Monday, 15 June 2009


The title of this blog may encourage some unwanted hits from Google but as you read on you'll see that it very much sums up today's experience.

My father and I are having a few days up in Northumberland, staying with old friend of mine. He told us that today we should witness something unusual and interesting on Bamburgh beach. So we got down their late morning to see a hive of activity. Most of my photos of Bamburgh beach comprise the castle, the dunes and beach together with a wind swept couple and their dog. But today the beach was quite crowded...

On closer inspection the hive of activity was a crowd of ladies from the Women's Institute (WI) making sand sculptures. In all there were 13 groups from various parts of Northumberland. The local Bamburgh ladies can be seen here...

Their industrious approach with spades and buckets of water put the nation's children to shame. Working labouriously on their hands and knees, spades furiously digging, hands gently caressing the sand, buckets of water making just the correct texture of sand. Then out of mounds of sand there slowly arose elephants, turtles, lions, seals, hares and rabbits. Oh, and of course an armadillo. Following a brief soujourn to the pavilion for fish and chips (the WI not us) it was time for the judging. The winning entry was this excellent elephant.

Another sculpture was this rather dashing hare.

Then after tea and cakes the WI ladies assembled for a group photo on the cricket pitch and a local celebrity (aka my old friend) drew the winning raffle ticket.