Blue Lagoon

Saturday, 18th June 2005

new lake at DurkarcormorantThe new lake by the River Calder at Durkar, a former gravel pit which now forms part of a flood relief scheme, looks more impressive than I'd imagined it would. There's an impression of one long blue lagoon because only a narrow strip of land, which the footpath runs along, separates the new lake from an existing lagoon, flooded some 10 or 15 years ago, close to the Denby Dale Road.


ringed ploversCormorants stand drying their wings and a pair of shelduck are swimming along with nine grown-up ducklings. Two ringed plovers flit along the shore while great crested grebes are swimming out on the lake. A warbler sings from a reedbed that is now well established on the older lagoon.

whitethroatGiant hogweed
is becoming a feature of the riverbanks. A whitethroat makes a display flight from a riverside thorn.

The hazy cloud has cleared as we've been walking and the sun is e we come out at a still bare rubbly stretch of ground at the foot of a flood defence barrier by a shiny new Jaguar showrooms I'm reminded of what it felt like in Mallorca, walking up the rocky slope from our resort at Porto Pollenca to the rugged Bocquer Valley.

Pugneys Café

Pugneys café

It's even more sweltering inside, as we wait to buy a drink in the new café at Pugneys Country Park; what a shame they didn't go for a grass roof instead of the metal one. Not only would it be cooler in summer and warmer in winter, it would also mean that the café would disappear when seen from the other side of the lake and, who knows, perhaps Canada geese would graze on the roof. Next Page

How I would have designed it

Richard Bell,