Tag Archives: sun

Once Brewed, Sun and Geocaches 130-133

Today I went to Once Brewed with my dad, who does lots of work with public engagement in astronomy. Once Brewed is near a section of Hadrian’s Wall, which provided a theme for the day as we travelled along various points on its route. My main task was to photograph him setting up his equipment and I also took some pictures of people looking at the sun through the specially designed solar telescope. I had lots of fun with the camera!

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Happily, this being Northumberland National Park, there was a fair smattering of geocaches about! I managed to find three different types today – two traditional, a letterbox hybrid and an earthcache.

The first cache, Once Brewed and the Sill (GC5226C) was very easy. It had been placed at the visitor centre by Northumberland National Park – a very quick find hidden in a very traditional style. Still, a find is a find!

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The second was the earthcache, Cawfields Great Whin Sill, (GC1YH9E), which was at Cawfield quarry.

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Very close by, there was a letterbox hybrid cache, Cawfields Quarry (GCXWCE) with a brilliant container, the first of its type I’ve found. Alison and I spent a few minutes searching in the wrong place.  There we uncovered a milk bottle half-dug into the ground, but closer inspection revealed it was not the cache.

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After relocating slightly, we got our hands on it! This was Alison’s first physical find, so I explained about letterboxing and how the logging works by collecting stamps in a book rather than by writing your name in the cache logbooks.

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After a short drive, we found ourselves by another interesting geological feature at Walltown with a cache nearby, Walltown Quarry (GCK29D). On the way up the hill from the car park we were heard a pack of hunting dogs and dad spotted a deer. We found the cache quickly at the top of a small hill and signed the log.

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At the end of the day as the sun was going down, we headed off to Twice Brewed, a very warm and cosy pub. There was a good pub menu and I really enjoyed my sausage and chips after a long afternoon in the cold! On the way out the barman told us they had the biggest rum collection in the North of England, and the next biggest collection is in Manchester. It seemed an odd accolade for a rural Northumbrian pub!

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I was really happy to get back in the warm after such a chilly day.

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Ice Cream and Chips

We started the day by heading to Roskilly’s, a working dairy farm and cafe! Before we got as far as the ice cream we had a look around the farm. The first piece of entertainment occurred almost as soon as we got out of the car, as a goat we were looking at casually jumped the fence keeping it in. It stood happily grazing just outside its enclosure as if to say “because I can”. We went into the cafe to let someone know, and upon reporting the goat’s antics were told that it was a regular occurrence and someone would come around and stick it back behind its fence soon. We were also asked if we would like a goat.

We moved on to the chickens and other fowl, and clearly inspired similar thoughts of escape. These fancy chickens lined up along the fence to pose for us.

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We went back down to the cafe and had some delicious ice cream outside in the sunshine. There weren’t many people around, but it was nice that the place was open given it’s November. After we’d finished, it was back in the car.

I snapped a quick picture of Goonhilly as we went by. The huge satellite dishes just appear over the brow of a hill – very impressive.

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The next stop was Perranporth. Perranporth is named for the patron saint of Cornwall, St Piran, who apparently arrived here from Ireland. It’s a popular seaside holiday destination because of it’s beautiful beach. Something about the place rung a bell for me…

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There was another reason for visiting Perranporth, as if you needed one. Pieces of Lego have been washing up on Cornish beaches for a long time, and I had read about this recently in a BBC news article. It would be interesting to find some Lego washed up here.

We walked along the beach for a while and had a quick hunt around the more stony areas but to no avail. But what a gorgeous beach! It was when I saw these pools that I was certain – I came on holiday here when I was about eight.

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By this stage I’m really starting to think that Jon’s stories of Cornish bad weather are purely a fabrication.

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We left the beach to go on a hunt for fish and chips – an ultimately fruitless search! Lots of cafes and chippies about, but none of them open when we were hungry. Happily, we managed to get our hands on some when we got to Truro, and they disappeared very quickly when we got back to Jon’s.

Sugar and Spice Tearooms

Arbroath is a small town by the sea in Scotland. Among other attractions, it has a spectacular coastline and clifftop walk. On a recent visit to Arbroath I was lucky enough to be treated to tea at Sugar and Spice Tearooms. If you didn’t know that the tearoom was there you’d be forgiven for missing it, as it is tucked in the back of the sweet shop of the same name. Once inside, the tearoom offers a traditional style and a comfortable place to sit, along with a conservatory which is beautiful in the late afternoon sunshine.

The portions are ample, and I went for the self-proclaimed “GINORMOUS Meringue”, which definitely lived up to its name. The whole thing was probably the size of my head, and I certainly appreciated the help I had in finishing it. It was fantastic, and you certainly aren’t left feeling hungry. I wouldn’t recommend attempting it alone unless you can handle a lot of whipped cream and sugar!

I was also impressed by the range of cakes and treats on offer. There was a reasonably-priced cream tea and a high tea was also on offer. The scones were equally impressive – huge – and there were plain, fruit and “special” scones on offer. I tasted the apple and cinnamon scone and it was unusual, but very tasty.

Given the atmosphere, the quality and the prices, Sugar and Spice Tearooms offers fantastic value for money, and I will definitely visit again.

You can find out more about the tearooms, as well as the adjoining sweet shop on the Sugar and Spice website.