Posted by: brendaintheboro | September 13, 2012


Well, it seems last week was summer. The days are getting shorter with the sun not coming up until 6.30am. I took this photo on Tuesday morning down by the river.

At the weekend, DS1 and I cycled across to Hartlepool. The north east of England used to be a large coal mining area with some coal seams coming up to the surface out to sea. On the beaches at Hartlepool, the small pebbles on the beach have a lot of sea coal in it . At low tide , men are licenced to collect the sea coal. They rake it into piles and then load it onto a flat bed truck. I understand it is used in steel production . I tried to take a photo of this. Hope it turns out.

While crossing back over the fields towards Billingham , we saw a combine harvester gathering in the wheat. It is fortunate that we had a bit of sun so this could happen.


There was a lot of dust being thrown up as we passed by.
Today, the weather has deteriorated and it’s much cooler with a northerly wind blowing. It was also about a force 5 with rain forecast. We decided as we had a couple of hours spare, we would go to see if we could harvest some wild berries. They are very late this year but we cycled over to Portrack Marshes and collected over 3 lbs of brambles( blackberries) before the rain started . Now , we’ve cleaned and boxed them and they are sitting in the freezer, ready to provide a taste of summer during the winter. Sorry no photos of them.


  1. That sunrise is spectacular! Err, don’t think I’ll swap beaches with you, interesting about the coal collection though. I may not be jealous of the beach, but, I am sooo envious of the blackberry picking. Just reading it made me think of mum’s blackberry and apple pie and my mouth is watering. 🙂

    • not all the beaches are like that. Most have beautiful yellow sand from magnesium limestone. I’ll not doubt e making bramle and apple rumble at some poit over the weekend.. I was rather take with the sunrise hih was at 6.30am. in June its’ more like 3.45am and in the far orth of Scotland its about 3.0am. Winter is fast apporaching. I just hope its ot a bad one. Best wishes Brenda in the Boro

  2. Hope you had a good ride and I’m pleased you managed to collect your blackberries. Do you know how you can tell when elderberries are ripe enough to pick? I shall have to look up some recipes for making syrup.

    • Elderberries Ive not picked before as I believed you could only make wine. I suppose when they are black but not too squidgy. I have made elderflower cordial in the past. I think it smells a bit like cats wee but it does taste good. If you find a syrup receipe would you post about it please. I didn’t see any ripe elderberries today though.

  3. Blackberries are my favourite. I like them in pies…in a crumble….on their own or with ice cream..anyway at all. Always brings back memories of picking them with my Father when I was a small child living on Portland in the west of Dorset. Thanks for the reminder..


    • You are welcome Trevor. We had some at breakfast today . Delicious . Years ago , I made a bramble and apple crumble for my dad. He ate it and had a n allergic reaction but it was an allergy to aspirin not the brambles. Your comment brought that back. He’s been dead for many years now. Meningitis got him, poor soul .

  4. Bramble jelly must be one of my favourite conserves of all time. I make a lot of jam and jelly (but not this year – not the fruit nor the energy) but much prefer jelly. Once we have a good hard frost I’ll get some rose hips and think about making rose hip syrup. I have a fruit steamer that makes getting the juice from the fruit a doddle.

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