29th December 2011, almost another year over. Just Kay & I in the Coach House tonight, its the quietest Blaithwaite has been for some time and the quietest its likely to be for some to come as our first "New Year" group arrive tomorrow, followed by another on New Year's Eve - we are looking forward to welcoming folk back to the Centre & looking forward to 2012.
2011 has been an interesting year, in many ways its not turned out as anticipated but overall its been a good time. I'd like to say a huge thank you to everyone out there who takes the time to read this blog - readership has increased significantly since the summer, its a real encouragement and there are plenty of developments planned for the year ahead which I hope will add interest and relevance.
Looking back to where the year started I was busy building mileage & fitness aimed at a series of mountain running challenges, injury while fell running in Snowdonia in May put paid to much of that but following cortisone injections and a fresh look at scheduling of activity what could have been a pessimistic outlook has turned out very well.
There have been some real high points in 2011
- Blaithwaite has had a great year, the life and mission of the Centre is strong and well on track with our vision here.
- After years of faffing around (I trained in 2005) it was very satisfying to complete the Mountain Leader Assessment process
- For Kay & I a very welcome third grandchild
- Loads of excellent trips in the fells, visits to the North West Highlands and Snowdonia & a determined effort to get back underground towards the end of the year
- More excellent days out with groups than there is space to record in this end of year piece
Best trips of the year: Discovering the Buttermere Area; Beinn Eighe; eventually getting up Great Gable; fell running in the Dodds; back underground in Ireby Fell Caverns; a winter day on Whiteside
I guess the less than nice stuff is dominated by Kay's un-planned visit to hospital in October and the subsequent "hard road" of treatment that she has found herself on, however, she is coping exceptionally well with it all and we will be forever grateful for the prayers of so many people - they are genuinely sustaining at such a time.
So what of 2012?
Blaithwaite - the Centre looks busy, we'll be looking forward to welcoming back many regular groups; lots of new groups booked in too. We should complete a major electrical uprgade mid-January which will fundamentally improve the infra-structure of the Centre; further camping developments are planned and a significant re-vamp of the STABLES building is underway. Our programme of retreats has proved very popular & will continue and there will be another Activity Weekend in 2012. Check out dates at www.blaithwaite.co,uk
In2venture - In2venture is a Christian; young peoples'; educational charity based in the North of England (In2venture Community Interest Company is my employer & is responsible for managing Blaithwaite House). The charity has been operating for over 25 years & despite its exceptional work is not well known, I plan to write much more about the work of In2venture in 2012 - watch this space!!
Blogging - there will be at least as much blogging in 2012: trip reports will frequent; I will try to improve the photography! I hope to develop the functionality of the blog and introduce a few new themes. After "dabbling" a little with reviewing gear in 2011 my conclusion is there will be less of this as its already done extensively by others. Again, please keep reading & watch this space.
So here's looking forward to 2012:
"For I know the plans I have for you" says the Lord. "They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope"
Jeremiah 29 v11