Here, two visitors begin to look at the Exhibition..........................
and here Rena Holford, a Glass Artist, lends her red kite sculpture, which adds another dimension.
Images courtesy of June Atkinson
Launch of the "Flight of the Red Kite Photographic Exhibition"
Image courtesy of David Jones
Click HERE for Launch of our "Flight of the Red Kite Photographic Exhibition".
Image courtesy of Ken Sanderson
Peter and Jean Smith of Low Fell at the Exhibition with Anna Pepperall,Curator of Public Art, Gateshead.
Coverage of the Photographic Exhibition can be found on the Flight of the Kite page.
Roost Watch Saturday 17th November 2012
Report by Judy Summerson:
About thirty people, including four very keen and excited youngsters, watched a brilliant flying display by 25 magnificent red kites, from the viaduct on the Derwent walk. The kites were gathering together
for their pre-roost before eventually going to roost for the night.
The sun shone on the kites showing off their wonderful russet colours. They swooped and swirled, glided and dived, played and perched and occasionally called to each other and gave a wonderful
demonstration of just how beautiful these birds are to watch. Much to the delight of the children some came down quite low and close to the viaduct, providing excellent close up views of the birds.
Red kites started to pre-roost from 2.45 pm onwards in the Hollinside, Paddock Hill and Snipes Dene areas. As the sun began to drop in the sky, the kites seemed undecided as to where to roost. The group split, some flying into the Gibside Estate, some into Paddock Hill Wood where Wing Tag 15 (Red Philip) was seen perched in a tree beside this year's nest. He remained there from about 3.20 pm onwards. He briefly sat on the nest then went back to sitting beside it. Many birds seemed reluctant to settle down for the night and flew out fom Snipes Dene and then back into Gibside whilst a few appeared to fly towards Chopwell Woods and Strother Hills.
Images courtesy of Judy Summerson
Friends of Red Kites Members' Social Evening Wednesday 14th November
Image courtesy of June Atkinson
A special event, to celebrate the change of name from the Golden Lion to The Red Kite - 54 members enjoyed a social evening together. Here is a report by Sylvia Jones.
Members' evening - The Red Kite Pub - November 14th2012
The members' social evening was held at the Red Kite Pub (formerly the Golden Lion) at Winlaton Mill. The 52 members present enjoyed a very nice two course meal. The evening was a huge success with new members meeting some regular 'old friends'. Following a brief introduction, we enjoyed the meal which was efficiently served by the two staff from the pub. Ken then presented an Olympic Gold picture quiz which was very challenging. The winning team still managed 22 points out of 26.
Austin then showed us his very amusing video record of 'Flight of the Kite' adventures at Marsden when we had to race against the incoming tide and at Sunderland Glass Centre, where the wind decided to try to blow the kite away. We also enjoyed an amusing 'Rock on Tommy' episode. Well done Austin - the new equipment looked very impressive.
We were very pleased to see Dave Hinds and his family. Dave has been unable to attend for several months due to ill health.
Many thanks to Steve and Chelsea and the support staff for an excellent evening at the Red Kite pub. Special thanks to Judy who could not stay for the whole evening - her superb organisation and hard work ensured we all enjoyed a very pleasant evening.
Hammers, Chains 'n' Nails + Red Kites Heritage Open Days 7 - 9 September 2012
Most people enjoy the countryside attractions of Derwenthaugh Country Park but do not know about the hidden heritage and natural history of this stunning section of the lower Derwent Valley.
Friends of Red Kites joined the Tyne and Wear Heritage Open Days scheme and offered three guided walks. Allan Withrington and Jackey Lockwood researched the heritage and shared it with FoRK volunteers. Fortunately the weather was kind on each of the three days.
On Friday 7th September eight visitors joined Allan, Judy and Ken for a factual and anecdotal account of the development of the forges, mills, dams, water wheels and village life from 1691 for the next 100 years.They were very interested in 'Lang Jack', the giants of Hollinside Manor, the Butterfly Bridge, the wildflower meadows and the story of the red kites. Our guests were from Rowlands Gill, Winlaton, South Shields and Barnard Castle.
The next day Sylvia and Marian followed the same route with five visitors and two black labradors. They also enjoyed the stories about industry and wildlife and went to Kite Hill and Nine Arches Viaduct for information about the red kites. Most people that day were fairly local (Gateshead, Newcastle and Killingworth) but felt they had found out lots of new information.
On Sunday, eighteen visitors joined Jackey and Harold on the walk. They were mostly local to the area including Winlaton Mill, but one couple was from Somerset. Alternating between them, the two Leaders gave the walkers accounts of the history of the Derwent Valley going back 300 years, and right up to the present day. The red kites put in an impressive fly-by as the group approached Kite Hill.
Overall, the feedback has been rewardingly positive, with most people finding the visit "very enjoyable", and including comments such as "interesting", "wonderful" and "informative".
The Leaders enjoyed it too!
Sylvia Jones, Events Co-ordinator; Jackey Lockwood, Health Walks Co-ordinator
As it was still threatening showers in the morning, we got our visitors (four wheelchair/scooter users and two helpers), to Thornley Woodland Centre where Harold Dobson gave us a Presentation on the kites, which was much appreciated.
We also had our lunch there, and then as the weather seemed more settled, (although still a strong and blustery wind), and they were all keen, we got everyone back to Winlaton Mill car park, and we did a shortened version of the safari from Winlaton Mill, through the Park and up on to Kite Hill.
Images courtesy of Marian williams
Image courtesy of Paul Ratcliffe
Helping on the Safari were Jackey Lockwood, Judy Summerson and Marian Williams.
A group of us set off from Swalwell Visitor Centre for a Scooter Safari in the Derwent Valley. The weather forecast was for heavy showers, and the temperatures were rather cool but that did not dampen the enthusiasm.
The Friends of Red Kites led the Scoot from Swalwell up on to the Derwent Walk, once a busy railway line but now a popular walking and cycling route.
The leaves on the trees were just showing shades of green, and the woodland floor had a variety of wild flowers. We had clear views over the Derwent Valley and of a soaring red kite overhead.
Once we reached the Nine Arches Viaduct we turned off the Derwent Walk, passed the "Stone Garden" and in to the Derwenthaugh Park.
The valley seemed to be full of bird song. We were able to listen to and watch many of the recently-arrived migrants such as willow warbler, chiffchaff and blackcap. A buzzard put in an appearance soaring overhead.
At Clockburn Lake we were able to watch a heron patiently stalking for food.
A swan was uncharacteristically friendly and stayed with the group for quite a while.
The new Butterfly Bridge is impressive, and many commented on how well maintained the Park and Walk are. By the weir at Damhead we had a chance to observe the nearly-completed fish pass which is quite a structure.
We watched a dipper on the River Derwent unperturbed by all the activity.
The promised showers arrived just before we got back to Swalwell but the rain did not spoil what had been a very enjoyable morning. Although the weather reduced the number of participants, those who came with us were amazed at what they saw.The company of FoRK volunteers was greatly appreciated and made the experience different to anything they had done before.They stopped frequently to enjoy the views and the wildlife.They wanted another 'scoot' as soon as possible and promised to bring their friends.We all gained a great deal from this unique experience.
Report: Jackey Lockwood, images:David Jones
Thank you to all who participated in this first co-operative venture between Friends of Red Kites and Gateshead Shopmobility. Let's hope we have a chance to repeat the event in the future.
Image courtesy of June Atkinson
Click HERE for a photo record of our Campaign launch on Saturday, 12th March.
Here, members of our Friends of Red Kites group display the image boards.
Seven photographers have donated their work so that we could have weather-proof, aluminium composite image boards for use at Events and at Presentations. We are grateful to SignsSignsSigns of Swalwell and especially to Mark Heron for the quality and efficiency with which they processed our order.
From top left, images are by Paul Ratcliffe, Ken Sanderson, Steve Ashton, Thomas Melton, then in front, from the left, Jamie MacArthur, Vicky King and Tony Belsham.
We take delivery of our new Pop-up Banners.
If you attend our indoor Events, you will see our two new Pop-Up Banners, designed by our Graphics Team Patrick and Karen Malone, using photographs by Ian Curran and produced by Chromazone of Team Valley. Here Ken Sanderson, Chairman and Kite Officer for FoRK, accompanied by Sylvia Jones, Events and Presentations Officer, is officially taking delivery of them from Alan Coates, Production Controller.
Image courtesy of David Jones
Would you like to see the kites, but can't walk the distance? Become a member of Gateshead Shopmobility and then you can book a mobility scooter, collecting and returning it to Swalwell Visitor Centre by the required time. This is usually between 10a.m. and 3p.m.
A FoRK member by Clockburn Lake, Derwent Country Park
Annual Membership is £5 and the hire charge for a full day is £4.00. 2 Scooters are kept at the Derwent Walk Country Park. This is one way to get mobile and keep up with the kites!
images June Atkinson
Contact: 0191 4779888 or firstname.lastname@example.org