Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Odds and Ends

Just a few 'odds and ends' of photos from our recent walks today, starting with a view over the trees from the newly erected viewing platform in Shipley Park.
From this platform, you get a lovely view across the parkland out towards the town in one direction and even further views towards East Midlands Airport and the power station at Ratcliffe on Soar.  But, looking the other way, back along the walkway and steps which bring you up to the platform, one sees the wooded area with its bird and bat boxes and mixture of broad-leaved trees.
In the other direction, the walk to the lakes of Straw's Bridge, takes you through another former industrial landscape where once dozens of train tracks carried passengers to and from Ilkeston as well as tons of coal and ore of various kinds.  Today - thankfully - those trains have all gone and the bank which once carried the track from Derby to Ilkeston is now covered with wild flowers - and Malcolm!
Nearby, the wet land of Pewit Carr is equally attractive and at this time of year, the wild flower meadows have been mowed and you get access to the waterside in some places, where it was a little tricky just a few days ago.  Thousands of insects make a home in this area and tiny fish fry swim in the shallows.  Goodness knows what might lurk in the muddy depths!
Closer to home you see the settling pools where water, pumped up from the old mine workings around Shipley Woodside, is allowed to flow from one pool to another, gradually settling out any pollutants, before the water is returned to the Nutbrook.  These six large pools , despite their rather unattractive function, nevertheless provide a fantastic habitat for a wide variety of wildlife, helped by the fact that the whole area is fenced off from the public.  And it looks good too!
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