Autumn is here – it’s official. After the wettest Summer in a hundred years we slide into a very English Autumn. Spring and Autumn, the so called ‘shoulder seasons’ are actually my favourite seasons in England. So much changes in nature at this time, it’s the start of the academic year and some sporting seasons (is it football?) and a brief colourful pause before the rabid commercial madness that is Christmas these days descends upon us all. Our local Park Jesmond Dene is right in the heart of the city and is very much used and loved by all us city dwellers. It provides a haven for dog walkers, joggers, child minders, students, teenagers, pensioners, cyclists and people in general who still like each other enough to take a walk together. You can get an ice cream, stop for a coffee, visit the baby Alpaca at Pet’s Corner or just mosey down by the river by yourself if you need some inspiration about something. Just now the leaves are gorgeous yellows and golds and the sharp bright sunshine is all the more precious as the days shorten and become colder from the Autumnal equinox.
Have you seen Bradley anywhere?
The river Ouseburn which runs through the Dene was originally dotted with Cornmills driven by water wheels and was a hive of activity during the industrial revolution. It was only when it came into the hands of Lord Armstrong that it became more landscaped and he developed the many picturesque bridges and waterfalls which are a feature of the Dene today. The original Jesmond Dene House is now an award winning boutique hotel and what was the old Fisherman’s Lodge, a first class restaurant. Lord Armstrong, a noted industrialist of his time left Jesmond Dene, his private estate, in trust to the city of Newcastle in 1883. And we’ve all been enjoying it’s bucolic pleasures as a spectacular green space in the middle of our city ever since.