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Weston super Mare

I had this desire to take a sunset photograph at the seaside.  With the pandemic, it has been a long time since I have seen the sea.  Natasha and Rob were married in Kos, Greece last year and I saw the sea every day for a week. I had my fill of beautiful sunrises and sunsets. Therefore, the plan was to visit Weston super Mare and experience the seaside and hopefully a sunset would happen as well.  The visit to Weston was with my photographic companion John Bray and our first port of call was the town of Burnham on Sea to visit the low lighthouse

Weston super Mere
Knightstone Island at high tide
Weston super Mere
The sea mist rolls in
Weston super Mere
Great evening for fishing
Weston super Mere
Not many people around in the wind

Just opening the car door on arrival in Weston and breathing in the sea air was exhilarating.  Hold on! The next sensation was sand being blown into my face and mouth.  Yes! this was Weston super Mare and in the middle of flaming June, it was blowing a gale!  It did not spoil the fun of being at the seaside. We parked on Marine Parade and then set off to take photographs of Weston.  Within 30 minutes it became obvious that the weather was closing on us, and a sea mist was descending on the town.  Photographs of the Grand Pier, Marine lake and Knightstone Island followed as we made our way around Anchor Head and finally ending up at the abandoned Birnbeck pier.  This looked very sad and in a poor state of repair.  It seems there is an ongoing saga of what is going to happen with the pier.

The sea was being whipped up to a frenzy by the wind and the waves crashed onto the promenade.  There was one person protesting at the strange times we are living in, and he was yelling at the high tide and blowing a horn.  All the walking and photographing had given us an appetite and we fancied fish and chips.  What else would you choose on your overdue visit to the seaside.  It appears that Weston super Mare shuts down at around 7pm and nothing was open except for a few pubs and restaurants.  The amusement arcades were empty, and they too were shutting down for the night.  Fortunately, we found two community police officers who gave us directions to a traditional fish and chip shop.  Hallelujah, at last we found one.  The premises were very traditional and looked new and vibrant against the quietly dilapidated charity shop rich streets of Weston.   Leaving the empty roads to the people wandering around, we returned to Marine parade and sat down to have our fish and chips.  What a racket the seagulls made. They were getting ready to dive bomb us and they hung in the wind waiting for the opportunity to grab a stray piece of fish or even a chip. 

Weston super Mere
The Tide is High
Weston super Mere
Traditional fish and chip shop
Weston super Mere
Fish and Chip Supper

We then looked for the sunset.  Alas that was not going to happen, although there were some occasional flashes of light and the retreating tide left beautiful reflections.  But no sunset! So we decided to call it a day and head back to Birmingham.  It was an enjoyable trip down but we left with mixed thoughts.  Weston has a wonderful promenade but the town is so quiet at night with not a great deal taking place in the town. Maybe the poor weather was keeping people in their hotels. Maybe we should return when the people return.

Weston super Mere
Sunset Colours
Weston super Mere
Tropicana amusement park

Whilst in Weston, I did enjoy finding some interesting street art dotted around the parade and the town. The street artist Jamie Scanlon known as JPS is one of the artists that features heavily in the town. There are others and here is a selection of the pictures that I found.

Street Art in Weston
Street Art in Weston
Weston super Mere
Seascape off Anchor Head

One of the most photographic structures near me is the Windmill at Chesterton.  I had visited it for the first time earlier in the year and I wished to plan another trip where I could have my tripod with me.  I contacted a good friend of mine, John Bray, and we planned the visit between Christmas and the New Year.  To really appreciate the Windmill you need to have good weather especially if you are looking for a memorable sunset.  As luck would have it not only did we pick a good afternoon, it had snowed the night before which gave an added plus factor to the photographic outing.  John and I spent an hour and half at the windmill taking photographs as the sun slowly left the sky.

Many people gathered for the sunset

A lone sail against the sunset

Starburst against the Windmill

The sunset was a good one and there were lots of opportunities for pictures.  Even the moon got into the act.  The temperature dropped and whilst it was cold there was little wind.  We took lots of pictures and soon it was time to leave as the sunset was nearly finished.  Just as we were walking away John turned around and said look at that view.  It is the old saying always look behind you when you are walking away from the picture.  John is really quick on getting his pictures out on social media and they were excellent producing much reaction.  Here are my views of Chesterton windmill on a cold yet ultimately rewarding photographic session.

A high key view

Afternoon light on the snow

Light through the centre

Shadows of the sails on the Windmill

Looking towards the Sun

Moonshot

The sentinel looks towards the sun

Another moon shot

The end of the day

Two figures walking towards the Windmill

 

John’s Photographs are on his Flickr account.