Sketching at Old Sleningford

Old Sleningford Hall

Summerhouse and Woods

The party met in the Stables Gallery and had a grand tour of the grounds, gardens, lake and woods (part of the National Gardens Scheme). There is an old mill, walled garden,  summer house, potting shed and greenhouse. Plenty of sketching subjects.

After a starter coffee, sketching started outside and moved into the Stable Gallery, a studio used for art courses, during the afternoon rain. Audrey promised sunny weather next year.

The smaller than usual group of sketchers produced the following results




Sketching at Dallowgill

On a glorious day there was another good turnout for the monthly sketching day. The location on a hill farm had good views around, especially from the nearby hilltop tower.

There were interesting buildings around the hamlet, including a Methodist chapel, a former pub and agricultural buildings.


After a welcome coffee from our hospitable hosts, the members spread out to sketch their chosen subjects.

Our hosts found enough chairs for the sharing lunchtime feast and entertained the group with humorous tales from  country life and time spent judging cattle at shows.


These are some of the sketches squeezed in between the distractions.



Sketching in Hartwith

Audrey arranged a sunny day in an interesting area that we drive through quickly, wondering what the pond is doing there and why there is a toll bridge?  It was time for exploration and a trip to the bluebell woods. But first a morning cuppa.

Meanwhile others had started sketching the house

The wisteria was blooming in the sun

The mill pond across the road was a refuge for the ducks and a cool place for walk

Hag wood, up the road, was full of bluebells, garlic, trees and artists.

Despite the distractions there were good results achieved



Sketching in Hebden

The final outdoor sketching day saw a good turnout of artists in search of a  cuppa, soup, sandwiches, a chat, interesting location and a bit of sketching.

Audrey again arranged some good weather, several degrees above zero and little wind. Everyone was prepared with warm clothing but cold is insidious. One member kept on moving and made it to Burnsall and back. The dedicated sketching artists who sat it out, came back to the tearoom for hot soup to thaw out.

Scenes around Hebden


Members’ sketches in progress




Sketching at Ripley Castle

Eleven artists enjoyed a wonderful, sunny autumn day in the grounds of Ripley Castle. Many had not been before and, after the usual cuppa, we all set off to find that ‘special spot’.

Ripley Castle

Some of the trees were showing their Autumn colours.

In the kitchen garden, we saw colourful dahlias and chrysanthemums. The windfalls were being packed into boxes to sell. The gardener told me that the oldest cultivar was called “Cat’s Head” because of its shape. Someone thought it looked more like another part of the cats anatomy!

We had lunch in the courtyard cafe with John, a prospective new member, who joined in the general banter, with everyone on best behaviour.

Kathy and Barbara took photographs of some of the sketches.

When we left for the journey home, John was still perched against a wall with a lovely view of the lake and Barbara was on the far side of the lake sketching the whole of the castle! Dedication!

Narrative by Audrey Culling

Sketching Ripon Walled Garden

Expecting heavy rain showers the six members who came were rewarded with sunshine and warmth. The Ripon Walled Garden is celebrating 25 years of working with young, disadvantaged adults, through horticulture and cooking.

Originally it was the vegetable garden for the historic Bishop’s Palace. Now it has poly tunnels, a shop selling plants, bottles of their own pressed apple juice and things for the garden. And a cafe for the obligatory cuppa and chat before sketching can start.


Beyond the walled garden there is a large orchard of rare varieties of apple tree, the oldest being a Nancy Jackson. All the names are fascinating.  The owner, who specialises in fruit trees, talked with members about them. He told Audrey that the main branches of the apple tree should be pruned to allow a pigeon to fly through.

Sitting in the sun,surrounded by trees and flowers and plenty of butterflies , sketching and having lunch prepared for us , what is not to like?

Most members’ sketches were of the wonderfully shaped trees, full of apples.


Paintings of the the Nancy Jackson apple trees

Apple Day
On October 14th from 10am to-4pm the Ripon Walled Garden is having an Apple Day when apples will be on show with their names, and pressing will take place. There will also be craft stalls. (This is also the same day as the Art Bus trip to Hull!)
Website >

Trip arranged by Audrey. Photographs by Audrey, Barbara and Lynn. Descriptions by Audrey.

Sketching at Old Sleningford

Audrey picked another good day for sketching, in between very wet days, at Old Sleningford Hall near Mickley and the River Ure. The gardens are well worth visiting and members of the club have been involved with sketching here since 1996.

Jane made us most welcome and showed some of her art works in her studio. She mentioned that there were spare places on a three day course in September ,”Still Life from Black and White to Colour” run by Paul Curtis, who demonstrated to the Pateley Bridge Art Club in July 2017. There are many art courses held in the Stable Gallery, see website >

There was plenty to keep our interest in the grounds, down by the lake, around the stable gallery and courtyard, where we sat for our lunch.

Despite the distractions, the group were able to produce some sketches, not all completed, that may inspire paintings.