I moved to Sidmouth over twenty years ago drawn by its stunning location. There is rich diversity of landscape within walking distance of my home. Hills, mixed woodland, pebblebed heaths, the River Sid, The Byes and of course the coastline, beach and Lyme Bay.

Following a local tree walk led by the knowledgeable and engaging Ed Dolphin, booked at the Museum run by SVA, I became a member. Through social media, the Sid Valley Biodiversity Group and in particular the work of Stefan Drew, my interest in the rich environment of the Sid Valley has developed. Though always interested in the natural environment, I’d not really explored it much beyond countryside walks until recently.

Attending an afternoon’s introduction to iNaturalist with Ed & Stefan I decided I wanted to be more mindful of the locality and to learn more. Sidmouth is home to a number of great photographers and Paul Clayden in particular inspired me to revive an old hobby and to use this a way to engage with my surroundings and share the results with locals with a common interest.

So, I have a new camera, a couple of decent lenses and I’m learning how to use them by exploring Sid Valley and the surrounding area. There’s plenty to discover and I’m at the start of a journey. Here are some of my first shots. I welcome comments, advice and suggestions on taking this forward.

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