Old farms in Teesdale

I’ve recently discovered an old farm in Teesdale. Abandoned to the centuries and resembling a clearance from one of the Scottish glens, I spent an afternoon in the hay meadows listening to the sound of whispers in the grass. I thought of them as echoes of the past and a shiver sent me packing. I visited the same location on my journey home from work recently. Splashing my way to the farm after days of heavy rain, the atmosphere was very different, darker and even more spooky. I imagine much took place in these old buildings, birth, death and laughter, the voices still run the through the flower meadows like children of the past.


16 Replies to “Old farms in Teesdale”

  1. What happens to these old farms? Does anyone claim them, or do they stay abandoned? I really like the composition of this piece, and the atmosphere you’ve captured paired with your writing. I can almost hear the whispers in the grass.

  2. Beautiful painting of the old farmhouse and wall – I love it !! I think I’ve said it before that I really like the way you have with words and I think you must write a book about the old farms and all the other things that you love and where you live. All the best to you Keith !!

  3. I love these kind of old buildings. What I’m wondering is, do the farmers that own them & as you say usually just leave them in ruins, build themselves brand new farmhouses or do they renovate old ones? And to what extent are the renovations, or else the new buildings, still based on the traditional style? I’ve just been briefly on holiday in Cantabria & I’d say that more or less what usually happens is rebuilding rather than renovation. Apart from in the National parks that is, where you can see lots of beautiful old walls & farm buildings.
    Nice drawing.

    1. Most of these old farms remain empty for various reasons. Life is hard in the North Pennines, families move further down the valley, blood lines run out and reluctant landlords see little reason to repair when the chance of housing new tenants are slim. In the way of farms there’s little money to attract. In England, most of the old country paths are empty say for walkers. You never see people working on the land or walking to work. I enjoy your comments as always.

  4. I agree with Jan about your way with words. Do you write your thoughts, impressions in your notebook as you sketch? Poetry or short prose pieces would complement your drawings. Take a look at the book ‘Wild’ on the poetry stand next time you are in NeST.

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