About karenlovestodance

I love to dance and I like to buy clothes in charity shops, though on one occasion I bought a teddy bear called Horace instead!

Re-visiting Watersmeet followed by a ride on the world’s steepest & highest water powered railway.

It was good to visit Watersmeet again but this time with my little brother Nye. The river Lyn was in full flow and gushing down the valley.

The rope across the river with lots of odd shoes dangling from it was a tad ppuzzling.

Further upstream next to the shoe line Nye found a sign which explained the shoes. They hang where a bridge used to be and a local charity are raising funds to build a new bridge.

We continued on up the path next to the river and found a bridge to cross to the other side. The water was very fast flowing; not somewhere to fall in so I kept a close eye on Nye.

To get to the tea rooms we crossed a bridge at the bottom of the waterfall that many visitors come to see. We posed for a selfie on the bridge while the humans held onto our legs to keep us safe.

On arrival at Watersmeet Tearooms we spent a while looking at the roof tiles. Back in 2016 I sponsored a tile (wrote my name on the back of it) and I wondered where my tile ended up. You can read about my tile here: https://wp.me/p2Recl-sC

Freshly made red pepper soup for lunch. Yum yum yum.

With full tummies we climbed up some steep steps to see another waterfall. Neither of us wanted to fall in!

After walking back down the valley we ended up in Lynmouth.

There is a very interesting funicular railway that goes up the cliff from Lynmouth to Lynton. When one carriage comes down the other goes up and it is powered by water. We decided to have a go.

It was a bit scary as the carriage travelled up the track pulled by a very thick cable with another carriage coming down at same time.

We waved to the people coming down a their carriage passed.

At the top there is an amazing view of Lynmouth.

There is also a cafe at top where we celberated having been on the world’s steepest and highest water powered railway at a table overlooking the sea.

An excellent end to an adventure.

For more information about Watersmeet and the cliff railway see:

https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/watersmeet

https://www.cliffrailwaylynton.co.uk

Horace the Alresford Bear 16/10/19

Gordon’s Cabin; Mortehoe

We recently tagged along with the humans to stay in an old 1800’s linhay (a sort of barn). It was turned into a holiday cottage by the National Trust in 2016.

Inside was very luxurious with a huge bed with plenty of room for two small bears to have power naps.

The humans left us a while then put us both on a shelf!

We found an old picture with an umage of the linhay in early 1900’s wirh a horse and cart outside.

There was also another book about someone who grew up in the area that we busied ourselves reading.

There is a very well equipped kitchen at Gordon’s Cabin, so making our porridge was a pleasure.

Yum yum yum…

The humans went out and left us ‘home alone’ a few times but we found plenty to do.

We did take a little stroll up to the village.

The humans took us along to Woolacoombe which is a mile or so along the road.

They didn’t take us on their coast path wall to Bullock’s Point as ‘didn’t want to carry us’. It was listed as a challenging walk so not suitable for us to toddle along behind. A shame as we missed some spectacular scenery including this:

We did get to go to Arlington Court though (half an hour’s drive from the cabin) which is a great place for bears

Gordon’s Cabin is a splendid place to stay for a peaceful break and for exploring North Devon.
https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/holidays/gordons-cabin-devon

Horace the Alresford Bear 15/10/19

Dunster Castle & Watermill (NT)

After a few days of October rain the River Avill was in full flow.

This was good news for the water wheels that power the mill.

I kept a tight hold on Nye going over the bridge just in case he fell through; the river below would have swept him easy in seconds if he were to fall in.

We found some excellent dry land stepping stones in the woods.

The gardener was nowhere to be seen so we tried out the bear sized gardening mobile.

Our tummies were beginning to rumble for food. We had a trip down the hill to the town to one of the many teashops for our lunch.

On returning to Dunster Castle we resumed exploring. Nye was sure he saw a pixie peeking out of the Pixie Well but I missed him.

The path up to the castle is quite steep bit we are fit bears…

We stopped for a little rest at the top!

Nye couldn’t resist climbing a very tall palm.

I was quite relieved when he climbed bback down again.

The table inside the castle was laid ready for a big banquet.

It was quite surprising to find a modern ‘Hygena’ kitchen installed in the castle. It was put in by the last ownerve to make life a bit easier for the servants. The Victorian kitchens are still in the castle but we didn’t get to see them as weren’t in time for the tour.

We managed to gave a quick game of ‘four in a row’….

There was also a selection of hats to try on. I think the cap suits me….not sure about Nye though; I think he needs to grow a bit!

We sat for a while warming our fur in the conservatory.

Before leaving we sat on the wall and wondered what it must have been like to live in a castle.

A great day out for humans and bears.

For more information see: https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/dunster-castle

Horace the Alresford Bear 15/10/19

Lyme (National Trust)

Lyme House was built a very long time ago in the 16th century. It was given to the National Trust in 1946.

Humans are asked to leave backpacks in lockers while wandering around the house. We climbed out of the bear carrier backpack to join the humans…

There were many very old books in library.

A kindly National Trust volunteer found a couple of books for us to view.

The dining room was all set up for a big banquet. This made us feel quite hungry.

There was a panel that could be opened in the room above the entrance hall. The ‘squint’ had a painting hung on the other side. The family members could open it just a little to view who was coming into the house and decide whether they wanted to pretend to be out.

Bears and humans are not allowed to sit on quite a lot of the furniture but the volunteer said we could try out this giant square sofa chair thingy as it was a reproduction of the original. It was a bit hard so we weren’t tempted to take naps.

The bath had a very tall drain plug.

Being rather small we find playing snooker on human size tables a tad challenging.

In the nursery there was a very shy looking panda; we thought he needed a cuddle.

We were fascinated by the workings behind the big clock.

These special tools are used for winding it up.

Outside the front of the clock can be seen at the side if the house between two windows on the top floor.

We stopped for lunch at the Ale Cellar cafe The pea soup was very good indeed; and healthy too. Yum yum yum.

With full tummies we continued exploring. The Orangery looked interesting but it took us a while to get there.

We found a beautiful fountain covered in moss but there weren’t any oranges.

While looking a the fountain we heard several visitors comment on how sweet we looked; one lady thought we belonged in the orangery!

It was very pleasant just sitting on the grass in the September sunshine….

….and having a little nap.

We weren’t able to explore all the areas as just over a month ago some areas of Lyme were damaged in a flood when a torrent of water ran down through the gardens like a river.

We climbed up on the hedge to view the Italian garden.

Bears will be bears and we couldn’t resist playing roly poly for a while.

This seemed like a good place for a selfie though I think the image is a little blurred.

After climbing up a hillside overlooking the estate we found a building known as ‘The Cage’. It was all closed up but back in the old days it was used to watch deer hunts and have banquets.

There was a splendid view up by ‘The Cage’. Here we are with The Peak District visible in the distance behind us.

We were hungry after so much walking about so stopped for ice cream before leaving. Yum yum yum.

There is lots to see and do at Lyme and we missed a few things so hope to visit again sometime.

Horace the Alresford Bear 21/9/19

For more info. about Lyme see: https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/lyme

Bolton Abbey including stepping stones & wobbly welly trail…

Bolton Abbey isn’t an abbey but a priory. The estate belongs to the Duke of Devonshire but is not in Devon but in Yorkshire. All a tad confusing for small bears ..

The River Wharfe runs through the estate. Years ago estate workers had to use the stepping stones to cross the river. More recently a bridge was built.

We tried to cross using the stepping stones but got scared so were very pleased that there is also a bridge.

We decided to practise on dry land using the wooden stepping stones.

Nye ‘fell in’ first….

Followed by me…

Next we came across this; much easier to negotiate and we both successfully crossed.

I had forgotten to bring my wellies (it was a lovely sunny day!) and Nye doesn’t have any; but we decided to do ‘The Welly Walk’ anyway.

Here we are avoiding snakes on the snakes and ladders trail.

We had fun sliding down inside the giant snake.

It was a bit of a struggle climbing up the ladder.

The igloo was a good thing for bears to climb on.

There was a splendid view of The Yorkshire Dales from the hill above the river.

We were a tad hungry after all the exploring so stopped for a cream tea at The Tea Cottage. Yum yum yum…

The Tea Cottage is very pretty so we posed for a selfie before leaving.

Bolton Abbey is a lovely place especially with the sun shining. There is much more to see but unfortunately didn’t have time. We recommend the cream teas!

Horace the Alresford Bear 19/9/19

For more information see: http://www.boltonabbey.com

Meeting long lost relatives Fagin & Ted in Waddington

Something rather wonderful happened today. We had a message from Fagin & Ted who live a few miles away from Lower Buck Cottage where we are staying at the moment. A meet-up was arranged and they arrived with home made scones, cream, jam and fruit. All good for bears

We posed for a special re-union photograph on the bench outside the cottage.

After a short walk another photo; this time on the bridge in Waddington memorial garden.

I noticed some stepping stones that looked as though us bears could cross them. So off we went….

Fagin ended up just watching from the bank. He is a well loved bear and could not risk falling in as his fur is quite fragile.

It was soon time for Fagin and Ted to go home. We crowded together for a selfie before saying our goodbyes.

As you can see we all look similar but also have differences. This is because we were all hand made and every Alresford honey Bear is slightly different.

A very special day.

Horace the Alresford Bear 16/9/19

Dunsop Bridge; the centre of the UK.

Dunsop Bridge is more or less at the centre of the UK .

The telephone box states on the outside that it is the 100,000th public payphone, Dunsop Bridge, Centre of Great Britain.

We went inside for a commemorative photo.

Then phoned home and spoke to Growler.

Next we had to find a tea shop. Fortunately we didn’t have to look far.

At Puddleducks tea room I enjoyed Lancashire parkin while Nye opted for coffee & walnut cake. Yum yum yum…

Before leaving we spent a while watching the sheep; and they watched us too!

Horace the Alresford Bear 15/9/19

NT Biddulph Grange Garden, including China

My little brother Nye came along with me to Biddulph Gardens. We were both on a mission to find China; but first we had lunch.

On our way to China we passed many dahlias.

Nye stopped for a while to watch a butterfly.

Here we are in front of ‘The Shelter House’ at the end of the dahlia walk.

Things started to get more interesting when we discovered The Stumpery; an excellent place for bears.

Fungi was growing in some of the nooks and crannies.

Finally we found the way to China…

On the way to China we had a rest on a big boulder next to a glade. A lady stopped to take a photo of us; she thought we were part of the garden’s exhibits!

It was a big surprise to suddenly come across a very large gold bull looking down at us. We had found China!

There were big red dragons in the grass below the golden bull…

Here we are in the heart of China.

There was quite a climb up to the little bear sized house up on the hill…

We both made it to the top…

There were some lovely blue flowers growing amongst the ferns.

After leaving China we had to cross a bridge over a ravine. Nye had some problems with his feet sticking in the gaps.

Here I am with a small tree fern.

Nye wanted to be in a tree fern photo too as it was first time he had seen one.

We had to walk through a tunnel to move on to the next part of the garden.

Biddulph Grange House overlooks the lake.

I kept a close eye on Nye as he studied the fish. He has a history of falling in (remember when he fell in with pigs https://horacethealresfordbear.com/2017/04/04/roskillys-organic-farm-where-nye-falls-in-with-the-piglets/)

We sat for a while enjoying the view and saw many humans taking ‘selfies’.

Some trees are just way too tall for bears to climb up.

Nye managed to get up into the monkey puzzle tree though!

Years ago the big house uses to be a hospital. Nurses used to wheel patients out into the gardens in their beds.

The house behind me had a sinister looking Buddha inside which was lit up in red. We thought the Buddha looked a bit creepy so didn’t hang around to take a photo.

All the exploring made us both very hungry so before leaving we enjoyed a cream tea.

Biddulph Grange garden is really lovely and we especially enjoyed China.

Horace the Alresford Bear 14/9/19

For more information see:

https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/biddulph-Grange-garden

Back at Tyntesfield again…

I was one if the first visitors to Tyntesfield on August bank holiday Monday. Headed straight to the woods where there is a tree house built especially for bears.

It took a little while for me to climb up to the platform.

Then on up the bear pole…

It felt good to be up with the trees.

Eventually I climbed right to the top. This alarmed my humans slightly.

Afterwards I made my way to the pumpkin patch to see how well they were growing.

This one was nearly as tall as me…

Here I am in the walled garden. A very special place where produce is grown for use in the cafe and sale on the produce table.

The celeriac was growing very well.

At the produce table I bought a large courgette and a freshly picked punnet of raspberries.

In the pavillion café I bought a piece of courgette and lemon cake to try. It was surprisingly yummy.

There is a lovely view across the fields from the picnic area behind the Pavillion cafe.

Before walking back to the car park I took a selfie of myself (of course) in front of the house.

I always enjoy visiting Tyntesfield and will be back again soon.

Horace the Alresford Bear 26/8/19

Previous blogs about Tyntesfield:

https://horacethealresfordbear.com/2018/12/23/a-very-victorian-christmas-at-tyntesfield/

https://horacethealresfordbear.com/2016/01/05/pumpkins-squashes

For more information see:

https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/tyntesfield

Glastonbury

The entrance to the footpath to Glastonbury Tor is not designed for bears that like cake.

I just about managed to squeeze through.

Glastonbury Tor is a special place that many people visit for all sorts of reasons.

The climb up to the top can be quite challenging for some; it certainly is for bears with short legs.

There were lots of people sat all around the top looking at the splendid view.

Here I am in front of the tower which is all that is left of a church that was built here in the 14th Century (St Michaels Church).

There are some stone seats inside the tower. It is OK to shelter from the wind, but the tower doesn’t have a roof, so not so good if raining.

Here I am emerging from the back of the tower.

In the distance I could see the big stage in the grounds of Glastonbury Abbey, where the Extravaganza music festival was on later.

It seemed like a good place to eat my sausage roll that didn’t have any sausage in.

As we walked back down the other side of the Tor there were a group of people with a very tall fox holding some signs for a photograph. They were campaigning to stop foxes getting hunted on National Trust land. I am glad I am not a fox.

Outside The Abbey grounds there was a big sign stating that all the tickets were sold out for the Extravaganza. I hoped that my humans had remembered to get a ticket for me.

While walking down through the High Street I found a shop selling lots of hats and couldn’t resist trying them on…

At the entrance to The Abbey we joined the queue. The humans did indeed have a ticket for me.

There were quite a few people queuing in front of us but they had all ‘made themselves at home’ and were sat on chairs drinking and eating.

Time to eat the Eccles cake bought in the High Street earlier….

All of a sudden everyone started to pack up their chairs; the gates were open and it was time to go into The Abbey grounds. I had quite a good ride on the trolley!

We settled ourselves down just in front of the sound engineer’s tent where there was a good view of the stage.

I was jolly pleased to meet Michael Eavis, who is the organiser of Glastonbury Extravaganza, and also has been hosting the very popular Glastonbury festival at his nearby farm at Pilton since 1971.

I managed to get right to the front to see The Lighthouse Family. They were very good but the base notes from the drum were a little harsh for my small ears, so retreated a bit further away from the big speakers after a few minutes at the front.

There was time for a healthy snack before the next act.

I didn’t get so close to the stage for The Specials. I enjoyed seeing myself on the big screen when the camera scanned the crowd!

Lots of humans were taking selfies of themselves with the band behind. Here is one of me…

The Specials played until it got dark, then minutes after they had finished playing their encore the firework display started. It was a fantastic display but I did find some of the bangs a bit loud.

After all the fireworks had finished it was time to go home. I nearly dozed off on the trolley but was pleased the humans woke me up to see the flood lit abbey ruins.

Glastonbury is an interesting place to visit, and if you like music, the Extravaganza that takes place annually in the abbey grounds is well worth attending. I certainly had a lovely day out.

Horace the Alresford Bear 5/8/19

For more information see:

https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/glastonbury-tor

https://www.glastonburyfestivals.co.uk/the-specials-to-headline-2019-glastonbury-abbey-extravaganza/

https://www.glastonburyabbey.com