|One of the fairy houses at Gelt Woods|
- the sign says 'Home Sweet Home'
There are some people - cynical unromantic humans - who suggest it is a local artist who puts the fairy houses there each summer. And removes them in the winter for fear of frost damaging them. Children and fairy lovers know better.
|A fairy door to a fairy house|
There can be a dozen or more fairy houses in the woods but, to be honest, it's difficult to count because some of them are remarkably well camouflaged. Some of the houses have signs such as 'Home Sweet Home' above the door. And others have fairy boots placed on the doorstep. It's also possible to find tiny wheelbarrows, garden seats, baskets and other fairy furniture beside the houses.
Remarkably, the doors are never stolen or even damaged - even though they are visible all summer. Indeed, when a mischievous Jack Frost has broken off a door handle or letterbox, it's placed carefully beside the door for the fairies to find and hopefully repair.
Children have been known to leave gifts for the fairies: sweets, flowers and gold-paper stars seem to be the most well-received presents. And some children have even left letters for the fairies - though I'm not aware of anyone yet receiving a reply.
|Hiker Lesley Park finds one fairy sensibly built her house|
high up in a tree and so avoided the floods
- Quick plug: My hand-bound book, Fairies of Cumbria, covers the Gelt Woods fairies and many other Cumbrian fairy legends. It is available for £4.99 as a 'real' book or £2.04 as an ebook (yes, sorry about that odd 4p - I'm not sure why that appeared!). See my online bookstore for more information.