Since making the decision to improve my photography I have only been out a handful of times with my camera to purposely take photos. I usually grab my camera to take photos whilst I am reviewing or out for the day. However in the last three weeks, I have taken two trips where the sole purpose has been to take photos. Last Sunday I had the absolute pleasure of being able to photograph the deer at dawn who live in Charlecote Park.
A 5am alarm call saw me open the curtains to frosty ground which was a good sign for some great early dawn photos. My buddies and I met Jana, one of the Charlecote volunteers and also a keen photographer, before sunrise so that we could get in a good position for the deer.
Charlecote Park, situated just outside Stratford-upon-Avon, is a Victorian home set in a landscaped deer park and belongs to the National Trust. There has been a herd of fallow deer at Charlecote since at least the mid 1400’s. They now live in the West Park and contribute to the grazing of the land to help sustain the plants and wildlife.
The deer appeared, near Charlecote church, just as the sun was rising.
The Bucks were beautifully majestic and the Does were elegantly serene.
The Does were the first to head towards West Park, where the morning feed would be taking place, while the Bucks slowly made their way. The light at this time of the morning was just glorious.
When we reached West Park I was lucky enough to have a lift with Matt, from the Park and Garden team, who carefully drove around the park scattering the feed making sure all the deer were fed.
Once fully nourished the deer started to disperse across the park.
By now the light had changed and a mist had started to descend. Walking back to the Orangery and the front gate we found some of the herd waiting patiently for daily visitors to arrive.
Time just seemed to fly by, one minute it was sunrise and the next it was time for the Park to open. It was so peaceful being able to see and photograph the deer without any other visitors. They were perfect subjects posing for photos.
Most of the time!
It was great to see how the staff and volunteers look after the animals and grounds at Charlecote. If you would like to see behind the scenes at Charlecote Park there are special events through the year, but book in advance as they are very popular. If you want to know what goes into looking after Charlecote visit Jana’s blog for more behind the scenes photos.
A huge thank you to Charlecote Park, Jana and Matt for a fabulous morning.