Friday, 9 September 2016
A silkscreen print by an artist called Joy Godfrey - 'Hebers Ghyll' - was the first 'proper' piece of original artwork I ever owned, way back in the mid 1970s, when Joy was just out of art college. I still have it. Joy has her studio in Ilkley and continues to produce beautiful and distinctive work, mostly inspired by local landscapes.
Hebers Ghyll (named, oddly, after a Bishop Heber, who wrote hymns but appears to have had no connection to Ilkley) is one of several areas of woodland that edge Ilkley Moor and protect the town. A stream off the moor tumbles down the steep hillside here and the path crisscrosses it via wooden foot-bridges. It's dark under the trees and always damp but somehow the area has a peacefulness that makes it a lovely place to walk and think. The foliage is still green but there begins to be a hint of gold in the green; autumn is on its way. (Note to self: Do the walk the opposite way next time, as it is such a steep climb up this way.)