Whenever we can, Ian and I try to get out for a walk. Right now, time is a precious commodity. Among home improvements, birthday parties, Easter and more, we haven’t had much of it to spare. But this weekend, we managed to fit in a walk around Skipton Woods. (And here I’d like to thank him as always for taking my photographs). Skipton Castle Woods, (to give it its full title), has over a thousand years of history. It used to be part of a hunting forest that stretched across the north of England. The woodland gave rise to Skipton Castle which established the town. Later, the wood helped power the town’s industrial revolution by supplying timber and water to the cotton and wool mills. Now, Skipton Woods is managed by the Woodland Trust.
We love it all year round but I think it’s at its most impressive in spring because of the abundance of wild garlic that carpets the ground and scents the air. (Spot the ladybird in the second photo down).
Last autumn The Woodland Trust commissioned a local artist to produce two beautiful willow sculptures. The Spirit of the Medieval Hunter, (below) and The Stalking Horse, (which is on a different route to the one we took).
I was very much in weekend mode so rather than blow-dry and straighten my hair, I let it dry naturally, hence its “undone-ness.” My outfit was practical but smart enough to stop for a glass of wine on the way home.
The Perfect Pair
What is the perfect pair to wear for a woodland walk? What eyewear compliments a casual jeans outfit? I cannot think of anything better than sustainable wooden sunglasses.
This style is the award-winning Blackcap by Bird Sunglasses. I’m particularly proud to wear it because I briefly met Ed Bird, the founder of the company, when I was at 100% Optical earlier this year. It’s a Devon-based start-up owned by Ed, his two brothers and his wife. Bird’s mission is to create eyewear which looks good and does good. The company uses sustainable materials including FSC-certified wood, repurposed aluminium and recycled packaging. Every pair purchased brings solar light to families in Malawi, Zambia and Uganda through their Share Your Sun partnership with SolarAid.
The Blackcap was named Frame of the Year at the 2019 Opticians Awards. It’s been highly engineered using multiple layers of sustainable bamboo, sandalwood and beechwood, plus aluminium for strength. Its distinctive colour palette and shape nods to retro-round designs and I love it.
Bird glasses are available online at www.birdsunglasses.com and in a range of stockists. My white pintuck shirt is a gift from Yorkshire-based company Pure Collection. it is currently reduced from £85 to £63.75.