Saturday, 28 April 2012

Gorse Flowers

Gorse seems to be in flower much of the year hence the saying "when the gorse is in flower kissings in season"  but at this time of year it looks it dazzling best.  The colour is not one that would sit well in a garden but splashed across a hillside it is in its elemental best.   I read recently that you can make wine with the flowers, they are certainly plentiful, but think you would have to wear thick gloves and long sleeves to fend off the thorns.  I'll leave these flowers for the bees.
Hodbarrow by the lagoon looking towards the old (1866) lighthouse

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

ABC Wednesday - Olympic Symbols

Come through the entrance to St Pancras station in London, look up to be amazed at William Barlow's single span elliptical roof and see some rings have appeared. Bit dull?
Come round the other side and here are the Olympic rings in full colour. John Betjeman's statue has temporarily got more than the shed roof to look at.  An appropriate combination for no doubt if still alive then he would probably be attending the Poetry Olympics Enlightenment Marathon or the Olympic Parnassus when it is hoped that a poet from all 204 nations competing at this year's London sporting Olympics will come together with a poem, although there are 23 countries lacking a representative so the search goes on from American Samoa to Vanuatu, a call has gone out to find the missing poets here
When we were in London the Olympic countdown clock was at 196 days now we are down to two figures - 93
and on the other side the Paralympics was 229 days away, now its only 126.

I couldn't feature a statute of John Betjeman without a poem so here he is dreaming of his 'Olympic Girl'

An entry to ABC Wednesday, a journey through the alphabet

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

ABC Wednesday - Naval Wedding

I've just done an ABC post thinking that M for Mill would be perfect then (after I had posted) realised that I'd done M for merry-go-round last week so really I should be posting N, doh.  I'm not sure whether this is my short or long term memory cracking up but I've scrambled together some appropriate N for Naval Wedding. Here goes. The White Ensign flies over the church while friends and crew
 present their sword.
 and then cross
 for the bride and groom to appear.
 Babies make an appearance (too cute to miss out) appropriately naval themed.
Everyone moves off and the White Ensign is lowered. Not all naval personnel are in uniform.

An entry to ABC Wednesday, a journey through the alphabet

Cromford Mill

 The waterfall which crashes down the wheel pit  and into a vaulted watercourse running a third of a mile underground to connect with the River Derwent.  Constructed (1772) by Richard Arkwright to power his first cotton cotton mill and his newly patented water spinning frame.  This revolutionised and introduced factory production on a large scale. The water, which was so important
came from Bonsall Brook and combined with a sough draining off water from a local lead mine.  Unseen in the photo are the huge trout swimming leisurely through the water.  This is part of
 Cromford Mill part of the Derwent Valley UNESCO World Heritage site, designated as such for its historical importance in the beginning of the factory system.  This is, and was, a rural area so for such large scale industrial production the employment of the first 200 workers was not enough (eventually there would be a 1000 here).  Arkwright's solution was to expanded the housing of the nearby village of Cromford.  The weavers lived in the houses and their children, some as young as 7, worked in the spinning mill, the parents weaving on the topmost floors.
The fact that further development of cotton mill technology happened in Lancashire rather than Derbyshire means that the Derwent Valley Mills were not redeveloped so these early industrial buildings sit in a rural landscape. There is a long term restoration programme here at Cromford Mill  somewhere inside the temporary building entrance just glimpsed in the photo.
 I contented myself with photos of the machinery of the smaller waterfall and the old
managers building before moving off to the tea shop and a walk along the canal.

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

ABC Wednesday - Merry-Go-Round

The Merry-Go-Round at Tatton Park, Cheshire covered and not an opening in sight but this rather more ornate one
 in Vannes, France has just been unwrapped ready for the Bastille Day celebration.  There is a menagerie of
 animals to choose from as well as a princess carriage whereas this one in my home town is whirling round
with a herd of horses ready to take you on a gallop. 

An entry to ABC Wednesday, a journey through the alphabet.

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

ABC Wednesday - Lambanana

This week for the letter L who is strolling in but the Lambananas of Liverpool.  These are the 'miniatures' located by the Museum of Liverpool, this one looking towards the iconic Liver Building.  The original Lambanana is a bright yellow 17 foot high Superlambanana, a cross between a lamb and a banana created by the artist Taro Chiezo, a comment about the the possible dangers of genetic engineering and the history of Liverpool trade.  In 2008 when Liverpool was European Capital of Culture 125 miniature replicas were created, placed all over the city and elsewhere in the UK.  I am not sure where they are now but currently three are at the pier head,  all on different themes, this maritime and
 this I think are nautical flags but your guess is as good as mine. The next is more certain
the music of Liverpool so as we are on the pier head and I have spotted the hair cut on the front, what says the 1980s more than A Flock of Seagulls

An entry to ABC Wednesday, a journey through the alphabet.