Christmas 2017

My year in pictures.
There was little snow last winter, but some cold days. Here the icicles have formed on twigs in the Hareshaw Burn Another view from the same spot on a warmer day Zoe and I had a good few walks early in the year. Here she is guarding Hadrian's Wall Zoe ignoring the notice beside the River North Tyne.  She has moved to Corbridge, so our walks are now infrequent.
We enjoyed visits for various family members and friends throughout the year. Eric and Pauline brought Brodie, Fraizer and Kara to see us. Anthony and Kathi from Vienna came with Lewis and Emilia. Helen was here in the summer with Molly and Eleanor. Walking has played a big part in my year, although I'm struggling now with an arthritic right knee and may need surgery in 2018. Here are the Haltwhistle Walkers on a bright sunny day.
It was our 30th festival so we bought teeshirts. One of the Spring Festival walks was to High Cup Nick. We have a great time every Wednesday and in the festivals Maureen and Gwen, who decided not to cross the stepping stones after all.
One of the more dramatic moments in First Aid Training In May I went to the USA for the first time. I stayed with my friend, BJ, in Mill Valley, on the far side of the Golden Gate Bridge. We took a day trip to Alcatraz. This was fascinating. The island is now a wildlife sanctuary and the egrets were raising young quite near to the paths.
I then moved on to visit Yosemite (along with thousands of other people who had come to see the waterfalls at the end of a very hard winter). I found quiet corners to photograph In July a large group of us visited Poland. The Tatras Mountains are very beautiful The meadows below are picture postcard perfect too.
We were the oldies on the trails. Most people were youngsters or young adults with children. We met lots of nuns, usually leading parties of young people in the mountains. I apologise if this image gives you an earworm! Julie and I had a day trip to Edinburgh for The Fringe - only to find we were too late! We had a night in Liverpool to see photographs by August Sander and paintings by Otto Dix at Tate Liverpool.
Photography is an ongoing passion and I met up with fellow photographers at different times. Here Elspeth, Guy and Paula met me in Corbridge. In November I went to Malaga with a group of fellow photographers. The Market before opening time was a great place to be with the camera The Malaga Pompidou Centre had this exhibit called Ghost on display. Leaving the centre I became aware that I was under surveillance!
Tim, seen here with Maxine, made a wonderful bird table for me. I took photographs to support his first solo exhibition Plant labels by Tim Patterson Photos from the workshop for Tim's exhibition. The images are A2 in size. Vase and Allium. Tim uses manufactured wood for some of his work.
In August we helped to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Gould Piano Trio during their Chamber Music Festival in Corbridge. Mum embroidered the card. I had a number of interesting photographic projects. Here I'm with Catton WI for a 50s night out. This is the Henry VII wedding bed that lives in the building next door to me at the moment. This photograph was for an antiques' magazine. I'm a member of the RPS Documentary Group. Four members in animated discussion at Kibblesworth Village Hall.
The RPS Documentary group photographed Country Fairs in 2017 I was asked to photograph all weekend at Stepping Stones Folk Festival near Carlisle. It was great fun. Here are the volunteers. I followed the volunteers as they set up the site before the public arrived. Then I photographed workshops and bands. Here is Maggie Feeney teaching penny whistle
I've come late to folk music and have loved some of the groups and soloists. This is Daorí Farrell with two friends. Brilliant singing and playing. Stepping Stones is Maddie Prior's festival and she is still going strong. I'm not fond of ukeleles, but I have to admit that people had a lot of fun playing them. Later in the year I was at Baafest (Bellingham All Acoustic Festival). Some of the young talent was breathtaking. These are a few of the Stocksfield Stompers.
Flossie Mallavielle - what a wonderful singer. Hear her if you can. Hareshaw Linn - an up and coming trio from the Folk Degree in Newcastle. I love going to hear authors talk. Here is poet John Hegley who appeared in the café at the Queens Hall. I was lucky to hear Jack Lowe of the Lifeboat Station Project. It's worth looking up if you have time.
I've enjoyed using a light box for a few flower photographs and photographing flowers in the garden too This pussy willow lasted for ages One of our David Austin roses (Alnwick Castle) I love the markings on the iris petals
A visit to Oak Lea Convent in Sunderland brought together teachers and one pupil from when Mum taught at St. Anthony's Grammar School (a few years ago). Srs Enda, Baptist, Dolores and Francis see from left to right. A simple wedding at Haydon Bridge Chapel was a highlight of our year. Many of our friends has been ill and Margaret has sadly died. She was out delivering church leaflets in the days before her final illness. For Mum's 96th birthday we went to Walwick Hall for afternoon tea.
Mum is always busy and has enjoyed doing some machine quilting One of out three regulars at the patio feeder throughout the summer. We hope they are hibernating in our garden. Bowlby has had a happy year, but she is 18+ and her health is failing. We enjoy lots of cuddles. The two elder members of the household often travel together on the stair lift.