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Ilkley: The Wildlife on Your Doorstep


Ilkley: The Wildlife on Your Doorstep – Ilkley Manor House

Call: + 44 (0) 1943 607 030


Open: Monday – Saturday 11am – 4pm


26th Oct 2019 – 24th Nov 2019 11:00 am – 4:00 pm

In the housebody every weekend during normal opening hours.

These photographs are the result of a project that I set for myself and have been working on over the last three years or so. My goal has been to record the variety of wildlife that can be seen in and around Ilkley (within the sort of distance you can cover with a pair of walking boots). None of the photographs were taken in private wildlife hides – all were taken in places where there is free public access. All of the animals were wild – and none were baited or lured. So, this is wildlife that any of us can see if we look hard enough. Included, over the course of the exhibition, will be photographs and information on kingfishers, curlews, otters, dippers, deer, cuckoos, herons, and more. Parts of the display will be changed each week, so please do consider visiting more than once.

In putting together this exhibition, I do have some concern that the photographs give the impression that all is well for wildlife in the area. I think that Ilkley has tremendous potential as a wildlife environment, but that for many animals their existence is an uphill struggle, sometimes due to our activities. So, my hope is that this exhibition won’t just be a record for posterity, but will encourage people to enjoy and support local wildlife.

In taking these photographs I have tried to go beyond making simple ‘records’ – and endeavoured to find combinations of animal, environment, and light that result in images that have aesthetic appeal. My personal favourites tend to be the ones that also take you ‘into the world’ of the animal, giving a flavour of its character and/or daily concerns. I hope you like them.

Steve Westerman

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