Sunday, 16 July 2017

Around Ponden, Brontë Country, July 2017

Last week I was back at Ponden Hall. Once a year I like to stay in this marvellous character home steeped in history with many Brontë Sisters connections. I blogged about it in the past here and here. Being situated three miles west of Haworth where the sisters lived and wrote, Ponden Hall is also a perfect place from which to explore and roam that part of Brontë Country. There are important landmarks related to the locations in Emily's "Wuthering Heights" book, the most significant being Ponden Kirk, or Ponden Crag as Emily called it in her novel. This was where G and I headed for on a rather cloudy, but still beautiful, breezy morning. I did this walk last September for a first time.


View of Ponden Reservoir from Ponden Cottage which is right next to Ponden Hall.






Upper Ponden Barn, always a lovely photogenic sight, especially under a dark, moody sky.


Approaching Ponden Kirk. a backdrop to Cathy and Heathcliff's tormented story in "Wuthering Heights". At the bottom of the crag there is a hole named "The Fairy Cave" to which Emily makes reference in her novel. According to tradition, if a young maid passes through the hole, she will marry within a year.


The magnificent view from the top of Ponden Kirk with Ponden Reservoir in the distance. I must admit, much as I enjoyed the view I felt a little uncomfortable with the steep drop below the rock and the narrow, uneven path close to the edge of the ravine, the more so because of the fairly strong wind. I thought of Emily who, being not only used to this landscape, but also inspired and intrigued by it, must have felt completely at home in this spot. I wished I was too.
In mid distance there is a lower path which I checked out when we left Ponden Kirk.


View over Ponden Clough and the path to Ponden Kirk. There had been little rain at the time, so the stream was narrow and low which made for an easier crossing since there is no bridge over the stream.


Ponden Kirk from the lower path.


I was overjoyed to see heather had just started to bloom. Can't wait to go back around the beginning of next month when it will be in its prime covering the moors with huge pink carpets.



I picked some heather, took it back to our room in Ponden Hall  and photographed it lying on the stone sill of the beautiful window. This was my second stay in this room, the Giddings Room. I love this window so much and have used it for still life photography before.



In the evening we walked to "The Old Silent Inn" for our evening meal, delightful old country pub, perfect for a rest and indulging in some gourmet food. This is one of our all time favourite pubs in England.



We passed Ponden Mill, where there is a cafe and two recently opened bed & breakfast rooms.


We walked back home just after the sunset when the whole countryside was enveloped in a pink and golden glow.





It was so gratifying to end the day taking photos in such beautiful surroundings and light. In fact, for me this is happiness that I cannot find in anything else.