Southwold – Suffolk. A touch of HDR

Southwold Seafront - Suffolk

Dug out an old image and had a play. Whilst I don’t generally ‘do’ HDR, I took this shot bracketed and had 3 RAW files 2 stops apart. Added another 2 for -1 and +1 in lightroom then ran them through Photomatix to see if I could recover the cloudy sky yet still keep some detail in the houses.
Not really sure what else I did to it other than a little cross processing and a vignette but was quite pleased with the result.

Jurassic Coast – Burton Bradstock, Dorset

What with the arrival of summer, wedding, and broken cars I’ve not had the time (nor the inclination to get the camera out and capture anything particularly interesting at all for weeks) That said, I did find some time to apply some ‘different’ techniques to one of my archived collections. The result was this shot, taken a couple of years ago on a camping trip to Dorset (not my favourite part of the country by a long shot). The clifftop walk from Burton Bradstock towards Lyme Regis affords some spectacular views, this being one of them.

Jurassic Coast (re-edit)

Lulworth Cove – Dorset

Lulworth - Dorset

The cove has formed because there are bands of rock of alternating resistance running parallel to the shore (a concordant coastline). On the seaward side the clays and sands have been eroded away. A narrow (less than 30 metre) band of Portland limestone rocks forms the shoreline. Behind this is a narrow (less than 50 metre) band of slightly less resistant Purbeck limestone. Behind this are 300-350 metres of much less resistant clays and greensands (Wealden clays, Gault and Upper Greensand).
Forming the back of the cove is a 250 metre wide band of chalk, which is considerably more resistant than the clays and sands, but less resistant than the limestones. The entrance to the cove is a narrow gap in the limestone bands. This was formed by a combination of erosional processes by wave action , glacial melt waters and the processes of weathering. The wide part of the cove is where the weak clays and greensands have been eroded. The back of the cove is the chalk, which the sea has been unable to erode as fast.

The unique shape of the cove is a result of wave diffraction. The narrow entrance to the cove ensures that as waves enter they bend into an arced shape.

Not sure about this shot, taken in the context of a single photo. It was taken as one shot of a 7 or 8 shot panorama which worked reasonably well. But thought I’d have a play with some processing that’s a bit different to the usual crop/sharpen and save to try and emphasise the layers in the exposed face of the cliff. Perhaps a different crop would work better, what do you think??

A Country Scene

The countryside seems to have thus far escaped the Health and Safety Nazis in that around the Backstreets of the darkest corners of Essex, you can still find the traditional method of keeping your sheep in one field and your crops in another. The longer they stay away from England’s green and pleasant Land, seen here on the Dengie peninsular the better the world will be.

Country Fence cropped

Old Leigh Sunset – A Wintery Essex Afternoon

Old Leigh Sunset, Essex

Leigh-on-Sea was recorded in the Domesday Book of 1086 as Legra, where it is described as a "one horse town". Located next to the sea, Leigh has been primarily a fishing village for most of its history. However, its sheltered position at the mouth of the Thames gave it some success as a port, with international trade and a shipbuilding business.

Due to its good position on the shipping route to London, it began to grow and by the 16th century had become a fairly large and prosperous port. Ships of up to 340 tons are recorded as being built in Leigh including many that would have been built for the local fishing fleets. With its location at the mouth of the Thames, Leigh was often used by the navy against threats from pirates and the French, Spanish and Dutch Navies.

By the 18th century ships had become larger and trade changed. At this time Leigh’s deep water channel silted up and the importance of the town diminished. It then gradually reverted to a fishing village, supplying the London market by road and barge. When the London to Tilbury railway was extended to Southend in 1856, this split the village in two and many of its timber-framed buildings were demolished

The Mayflower is believed to have docked at Leigh-on-Sea to take on provisions and passengers before its epic voyage to the new world with the Pilgrim Fathers

The fishermen of Leigh are famous for their heroic attempts to rescue British soldiers stranded on the beaches of Dunkirk. A memorial in St Clements churchyard stands as a reminder of their bravery and sacrifice.

The arrival of the London, Tilbury and Southend Railway in 1854 spurred the town’s development, allowing greater trade with London and the rest of the world, and making it a commuter town for London workers. Leigh-on-Sea railway station is run and served solely by c2c.
In recent years, Leigh-on-Sea has become home to an increasing number of upmarket bars and restaurants such as The Estuary. Cafés such as laid back, hippie-esque The Squeeze who use only organic produce, art galleries and hairdressers also adorn the towns surroundings. Popular hairdressers include Staffords owned by Lee Stafford and Srangeways owned by Ade from the Channel 4 show The Salon. Leigh is also home to a wide range of shops, from clothes and shoe shops selling the latest fashions to more expensive additions such as Bang & Olufsen and Connections who provide the furniture for another channel 4 show, Big Brother. Leigh also has a strict no nightclub policy in an effort to preserve the towns heritage

Old Leigh

Leigh-on-Sea boasts London’s nearest beach, and many visitors travel down at the weekend to the conservation area of Old Leigh with its cobbled streets and clapboard cottages. The area is notable for its shellfish, and there is a small but active fleet of cockle boats, which keep alive the reputation of Leigh as the epicentre of the world cockling trade. The picturesque cockle sheds are home to many old Leigh families who have followed this trade for generations.

Osborne Bros specialises in producing and supplying quality shellfish and fish to individuals and trade customers around the world. Their café is housed in the heart of the Old Town in an 18th century stable mews which was used to house horses and carriages delivering ale to the local public house – The Crooked Billet. The cockle sheds and smoke house are located along Cockle Shed row, which remains largely unchanged since being built in the 19th century.

Image Copyright Dave Frost – www.davefrost.co.uk

Hadleigh Castle, Essex

The construction of Hadleigh castle began during the reign of King Henry III in 1230 for Hubert de Burgh – 1st Earl of Kent and Chief Justiciar of England, but the castle was requisitioned in 1232 by Henry after Hubert was imprisoned.

The castle was built of Kentish ragstone and cemented by a mortar containing a large proportion of seashells; particularly cockleshells from the cockle beds of neighbouring Canvey Island. As a royal property it was heavily extended in the 1360s by Edward III and it is mainly these extensions that remain. The castle and its adjoining 500-acre (2.0 km2) park formed part of the dower of several English queens in the 15th and 16th centuries, including Elizabeth Woodville (wife of Edward IV) and three of the wives of Henry VIII, Catherine of Aragon, Anne of Cleves, and Catherine Parr. Edward VI sold it in 1551 for £700 to Lord Rich of Leez Priory in Chelmsford who used the castle as a source of stone for other buildings such as churches. The castle later passed from the possession of Lord Rich to the Barnard family.

Years of neglect and the effects of land subsidence had left the castle in ruins by the 17th century, but two towers constructed in the era of Edward III still remain. One of the three-storey towers at the eastern side built from rubble with ashlar dressings stands to nearly full height and has narrow rectangular windows in the upper levels. The second tower has not fared as well, appearing to have partially disintegrated in a landslip and consequently has lost approximately two-thirds of its form. Some sections of the curtain exist, the foundations of the great hall, two solars, and the kitchen remain. There is also a barbican which once stood adjacent to a swing-bridge.

Hadleigh Castle

Image Copyright Dave Frost – www.davefrost.co.uk