Tuesday, 4 April 2017
By the time I reached the far end of Newmillerdam lake, there were few people about and it was a scene of real peace in the sunshine. I crossed a little bridge and walkway across the lake and plunged into Bushcliff Wood, emerging to cross a road and then meander through the Seckar Wood nature reserve.
Seckar Wood is an SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest) with a mixture of woodland, wet heath and dry heathland. Home to some rare plants, it was originally part of the Wentworth estate until the 1920s when it was bought by a local photographer, Warner Gothard Jnr. He managed a business that was known for producing postcards featuring montages of local and national events - anything from Royal visits to local accidents and disasters. (See here. Fascinating - and now highly collectible!) He planned to build a house on the land but that never happened, although there is a walled pond that was at one time used as a swimming pool. Now the area is managed as a nature reserve by Wakefield Council's Countryside Service.