This weekend came as a pleasant surprise. The sun was shining and on Sunday it truly felt as though spring had finally sprung (although fast forward two days and we have five centimetres of hailstone in the north of England – but that’s getting away from the point). Having spent the morning visiting my cousin who was stressing out about her impending wedding, I decided to take the family home via Fountains Abbey. A UNESCO world heritage site no less, Fountains Abbey is located in North Yorkshire and is the best preserved example of a Cistertian Monastery in England.
After checking the opening times though I was a little bit disappointed to find it would close before sunset at 6pm so I took my camera knowing that I wouldn’t get any golden hour shots, but did have in mind a couple of others. The panorama you see below was one such shot. I’ve never really bothered with Panorama’s before and perhaps this one is not the finest example of the artform – the uprights aren’t quite vertical and there is a definite bow in the middle of the structure, but it was an experiment and one I am relatively happy with.
THe other shot I had in mind was more iconic, and totally independent of a golden sunset. The famous vaulted ceiling of the undercroft, or cellar, is a breathtaking examle of medieval architecture and is almost guaranteed to make a great photograph no matter how hard you try to mess it up 🙂 (and believe me I tried!).
I did need patience though. After all as I’ve said the sun was shining and so the visitors to the Abbey were out in force. I have to wait almost half an hour with my tripod positioned in the corner of the room waiting for the scene to be free of people. It was quite frustrating at times to see people leave trough one door only to have a whole family trundle in through another. But nevertheless 30 minutes in I manage to take this image – there are still folk hanging about around the window at the bottom of the hall but you can barely see them thanks to the use of the wide angle.
Parking is free, and the visitor’s center offers an interesting distraction if you have time on your hands before going home.