldn’t, but I never did have any willpower, and I know you’ll want one last Bristol stroll with me.  You do, don’t you?  I promise to keep it short.

The plaque, Sir Abraham Roberts, a distinguished Indian general, in case you wonered

The plaque, Sir Abraham Roberts, a distinguished Indian general, in case you wondered

We seem to be in a very genteel and affluent area of Bristol but, as I stroll, people are going about their every day, and we nod and exchange smiles.  It’s good to be here.

I am purely following my nose, and hoping that I will arrive somewhere I recognise.  I hadn’t realised that Clifton had such mighty architecture as Royal York Crescent.  Adjoining Clifton Village, it is a Grade II listed terrace of 46 houses.  Allegedly the longest terrace in Europe, building began in 1791 but was not completed until 1820.  What is indisputable is that the views from up here are far reaching.

Next, a treat for shoppers

Next, a treat for shoppers

Clifton Arcade is the very height of temptation.  Small, but perfectly formed, it has ’17 unique shops set in Victorian splendour’. Originally opened in 1878, it then fell into disrepair. Beautifully restored, you can even take a virtual tour on the link I have enclosed, and pop in for coffee at the Primrose Cafe.

I have a daughter who would adore this window

I have a daughter who would adore this window

A veritable Aladdin's cave of nostalgia

A veritable Aladdin’s cave of nostalgia

I promised to be short, so maybe this is a good time to leave you browsing.  There are modern items alongside the nostalgia.  Have fun, won’t you?  I really do need to go.

For those of you I have confused (sorry, Meg) I have a 2 week laze about in the Algarve, then am home for 6 days before gallivanting off to a wedding in Poland.  Sigh!  The things you have to do to be Restlessjo.  But first I must link to Dawn, who loves lingering at windows.

No more Bristol!  Toodle pip!


Lingering in Leeds!

The breathtaking ceiling in the Victoria Quarter

The breathtaking ceiling in the Victoria Quarter

I seldom pay more than a flying visit to the city of Leeds, but recently I had cause to wonder why. Never much of a shopper, I’m happy to let life flow around me as I absorb the architecture. Strolling through the city with my son, I was left far behind when we came upon the Victoria Quarter.  Here is just a glimpse of what I saw before I scurried to catch up.

Click on a photo to open the gallery

How about this for a ceiling?

How about this for a ceiling?

The wrought iron was spectacular too

The wrought iron was spectacular too

Down at ground level wasn't shabby either

Nor was ground level too shabby

All of the top names in the world of designer clothes are here, so if you are a shopper you will undoubtedly be in heaven.  County Arcade, Cross Arcade and Queen Victoria and King Edward streets were linked together to form the Victoria Quarter in the 1900s. Theatre architect Frank Matcham was responsible for the design, which no doubt accounts for its drama,  lavishly using faience and marble.  The Empire Palace Theatre was originally part of the development, since replaced by Harvey Nichols department store.

Nothing stops in the world of design and Victoria Quarter is currently undergoing a new phase. Me, I was swept on past beautiful Kirkstall Market to the newer kids on the block, Trinity Centre.

Looking up in the Trinity Centre

Looking up inside the Trinity Centre

Are you a tennis fan?  Crossing town we came upon on open air big screen, and my son remarked that if Murray makes the final it would be a great place to watch the match.  Given current weather conditions that would seem like an excellent idea, but my husband, whose birthday it is that day, was less than thrilled with the suggestion.

Federer, wilting in the heat?

Federer, wilting in the heat?

Right on his doorstep, brand new First Direct Arena is eagerly awaited.  A hot venue for summer!

But I can’t help hankering after the old.  I looked wistfully up at remnants of the old Leeds.

I'd be happy with a home like this

I do hope it will last!

So what did you make of Leeds?  A thriving modern city these days.  I hope that Dawn will enjoy adding it to her collection at A Lingering Look at windows.  This month she looks at windows that aren’t windows any more!

Wacky windows in Nottingham

Headine news!

Headline news!

Many of you will know that I took a flying visit to Nottingham at the weekend.  But not so swift that I couldn’t have a healthy salad (and a naughty cake) in Hopkinson with my lovely daughter. A Vintage store that spans four floors (yes, 4!), you can sit in the cafe on the ground floor surrounded by the most delightful clutter.  No need to worry about calories!  The 4 floors will soon work them off.

Click on a photo to view the galleries

The external is quite arresting too!

The external is quite arresting too!

Nottingham has shops by the gazillion, but I’ve always loved arcades and Flying Horse Walk is surely an eye pleaser. Let’s go a little more upmarket, shall we?

And inside the arcades

Inside the arcades

And looking up

And looking up

More flying horses!

More flying horses!

I’d like to say thank you for the kind thoughts and good wishes I received at the weekend.  A few prayers won’t go amiss but I’m hopeful that things will get better.  Love is all you need, but sometimes we need a little help too.

And, of course, I’m linking to Dawn’s A Lingering Look at Windows.  Let’s go window shopping!

Window gazing in Kraków

Irresistible stained glass angels

Irresistible stained glass angels

I’m quite partial to a spot of window gazing and there can be few better places than Kraków to indulge. Beneath the cloisters of the Cloth Hall (Sukiennice) all kinds of temptation beckon.  I really couldn’t remain outside the shop with the stained glass angels, but my timing was bad. The gentleman behind the counter politely informed me that he was closing for lunch and gave me his card.  So my Polish money stayed in my pocket a while longer!

Click on the gallery below to shop with me

Inside the Sukiennice stalls offer up every kind of indulgence, but no windows, so I contented myself with a stroll around the rather damp Rynek.  There’s a swish cafe above the Sukiennice, with a terrace open to beguiling views of the Rynek Główny, Europe’s largest Market Square.  I didn’t linger long as it started to drizzle.

Lots of windows but not many customers fro the coaches

Lots of windows, but not many customers for the coaches

I actually spent a very interesting couple of hours in the museum beneath the Rynek, Podziemia, which kept me out of the rain very effectively, but more of that another time.  One last shot caught my eye before I headed for home.

But this one, complete with view of the Rynek, may have been my favourite

A fashion window, with a lovely view of the Rynek

I’ve been promising to return to Dawn’s Windows challenge for the longest time.  This month’s windows are so ‘pretty in pink’.  I do hope that you can join me there.

Young at heart


I’m fa-a–ll-ing!

One of the highlights of my December is always a visit to the windows of Fenwick’s department store in Newcastle-on-Tyne.  Doesn’t it just bring out the child?  This year’s theme is Alice.

It’s not always easy to get your nose pressed up against the windows, but I did what I could. After all, you’ve got to leave space for the children!

You're a very fine looking caterpillar!

You’re a very fine looking caterpillar!

Who’s your favourite character?  I was always a little in love with the White Rabbit.  The husband says it’s because I’m always late!  Well, maybe just a little…

Croquet, your Majesty? I don't believe I do.

Croquet, your Majesty? I don’t believe I do.

Oh, not off with his head!

Oh, not ‘off with his head!’

He IS such a handsome rabbit!

He IS such a handsome rabbit!

But thank goodness, it was all a dream!

But thank goodness, it was all a dream!

All’s well that ends well for another year, and many children, both young and old, will be royally entertained.  You won’t be surprised to know that this is my Christmas entry for Dawn’s Lingering Look at Windows.

When Paula announced that her theme for this week was Young– well, what’s a youngster going to do?  You will join me in visiting them both, won’t you?  We can stay young together.



A Lingering Look at windows : week 41

Any guesses where?

Any guesses where?

It seems so long since we were there, yet it’s barely two months.  I suspect it’s much longer than that since I took part in Dawn’s Lingering Look at windows, so I thought that I’d bring the two together this week.

Come and press your nose up against a few windows with me.  Click on a photo to start the gallery and look for clues.

But just in case you haven't guessed

But just in case you haven’t guessed

It’s Paris, of course!  One of my many wonderful memories this year.

Dawn keeps finding interesting windows, week after week.  Maybe you have some you’d like to share?  Click on this link to visit the challenge.

I’m lingering again!

Newcastle Rail Station gets a makeover

Newcastle Rail Station gets a makeover

I’ve not done too much lingering by windows lately, but a railway station is often a place for hanging about.  Usually I arrive at Newcastle-upon-Tyne by bus, so the recent improvements, blocking out those draughty spaces, have crept up on me.  But I like them.  A lot!

It's a piece of artwork, in itself!

It’s a piece of artwork, in itself, don’t you think?

And from inside the impact is even more dramatic.

Like most cities, Newcastle has its share of windows, in all shapes and sizes.  I was meeting a friend for coffee and we stopped to admire The Gate- a cinema and restaurant complex.

Could be my kind of film!

Could be my kind of film!

We rode up the escalator for a look out

We rode up the escalator for a look out on the street

I was very taken with this structure

And I particularly liked this structure

Not exactly a window, but you can definitely see through it.  Then Waterstones upstairs cafe delighted me.  A cafe in a bookshop- perfection!  But I did have to wonder about this window.

Is the bike for sale?

Is the bike for sale?

A little strange, don't you think?

I’d rather have a view with my coffee!

The Danish pastries were very nice though.  Quite a few people have asked about the green glass structure so I’m belatedly including a link with information on the sculptures in Newcastle.

Got to see which windows Dawn has been lingering by this week.  Click this link and come too?