The lighthouse on Flat Holm island in the Bristol Channel, on a stormy day.  In the background, the coast of south Wales.

The Somerset Levels run out westwards into the sea – into the Bristol Channel in fact – and on this low coast are two rather cheap and cheerful seaside towns, Weston-super-Mare and Burnham-on-Sea.  The heyday of the family seaside holiday is long past, and both of these towns are rather feeling the economic pinch.  This coast is notable for having the second highest tidal range in the world – 43 feet (13 m) – and also for the fact that, since the Bristol Channel is in fact the estuary of the River Severn, in addition to some nice sandy beaches there are also vast amounts of glutinous estuarine mud – Weston-super-Mud being the rather unkind jibe.

But Weston is also notable to me for another reason: it is my home town, the place of my youth, some of it altered out of all recognition now of course, but still filled with a vast and undying store of memories.

And so to a visit there on a wet and windy day – its only 20 miles or so from Bristol.  And standing high above the sea, bracing myself against the gale, I looked out over the seascape of my youth.  There in the murk was Flat Holm island, not a part of Somerset (or even of England) at all, but rather the most southerly point of Wales.  A sudden break in the overcast, a fleeting moment of sunlight, and I managed several frames.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window, and click onto that image to further enlarge it – recommended.

Technique: Z 6 with 70-300 Nikkor lens at 300mm; 1600 ISO; Lightroom, starting at the Camera Graphite profile; Silver Efex Pro 2, starting at the Neutral preset; looking west from Upper Kewstoke Road, Weston-super-Mare, Somerset; 4 Oct 2019.





  1. Oh, yes – wonderfully atmospheric. Love that dark dark sea; makes the beacon really stand out even at that distance. I’m waving in that picture; can you see me 🙂 🙂

    I’m not sure if I’ve ever been to Weston; I think my sister used to go there for holidays with her young family. I know I’ve never been to Burnham-on-Sea. Where I lived as a child – 20 miles west of London and without a car – the south coast resorts of Eastbourne and Brighton were where we spent most of our family holidays – where all the early holiday memories are. How Brighton has changed; another example of a gentrified hip and happening place with its pockets of poverty and deprivation.


    • Was that you waving??? Oh dear I think I thought you were on the sensor … and took you out with Lightroom … still, its the thought that counts, isn’t it …. 😉 ….

      In the same way, I’ve never been to Brighton, but I can believe your summary of it. Ah, gentrification, eh? Wow … While not claiming any superiority (nor inferiority either), its very interesting to try to stand back and look at how intelligent Life organises itself – I mean, let’s look at a few aspects … nations, religions, tribes, national anthems, flags, wars, politics, social classes, subspecies etc – and to wonder whether these entities hold sway in all places where intelligent Life has evolved in the Cosmos. We shall hopefully never know, and I say hopefully because, should we ever come into significant contact with other intelligent Lifeforms, who knows what might happen? H G Wells? 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • My big fear is that somewhere out there in the distant star-studded universe with gas giants, rocky moons, comet-studded halos of space dust revolving around larger planets, black holes, super massive black holes, meteor showers, constellations, dwarf planets, red planets, celestial bodies, space junk and red dwarves ………. there is going to be a parallel planet just like our own filled with brexiters and remainers and all the other c**p that goes with it and that they are going to visit us bringing mad tidings: ahhhhrrrrrrrrrgggghhhhh 🙂

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    • I do, Henrietta, bur they’re well scattered – some on this blog, others unpublished – as manuscripts or in photobooks that have been given as presents to close friends. I ought to try and coalesce some of them but, with photography driving me forever on, this is an uncertain commitment. Adrian

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        • Well, in a nutshell, the water had little effect, compared to three other things.

          First, an artistic grandmother, who has passed her creative genes (and many many other things) on to two of us – both of us with careers in science / engineering, and both deeply into images, me photographic, and my late cousin oil painting.

          Then a kindergarten history book with coloured pictures got me into history and, following a primal urge(!) to go further and further back, into archaeology and finally geology, in which I got to post-doctoral research level.

          And to a chance walk with school friends got me into birds, ending in A Bird Atlas Of Kenya (1989), and leading safaris in Kenya.

          And in about 2003, after pointing cameras at things I thought attractive for four decades, I got more in “thinking photography”, and so to this blog. And I’m also heavily into world class Belgian beers – from the Duvel and Westmalle breweries! Hic!!! 🙂

          How’s that for a concise, potted account??????? Hope I haven’t bored you! A 🙂

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