Friday, 12 July 2013

Spurn Lighthouse Visit

Yesterday just over a score of participants met at Spurn to be shown round Spurn Lighthouse.  Maggie and Claire arrived early to enjoy the antics of the Swallows feeding their brood at Canal Scrape.  The rest of us rendezvoused at the Blue Bell, and then car shared to the point car park.  From there we walked to the lighthouse.  Along the way we noticed the profusion of wild flowers, and the amazingly pleasant scent of the Wall Rocket.  In the afternoon we were nearly mown down by someone who didn't want to slow down & screamed at us that pedestrians should not walk along the road at all!
Swallow (c) 2013 Maggie Bruce
Panoranic View (c) 2013 Maggie Bruce
 View to the South
 View to the North
 The 2nd of Spurn's 3 Lighthouses in modern times
At the lighthouse we were met by Adam Stoyle, Yorkshire Wildlife Trust's Admission Officer for Spurn.  I handed over to him, and he began by informing everyone of when the lighthouse was constructed, and of some of the YWT's ambitious plans for the future.  The acoustics were rather echoey, so it made sense to concentrate on every word being said.  Adam proceeded to inform us of how each room was used when the lighthouse was in operation, and what some of the remaining features were used for.
 An Art Installation (c) 2013 Maggie Bruce
Evenually, we made it up the 140+ steps to the very top where the main light had been installed.  Here we had breathtaking panoramic views over the Humber estuary towards Grimsby; plus the amazing curving sweep of the peninsula itself.   From here Adam was able to point out many features of the area, which cannot all be seen from any other point.  He was able to regale the audience with all their names, and their history.  In all he kept everyone spellbound for over an hour, and was easily able to deal with any questions from the gathered throng.   
Dunlin (c) 2013 Maggie Bruce
Once Adam's talk had finished and everyone's appreciation passed on to him, the participants went for a floral and insect walk around the point.   Normally, we would have gone looking for birds, but mid-July is a fairly quiet time for those.  However, the flowers rewarded our attention.  This year the Parade Ground area was absolutely awash with colour, with some of the highlights being Pyramidal Orchids, Restharrow, Lady's Bedstraw, Centaury, Scarlet Pimpernel, Storksbill and  Viper's Bugloss.  Unfortunately, the sun remained obscured by clouds all day, so there weren't a profusion of insects but we did see quite a few Burnet-moths, plus Small Heaths, Meadow Browns and Ringlets.   
Swallow with at least 2 Damselflies (c) 2013 Maggie Bruce
 Swallow (c) 2013 Maggie Bruce
 Immature Magpie
 Burnet-Moth on Pyramidal Orchid
 Burnet-Moth (c) 2013 Maggie Bruce
 Pyramidal Orchids (c) 2013 Maggie Bruce
 Pyramidal Orchid
 Record Shot of Ringlet
 Small Heath on Yarrow
 Storksbill (c) 2013 Maggie Bruce
 Grasshopper sp. (c) 2013 Maggie Bruce
 Restharrow (c) 2013 Maggie Bruce
 Lady's Bedstraw (c) 2013 Maggie Bruce
 Lady's Bedstraw
 Centaury (c) 2013 Maggie Bruce
 Dog Rose (c) 2013 Maggie Bruce
 Hawkbit sp. (c) 2013 Maggie Bruce
 Pea sp. (c) 2013 Maggie Bruce
 Viper's Bugloss
 Snow-in-Summer (a garden escape)
Some photographers remained in the area once their session had finished, and this is when Maggie obtained her photograph of the Dunlin.  In all our visit ensured that £88 was raised for the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust, while everyone had an enjoyable and informative visit to the lighthouse, and our thanks go out to Adam Stoyle and YWT for a very pleasant visit.

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