The Lake District in photographs

    The tarn from Loughrigg Fell. Credit: Stuart Holmes/fotoVUE
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    It is strange to think that before 1778, when Thomas West’s Guide to the Lake District was published, the perception of the Lake District, a mountainous region in north-west England, was one of a savage wilderness. In 1724, Daniel Defoe had described the Lakes as the “wildest, the most barren and frightful” place he had ever seen. West, who had travelled widely abroad and witnessed the popularity of the scenic beauty of the Alps and Apennines, was among the first to challenge this idea. “Such exhibitions of sublime and beautiful objects cannot but excite at once both rapture and reverence,” he wrote in his guide, which featured various stations or viewpoints where tourists were encouraged to appreciate the views.

    Not long after in the 1790s, a group of poets that came to be known as the Lake Poets – William Wordsworth, who was born in the area, Samuel Taylor Coleridge and Robert Southey – migrated to the region and its beautiful landscape made its way into poems such as “Daffodils”.

    It was Coleridge who is said to have made the first recreational rock climb – ascending Broad Stand, between Scafell and Scafell Pike, the highest mountain in England. Befitting its name, the region also features the deepest and longest lakes in England, Wastwater and Windermere.

    A lake mist. Credit: Stuart Holmes/fotoVUE
    Morning mist in autumn on Ullswater. Credit: Stuart Holmes/fotoVUE

    Another writer who loved the Lakes was Beatrix Potter, who was inspired by the rich wildlife in the region and whose Hill Top Farm, near Windermere, Photographing the Lake District cover imagefeatures in the next issue of Discover Britain.

    Photographer Stuart Holmes, who has lived in the Lake District all of his life and photographed it for over 30 years, writes in his new book Photographing the Lake District “Today 15 million people visit the Lake District every year. They come to enjoy one of the most beautifully scenic areas in the world. The
    geology, climate and man’s influence on the landscape over the years have crafted a stunning juxtaposition of mountain, valley, lake, river, fell and forest. Not forgetting the cultural aspect of the area with its white painted cottages and stone built hill farmhouses, stone arch bridges and dry stone walls.”

    Stuart’s book, published by fotoVUE, features seasonal advice, travel tips and suggestions on how to improve your photography and get the best from a location, as well as over 350 stunning photographs of the inspirational region. The book is priced at £22.95 and available to buy online. Here, Stuart has shared a few of his autumnal favourites with Discover Britain

    Sheep in sunlight. Credit: Stuart Holmes/fotoVUE
    Sheep on the side of Derwentwater. Credit: Stuart Holmes/fotoVUE
    From Catbells, overlooking Derwentwater, with Skiddaw & Blencathra beyond. Credit: Stuart Holmes/fotoVUE
    Autumn morning on Catbells, overlooking Derwentwater, with Skiddaw and Blencathra beyond. Credit: Stuart Holmes/fotoVUE
    Derwent Isle. Credit: Stuart Holmes/fotoVUE
    Derwent Isle and Catbells from Keswick boat landings. Credit: Stuart Holmes/fotoVUE
    A white hut on Buttermere Lake. Credit: Stuart Holmes/fotoVUE
    Sunset colours on the fells reflected in Buttermere. Credit: Stuart Holmes/fotoVUE
    Buttermere in autumn. Credit: Stuart Holmes/fotoVUE
    Warnscale Beck across a stormy Buttermere. Credit: Stuart Holmes/fotoVUE
    Jetty over the lake. Credit: Stuart Holmes/fotoVUE
    Brandlehow Jetty on Derwentwater. Credit: Stuart Holmes/fotoVUE
    Mist over trees. Credit: Stuart Holmes/fotoVUE
    Morning mists in Lingholme Woods, Derwentwater. Credit: Stuart Holmes/fotoVUE
    Haweswater Road. Credit: Stuart Holmes/fotoVUE
    Haweswater from the Old Corpse Road. Credit: Stuart Holmes/fotoVUE
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