Seafield, Kirkcaldy, Fife, Scotland

rocks + sea 1

Come on, get your beach friendly shoes on, it’s time for another walk down at Seafield. As you can see it’s a blue sky day and the tide is out, it’s all looking a bit slimey down there.

The photos below are close ups of the rocks on the left hand side of the first photo. I love the texture of them.

rocks 3
There was a chap on TV’s Countryfile recently looking at a similar rock near St Andrews a few weeks ago and he pointed out fossilised animal tracks on it, but I’m fairly sure this is just wear and tear from the weather, it looks good though.

rocks 1

The photo below is looking back to Kirkcaldy from the Seafield area. I’ve always wondered what the concrete remains which you can see in the photo actually were. I’ve got a feeling they were probably some sort of defence thing left over from World War 2.

View back 1

The weather in Scotland seems never to be the same two days in a row so it wasn’t a surprise that the next day was grey, it didn’t stop me from getting down to the beach though. I’m not really a beach person, I’ve never sun-bathed on a beach in my life, and although I can appreciate that a long stretch of golden sand is attractive, I also find it quite boring because you know that you’re unlikely to find anything interesting there. I love a beach with plenty of detritus washed up on it, although obviously not the junk which seems to be washed off passing ships regularly. It’s the natural stuff I like, I’m not a great one for shells, although I will pick up the odd unusual one. It’s stones which attract me and it’s rare for me to get off a beach without an interesting stone in my pocket. Then there’s the sea-glass. What do you want with sea-glass junk I hear you say. Well I plan to make a sea collage with my collection – sometime in the future, probably when I don’t live near the sea any more.

beach 1

The other interesting thing on some beaches in Fife is broken shards of pottery, evidence of the pottery industry which used to go on around here in Victorian times and earlier. I always pick up any bits I see, and the pottery stand/supports too. I think they just chucked anything which was broken in the kilns into the Forth and over the years it gets washed up on to the beaches.

beach 2

On our blue sky day walk there was no sign of the seals which often drape themselves over the rocks off Seafield but they were there on our grey day walk, although it was a while before I noticed them because they were unusually quiet, maybe because the sea was rough and noisy.

aseals 5

So that was Seafield on two different days, walking along the esplanade today was a chancy thing to do as the sea exploded over the sea wall which is in the process of being remodelled and strengthened.

Cygnet update

I took this photo a couple of days ago, it’s of the five surviving cygnets in Beveridge Park. As you can see they’re quite a size now and they’re even beginning to get some white plumage.

5 cygnets

The photo below is the very first one which I took of them, around about May 25th.

My how they’ve grown!

Swan and cygnets

Coming for a Walk?

We’ve been having gorgeous weather over the last couple of weeks. It’s about time, I hear you say – okay, that was me. Anyway, on Sunday we decided to go down the path to the left hand side of Beveridge Park, which leads up into the fields above that part of Kirkcaldy. We veered off to the left again onto a path which we hadn’t been along before and it led us to the field below, which as you can see has the remains of what was some sort of house or bothy/shepherd’s shelter.

ruin and field

This is a bit further round, the main road to Edinburgh is up there, just where the electricity pylon is.

fields near Kirkcaldy,

And this is from the other side of the road, which is just a farm track really but there are a few houses in the area. Although they are just outside the town of Kirkcaldy it feels incredibly remote. The road bisects part of a golf course, the 17th hole, but I think the area is called the mill dam.

The daisy type flowers in the foreground are there for the wildlife I suppose, I think that nowadays farmers are a lot more likely to have the field margins left to nature rather than cultivating every part of the field. The crop seems to be some sort of beans. I thought when I took this photo that you would be able to see the Firth of Forth between the sky and field but is has all blended in, despite the fact that we could actually see a ship on the horizon.

fields in Fife

All of these cows were sitting enjoying the sun until I decided to take a photo of them, then the cream one decided that she really didn’t like what was going on. A discussion ensued as to whether these were cows or bullocks, because she looked quite fierce. We aren’t from farming stock ourselves you know! Anyway we came to the conclusion that they were cows despite not having much in the way of udders. Presumably these ones are not dairy cows but beef ones, well that’s what we think anyway, but we could be completely wrong.

cattle

It has been hot here, and our tongues were just about hanging out by the time we got home, so we awarded ourselves the first ice lollies of this summer. Lovely!

Blogging and Cygnets

Well I think that’s the longest blogging hiatus which I’ve ever had, and it was totally unplanned. I actually couldn’t get into ‘pining’ for technical reasons but I’ve changed my server and hope things will be better from now on.

Anyway, I’ve been visiting the park as usual and as promised, here are the photos of the cygnets as they grow up.
5 cygnets at Beveridge Park

As you can see, the cygnets are able to duck down and pull up the pond weed themselves. There are only five now, so two have disappeared, possibly one of the geese pulled them under, it’s nature red in tooth and claw I suppose.

5 cygnets

I thought they had given up on the miniature train rides but as you can see, it was up and running last Saturday and apart from these passengers there was a queue of wee enthusiasts waiting patiently for their turn. Great fun for wee ones and it seems like only yesterday that my boys were on this train but it must have been well over 20 years ago.

train in Beveridge Park, Kirkcaldy, Fife.

Beveridge Park, Kirkcaldy, Fife

It’s well over a year since one of the big red sandstone gateposts at Beveridge Park was demolished by a trailer belonging to a Bulgarian circus which some silly person in the council gave permission to set up in the park. It looked like it was never going to be repaired or replaced and I previously did a blog post on it, hoping to shame someone into action. You can see that post here.

Here’s the photo I took last year.

Beveridge Park Gates 2012

Anyway, I’m taking absolutely no credit for it but just a week after I posted about it, I saw a stonemason’s van parked at the gates. It looked like someone was being given the job of at least doing a survey on the work required.

And over the last couple of weeks the work has been completed. Hallelujah! The photo below is of the gatepost under construction.

Beveridge Park gates

Seafield, Kirkcaldy, Fife, Scotland.

As the clocks sprang forward by one hour last week – the nights are fair drawin’ oot, as we say here. I love this time of the year because it’s almost like getting another life as there’s light to do things after dinner time, like take a walk along the coast to Seafield, which is what we did a couple of nights ago, as you can see, the tide was quite far out. Sometimes there are seals on the rocks here, but not this time. Until about 20 years ago there was a coalmine underneath the sea here. It must have been very scary to mine in those conditions.

arocks and sea 1

There are some nice red rock formations along that part of the coast. It looks like sandstone to me but I’m not sure that it is as that is a very soft stone but this seems to be able to stand up well to being battered by the North Sea.

arocks 1

It’s difficult to get photos without junk in them. The whole place is littered with stuff which has been lost overboard from ships. Buckets, old ropes, smashed up creels and bits of tarpaulin seem to come in with every tide. Every now and again there is a community clean up weekend, but it’s a never ending task.

arocks and sea 2

This was our destination, Seafield Tower, or what is left of it. It was abandoned in 1733. I don’t suppose you can be sentimental and save all old buildings, there are so many of them around Scotland. This one has clung on to the coastline for hundreds of years and until recently it was really quite safe to have a walk around in it but the heavy seas of this last winter have taken their toll on the tower.

aTower 2

As you can see from this photo, there has been a fairly massive rockfall from the tower and I suppose it’ll eventually all disappear into the North Sea.

aTower 1

Sunset at Beveridge Park, Kirkcaldy, Fife

When Jack got home from work last Tuesday night he said: there’s a fantastic sky out there – so we shot out with the camera to see what we could capture.

trees at sunset, first

For some reason the sky looked even redder behind the trees, but the shapes of trees on their own are lovely. I’m fairly sure these are cherry trees, they’re the first to lose all of their leaves anyway.

trees third

The boating pond again, with the trees on the island on the left hand side. As you can see there are some birds on the pond but as ever they’re too shy to show their heads, they always duck down just as I snap them.

Boating pond

Red sky at night – shepherds’ delight and all that – well it delighted me anyway.

Beveridge park second

The Fountain in Beveridge Park, Kirkcaldy.

We’re still in Beveridge Park, at the lily pond and fountain now.
I really wanted to get a photo of the different autumnal shades of the trees which is why the fountain is in the corner of this photo.

Beveridge Park fountain & trees 1

I just had to take one of the fountain on centre stage though. I love fountains and although this is a very tame one, it’s a trickle rather than a fount, it’s still a thing of beauty, especially on the lovely autumn day when I took the photo.

Beveridge Park fountain & trees 2

Autumn in the Park

We rarely get two days in a row with the same weather so when you get a good day, you just have to go out there and grab it as tomorrow will probably be grey if not wet. That’s why I found myself at my local park getting some fresh if chilly air and exercise. I took my camera of course, just to let you see what autumn is like in Kirkcaldy in Fife. Are you coming for a wee walk?

These trees are at the beginning of the pathway which leads all the way around the perimeter of what is a large Victorian Park.

leaves & trees 4

The path gets quite steep here and I used to get quite puffed out by this stage of the walk. I sometimes had to stop and pretend to be tying a shoe lace or something, just to catch my breath but it’s no bother to wheech up it now.

leaves & trees 3
We’re at the top of the hill and looking back now, I think, there were men in the park gathering up the leaves using machines, shame on them!

Trees 1

This is the view from the path, down into the main part of the park, there are the usual play areas for wee ones and skate board thingy for the bigger ones. Luckily the trees screen all of that.

Trees 4

Another stand of trees, there are lots of them dotted around, unfortunately there are none of our native red squirrels here, only those American grey squirrels, they get everywhere!

Trees 2

After walking all around the edge of the park it’s time to veer into the centre for a walk around the boating pond, it’s much like any other one with an island in the middle where the birds can nest safely. The boats have all been tidied away for winter, they’re swan shaped.

The Boat Pond

And here it is again from the other side. It’s hard to believe that there was a film of ice on the pond just the other day, well I did say that we don’t get two days together the same here.

The Boating Pond 2

That’s the end of today’s jaunt, I hope you enjoyed the breath of fresh air and exercise!

McDonald’s No More

I was absolutely flabbergasted, not to say dumbfoonert, when I walked past what had been McDonald’s in Kirkcaldy High Street last week and saw that it was all boarded up. I thought maybe it was just closed for refurbishment, although I did think it was a strange time of the year to do that. After a wee bit of research on the internet I discovered that it has closed down completely!

So much for all those people who say that kids are able to get work easily if they want it, and they are all too lazy or snooty to start flipping burgers, they obviously haven’t been to Fife, where they can’t flip burgers even if they want to. I feel really sorry for the people who have lost their jobs there because the town is such an unemployment blackspot and it’s going to be so difficult for them to get another job. Kirkcaldy always has been an area of high unemployment thanks to the Labour Party stranglehold on the area and having Gordon Brown as our MP who did absolutely nothing for Kirkcaldy except poke his nose in things which had nothing to do with him, and overruled the council.

McDonald’s isn’t everyone’s cup of tea or meal of choice, certainly not mine anyway but it’s a shame that yet another business has disappeared from the High Street. The only growth area shop-wise is charity shops and by all accounts it’s going to get a lot worse before it gets better.

And if you fancy a bit of a laugh have a look at this puppet version. I think they’re great and the scenery behind them isn’t too bad either.