Thursday, December 27, 2007


We went to stay with my wife's family over Christmas. This quaint looking fishing boat is at a quay near the Dock Museum in Barrow.

Just over the road is a large Tesco Extra with two wind turbines, McDonalds, Kentucky Fried Chicken, and a Pizza Hut, and the BAE Systems shipyards. Inside they are building new submarines.
Some of the old Dock cranes are still around, and functioning, alongside a Morrisons Supermarket.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007


Window in Muncaster Church, Cumbria

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Albury Manor County Secondary School, Merstham

Our school coach used to bring us from Bletchingly and Nutfield and drop us at the school gates. The boys' playground to the left of the school was surrounded by high wire fences to protect the windows. The only football allowed was with a tennis ball. Sometimes the ball would get kicked onto the flat roof above the cloakrooms or into a garden area, and whoever kicked it would try to retrieve it. If caught they would be taken in by prefects or staff on duty and sit outside the headmaster's room.

Our Headmaster was Mr Jones - known as Taff because he was Welsh. He was strict. He made headlines in the Sunday Mirror once for making all our year scrub the toilet walls after somebody had made black marks all over the new paintwork. Two boys from Bletchingly refused and were expelled.

I saw fights that shocked me in my first year. Whenever a fight broke out pupils would chant 'fight fight fight' and gather round. The staff and prefects on duty would usually haul the culpits to the headmaster.

I remember an incident on that patch of grass on the right of the picture when the coach was late. Some of the others had taken my bag and were throwing it from one to the other. Failing to get the bag I went for one of the throwers and we went tumbling to the grass. I remember falling awkwardly, and then the rest of the group jumped us.

I hobbled home after getting off the bus. At the East Surrey Hospital in Redhill I told the doctor that I tripped over a kerb. It turned out not to be sprained as usual, but to be broken. So back at school a few days later I had crutches and a plaster cast and some car tyre as a sole

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

An American in Paris

The picture was taken by my wife on a recent trip to Paris.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007


I somehow took the wrong road out of London , and as it was a nice day I just kept going through Brixton, then round Croydon, knowing the road must lead to the M25. But even then I lost the way, and by chance came to a beauty spot called Riddlesdown, where the road came to an end.

Here sheep were grazing in a quiet clearing and I sat to watch them for a while.

This far out on the Surrey Downs the dog bins are owned by 'The Corporation of London'. I didn't realise London stretched so far.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

More tea Vicar?

Some art at Moma (Museum of Modern Art) in Oxford.

Saturday, August 11, 2007


It rained on this boat trip round the outer islands of the Venice Lagoon. When it started raining I suggested we just hopped on the next boat as all the boat trips were circular. This one proved to be the one that wasn't circular, and it took us faraway into unknown territory. We weren't even sure we would get back that night. We did.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Womad 2007

If you had wellies, mud like this was no problem. It was when it got sticky, that it got hard going. We found a nice green area round the Radio 3 stage where you could still sit on the grass. That didn't last. But it was an oasis for a while.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

No Big Deal

I thought it would be. But it ain't.

Friday, April 13, 2007

The Witney Blanket Story

Up in the museum , there is an exhibition about the Witney Blanket Story. Witney Blankets have a reputation for being warm and cuddly. The last one was made in 2002. There are lots of sample blankets you can hold and cuddle in the children's area.

The Witney M.P, and Tory leader, David Cameron was in town today...

Monday, April 09, 2007

The Outback

Today, being a bank holiday, we went for a walk in the outback. There's an old sand quarry a few miles cross county from home.
with a long dead tree. But no Kanga or Roo.