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www.spurnpoint.com/Spurn_Point.htm

  

Spurn is a very unique place in the British Islands. Three and a half miles long and only fifty metres wide in places.

Extending out in to the Humber Estuary from the Yorkshire coast it has always had a big affect to the navigation of all vessels over the years. Help to some and a danger or hindrance to others. This alone makes Spurn a unique place.

Spurn is made up of a series of sand and shingle banks held together with mainly Marram grass and Seabuckthorn. There are a series of sea defence works built by the Victorians and maintained by the Ministry of Defence, till they sold Spurn to the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust in the 1950s. The defences are in a poor state, breaking down and crumbling. This is making Spurn a very fragile place wide open to the ravages of the North Sea.

One of the most striking features of Spurn is the black and white lighthouse near to the end of Spurn. Now just an empty shell not used since it was closed down at dawn on the thirty first of October 1986.

There have been many Lighthouses on Spurn over the years the first recorded at around 1427. The present light was built from 1893 TO 1895. The small tower on the beach on the Estuary side was originally the low light. It was built and put in to operation at around 1852. This light was no longer needed when the present lighthouse was opened in 1895.At a later date the light was removed and it was used as a store for explosives and later as a water tower. The tank can still be seen on the top. When it was operational there was a raised walkway from the shore to the lighthouse so it could be reached at all stages of the tide.

The present lighthouse was built to replace an old lighthouse that was positioned just to the south of the present one. You can still see the round perimeter wall surrounding the old keepers cottages and the base of the old lighthouse which had to be demolished due to it settling on it's foundations making it unsafe.

The only light on Spurn today is a flashing green starboard light on the very end of the point and the fixed green lights marking the end of the Pilots jetty.

Because of Spurns ever moving position there have been many Lighthouses over the years. There is a very good book by George.de.BOAR, called History of the Spurn Lighthouses, produced by the East Yorkshire Local History Society. This is one of a series of books on local history.

  

www.spurnpoint.com/Around_and_about_at_Spurn.htm

  

Around and about there are plenty of places to eat and drink. Starting from the north of Spurn at Kilnsea there is the Riverside hotel offering good quality food drink and accommodation. Coming south towards Spurn and still in Kilnsea there is the Crown and Anchor pub. A welcoming place serving bar meals fine beers and offering bed and breakfast at very reasonable rates. At the crossroads before you turn towards Spurn there is the Spurn heritage coast visitors centre. Where there is a small cafe and exhibition. At the entrance Spurn point nature reserve is an information centre and bird observatory selling books pamphlets, etc., and the last toilet on Spurn.

Past the lighthouse is the last car park. Two hundred metres further on you find the Humber Lifeboat and Pilot stations. Near the houses is a Small caravan selling tea, coffee, cold cans, hot and cold food, crisps and sweets.

All are open all year round apart from the heritage centre which is open thought the season.

 

BIRD WATCHING.

Is a very popular pastime as Spurn is internationally famous for birds. There are up to two hundred species recorded at spurn every year. Some of which are extremely rare. The Marmora's Warbler seen at Spurn In June 1992 was only the third recorded in Britain.

 

SEA FISHING.

The beaches of Spurn provide some of the best sea fishing in the area, with Cod and Whiting and Flats being caught through the winter and Skate, Flats and Bass through the summer. There is sport to be had all the year.

At the very end of Spurn is deep water ideal for Cod but this only fishes best two hours either side of low water, the tide is to strong at other times. All along the seaward side of Spurn is good for all species of fish at all times though over high water being the better. The riverside of Spurn is very shallow and only produces Flats and the bass over high water.

 

THE BEACH.

 

The beaches at Spurn are of soft sand and shingle. Whichever way the wind is blowing you can just pop over the dunes to the outer side. There are fossils and all manners of things to find beach combing. Swimming is not safe any were near the point end as there are very strong tides at up to six knots at times. But in side Spurn around the point car park is perfect at high water. The beach does not shelf to fast and very little tide. You can have the place to your self at times, as Spurn is never really busy weekdays.#

A very popular pastime at Spurn is Fossil hunting. There is a good abundance of fossils to be found in amongst the pebbles and shingle.

The Shark Trust has a very interesting PDF file tell you all about Shark Skate and rays the mermaids purses you find on the beach are egg shells from sharks and Rays. Click the link to down load the Shark Trust Brochure.

 

WALKING.

Walking or strolling at spurn is very easy, as there are no hills. There are various sign posted paths up and down the point. For the fit a complete walk round the whole point is about 8 miles, taking in all the point round the point end and back to the "warren" information place at the start of Spurn. You will need good footwear, as much of the paths are sand. There is limited access for disabled, but not to the point end, as you have to go via the beach.

You can park your car at the point car park and walk round the point end and back to the car park about a mile, or just stroll around the point were you choose. The only place you are not allowed to go are down the pilot's jetty and the centre square of the Lifeboat houses.

In spring and early summer Spurn is covered with a large amount of wild flowers of all species.

There are common to the not so common; from Orchids to bluebells. I must remind you Spurn is a nature reserve and the picking of all flowers is prohibited. When visiting please enjoy Spurn, as it is a very beautiful place and leave only your footprints.

 

Horse Riding.

 

There is riding available nearby at the North Humberside Riding Centre. The stables are ideally located with rides along quiet country lanes, by-ways, plus miles of sandy beach and riverbanks. The cross-country course offers a variety of fences for both the novice and the more experienced rider.

 

www.spurnbirdobservatory.co.uk/

 

A Brief History of Spurn Bird Observatory

 

Following visits to Spurn by several members of the Yorkshire Naturalists' Union in the late 1930's, a communal log for ornithological observations was instituted in 1938. This included a roll-call of species, the beginnings of a recording system, which later became standard in bird observatories. Realising the potential of the Spurn peninsula for the regular observation of bird migration a group of enthusiasts, notably Ralph Chislett, George Ainsworth, John Lord and R.M. Garnett, had the idea of setting up a bird observatory, with the Warren Cottage at the northern end of the peninsula as an ideal headquarters. Unfortunately the outbreak of war forced them to put their plans on hold but shortly after hostilities ceased a lease for Warren Cottage was obtained from the War Department and the observatory was established shortly afterwards under the auspices of the Y.N.U. with the four members mentioned above forming the first committee. A preliminary meeting was held in September 1945 to decide on the site for a Heligoland trap, work on which was begun almost immediately and the first bird (a Blackbird) was ringed on November 17th. The first minuted committee meeting was held on March 9th 1946 and the observatory was opened to visitors at Whitsuntide that year.

Initially coverage was limited to the main migration seasons, being extended to winter weekends in the early 1950's to trap and ring some of the large numbers of Snow Buntings which used to occur at that time of year and gradually coverage was increased (whenever possible) to cover the late spring and summer. In 1959 there was an important development when the Yorkshire Naturalists' Trust (now the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust) became the owners of the peninsula and thus the observatory's landlord. In 1960 a full time warden was appointed by the Trust, and although having no official connection with the observatory the fact of having an observer on the peninsula year-round inevitably helped to improve the ornithological coverage. This was especially the case from 1964 when the current warden, Barry Spence, was appointed, in conjunction with the fact that an interest in birds and their migrations was steadily growing and more bird-watchers were staying at the observatory, often for longer periods.

When the observatory opened there was accommodation for seven visitors in Warren Cottage and facilities included two chemical toilets, the Warren Heligoland trap and an ex-army hut as a ringing hut. Over the next ten years a further five Heligoland traps were constructed along the peninsula, although today only three remain in existence. In 1959 the observatory gained the use of the Annexe, one of two ex W.D. bungalows built at the Warren during the early 1950's, thus increasing the accommodation capacity to seventeen and providing much improved toilet facilities. Over the years the accommodation and facilities have been gradually improved to try to make the visitor's stay at Spurn as comfortable as possible. Other improvements have also taken place, in 1968 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Point was converted into a ringing laboratory ready for the first B.T.O. Ringing Course, held in autumn of that year and in 1971 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Warren was also converted into a ringing laboratory. The other part of this building became a laboratory for the use of students of Leeds University but this also became available to the observatory in the mid 1980's when the University no longer had a use for it. Subsequently it was converted into a self-contained accommodation unit for two, complete with kitchen facilities, and although officially known by the somewhat unimaginative name of Room F (the rooms in the Annexe being known as Rooms A, C, D & E, - whatever happened to Room B?), it was somewhat irreverently christened "Dunbirdin" by regular visitors to Spurn.

In 1965 a sea-watching hut was erected east of the Warren beyond the line of the former railway track. Due to coastal erosion it became necessary to move this in late 1974, when it was hoped that it would last at least as long as it had in its first position. Alas this was not to be, as the rate of erosion increased dramatically in the mid 1970's, necessitating a further move in early December 1977. In that year a clay bank had been built across the field behind Warren Cottage (Clubley's field) to prevent the flooding of arable land by wind-blown sea water, but on January 11th 1978 Spurn suffered its worst flooding ever when a strong to gale-force north-westerly wind combined with a spring tide. In late 1981 due to extensive construction works at Easington a large quantity of boulder clay became available and this was used to build up and extend the bank across Clubley's field, south towards Black Hut and north beyond Big Hedge to join up with an existing bank (which had been built in 1974) behind the scrape. In 1982 the sea-watching hut was repositioned on top of this bank, where it remained until the bank itself was washed away in the early 1990's.

A number of other changes to the observatory recording area began to take place from the early 1970's, including extensive building operations at the Point, commencing in 1974, with the construction of a new jetty for the Humber Pilot boats, new housing for the Spurn Lifeboat crew and the conversion and renovation of various existing buildings for use by the Coastguard and the Pilots. In 1978 following damage to the existing road south of the Warren area a new tarmac road was laid to the west of the original one, this lasted until 1988 when a second "new road" loop had to be laid, followed in 1991 by the construction of the existing loop road running along the Humber shore from just south of the Warren to just beyond Black Hut. The construction of this road resulted in the destruction of the actual Black Hut, although the area still bears the name. In 1981 the lines of wartime concrete anti-tank blocks running from the seashore to the Canal Zone were removed to fill in a breach at the Narrow Neck. This resulted in the southward extension of the Scrape field by the farmer up to Big Hedge and the start of a gradual decline in the condition of this hedge and its attractiveness to birds. In 1982 a local resident excavated a pond for shooting purposes in the wet area adjoining the Canal Zone. This never really proved successful and the land was later purchased by the Y.W.T. and the pond enlarged to become what is now known as Canal Scrape. In 1984 a famous Spurn landmark, the Narrows "Hut", a wooden migration watch shelter which had stood at the Narrow Neck for twenty-three years, was set fire to by person or persons unknown and completely destroyed, it was replaced the following year by a more solid construction made from breeze-blocks.

A period of considerable change began in 1988 when the Spurn peninsula was designated as part of the Spurn Heritage Coast. Projects undertaken include the enlargement of the Canal Scrape mentioned above and the erection of a hide overlooking it, a hide overlooking the Humber wader roost at Chalk Bank, a public sea-watching hide alongside the observatory one, provision of additional car-parking space, the restoration of the short-turf habitat in the Chalk Bank area, provision of footpaths, etc. A major project was the renovation of the Blue Bell in Kilnsea for use as offices, an information centre and a small cafe, which became fully operational in 1995. Another fairly recent project has been the creation of another scrape/pond on Clubley's field.

In 1996 the observatory celebrated its fiftieth anniversary, and for the first time in its history SBO employed a full time seasonal warden. This position has since been expanded and the observatory now enjoys the services of a year- round warden. In 1998, with a view to the future, a small bungalow in Kilnsea was purchased with money bequeathed by the late John Weston, a long time committee member, who regrettably died in 1996. This was followed in 1999 by the purchase of a strip of land adjacent to the property and is now known as the ‘Church Field’, this is planted with a sacrificial crop every year, and has also had several groups of trees planted and a feeding station placed in the north-east corner. Access to this field is available by becoming a member of ‘Friends of Spurn Bird Observatory’, a venture set up in 2003 to eventually help with the building of a new observatory when the old one falls way to the sea.

 

This is a scanned print from a collection of photographs taken by the late Jim Taylor A number of years ago I was offered a large number of photographs taken by Jim Taylor, a transport photographer based in Huddersfield. The collection, 30,000 prints,20,000 negatives – and copyright! – had been offered to me and one of the national transport magazines previously by a friend of Jims, on behalf of Jims wife. I initially turned them down, already having over 30,000 of my owns prints filed away and taking space up. Several months later the prints were still for sale – at what was, apparently, the going rate . It was a lot of money and I deliberated for quite a while before deciding to buy them. I did however buy them directly from Jims wife and she delivered them personally – just to quash the occasional rumour from people who can’t mind their own business. Although some prints were sold elsewhere, particularly the popular big fleet stuff, I should have the negatives, unfortunately they came to me in a random mix, 1200 to a box, without any sort of indexing and as such it would be impossible to match negatives to prints, or, to even find a print of any particular vehicle. I have only ever looked at a handful myself unless I am scanning them. The prints are generally in excellent condition and I initially stored them in a bedroom without ever looking at any of them. In 2006 I built an extension and they had to be well protected from dust and moved a few times. Ultimately my former 6x7 box room office has become their (and my own work’s) permanent home.

  

It was the development of our second generation website with its photo gallery located quite cleverly on Flickr, rather than making our own site unwieldy, that led me to start uploading photos to Flickr. It was initially for my own and historic company photos but with unlimited storage and reasonable upload speeds I soon started uploading other stuff. Scanning one of Jims photos was a random choice one winters evening, initially very slow and time consuming I nevertheless stuck with it and things just snowballed. It was obvious that there are a lot of people interested in this type of thing. I can now scan and edit in Photoshop in a minute or so per print. Out of over 30,000 images on Flickr I have around 3500 of Jims photos. I don’t promote myself on Flickr – at all! So my viewing figures grow organically, without using the mutual favourite awarding etc. that is endemic on Flickr. The statistics tell me that travel (I don’t do porn) is the most popular genre. My travel photos, particularly later stuff receive far more views than transport. The transport stuff will hit a ceiling and then build very slowly over time, with lots of people coming back to them again and again. Travel of course is far more inclusive but there is an unbelievable amount out there, far more than the 1980’s UK transport stuff. The travel and landscape photos have pushed the views past 12 million, with a current average of around 40,000 views a day, peaking with an upload from a new destination at around 90,000 views. I recall being excited with a 100 views.

 

My reasons for buying the collection were mixed. On the one hand it was a unique snapshot of the transport industry, predominantly in the north of England, from around 1980 onwards. This was my patch and my era. I passed my Class One a few days after my 21st birthday in 1980 and spent the next 17 years being a Jack the Lad on the road, waving at and crossing paths with many of the wagons that Jim photographed, in fact my owns wagons are in the mix. Jim did travel to Scotland extensively and into the Southern Hemisphere a number of times hence there is a broad range of material in his collection. I knew I wouldn’t get a chance like it again. On the other hand the reason I gave up hauling scrap around the North of England in a Foden eight wheeler was the diagnosis of an incurable form of Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma at the age of 38, although a low grade cancer I was already a widower with four young children and I was looking at an uncertain future and it terrified me. I wasn’t remotely ill but was treated with Chemotherapy, again, I wasn’t ill and didn’t need time off work. The shock however brought me to my senses and I came off the road, I joined the normal world, up at 6.30 not 4.30am. I didn’t realise it at the time but I had closed the door on my wagon driving days. I was worried that, at some point, I wouldn’t be able to work physically hard, bearing in mind the family business is a scrap yard – a physical sort of environment. I had it in my mind that there was a possibility that I could use my own and Jims photos to supplement my income, I had four kids to feed and I knew there wouldn’t be any family financial support – it’s not that sort of family. I still have the NHL although thankfully you wouldn’t know it. This type of thing is now considered treatable – not curable- after around forty endoscopies, a 100 stomach biopsies, bone marrow samples and endless scans of different types, I may well get to die of old age, not cancer. It was discovered almost by accident at the time, not illness on my part, and long may it stay that way! The lack of illness made the shock all the greater though.

 

I hope to avoid posting images that Jim had not taken his self, however should I inadvertently infringe another photographers copyright, please inform me by email and I will resolve the issue immediately. There are copyright issues with some of the photographs that were sold to me. A Flickr member from Scotland drew my attention to some of his own work amongst the first uploads of Jims work. I had a quick look through some of the 30 boxes of prints and decided that for the time being the safest thing for me to do was withdraw the majority of the earlier uploaded scans and deal with the problem – which I did. whilst the vast majority of the prints are Jims, there is a problem defining copyright of some of them, this is something that the seller did not make clear at the time. I am reasonably confident that I have since been successful in identifying Jims own work. His early work consists of many thousands of lustre 6x4 prints which are difficult to scan well, later work is almost entirely 7x5 glossy, much easier to scan. Not all of the prints are pin sharp but I can generally print successfully to A4 from a scan.

 

You may notice photographs being duplicated in this Album, unfortunately there are multiple copies of many prints (for swapping) and as I have to have a system of archiving and backing up I can only guess - using memory - if I have scanned a print before. The bigger fleets have so many similar vehicles and registration numbers that it is impossible to get it right all of the time. It is easier to scan and process a print than check my files - on three different PC's - for duplicates. There has not been, nor will there ever be, any intention to knowingly breach anyone else's copyright. I have presented the Jim Taylor collection as exactly that-The Jim Taylor Collection- his work not mine, my own work is quite obviously mine.

 

Unfortunately many truck spotters have swapped and traded their work without copyright marking it as theirs. These people never anticipated the ease with which images would be shared online in the future. I would guess that having swapped and traded photos for many years that it is almost impossible to control their future use. Anyone wanting to control the future use of their work would have been well advised to copyright mark their work (as many did) and would be well advised not to post them on photo sharing sites without a watermark as the whole point of these sites is to share the image, it is very easy for those that wish, to lift any image, despite security settings, indeed, Flickr itself, warns you that this is the case. It was this abuse and theft of my material that led me to watermark all of my later uploads. I may yet withdraw non watermarked photos, I haven’t decided yet.

 

To anyone reading the above it will be quite obvious that I can’t provide information regarding specific photos or potential future uploads – I didn’t take them! There are many vehicles that were well known to me as Jim only lived down the road from me (although I didn’t know him), however scanning, titling, tagging and uploading is laborious and time consuming enough, I do however provide a fair amount of information with my own transport (and other) photos. I am aware that there are requests from other Flickr users that are unanswered, I stumble across them months or years after they were posted, this isn’t deliberate. Some weekends one or two “enthusiasts” can add many hundreds of photos as favourites, this pushes requests that are in the comments section ten or twenty pages out of sight and I miss them. I also have notifications switched off, I receive around 50 emails a day through work and I don’t want even more from Flickr. Other requests, like many other things, I just plain forget – no excuses! Uploads of Jims photos will be infrequent as it is a boring pastime and I would much rather work on my own output. I am happy to reply to comments and don't have a problem with people adding tags or adding supplementary information regarding vehicles or companies that they were familiar with.

 

None of my photographs are free to use – without my permission - only free to view! If you breach my copyright you are stealing what is mine and if I find out, I will pursue the case until you rectify the situation. Arguments that attempt to justify copyright theft are just excuses for theft from people with little or no understanding of copyright law – or more frequently- deliberate, selective, misinterpretation of the law – to suit their own ends. I have never knowingly refused a reasonable request, I don’t join groups but am quite happy for people to add photos to groups. I dislike exchanging long and time consuming emails – I prefer to talk on the phone, being the opposite of anti-social in person, you can’t shut me up. I am generally speaking an anti-social, social networker, I just don’t have the time for it, in fact, I joke that I am going to start a social network for internet anti-social people, you’ll just register your name and that’s it – no networking and endless mindless twaddle. Face-less Book? The antidote to Facebook. I like to get out and chat to people face to face and welcome customers with an interest in photography in to my office to chat on a regular basis. I also print – and give- A4 prints to many of the drivers that visit our yard. I photograph wagons and plant that I come into contact with in a day’s work I don’t go looking to photograph them in my free time. Wagons are a necessary evil in my life these days and they cost me money – every day! For the extensive story and history of JB Schofield &sons Ltd look here; www.jbschofieldandsons.co.uk/

 

So far photography remains a hobby, and I refuse any offers to turn it into a business, the regulations surrounding scrap and transport and the running of the yard keep me occupied most of the time. In my free time I cycle hard for fitness, walk hard for pleasure, fitness, and the challenge, take photos for pleasure and the challenge, edit them because I have to, and lastly, drink wine because I want to. There isn't time for another business. The kids are now adults and all of them work for me, and with me, another challenge.

 

Well, to be precise, there are three Ios in the three Jupiter images as well as three Io shadows but the third Io in the top image is harder to spot as it was away from the edge of Jupiter by then. If you look closely at the same angle to the shadow as the two lower images you can just make out the brown spot that is Io.

 

All three images were part of an experiment on a reasonably good night of seeing. They are all taken in 8bit format. The lower left image was taken with a Celestron Skyris USB3 colour CCD camera with a 618 chip. The other two images were taken with a Basler Ace USB3 mono CCD also with a 618 chip. The lower two images were both take through my 5inch/130mm refractor with a 5x PowerMate and ADC. The top image was taken through my 12inch SCT with a 2.5x PowerMate and no ADC. Remarkably by using the component chain for the Skyris in the order back from the refractor focuser of extension tube, 5x Powermate, ADC and finally the Skyris or Basler, the image size recorded is almost identical to that of using the 2.5x Powermate through the 12inch SCT with 2.5x Powermate attached to the focuser and then just a filter wheel in front of the Basler.

 

The Basler Ace was used with RGB filters. The Skyris was fitted with an IR blocker, the Basler Ace wasn't. The Skyris image was taken at around 30fps, the Basler Ace image on the lower right at 40fps and top at around 75fps.

 

Both the lower images are derotated stacks, for the Skyris 7x60secs, for the Basler Ace 4x Red, 4x Green and 4x Blue each colour at 45-50 seconds. The top image with Europa to the right and Io and shadow crossing is a single stack of 1x R, 1xG and 1xB at 55 seconds per colour.

 

At first glance there is little between the images but a close inspection shows the Basler RGB image through the refractor is fractionally more detailed than the Skyris colour image. The top Basler image, which is a far shorter sequence, holds up well in comparison. While it is a little smoother as it was taken through a SCT, it also has more depth to the colours even if it doesn't have the sharpness of the refractor. It also reveals slightly more detail although the refractor images may look more detailed at frst glance.

 

What the little experiment above does show is that there is really little to choose in end image quality between them although I had a better chance with the greater light gathering ability of the 12inch SCT to run the camera faster and capture more detail in the best seeing. The only drawback with the Skyris is that because it is capturing in RGB32 mode, it eats up the transmission even with USB3, meaning that if I operate at above 40fps it starts to drop frames at an alarming rate. No such problem with the raw files captured with the Basler Ace, which can happly run at full speed without dropping frames.

 

It is possible to capture direct RAW images with the Skyris, which is much faster and enables faster speeds above 40fps, but I have tried and failed to find a way to get the raw captures to debayer, so can only conclude there is something else that I need to do to ensure a RAW capture can be processed as colour. If anyone out there knows what, please let me know!

 

Peter

 

www.spurnpoint.com/Spurn_Point.htm

  

Spurn is a very unique place in the British Islands. Three and a half miles long and only fifty metres wide in places.

Extending out in to the Humber Estuary from the Yorkshire coast it has always had a big affect to the navigation of all vessels over the years. Help to some and a danger or hindrance to others. This alone makes Spurn a unique place.

Spurn is made up of a series of sand and shingle banks held together with mainly Marram grass and Seabuckthorn. There are a series of sea defence works built by the Victorians and maintained by the Ministry of Defence, till they sold Spurn to the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust in the 1950s. The defences are in a poor state, breaking down and crumbling. This is making Spurn a very fragile place wide open to the ravages of the North Sea.

One of the most striking features of Spurn is the black and white lighthouse near to the end of Spurn. Now just an empty shell not used since it was closed down at dawn on the thirty first of October 1986.

There have been many Lighthouses on Spurn over the years the first recorded at around 1427. The present light was built from 1893 TO 1895. The small tower on the beach on the Estuary side was originally the low light. It was built and put in to operation at around 1852. This light was no longer needed when the present lighthouse was opened in 1895.At a later date the light was removed and it was used as a store for explosives and later as a water tower. The tank can still be seen on the top. When it was operational there was a raised walkway from the shore to the lighthouse so it could be reached at all stages of the tide.

The present lighthouse was built to replace an old lighthouse that was positioned just to the south of the present one. You can still see the round perimeter wall surrounding the old keepers cottages and the base of the old lighthouse which had to be demolished due to it settling on it's foundations making it unsafe.

The only light on Spurn today is a flashing green starboard light on the very end of the point and the fixed green lights marking the end of the Pilots jetty.

Because of Spurns ever moving position there have been many Lighthouses over the years. There is a very good book by George.de.BOAR, called History of the Spurn Lighthouses, produced by the East Yorkshire Local History Society. This is one of a series of books on local history.

  

www.spurnpoint.com/Around_and_about_at_Spurn.htm

  

Around and about there are plenty of places to eat and drink. Starting from the north of Spurn at Kilnsea there is the Riverside hotel offering good quality food drink and accommodation. Coming south towards Spurn and still in Kilnsea there is the Crown and Anchor pub. A welcoming place serving bar meals fine beers and offering bed and breakfast at very reasonable rates. At the crossroads before you turn towards Spurn there is the Spurn heritage coast visitors centre. Where there is a small cafe and exhibition. At the entrance Spurn point nature reserve is an information centre and bird observatory selling books pamphlets, etc., and the last toilet on Spurn.

Past the lighthouse is the last car park. Two hundred metres further on you find the Humber Lifeboat and Pilot stations. Near the houses is a Small caravan selling tea, coffee, cold cans, hot and cold food, crisps and sweets.

All are open all year round apart from the heritage centre which is open thought the season.

 

BIRD WATCHING.

Is a very popular pastime as Spurn is internationally famous for birds. There are up to two hundred species recorded at spurn every year. Some of which are extremely rare. The Marmora's Warbler seen at Spurn In June 1992 was only the third recorded in Britain.

 

SEA FISHING.

The beaches of Spurn provide some of the best sea fishing in the area, with Cod and Whiting and Flats being caught through the winter and Skate, Flats and Bass through the summer. There is sport to be had all the year.

At the very end of Spurn is deep water ideal for Cod but this only fishes best two hours either side of low water, the tide is to strong at other times. All along the seaward side of Spurn is good for all species of fish at all times though over high water being the better. The riverside of Spurn is very shallow and only produces Flats and the bass over high water.

 

THE BEACH.

 

The beaches at Spurn are of soft sand and shingle. Whichever way the wind is blowing you can just pop over the dunes to the outer side. There are fossils and all manners of things to find beach combing. Swimming is not safe any were near the point end as there are very strong tides at up to six knots at times. But in side Spurn around the point car park is perfect at high water. The beach does not shelf to fast and very little tide. You can have the place to your self at times, as Spurn is never really busy weekdays.#

A very popular pastime at Spurn is Fossil hunting. There is a good abundance of fossils to be found in amongst the pebbles and shingle.

The Shark Trust has a very interesting PDF file tell you all about Shark Skate and rays the mermaids purses you find on the beach are egg shells from sharks and Rays. Click the link to down load the Shark Trust Brochure.

 

WALKING.

Walking or strolling at spurn is very easy, as there are no hills. There are various sign posted paths up and down the point. For the fit a complete walk round the whole point is about 8 miles, taking in all the point round the point end and back to the "warren" information place at the start of Spurn. You will need good footwear, as much of the paths are sand. There is limited access for disabled, but not to the point end, as you have to go via the beach.

You can park your car at the point car park and walk round the point end and back to the car park about a mile, or just stroll around the point were you choose. The only place you are not allowed to go are down the pilot's jetty and the centre square of the Lifeboat houses.

In spring and early summer Spurn is covered with a large amount of wild flowers of all species.

There are common to the not so common; from Orchids to bluebells. I must remind you Spurn is a nature reserve and the picking of all flowers is prohibited. When visiting please enjoy Spurn, as it is a very beautiful place and leave only your footprints.

 

Horse Riding.

 

There is riding available nearby at the North Humberside Riding Centre. The stables are ideally located with rides along quiet country lanes, by-ways, plus miles of sandy beach and riverbanks. The cross-country course offers a variety of fences for both the novice and the more experienced rider.

 

www.spurnbirdobservatory.co.uk/

 

A Brief History of Spurn Bird Observatory

 

Following visits to Spurn by several members of the Yorkshire Naturalists' Union in the late 1930's, a communal log for ornithological observations was instituted in 1938. This included a roll-call of species, the beginnings of a recording system, which later became standard in bird observatories. Realising the potential of the Spurn peninsula for the regular observation of bird migration a group of enthusiasts, notably Ralph Chislett, George Ainsworth, John Lord and R.M. Garnett, had the idea of setting up a bird observatory, with the Warren Cottage at the northern end of the peninsula as an ideal headquarters. Unfortunately the outbreak of war forced them to put their plans on hold but shortly after hostilities ceased a lease for Warren Cottage was obtained from the War Department and the observatory was established shortly afterwards under the auspices of the Y.N.U. with the four members mentioned above forming the first committee. A preliminary meeting was held in September 1945 to decide on the site for a Heligoland trap, work on which was begun almost immediately and the first bird (a Blackbird) was ringed on November 17th. The first minuted committee meeting was held on March 9th 1946 and the observatory was opened to visitors at Whitsuntide that year.

Initially coverage was limited to the main migration seasons, being extended to winter weekends in the early 1950's to trap and ring some of the large numbers of Snow Buntings which used to occur at that time of year and gradually coverage was increased (whenever possible) to cover the late spring and summer. In 1959 there was an important development when the Yorkshire Naturalists' Trust (now the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust) became the owners of the peninsula and thus the observatory's landlord. In 1960 a full time warden was appointed by the Trust, and although having no official connection with the observatory the fact of having an observer on the peninsula year-round inevitably helped to improve the ornithological coverage. This was especially the case from 1964 when the current warden, Barry Spence, was appointed, in conjunction with the fact that an interest in birds and their migrations was steadily growing and more bird-watchers were staying at the observatory, often for longer periods.

When the observatory opened there was accommodation for seven visitors in Warren Cottage and facilities included two chemical toilets, the Warren Heligoland trap and an ex-army hut as a ringing hut. Over the next ten years a further five Heligoland traps were constructed along the peninsula, although today only three remain in existence. In 1959 the observatory gained the use of the Annexe, one of two ex W.D. bungalows built at the Warren during the early 1950's, thus increasing the accommodation capacity to seventeen and providing much improved toilet facilities. Over the years the accommodation and facilities have been gradually improved to try to make the visitor's stay at Spurn as comfortable as possible. Other improvements have also taken place, in 1968 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Point was converted into a ringing laboratory ready for the first B.T.O. Ringing Course, held in autumn of that year and in 1971 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Warren was also converted into a ringing laboratory. The other part of this building became a laboratory for the use of students of Leeds University but this also became available to the observatory in the mid 1980's when the University no longer had a use for it. Subsequently it was converted into a self-contained accommodation unit for two, complete with kitchen facilities, and although officially known by the somewhat unimaginative name of Room F (the rooms in the Annexe being known as Rooms A, C, D & E, - whatever happened to Room B?), it was somewhat irreverently christened "Dunbirdin" by regular visitors to Spurn.

In 1965 a sea-watching hut was erected east of the Warren beyond the line of the former railway track. Due to coastal erosion it became necessary to move this in late 1974, when it was hoped that it would last at least as long as it had in its first position. Alas this was not to be, as the rate of erosion increased dramatically in the mid 1970's, necessitating a further move in early December 1977. In that year a clay bank had been built across the field behind Warren Cottage (Clubley's field) to prevent the flooding of arable land by wind-blown sea water, but on January 11th 1978 Spurn suffered its worst flooding ever when a strong to gale-force north-westerly wind combined with a spring tide. In late 1981 due to extensive construction works at Easington a large quantity of boulder clay became available and this was used to build up and extend the bank across Clubley's field, south towards Black Hut and north beyond Big Hedge to join up with an existing bank (which had been built in 1974) behind the scrape. In 1982 the sea-watching hut was repositioned on top of this bank, where it remained until the bank itself was washed away in the early 1990's.

A number of other changes to the observatory recording area began to take place from the early 1970's, including extensive building operations at the Point, commencing in 1974, with the construction of a new jetty for the Humber Pilot boats, new housing for the Spurn Lifeboat crew and the conversion and renovation of various existing buildings for use by the Coastguard and the Pilots. In 1978 following damage to the existing road south of the Warren area a new tarmac road was laid to the west of the original one, this lasted until 1988 when a second "new road" loop had to be laid, followed in 1991 by the construction of the existing loop road running along the Humber shore from just south of the Warren to just beyond Black Hut. The construction of this road resulted in the destruction of the actual Black Hut, although the area still bears the name. In 1981 the lines of wartime concrete anti-tank blocks running from the seashore to the Canal Zone were removed to fill in a breach at the Narrow Neck. This resulted in the southward extension of the Scrape field by the farmer up to Big Hedge and the start of a gradual decline in the condition of this hedge and its attractiveness to birds. In 1982 a local resident excavated a pond for shooting purposes in the wet area adjoining the Canal Zone. This never really proved successful and the land was later purchased by the Y.W.T. and the pond enlarged to become what is now known as Canal Scrape. In 1984 a famous Spurn landmark, the Narrows "Hut", a wooden migration watch shelter which had stood at the Narrow Neck for twenty-three years, was set fire to by person or persons unknown and completely destroyed, it was replaced the following year by a more solid construction made from breeze-blocks.

A period of considerable change began in 1988 when the Spurn peninsula was designated as part of the Spurn Heritage Coast. Projects undertaken include the enlargement of the Canal Scrape mentioned above and the erection of a hide overlooking it, a hide overlooking the Humber wader roost at Chalk Bank, a public sea-watching hide alongside the observatory one, provision of additional car-parking space, the restoration of the short-turf habitat in the Chalk Bank area, provision of footpaths, etc. A major project was the renovation of the Blue Bell in Kilnsea for use as offices, an information centre and a small cafe, which became fully operational in 1995. Another fairly recent project has been the creation of another scrape/pond on Clubley's field.

In 1996 the observatory celebrated its fiftieth anniversary, and for the first time in its history SBO employed a full time seasonal warden. This position has since been expanded and the observatory now enjoys the services of a year- round warden. In 1998, with a view to the future, a small bungalow in Kilnsea was purchased with money bequeathed by the late John Weston, a long time committee member, who regrettably died in 1996. This was followed in 1999 by the purchase of a strip of land adjacent to the property and is now known as the ‘Church Field’, this is planted with a sacrificial crop every year, and has also had several groups of trees planted and a feeding station placed in the north-east corner. Access to this field is available by becoming a member of ‘Friends of Spurn Bird Observatory’, a venture set up in 2003 to eventually help with the building of a new observatory when the old one falls way to the sea.

 

 

www.spurnpoint.com/Spurn_Point.htm

  

Spurn is a very unique place in the British Islands. Three and a half miles long and only fifty metres wide in places.

Extending out in to the Humber Estuary from the Yorkshire coast it has always had a big affect to the navigation of all vessels over the years. Help to some and a danger or hindrance to others. This alone makes Spurn a unique place.

Spurn is made up of a series of sand and shingle banks held together with mainly Marram grass and Seabuckthorn. There are a series of sea defence works built by the Victorians and maintained by the Ministry of Defence, till they sold Spurn to the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust in the 1950s. The defences are in a poor state, breaking down and crumbling. This is making Spurn a very fragile place wide open to the ravages of the North Sea.

One of the most striking features of Spurn is the black and white lighthouse near to the end of Spurn. Now just an empty shell not used since it was closed down at dawn on the thirty first of October 1986.

There have been many Lighthouses on Spurn over the years the first recorded at around 1427. The present light was built from 1893 TO 1895. The small tower on the beach on the Estuary side was originally the low light. It was built and put in to operation at around 1852. This light was no longer needed when the present lighthouse was opened in 1895.At a later date the light was removed and it was used as a store for explosives and later as a water tower. The tank can still be seen on the top. When it was operational there was a raised walkway from the shore to the lighthouse so it could be reached at all stages of the tide.

The present lighthouse was built to replace an old lighthouse that was positioned just to the south of the present one. You can still see the round perimeter wall surrounding the old keepers cottages and the base of the old lighthouse which had to be demolished due to it settling on it's foundations making it unsafe.

The only light on Spurn today is a flashing green starboard light on the very end of the point and the fixed green lights marking the end of the Pilots jetty.

Because of Spurns ever moving position there have been many Lighthouses over the years. There is a very good book by George.de.BOAR, called History of the Spurn Lighthouses, produced by the East Yorkshire Local History Society. This is one of a series of books on local history.

  

www.spurnpoint.com/Around_and_about_at_Spurn.htm

  

Around and about there are plenty of places to eat and drink. Starting from the north of Spurn at Kilnsea there is the Riverside hotel offering good quality food drink and accommodation. Coming south towards Spurn and still in Kilnsea there is the Crown and Anchor pub. A welcoming place serving bar meals fine beers and offering bed and breakfast at very reasonable rates. At the crossroads before you turn towards Spurn there is the Spurn heritage coast visitors centre. Where there is a small cafe and exhibition. At the entrance Spurn point nature reserve is an information centre and bird observatory selling books pamphlets, etc., and the last toilet on Spurn.

Past the lighthouse is the last car park. Two hundred metres further on you find the Humber Lifeboat and Pilot stations. Near the houses is a Small caravan selling tea, coffee, cold cans, hot and cold food, crisps and sweets.

All are open all year round apart from the heritage centre which is open thought the season.

 

BIRD WATCHING.

Is a very popular pastime as Spurn is internationally famous for birds. There are up to two hundred species recorded at spurn every year. Some of which are extremely rare. The Marmora's Warbler seen at Spurn In June 1992 was only the third recorded in Britain.

 

SEA FISHING.

The beaches of Spurn provide some of the best sea fishing in the area, with Cod and Whiting and Flats being caught through the winter and Skate, Flats and Bass through the summer. There is sport to be had all the year.

At the very end of Spurn is deep water ideal for Cod but this only fishes best two hours either side of low water, the tide is to strong at other times. All along the seaward side of Spurn is good for all species of fish at all times though over high water being the better. The riverside of Spurn is very shallow and only produces Flats and the bass over high water.

 

THE BEACH.

 

The beaches at Spurn are of soft sand and shingle. Whichever way the wind is blowing you can just pop over the dunes to the outer side. There are fossils and all manners of things to find beach combing. Swimming is not safe any were near the point end as there are very strong tides at up to six knots at times. But in side Spurn around the point car park is perfect at high water. The beach does not shelf to fast and very little tide. You can have the place to your self at times, as Spurn is never really busy weekdays.#

A very popular pastime at Spurn is Fossil hunting. There is a good abundance of fossils to be found in amongst the pebbles and shingle.

The Shark Trust has a very interesting PDF file tell you all about Shark Skate and rays the mermaids purses you find on the beach are egg shells from sharks and Rays. Click the link to down load the Shark Trust Brochure.

 

WALKING.

Walking or strolling at spurn is very easy, as there are no hills. There are various sign posted paths up and down the point. For the fit a complete walk round the whole point is about 8 miles, taking in all the point round the point end and back to the "warren" information place at the start of Spurn. You will need good footwear, as much of the paths are sand. There is limited access for disabled, but not to the point end, as you have to go via the beach.

You can park your car at the point car park and walk round the point end and back to the car park about a mile, or just stroll around the point were you choose. The only place you are not allowed to go are down the pilot's jetty and the centre square of the Lifeboat houses.

In spring and early summer Spurn is covered with a large amount of wild flowers of all species.

There are common to the not so common; from Orchids to bluebells. I must remind you Spurn is a nature reserve and the picking of all flowers is prohibited. When visiting please enjoy Spurn, as it is a very beautiful place and leave only your footprints.

 

Horse Riding.

 

There is riding available nearby at the North Humberside Riding Centre. The stables are ideally located with rides along quiet country lanes, by-ways, plus miles of sandy beach and riverbanks. The cross-country course offers a variety of fences for both the novice and the more experienced rider.

 

www.spurnbirdobservatory.co.uk/

 

A Brief History of Spurn Bird Observatory

 

Following visits to Spurn by several members of the Yorkshire Naturalists' Union in the late 1930's, a communal log for ornithological observations was instituted in 1938. This included a roll-call of species, the beginnings of a recording system, which later became standard in bird observatories. Realising the potential of the Spurn peninsula for the regular observation of bird migration a group of enthusiasts, notably Ralph Chislett, George Ainsworth, John Lord and R.M. Garnett, had the idea of setting up a bird observatory, with the Warren Cottage at the northern end of the peninsula as an ideal headquarters. Unfortunately the outbreak of war forced them to put their plans on hold but shortly after hostilities ceased a lease for Warren Cottage was obtained from the War Department and the observatory was established shortly afterwards under the auspices of the Y.N.U. with the four members mentioned above forming the first committee. A preliminary meeting was held in September 1945 to decide on the site for a Heligoland trap, work on which was begun almost immediately and the first bird (a Blackbird) was ringed on November 17th. The first minuted committee meeting was held on March 9th 1946 and the observatory was opened to visitors at Whitsuntide that year.

Initially coverage was limited to the main migration seasons, being extended to winter weekends in the early 1950's to trap and ring some of the large numbers of Snow Buntings which used to occur at that time of year and gradually coverage was increased (whenever possible) to cover the late spring and summer. In 1959 there was an important development when the Yorkshire Naturalists' Trust (now the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust) became the owners of the peninsula and thus the observatory's landlord. In 1960 a full time warden was appointed by the Trust, and although having no official connection with the observatory the fact of having an observer on the peninsula year-round inevitably helped to improve the ornithological coverage. This was especially the case from 1964 when the current warden, Barry Spence, was appointed, in conjunction with the fact that an interest in birds and their migrations was steadily growing and more bird-watchers were staying at the observatory, often for longer periods.

When the observatory opened there was accommodation for seven visitors in Warren Cottage and facilities included two chemical toilets, the Warren Heligoland trap and an ex-army hut as a ringing hut. Over the next ten years a further five Heligoland traps were constructed along the peninsula, although today only three remain in existence. In 1959 the observatory gained the use of the Annexe, one of two ex W.D. bungalows built at the Warren during the early 1950's, thus increasing the accommodation capacity to seventeen and providing much improved toilet facilities. Over the years the accommodation and facilities have been gradually improved to try to make the visitor's stay at Spurn as comfortable as possible. Other improvements have also taken place, in 1968 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Point was converted into a ringing laboratory ready for the first B.T.O. Ringing Course, held in autumn of that year and in 1971 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Warren was also converted into a ringing laboratory. The other part of this building became a laboratory for the use of students of Leeds University but this also became available to the observatory in the mid 1980's when the University no longer had a use for it. Subsequently it was converted into a self-contained accommodation unit for two, complete with kitchen facilities, and although officially known by the somewhat unimaginative name of Room F (the rooms in the Annexe being known as Rooms A, C, D & E, - whatever happened to Room B?), it was somewhat irreverently christened "Dunbirdin" by regular visitors to Spurn.

In 1965 a sea-watching hut was erected east of the Warren beyond the line of the former railway track. Due to coastal erosion it became necessary to move this in late 1974, when it was hoped that it would last at least as long as it had in its first position. Alas this was not to be, as the rate of erosion increased dramatically in the mid 1970's, necessitating a further move in early December 1977. In that year a clay bank had been built across the field behind Warren Cottage (Clubley's field) to prevent the flooding of arable land by wind-blown sea water, but on January 11th 1978 Spurn suffered its worst flooding ever when a strong to gale-force north-westerly wind combined with a spring tide. In late 1981 due to extensive construction works at Easington a large quantity of boulder clay became available and this was used to build up and extend the bank across Clubley's field, south towards Black Hut and north beyond Big Hedge to join up with an existing bank (which had been built in 1974) behind the scrape. In 1982 the sea-watching hut was repositioned on top of this bank, where it remained until the bank itself was washed away in the early 1990's.

A number of other changes to the observatory recording area began to take place from the early 1970's, including extensive building operations at the Point, commencing in 1974, with the construction of a new jetty for the Humber Pilot boats, new housing for the Spurn Lifeboat crew and the conversion and renovation of various existing buildings for use by the Coastguard and the Pilots. In 1978 following damage to the existing road south of the Warren area a new tarmac road was laid to the west of the original one, this lasted until 1988 when a second "new road" loop had to be laid, followed in 1991 by the construction of the existing loop road running along the Humber shore from just south of the Warren to just beyond Black Hut. The construction of this road resulted in the destruction of the actual Black Hut, although the area still bears the name. In 1981 the lines of wartime concrete anti-tank blocks running from the seashore to the Canal Zone were removed to fill in a breach at the Narrow Neck. This resulted in the southward extension of the Scrape field by the farmer up to Big Hedge and the start of a gradual decline in the condition of this hedge and its attractiveness to birds. In 1982 a local resident excavated a pond for shooting purposes in the wet area adjoining the Canal Zone. This never really proved successful and the land was later purchased by the Y.W.T. and the pond enlarged to become what is now known as Canal Scrape. In 1984 a famous Spurn landmark, the Narrows "Hut", a wooden migration watch shelter which had stood at the Narrow Neck for twenty-three years, was set fire to by person or persons unknown and completely destroyed, it was replaced the following year by a more solid construction made from breeze-blocks.

A period of considerable change began in 1988 when the Spurn peninsula was designated as part of the Spurn Heritage Coast. Projects undertaken include the enlargement of the Canal Scrape mentioned above and the erection of a hide overlooking it, a hide overlooking the Humber wader roost at Chalk Bank, a public sea-watching hide alongside the observatory one, provision of additional car-parking space, the restoration of the short-turf habitat in the Chalk Bank area, provision of footpaths, etc. A major project was the renovation of the Blue Bell in Kilnsea for use as offices, an information centre and a small cafe, which became fully operational in 1995. Another fairly recent project has been the creation of another scrape/pond on Clubley's field.

In 1996 the observatory celebrated its fiftieth anniversary, and for the first time in its history SBO employed a full time seasonal warden. This position has since been expanded and the observatory now enjoys the services of a year- round warden. In 1998, with a view to the future, a small bungalow in Kilnsea was purchased with money bequeathed by the late John Weston, a long time committee member, who regrettably died in 1996. This was followed in 1999 by the purchase of a strip of land adjacent to the property and is now known as the ‘Church Field’, this is planted with a sacrificial crop every year, and has also had several groups of trees planted and a feeding station placed in the north-east corner. Access to this field is available by becoming a member of ‘Friends of Spurn Bird Observatory’, a venture set up in 2003 to eventually help with the building of a new observatory when the old one falls way to the sea.

 

www.spurnpoint.com/Spurn_Point.htm

  

Spurn is a very unique place in the British Islands. Three and a half miles long and only fifty metres wide in places.

Extending out in to the Humber Estuary from the Yorkshire coast it has always had a big affect to the navigation of all vessels over the years. Help to some and a danger or hindrance to others. This alone makes Spurn a unique place.

Spurn is made up of a series of sand and shingle banks held together with mainly Marram grass and Seabuckthorn. There are a series of sea defence works built by the Victorians and maintained by the Ministry of Defence, till they sold Spurn to the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust in the 1950s. The defences are in a poor state, breaking down and crumbling. This is making Spurn a very fragile place wide open to the ravages of the North Sea.

One of the most striking features of Spurn is the black and white lighthouse near to the end of Spurn. Now just an empty shell not used since it was closed down at dawn on the thirty first of October 1986.

There have been many Lighthouses on Spurn over the years the first recorded at around 1427. The present light was built from 1893 TO 1895. The small tower on the beach on the Estuary side was originally the low light. It was built and put in to operation at around 1852. This light was no longer needed when the present lighthouse was opened in 1895.At a later date the light was removed and it was used as a store for explosives and later as a water tower. The tank can still be seen on the top. When it was operational there was a raised walkway from the shore to the lighthouse so it could be reached at all stages of the tide.

The present lighthouse was built to replace an old lighthouse that was positioned just to the south of the present one. You can still see the round perimeter wall surrounding the old keepers cottages and the base of the old lighthouse which had to be demolished due to it settling on it's foundations making it unsafe.

The only light on Spurn today is a flashing green starboard light on the very end of the point and the fixed green lights marking the end of the Pilots jetty.

Because of Spurns ever moving position there have been many Lighthouses over the years. There is a very good book by George.de.BOAR, called History of the Spurn Lighthouses, produced by the East Yorkshire Local History Society. This is one of a series of books on local history.

  

www.spurnpoint.com/Around_and_about_at_Spurn.htm

  

Around and about there are plenty of places to eat and drink. Starting from the north of Spurn at Kilnsea there is the Riverside hotel offering good quality food drink and accommodation. Coming south towards Spurn and still in Kilnsea there is the Crown and Anchor pub. A welcoming place serving bar meals fine beers and offering bed and breakfast at very reasonable rates. At the crossroads before you turn towards Spurn there is the Spurn heritage coast visitors centre. Where there is a small cafe and exhibition. At the entrance Spurn point nature reserve is an information centre and bird observatory selling books pamphlets, etc., and the last toilet on Spurn.

Past the lighthouse is the last car park. Two hundred metres further on you find the Humber Lifeboat and Pilot stations. Near the houses is a Small caravan selling tea, coffee, cold cans, hot and cold food, crisps and sweets.

All are open all year round apart from the heritage centre which is open thought the season.

 

BIRD WATCHING.

Is a very popular pastime as Spurn is internationally famous for birds. There are up to two hundred species recorded at spurn every year. Some of which are extremely rare. The Marmora's Warbler seen at Spurn In June 1992 was only the third recorded in Britain.

 

SEA FISHING.

The beaches of Spurn provide some of the best sea fishing in the area, with Cod and Whiting and Flats being caught through the winter and Skate, Flats and Bass through the summer. There is sport to be had all the year.

At the very end of Spurn is deep water ideal for Cod but this only fishes best two hours either side of low water, the tide is to strong at other times. All along the seaward side of Spurn is good for all species of fish at all times though over high water being the better. The riverside of Spurn is very shallow and only produces Flats and the bass over high water.

 

THE BEACH.

 

The beaches at Spurn are of soft sand and shingle. Whichever way the wind is blowing you can just pop over the dunes to the outer side. There are fossils and all manners of things to find beach combing. Swimming is not safe any were near the point end as there are very strong tides at up to six knots at times. But in side Spurn around the point car park is perfect at high water. The beach does not shelf to fast and very little tide. You can have the place to your self at times, as Spurn is never really busy weekdays.#

A very popular pastime at Spurn is Fossil hunting. There is a good abundance of fossils to be found in amongst the pebbles and shingle.

The Shark Trust has a very interesting PDF file tell you all about Shark Skate and rays the mermaids purses you find on the beach are egg shells from sharks and Rays. Click the link to down load the Shark Trust Brochure.

 

WALKING.

Walking or strolling at spurn is very easy, as there are no hills. There are various sign posted paths up and down the point. For the fit a complete walk round the whole point is about 8 miles, taking in all the point round the point end and back to the "warren" information place at the start of Spurn. You will need good footwear, as much of the paths are sand. There is limited access for disabled, but not to the point end, as you have to go via the beach.

You can park your car at the point car park and walk round the point end and back to the car park about a mile, or just stroll around the point were you choose. The only place you are not allowed to go are down the pilot's jetty and the centre square of the Lifeboat houses.

In spring and early summer Spurn is covered with a large amount of wild flowers of all species.

There are common to the not so common; from Orchids to bluebells. I must remind you Spurn is a nature reserve and the picking of all flowers is prohibited. When visiting please enjoy Spurn, as it is a very beautiful place and leave only your footprints.

 

Horse Riding.

 

There is riding available nearby at the North Humberside Riding Centre. The stables are ideally located with rides along quiet country lanes, by-ways, plus miles of sandy beach and riverbanks. The cross-country course offers a variety of fences for both the novice and the more experienced rider.

 

www.spurnbirdobservatory.co.uk/

 

A Brief History of Spurn Bird Observatory

 

Following visits to Spurn by several members of the Yorkshire Naturalists' Union in the late 1930's, a communal log for ornithological observations was instituted in 1938. This included a roll-call of species, the beginnings of a recording system, which later became standard in bird observatories. Realising the potential of the Spurn peninsula for the regular observation of bird migration a group of enthusiasts, notably Ralph Chislett, George Ainsworth, John Lord and R.M. Garnett, had the idea of setting up a bird observatory, with the Warren Cottage at the northern end of the peninsula as an ideal headquarters. Unfortunately the outbreak of war forced them to put their plans on hold but shortly after hostilities ceased a lease for Warren Cottage was obtained from the War Department and the observatory was established shortly afterwards under the auspices of the Y.N.U. with the four members mentioned above forming the first committee. A preliminary meeting was held in September 1945 to decide on the site for a Heligoland trap, work on which was begun almost immediately and the first bird (a Blackbird) was ringed on November 17th. The first minuted committee meeting was held on March 9th 1946 and the observatory was opened to visitors at Whitsuntide that year.

Initially coverage was limited to the main migration seasons, being extended to winter weekends in the early 1950's to trap and ring some of the large numbers of Snow Buntings which used to occur at that time of year and gradually coverage was increased (whenever possible) to cover the late spring and summer. In 1959 there was an important development when the Yorkshire Naturalists' Trust (now the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust) became the owners of the peninsula and thus the observatory's landlord. In 1960 a full time warden was appointed by the Trust, and although having no official connection with the observatory the fact of having an observer on the peninsula year-round inevitably helped to improve the ornithological coverage. This was especially the case from 1964 when the current warden, Barry Spence, was appointed, in conjunction with the fact that an interest in birds and their migrations was steadily growing and more bird-watchers were staying at the observatory, often for longer periods.

When the observatory opened there was accommodation for seven visitors in Warren Cottage and facilities included two chemical toilets, the Warren Heligoland trap and an ex-army hut as a ringing hut. Over the next ten years a further five Heligoland traps were constructed along the peninsula, although today only three remain in existence. In 1959 the observatory gained the use of the Annexe, one of two ex W.D. bungalows built at the Warren during the early 1950's, thus increasing the accommodation capacity to seventeen and providing much improved toilet facilities. Over the years the accommodation and facilities have been gradually improved to try to make the visitor's stay at Spurn as comfortable as possible. Other improvements have also taken place, in 1968 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Point was converted into a ringing laboratory ready for the first B.T.O. Ringing Course, held in autumn of that year and in 1971 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Warren was also converted into a ringing laboratory. The other part of this building became a laboratory for the use of students of Leeds University but this also became available to the observatory in the mid 1980's when the University no longer had a use for it. Subsequently it was converted into a self-contained accommodation unit for two, complete with kitchen facilities, and although officially known by the somewhat unimaginative name of Room F (the rooms in the Annexe being known as Rooms A, C, D & E, - whatever happened to Room B?), it was somewhat irreverently christened "Dunbirdin" by regular visitors to Spurn.

In 1965 a sea-watching hut was erected east of the Warren beyond the line of the former railway track. Due to coastal erosion it became necessary to move this in late 1974, when it was hoped that it would last at least as long as it had in its first position. Alas this was not to be, as the rate of erosion increased dramatically in the mid 1970's, necessitating a further move in early December 1977. In that year a clay bank had been built across the field behind Warren Cottage (Clubley's field) to prevent the flooding of arable land by wind-blown sea water, but on January 11th 1978 Spurn suffered its worst flooding ever when a strong to gale-force north-westerly wind combined with a spring tide. In late 1981 due to extensive construction works at Easington a large quantity of boulder clay became available and this was used to build up and extend the bank across Clubley's field, south towards Black Hut and north beyond Big Hedge to join up with an existing bank (which had been built in 1974) behind the scrape. In 1982 the sea-watching hut was repositioned on top of this bank, where it remained until the bank itself was washed away in the early 1990's.

A number of other changes to the observatory recording area began to take place from the early 1970's, including extensive building operations at the Point, commencing in 1974, with the construction of a new jetty for the Humber Pilot boats, new housing for the Spurn Lifeboat crew and the conversion and renovation of various existing buildings for use by the Coastguard and the Pilots. In 1978 following damage to the existing road south of the Warren area a new tarmac road was laid to the west of the original one, this lasted until 1988 when a second "new road" loop had to be laid, followed in 1991 by the construction of the existing loop road running along the Humber shore from just south of the Warren to just beyond Black Hut. The construction of this road resulted in the destruction of the actual Black Hut, although the area still bears the name. In 1981 the lines of wartime concrete anti-tank blocks running from the seashore to the Canal Zone were removed to fill in a breach at the Narrow Neck. This resulted in the southward extension of the Scrape field by the farmer up to Big Hedge and the start of a gradual decline in the condition of this hedge and its attractiveness to birds. In 1982 a local resident excavated a pond for shooting purposes in the wet area adjoining the Canal Zone. This never really proved successful and the land was later purchased by the Y.W.T. and the pond enlarged to become what is now known as Canal Scrape. In 1984 a famous Spurn landmark, the Narrows "Hut", a wooden migration watch shelter which had stood at the Narrow Neck for twenty-three years, was set fire to by person or persons unknown and completely destroyed, it was replaced the following year by a more solid construction made from breeze-blocks.

A period of considerable change began in 1988 when the Spurn peninsula was designated as part of the Spurn Heritage Coast. Projects undertaken include the enlargement of the Canal Scrape mentioned above and the erection of a hide overlooking it, a hide overlooking the Humber wader roost at Chalk Bank, a public sea-watching hide alongside the observatory one, provision of additional car-parking space, the restoration of the short-turf habitat in the Chalk Bank area, provision of footpaths, etc. A major project was the renovation of the Blue Bell in Kilnsea for use as offices, an information centre and a small cafe, which became fully operational in 1995. Another fairly recent project has been the creation of another scrape/pond on Clubley's field.

In 1996 the observatory celebrated its fiftieth anniversary, and for the first time in its history SBO employed a full time seasonal warden. This position has since been expanded and the observatory now enjoys the services of a year- round warden. In 1998, with a view to the future, a small bungalow in Kilnsea was purchased with money bequeathed by the late John Weston, a long time committee member, who regrettably died in 1996. This was followed in 1999 by the purchase of a strip of land adjacent to the property and is now known as the ‘Church Field’, this is planted with a sacrificial crop every year, and has also had several groups of trees planted and a feeding station placed in the north-east corner. Access to this field is available by becoming a member of ‘Friends of Spurn Bird Observatory’, a venture set up in 2003 to eventually help with the building of a new observatory when the old one falls way to the sea.

 

www.spurnpoint.com/Spurn_Point.htm

  

Spurn is a very unique place in the British Islands. Three and a half miles long and only fifty metres wide in places.

Extending out in to the Humber Estuary from the Yorkshire coast it has always had a big affect to the navigation of all vessels over the years. Help to some and a danger or hindrance to others. This alone makes Spurn a unique place.

Spurn is made up of a series of sand and shingle banks held together with mainly Marram grass and Seabuckthorn. There are a series of sea defence works built by the Victorians and maintained by the Ministry of Defence, till they sold Spurn to the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust in the 1950s. The defences are in a poor state, breaking down and crumbling. This is making Spurn a very fragile place wide open to the ravages of the North Sea.

One of the most striking features of Spurn is the black and white lighthouse near to the end of Spurn. Now just an empty shell not used since it was closed down at dawn on the thirty first of October 1986.

There have been many Lighthouses on Spurn over the years the first recorded at around 1427. The present light was built from 1893 TO 1895. The small tower on the beach on the Estuary side was originally the low light. It was built and put in to operation at around 1852. This light was no longer needed when the present lighthouse was opened in 1895.At a later date the light was removed and it was used as a store for explosives and later as a water tower. The tank can still be seen on the top. When it was operational there was a raised walkway from the shore to the lighthouse so it could be reached at all stages of the tide.

The present lighthouse was built to replace an old lighthouse that was positioned just to the south of the present one. You can still see the round perimeter wall surrounding the old keepers cottages and the base of the old lighthouse which had to be demolished due to it settling on it's foundations making it unsafe.

The only light on Spurn today is a flashing green starboard light on the very end of the point and the fixed green lights marking the end of the Pilots jetty.

Because of Spurns ever moving position there have been many Lighthouses over the years. There is a very good book by George.de.BOAR, called History of the Spurn Lighthouses, produced by the East Yorkshire Local History Society. This is one of a series of books on local history.

  

www.spurnpoint.com/Around_and_about_at_Spurn.htm

  

Around and about there are plenty of places to eat and drink. Starting from the north of Spurn at Kilnsea there is the Riverside hotel offering good quality food drink and accommodation. Coming south towards Spurn and still in Kilnsea there is the Crown and Anchor pub. A welcoming place serving bar meals fine beers and offering bed and breakfast at very reasonable rates. At the crossroads before you turn towards Spurn there is the Spurn heritage coast visitors centre. Where there is a small cafe and exhibition. At the entrance Spurn point nature reserve is an information centre and bird observatory selling books pamphlets, etc., and the last toilet on Spurn.

Past the lighthouse is the last car park. Two hundred metres further on you find the Humber Lifeboat and Pilot stations. Near the houses is a Small caravan selling tea, coffee, cold cans, hot and cold food, crisps and sweets.

All are open all year round apart from the heritage centre which is open thought the season.

 

BIRD WATCHING.

Is a very popular pastime as Spurn is internationally famous for birds. There are up to two hundred species recorded at spurn every year. Some of which are extremely rare. The Marmora's Warbler seen at Spurn In June 1992 was only the third recorded in Britain.

 

SEA FISHING.

The beaches of Spurn provide some of the best sea fishing in the area, with Cod and Whiting and Flats being caught through the winter and Skate, Flats and Bass through the summer. There is sport to be had all the year.

At the very end of Spurn is deep water ideal for Cod but this only fishes best two hours either side of low water, the tide is to strong at other times. All along the seaward side of Spurn is good for all species of fish at all times though over high water being the better. The riverside of Spurn is very shallow and only produces Flats and the bass over high water.

 

THE BEACH.

 

The beaches at Spurn are of soft sand and shingle. Whichever way the wind is blowing you can just pop over the dunes to the outer side. There are fossils and all manners of things to find beach combing. Swimming is not safe any were near the point end as there are very strong tides at up to six knots at times. But in side Spurn around the point car park is perfect at high water. The beach does not shelf to fast and very little tide. You can have the place to your self at times, as Spurn is never really busy weekdays.#

A very popular pastime at Spurn is Fossil hunting. There is a good abundance of fossils to be found in amongst the pebbles and shingle.

The Shark Trust has a very interesting PDF file tell you all about Shark Skate and rays the mermaids purses you find on the beach are egg shells from sharks and Rays. Click the link to down load the Shark Trust Brochure.

 

WALKING.

Walking or strolling at spurn is very easy, as there are no hills. There are various sign posted paths up and down the point. For the fit a complete walk round the whole point is about 8 miles, taking in all the point round the point end and back to the "warren" information place at the start of Spurn. You will need good footwear, as much of the paths are sand. There is limited access for disabled, but not to the point end, as you have to go via the beach.

You can park your car at the point car park and walk round the point end and back to the car park about a mile, or just stroll around the point were you choose. The only place you are not allowed to go are down the pilot's jetty and the centre square of the Lifeboat houses.

In spring and early summer Spurn is covered with a large amount of wild flowers of all species.

There are common to the not so common; from Orchids to bluebells. I must remind you Spurn is a nature reserve and the picking of all flowers is prohibited. When visiting please enjoy Spurn, as it is a very beautiful place and leave only your footprints.

 

Horse Riding.

 

There is riding available nearby at the North Humberside Riding Centre. The stables are ideally located with rides along quiet country lanes, by-ways, plus miles of sandy beach and riverbanks. The cross-country course offers a variety of fences for both the novice and the more experienced rider.

 

www.spurnbirdobservatory.co.uk/

 

A Brief History of Spurn Bird Observatory

 

Following visits to Spurn by several members of the Yorkshire Naturalists' Union in the late 1930's, a communal log for ornithological observations was instituted in 1938. This included a roll-call of species, the beginnings of a recording system, which later became standard in bird observatories. Realising the potential of the Spurn peninsula for the regular observation of bird migration a group of enthusiasts, notably Ralph Chislett, George Ainsworth, John Lord and R.M. Garnett, had the idea of setting up a bird observatory, with the Warren Cottage at the northern end of the peninsula as an ideal headquarters. Unfortunately the outbreak of war forced them to put their plans on hold but shortly after hostilities ceased a lease for Warren Cottage was obtained from the War Department and the observatory was established shortly afterwards under the auspices of the Y.N.U. with the four members mentioned above forming the first committee. A preliminary meeting was held in September 1945 to decide on the site for a Heligoland trap, work on which was begun almost immediately and the first bird (a Blackbird) was ringed on November 17th. The first minuted committee meeting was held on March 9th 1946 and the observatory was opened to visitors at Whitsuntide that year.

Initially coverage was limited to the main migration seasons, being extended to winter weekends in the early 1950's to trap and ring some of the large numbers of Snow Buntings which used to occur at that time of year and gradually coverage was increased (whenever possible) to cover the late spring and summer. In 1959 there was an important development when the Yorkshire Naturalists' Trust (now the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust) became the owners of the peninsula and thus the observatory's landlord. In 1960 a full time warden was appointed by the Trust, and although having no official connection with the observatory the fact of having an observer on the peninsula year-round inevitably helped to improve the ornithological coverage. This was especially the case from 1964 when the current warden, Barry Spence, was appointed, in conjunction with the fact that an interest in birds and their migrations was steadily growing and more bird-watchers were staying at the observatory, often for longer periods.

When the observatory opened there was accommodation for seven visitors in Warren Cottage and facilities included two chemical toilets, the Warren Heligoland trap and an ex-army hut as a ringing hut. Over the next ten years a further five Heligoland traps were constructed along the peninsula, although today only three remain in existence. In 1959 the observatory gained the use of the Annexe, one of two ex W.D. bungalows built at the Warren during the early 1950's, thus increasing the accommodation capacity to seventeen and providing much improved toilet facilities. Over the years the accommodation and facilities have been gradually improved to try to make the visitor's stay at Spurn as comfortable as possible. Other improvements have also taken place, in 1968 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Point was converted into a ringing laboratory ready for the first B.T.O. Ringing Course, held in autumn of that year and in 1971 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Warren was also converted into a ringing laboratory. The other part of this building became a laboratory for the use of students of Leeds University but this also became available to the observatory in the mid 1980's when the University no longer had a use for it. Subsequently it was converted into a self-contained accommodation unit for two, complete with kitchen facilities, and although officially known by the somewhat unimaginative name of Room F (the rooms in the Annexe being known as Rooms A, C, D & E, - whatever happened to Room B?), it was somewhat irreverently christened "Dunbirdin" by regular visitors to Spurn.

In 1965 a sea-watching hut was erected east of the Warren beyond the line of the former railway track. Due to coastal erosion it became necessary to move this in late 1974, when it was hoped that it would last at least as long as it had in its first position. Alas this was not to be, as the rate of erosion increased dramatically in the mid 1970's, necessitating a further move in early December 1977. In that year a clay bank had been built across the field behind Warren Cottage (Clubley's field) to prevent the flooding of arable land by wind-blown sea water, but on January 11th 1978 Spurn suffered its worst flooding ever when a strong to gale-force north-westerly wind combined with a spring tide. In late 1981 due to extensive construction works at Easington a large quantity of boulder clay became available and this was used to build up and extend the bank across Clubley's field, south towards Black Hut and north beyond Big Hedge to join up with an existing bank (which had been built in 1974) behind the scrape. In 1982 the sea-watching hut was repositioned on top of this bank, where it remained until the bank itself was washed away in the early 1990's.

A number of other changes to the observatory recording area began to take place from the early 1970's, including extensive building operations at the Point, commencing in 1974, with the construction of a new jetty for the Humber Pilot boats, new housing for the Spurn Lifeboat crew and the conversion and renovation of various existing buildings for use by the Coastguard and the Pilots. In 1978 following damage to the existing road south of the Warren area a new tarmac road was laid to the west of the original one, this lasted until 1988 when a second "new road" loop had to be laid, followed in 1991 by the construction of the existing loop road running along the Humber shore from just south of the Warren to just beyond Black Hut. The construction of this road resulted in the destruction of the actual Black Hut, although the area still bears the name. In 1981 the lines of wartime concrete anti-tank blocks running from the seashore to the Canal Zone were removed to fill in a breach at the Narrow Neck. This resulted in the southward extension of the Scrape field by the farmer up to Big Hedge and the start of a gradual decline in the condition of this hedge and its attractiveness to birds. In 1982 a local resident excavated a pond for shooting purposes in the wet area adjoining the Canal Zone. This never really proved successful and the land was later purchased by the Y.W.T. and the pond enlarged to become what is now known as Canal Scrape. In 1984 a famous Spurn landmark, the Narrows "Hut", a wooden migration watch shelter which had stood at the Narrow Neck for twenty-three years, was set fire to by person or persons unknown and completely destroyed, it was replaced the following year by a more solid construction made from breeze-blocks.

A period of considerable change began in 1988 when the Spurn peninsula was designated as part of the Spurn Heritage Coast. Projects undertaken include the enlargement of the Canal Scrape mentioned above and the erection of a hide overlooking it, a hide overlooking the Humber wader roost at Chalk Bank, a public sea-watching hide alongside the observatory one, provision of additional car-parking space, the restoration of the short-turf habitat in the Chalk Bank area, provision of footpaths, etc. A major project was the renovation of the Blue Bell in Kilnsea for use as offices, an information centre and a small cafe, which became fully operational in 1995. Another fairly recent project has been the creation of another scrape/pond on Clubley's field.

In 1996 the observatory celebrated its fiftieth anniversary, and for the first time in its history SBO employed a full time seasonal warden. This position has since been expanded and the observatory now enjoys the services of a year- round warden. In 1998, with a view to the future, a small bungalow in Kilnsea was purchased with money bequeathed by the late John Weston, a long time committee member, who regrettably died in 1996. This was followed in 1999 by the purchase of a strip of land adjacent to the property and is now known as the ‘Church Field’, this is planted with a sacrificial crop every year, and has also had several groups of trees planted and a feeding station placed in the north-east corner. Access to this field is available by becoming a member of ‘Friends of Spurn Bird Observatory’, a venture set up in 2003 to eventually help with the building of a new observatory when the old one falls way to the sea.

 

Memories of Brambletye Boys Preparatory School 1967 – 1971.

 

When I went to Brambletye at the age of nine, in September 1967, it was my fifth school in the last four years. As my parents were routinely being posted within the Army, they felt a boarding school would give me a more stable education. I vaguely remember touring the school with them and Mr Blencowe, the Headmaster, one summer before term and being asked if I would be happy there for the next four years, to which I obediently replied, "Yes".

 

The school seemed to be based on many military methods. Each boy was allocated to one of four Houses named after great British military heroes: there were Nelson, Marlborough and Drake, and I was in Wellington. Many boy's fathers had been to Brambletye when they were young and it was not unusual for them to insist their son followed in the same House. Instead of prefects we had Officers. As just one part of the overall military discipline we had to march everywhere!

 

We had no first names even though all our parents may have thought long and hard about choosing a name that would either continue the family line, please a grandfather or uncle or be one of the "in" names in the 1960’s. Despite this being formalised by Christening we were only referred to by our surnames. The list of boarders showed a proliferation of double-barrelled surnames, and one poor boy was even blessed with a triple barrelled title. If you had the same surname as someone else, the older and more senior added "1" to his name, the junior adding "2". You had Smith 1 and 2 because they were common. They did get as far as Sommerfelt 3 but no other parents managed to produce four offspring within the four year scope of preparatory school life (fertility treatment had not been developed at this time!).

 

I remember the first night, going to bed later than it should have been at 6.30pm, and a few of the other sixteen or so boys in the dormitory sobbing into their pillows. They were comforted by the matrons in their starched white uniforms. I had the benefit of a few months on the majority of them as I was a Spring baby born in March, while there were still others born later in Autumn of the same year who were in the same intake. Whether this classified me as "retarded" because there were younger and cleverer boys in the same class, I shall never be sure, but I do know I didn't cry on the first night.

 

The dormitory was a long room with nine steel framed beds down one side, seven down the other. One side had deep windows stretching from the high ceiling down to near the floor, overlooking the shallow valley below. To the right you could see a lake or reservoir that glistened in the sun. It appeared only a few miles away. To me it symbolised "freedom" as on nice sunny days you could see yachts sailing on it. But between the shimmering water and me was a gulf that might as well have been a thousand miles wide. I never ever did reach its shores, and be able to look back across to the school.

 

Winter terms could be dark and huge curtains were drawn across those high dormitory windows. In summer time even they couldn't make it dark enough to sleep until late. But at least in summertime you could find the enamelled tin potties which were strategically located around the dormitory. These could get rather full and smelly over night and were a disgusting trap for little feet as boys sneaked around barefoot in their pyjamas after lights out. There was many a time when a toe stubbed a potty in the dark. There would be a stifled shriek either followed by the splashing of urine onto the wooden floor or the crashing of an empty tin potty skidding across the dormitory. If it crashed into the steel frame of a bed you had about 10 seconds to run back to the other end of the dormitory in pitch darkness, find your bed, leap under the blankets and "be asleep" before simultaneously the lights came on and a Master strode into the room. Anyone caught out of bed was in for a whacking!

 

Actually this only happened rarely. Dormitory raids were the exception rather than the rule. Mind you it was difficult from the juniors dormitory. The dormitory door led into a magnificent hall, very much the Headmaster's part of the school, with offices, and staff rooms to the right. A huge skinned tiger with his stuffed head, bared teeth and glass eyes, lay star shaped on the parquet floor, ready to rip into your ankles if you dared pass. To the left lay a wood panelled corridor leading to Mr Blencowe's room. Ahead, past the tiger, rose a magnificent wooden grand staircase. Above it a huge portrait of a very stern gentleman stared down forbiddingly towards the dormitory door. Access to the other dormitories could only be gained across this hall and up the staircase. With doors to left and right from which a master might appear at any moment, the staring, watching eyes of the portrait, and the risk of a master or matron appearing on the landing above, it was incredibly risky in a Colditz sort of way left to venture upstairs after lights out. If a number of you were caught, wielding pillows, tip toeing upstairs, there was only one outcome. A quick march down the panelled corridor to the left took you to Mr Blencowe's office. Normally being there was not good news, but it always gave me the chance to see the two black cast statues of Charles I and Henry VIII(?) that stood in his hallway. I was always impressed by these 3ft tall figures and thirty-five years later was quite upset to hear that they ended their lives thrown in a rubbish tip.

 

There were a number of strange procedures for First Years. One peculiar rule was that juniors had to line up outside the toilets every morning. A junior officer held a book – perhaps it should have been called a log book. According to the order of name in the book each boy would enter the toilet as a cubicle became available, do what he could and return to report to the officer with either a "1" or a "2" to confirm which bodily function had been completed. A twelve or thirteen year old officer then had the medical responsibility when noting a certain boy had not reported a "2" for several days, to tell him to go back in and try harder. Serious cases of constipation were referred to the school nurse.

 

After lunch we were required to rest. This meant returning to our dormitory to lie fully clothed in our uniforms on our beds and in silence. Of course at our age this was the last thing we wanted to do. Sleeping was difficult at this time of the day; after all lights out was at 6.30pm every night. You could take one book to read, but if you had made a poor choice you were stuck with it. Fidgeting was not allowed, even if you were bored!

 

Apart from the above two additions to the day's routine it didn't really matter which year you were in, the routine Monday to Friday was the same.

 

We got up on the alarm bell, dressed and washed. Then all 120 or so boys marched by dormitory into the Dining room to sit on wooden benches down the sides of long wooden tables topped by either a Master or Matron at each end. Grace was said in a silent room to immediately be followed by the din of scraping of chairs and benches, clattering of china and cutlery and 120 chattering boys. The food was always prepared and brought to the ends of the tables in large aluminium trays by some curious little Spanish couple called Angela and Manuel. I was never sure where they lived but it appeared to be in a large cupboard at the end of the dining hall!

 

The Master or Matron served the food, helped by the boy on the end of the row. We all moved round one place each day. As each plate was filled with food it was passed from boy to boy down the line to the end. Breakfast was always cornflakes in the summer term followed by bacon, egg and plum tomatoes. Sometimes the egg was scrambled in a watery pale yellow mush of nothing. For variety it was fried into flat discs of rubber. In winter it was porridge poured out of a massive jug - every day. Sometimes I ate a few spoonfuls, but despite a rule that you sit there until you eat it, there was always a hungry chum nearby that preferred to eat my porridge than have a dose of scrambled egg. Once I sat in the dining hall whilst the rest of school had morning inspection, chapel, prep and the first lesson, before Angela took pity on me, gave me a smile, and removed the solid, cold bowl of porridge from in front of me. I would have sat there all day, but I think she had been waiting to go shopping!

 

After the meal we returned to the dormitory to make our beds. This was a precise science recalling military traditions of the 45 degree hospital tuck and razor sharp folds. Points were attributed to the house for clean and tidy dormitories. We then had a short time to brush up our shoes and present ourselves for inspection in the main hall. This was to all intents and purposes a military parade with the Captain walking up and down each line to give a head to toe examination of brushed hair, tie knot, clean knees and polished and tied shoes. We always faced one side of the hall and your eyes naturally rose up to some huge ornate wooden boards listing the names of all the old School Captains who had gone on to better things. I was always struck by this board as it listed boys all the way back to the time of the Great War. I never thought my name would be on this board and I was proven right!

 

Next came chapel. A short march took us into a beautiful little chapel. I still remember there was so much wood in it and some lovely religious frescos. As a "non-singer" chapel during the week was quite straightforward. You stood up, sang, sat down, knelt, stood up, sang, knelt, sat up, listened to the lesson………..the routine was the same every day. I once was told to read the lesson. I was given a week to prepare for it, and fretted every day over it. Shaking in my shoes I read it in front of the whole school and apparently missed a whole verse out of it, but next to nobody noticed.

 

We had a short spell of "prep" until nine o'clock (time to do the home work you didn't do lastnight) before it was full steam into lessons.

 

Colonel Molesworth, was our French teacher. He was so regimented in everything he did, at lunchtime he would disect a rectangular tray of rice pudding with skin, into 24 precise portions using a knife to gauge the proportions. Then he would take the knife and try to cut a rectangular block of rice pudding! I tell you what, he had some knack! I detested rice pudding, porridge, semolina or tapioca, and still he always managed to give me the same sized portion as everyone else!

 

He was even more amazing at French. He taught us Franglais, a language quite unknown to the Gallic people of France, so that even after finishing at Brambletye, and continuing it at High school, I still could not speak French after nine years.

 

He would have left today's England's football team in tears with his rules. In the days of wingers on each side, inside left, centre forward, inside right, with right, centre and left halves and a left and right back you could not move out of your "box". As a right back, cross an imaginary line between the goal and the centre spot into the left half and the whistle would blow and you would be sent to run a quick circuit of the four pitches on the lower playing fields. Colonel Molesworth approved of the shoulder barge whereby a four stone weakling on the ball could be shoulder-barged with the force of a charging rhinoceros and no foul given. Similarly Henniker–Heaton's clod-hopper boots, which were built of half inch thick leather coming up to the middle of his shins, tipped on the sole with half inch steel studs and re-inforced toe caps, could quite legitimately be used to separate an opponents leg from his foot at the ankle without any thought about the need to take time off sports through injury, physiotherapy or scans.

 

Colonel Molesworth: clipped moustache, highly polished brown shoes: what did he do in the war? (Mmm; he was prisoner. That seems appropriate)

 

Mr Trevanion was hard. Oh yes!!! He taught Maths. You didn't say much to Mr Trevanion, you just answered his questions as directly as possible. You tried not to meet eye to eye with him either: his stare was deadly! Sometimes you would have to stand by the desk and wait whilst he marked your work. I noticed his hands then. They were hard!

 

Scripture was taught by Mr Jones, definitely a man to respect, and whilst he could be strict, I did seem to do well in his classes gaining a few "A-"s, "B+"s and "Satis" all over my work. He made me Form Captain. It was my job to let the class know what their Prep was for the next day so I must apologise to the whole class, now for the first time in thirty-four years, that one day I gave them the wrong details. This meant that the majority of them were in trouble with Mr Jones the next day for doing the wrong work. Protest as they did it was proven I couldn't have given the wrong information as there were a number of boys who had completed the same work as me. They naturally kept quiet because these were the ones who had copied off me!

 

Mr Ogle taught Geography which I liked. I was good at locating the Amazon mouth, the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn, the Nile, etc, on a blank map of the world with pinpoint precision. Is this why I later qualified as a Navigation Officer in the Merchant Navy twelve years later? But Mr Ogle was an arty-farty type of teacher into music and art as well. He seemed to swan around in his black gown and couldn't be taken too seriously.

 

English and Latin were taught by Mr Glanfield (Glanners). I'm not sure why I don't remember much about him. I suited Latin as it was very regimented, but unfortunately being good in Latin at Brambletye proved completely useless for any application in the rest of my life. Mr Glanfield lived in a room at the end of the dormitory corridor, up a short flight of stairs. I only got whacked by Mr Glanfield once with a hair brush (and I deserved it for being an irritating little shit in the dormitory after lights out). It was he who also developed the "sitting in" form of punishment. For minor mis-demeanors you could get a 15 minute "sit in" for each offence up to a maximum of an hour's worth. When the rest of the school was free to play, anyone on a "sit in" was required to sit upright, in silence, facing forward, in a classroom for just you, a Master to watch over you and any other miscreants doing their "sit in". If you accrued more than an hour's worth of "sit in", you not only had to do your time, but were sent down to see the Headmaster for a bit of serious talking, and maybe a whacking too!

 

Learning the dates of births and deaths of every English King and Queen, major battle and historical event from 1066 until the 20th Century by heart, now doesn't seem such a waste of time when you bump into a foreign tourist who knows British Empire history better than you do. But I couldn't trust the History teacher (whose name I conveniently cannot recall) who showed slightly too much favouritism to certain boys.

 

Science was a mix of chemistry, physics and biology taken by Mr Blencowe, a very mild man, who as headmaster had to be all things to the school. Not only did he have to lead the school in prayer and hymn in chapel, but conduct daily inspections, administor the whole school and invariably fill in for any teacher who was "away" for whatever reason. Science was fun. Apart from the effects of burning sodium and magnesium we had everything from breeding locusts to hatching chicks and copulating Xenopus toads. I remember Mr Blencowe saying something about injecting the toads to make them breed. I know at the time I thought the whole matter strangely peculiar: why was the male, scrabbling franticly at the top of the tank and the female lying completely breathless at the bottom? There were eggs everywhere! This was not mating as I knew it. Normally it is the male that is exhausted! It's taken 34 years for Mr Blencowe to admit he was supposed to give the female a larger dose, but he gave it to the male by mistake!

 

Music lessons were the worry. Singing was not my strength but I learned, as a matter of self-preservation, to mime quite well. Mr Sharpe didn't just have a sharp tongue; his hand could to do some damage too. This didn't just happen in music lessons, but more memorably in chapel rehearsing for the main Sunday service. We would have to sing all the hymns and psalms selected for the next day's service. Mr Sharpe would sit in the organ pit, fingers and feet bouncing off the organ keys and pedals. With back to us, suddenly he wouldn't be happy with what he was hearing, leap out of the pit and race to the pew where he thought the wrong sound was coming from. Miming was no good at this point: you had to start singing quickly – and in tune too! Without the rhythm and backing of the organ it was doubly difficult and we had to continue to sing as he would come along our row, ear cocked to what we sang. If he heard the wrong note a hand would flash out so fast: "Whack!" right across the face!

 

I distinctly remember the row of five classrooms partitioned off from each other by wooden folding doors. At prep or when letter writing on Sunday the doors were folded back to allow one teacher to oversee everyone as they worked in silence. With the partitions closed during the day, we sat in cast iron framed desks with a flip up seat. There was an ink well filled regularly with a jug of the blue stuff. It was often spilt and some boys had significant indelible stains on various parts of their school uniform. Ink was used as an offensive weapon too, either flicked from the nibs of fountain pens or launched as a sodden ball of blotting paper into the front rows of the classroom. In one English lesson I remember a classmate taking several thick rubber bands, placing them over the tip of forefinger and thumb to form a catapault, and then placing a pellet of folded card into the "V", pulling it back, until the elastic would stretch no more before firing it into the bare neck of the boy immediately in front of him. Five minutes later he dared to do it again, but this time his aim was slightly out so that the hardened pellet richochetted off the back of the boy’s head, thudding into the wall of the classroom above Mr Glanfield's head, before falling to the floor near his feet! All hell broke loose then and I had to quickly withdraw both hands from under the desk lid where I had been constructing a Concorde shaped aeroplane out of a felt tip pen body, some paperclips and a folded exercise book cover.

 

There were regular intervals in the day to run off energy, shout and run about. These were often five or ten minute spells between chapel and lessons, tea and chapel, prep and bed along with morning breaktime and after lunch –unless you were a junior of course.

 

In the winter and spring term we changed into our sports gear after lunch. We only played football in the winter term, and rugby in the spring term. In summer, games were played after the afternoon break and we always played cricket.

 

Playing football and rugby in the colder, wetter months, every day was not particularly pleasant. Apart from being hacked to death by Hennicker-Heaton's boots, it was normally wet and cold. Being in the lower league playing fields and being refereed by Colonel Molesworth meant a long trudge from the playing fields up to the school. I hated how his military precision required us to play until the second hand of his watch hit the hour when some of the younger masters, watching the rain clouds gather, would blow the whistle early. Two hundred and forty hot, sweaty and wet boots were taken off and hung up in the small lean-to boot shed which stank like a giant mud wrestlers armpit, before the boys went up to shower. Colonel Molesworth's troop, coming from the furthest field, always arrived last to find the changing rooms awash with muddy water and clods of grass, the wooden duck boards barely allowing you to change into dry clothes only by hanging yourself on the clothes hooks, and reaching down to pull your socks on.

 

If it was too wet to play games, we had to don our macintoshs and "gum" boots and walk up and down the school drive. Normally after two laps from one end to other you were allowed back inside out of the rain! Colonel Molesworth would call out, "Left, right, left, right"………c'mon chaps!"

 

Afternoon tea comprised of filing past to pick up your Marmite sandwich (jam on Sundays) and third of a pint of milk bottle. These were consumed whilst each boy sat on his allocated locker surrounding the main hall. Every day we would pass the crates of milk on the way to breakfast. In summer they sat in the sun and were still there at 3.30pm. Sometimes you could barely press the bottle top to remove it because the pressure had built up so much, and when you could, you would find the top half of the milk completely solid, curdled and sour. Some would clamp a hand over the bottle, shake it vigorously and swallow the lot in one. Some would put it on the floor, and whilst sat on the locker, "knock it over by mistake". This normally resulted in them being given another one to drink!!!

 

After games it was back into the classroom for more lessons until teatime. Too often it was bland macaroni cheese - just macaroni cheese on a plate which was abhorred by every boy. Still were to come "Prep", our homework session of homework carried out in silence in the classroom another parade and chapel service before we normally had half an hour or so of play before bed. With juniors tucked up in bed by 6.30pm, the second years were despatched by 7.00pm, third years at 7.30pm. Even the oldest boys had to be in bed by 8.00pm!

 

Saturday was a "half-day". Lessons and chapel Sunday service rehearsal (watch out for Mr Sharpe) in the morning followed by freetime in the afternoon. Freetime could be spent in many ways. There was a boating pond. Electric boats were rare then, and there was certainly no radio control. Most boats were either free sailing yachts or clockwork powered. We could play rounders, fly model planes, roller skate, do woodwork or pottery, go in the monkey-climb or into the woods. There were marionettes and a steam engine Club too. There were great Chestnut trees so the school went conker mad in October. The school drives were lined with rhododendron bushes and you could in places climb through the bushes without touching the ground for up to 200 yards or so in places. Amongst these boys had dens as they did in the bracken filled bushes of the woods. We had khaki coloured jackets that made us quite camouflaged and apart from the dens there were caverns dug out of the sandstone. These could have been dangerous, but despite having fires in them, the odd roof collapse and "wars" between different groups I'm not aware that there were any casualties.

 

Sunday was different. Instead of lessons we had the full service in the chapel lasting 75 minutes. This sometimes seemed quite interminable, especially when the sun was shining outside, but you couldn't relax because the headmaster's wife, teachers and matrons filled the pews behind you.

 

And then it was to letter writing. We had to write one letter every week. I nearly always wrote to my parents in Germany. It tended to get a bit repetitive although the scores and names could normally be alternated on a regular basis. "I got A minus in Latin. The First Eleven played Ashdown House and we won 5 –2. The Second Eleven lost 2-0. Crompton and Wallis 2 have got German measles and have gone to the sick bay for three days. Only 62 days to go until the end of term and I am looking forward to seeing you (for the first time in 3 months)". Normally we had to bring writing pads to school with us at the start of each term. The trick was to get a small one with widely spaced lines so that Colonel Molesworth's demand for all letters to be two full pages didn't require too many words. Whether it was censorship or not, we had to take them to the front of the class for the teacher to read before we could "finish" which normally on a Sunday meant escape into the woods.

 

Young as we were, the confines of the school were exactly that. There were areas you would never go in. In the woods there was only a small fence that marked the limit of where we were allowed to go. It might only have been a two strand barbed wire fence but I never crossed it. It was as if there was a hidden Nazi watchtower ready to machine gun you if you touched the tripwire. The limits were marked by a two bar metal fence or the drives in other directions, easily enough crossed, but like the shimmering lake, in four years that I was there, what lay outside was not part of my world.

 

But apparently there were two escapes in my time at the school. All of a sudden there were rumours that someone had done a runner, but shortly afterwards the school propaganda system kicked in and the "hero" became someone taken out of school urgently to visit a dying grandmother.

 

I think we bathed twice a week. We lined up in the bathroom, with three tubs, where we would take turns to leap in. I don't think the water was changed, and matron would wash our hair. Every week we had a "sock" night or a "pants" night when everyone would throw that item in big baskets to be washed. Jumpers, shirts and trousers were washed less frequently. Only seniors, and only if they were over 5ft, could wear long trousers. At least once a term we were weighed and our height was recorded. Presumably the details helped our parents to recognise us when they next saw us! “Oh yes, darling, this one’s 4 ft 5 inches and about 5 stone, just like Timothy’s report says: this must be our son!”

 

I do remember a few "special" events. We occasionally were shown a film in the library. Apart from Treasure Island and The Robe these normally frightened me, especially the one of the headless horsemen attacking people in the dark! I only saw television a few times. There were some very basic " watch and learn" type physics programs in black and white but the only other thing I saw on TV was a fuzzy grey, live, image of the some men walking on the moon, for the first time.

 

We had some Spanish guy with long, horny nails come and play classical guitar, which seemed extremely tedious for us and him, and some cowboy who came and shot some balloons in the main hall.

 

Every year there was a school play. I was too young to be in Oliver. Just as well, as I was scared of the Bill Sykes character played by Jonathon Hughes De'Ath. Without girls in the school female parts had to be played by boys. It was whispered that one master reputedly quite fancied Cadicott-Bull who played Nancy. On the same basis I was quite glad I wasn't too attractive in my blonde pigtails, pink dress and Bo-Peep hood as a sailor's girl in the Pirates of Penzance. Playing a black cannibal in HMS Pinafore was much less dubious!

 

There were visitors to the school. Unfortunately one of these was the school dentist. Once a week we got sweets. A table was set up on the main hall stage and class by class we were taken to line up and chose our sweets. We each had a shilling with which you could get two handfuls of packets of sweets. Then decimalisation came in 1971 and we were robbed! Our shilling had become 5p. Straightaway we could only get about half as much. If we weren't robbed here, there were other chances to take advantage of us.

 

Every so often a long haired traveller we called the "Swindler" parked near the school. He had a Commer van. It was stacked with miniature chess sets, models, pen-knives and games. Since leaving the school I've never understood why he was given access as he must have obtained his name and reputation from somewhere. But the knives were the most frequently bought items either for activities in the woods or for playing "splits" where two opponents face each other, with two knives. Each in turn throws their knife into the ground, the opponent having to stretch one foot to the knife leading to them eventually doing the splits. Whilst everyone had a knife (and some might come close in this game) I was never aware of any knives being used as weapons. Anyhow, if in any sort of confrontation all you had to do was raise a hand and shout "Pax" (meaning "Peace" in Latin) and for some mysterious reason you were safe. Similarly if a prowling Master was spotted when boys were doing something they shouldn't, the warning word, "Cave" (pronounced "K.V" and meaning "warning" in Latin) was urgently passed from boy to boy.

 

There was also a barber who visited a school. Everyone got a cut and there was never any discussion over which style would suit. We all got the same. Strange that we sat in a small room having our hair cut next to a large glass case of British stuffed birds. I wondered if we would turn out the same.

 

There were tennis courts and a swimming pool at the school. I didn't take tennis, but one summer a keep fit regime was started. At about 7.00 am we were taken to the tennis courts where we did press-ups, star jumps, and lots of exercises in the dewy, cool morning air. I remembering it lasting a week or so, and then strangely we never did it again.

 

We had rehearsals for Sports Day, practising marching onto the fields, when we would line up in front of the parents in white shorts, T-shirts and rubber plimsolls. We had to compete in at least two events. Not a natural runner I actually surprised myself by getting into the heats of the 100 yard hurdles one year. I couldn't jump consistently high enough to ensure I could clear the hurdles, so I developed a technique to deliberately hit the hurdle but make sure I never tripped on it. I was glad when they introduced a new sport called, "Throwing the cricket ball". Requiring one to take a short run and throw the ball as far as you could in the general direction of "away from you", it was a shame they never introduced this at national level as this might have been something I could have done reasonably well at

 

I had a garden. Those that wanted one were given a six by six plot to till. That's six feet by six feet. Almost everyone who had one turned them to carrots, radishes, lettuces and nasturtiums, which we were persuaded we could eat. Some added these into their Marmite sandwiches and gave mixed reviews.

 

Swimming at Brambletye was definitely to be avoided unless you were a frog or a newt……..and despite the name I was not one of the latter. Fed by a stream, this "pit" was filthy for all but a week of the year. It might have been natural, for it was full of the flora and fauna of East Sussex, but it was icy cold even in the middle of summer. Forced to swim its length as a test I would willingly have covered the distance at the fastest possible speed if it hadn't been for the heart seizures and cramps I got when first entering the water. Fortunately I never showed enough promise to get in the swimming team. How some boys could enthusiastically take up diving I shall never know.

 

In quieter times I enjoyed playing billiards in the library. Also there was a reasonable selection of books but it was Hornblower and the World War Two escape stories I enjoyed most. This was partly lived out in the upper reaches of the school. Removing some of the wood panels in the bathroom, we found we could climb into the roof space and travel extensively throughout the length and breadth of the school at night, above the dormitories and master's bedrooms. If this had been Colditz we would have built a glider up here and escaped to freedom!

 

Some of the fixed steel ladder fire-escapes added to the Colditz feel. Forbidden to use them unless there was a fire practice or real emergency, they were actually so dangerous it was only very rarely we went down them even in a drill.

 

Some steep stairs led to the sick bay in the highest part of the school. Catching something highly contagious was quite desirable as long as it wasn't too life threatening. This meant you were isolated in the sick bay, totally exempt from the normal routine, far from the reach of masters and officers and safely tucked up in the motherly care of the matrons. This was the place to have a good time! An outbreak of measles and chicken-pox was of little use to me as I had reasonable resistance to most diseases and only fell to them when most of the school had already got it. This meant the sick bay was already full and I usually ended up confined to my dormitory back under the gaze of the masters and officers.

 

On the return to each term posted on the notice board there would be all the important dates: start and finish of term, half term, Easter holidays, etc. the holidays were so short, and the terms seemed so long. When I first started at school we were all boarders – day pupils didn't start until 1971. A half term or Easter seemed such luxury. You got a Saturday, Sunday AND Monday off, all together. Normally I went to my grandparents who lived nearby. Once there were about four of us who had nowhere to go. We got to watch television and have jam sandwiches in Mr Ogle's bungalow as compensation! I used to fly unaccompanied to my parents in Germany each holiday or to Wick when they moved to the north of Scotland. Once my brother and I were caught up in the effects of a strike at Edinburgh airport.

 

From time to time they added cut outs of certain articles from the daily newspapers and I remember regular features on the Vietnam War and Cassius Clay who would fight any man in the ring with his fists, but refused to fight in a war.

 

Mail used to arrive regularly and was handed out after breakfast. Seeing my parents only in between terms, I felt particularly lucky having such loving parents who ensured I was always well supplied with very regular, long letters every week. Other boys, some sons of diplomatic staff based in Embassies around the world, saw their parents very rarely, not even going home in the holidays sometimes. Some were lucky to even get a card on their birthday. But most received a parcel from home on their birthday. These were handed out on the matron's landing where they had to be opened in front of the staff. Food, sweets and money were immediately confiscated to be saved and supplied to the individual on a rationed basis.

 

The school changed quite a bit towards the end of my time there as Mr Fowler-Watt was phased in as Headmaster. He had an aggressive look to him and the style of the school became more progressive. Unlike Mr Blencowe who had more of a pained look on his face when a boy's behavior frustrated him, Mr Fowler-Watt could explode in rage. The Scots breeding in him meant the songs of Gilbert & Sullivan were out for the school play and in came the ghouls, witches and blood letting of Shakespeare's Macbeth. Extensions were built to the school, and new Portacabin classes positioned on the ground that was once my garden. And then another class of boy arrived; the day boys, namby pambies who went home to their Mummies every night, and arrived by car, freshly washed and dressed each morning. There was even talk of girls joining the school soon! What was the place coming to?!

 

Having laboured through the Common Entrance Exams to Public School, I left Brambletye to join my parents and brothers now living in the far north of Scotland near John O'Groats. The difference could not have been more extreme. I passed into the comprehensive school with girls (!), straight into the highest stream without need for examination. This was a lucky streak as they were all sons and daughters of nuclear physicists, doctors and engineers imported from the higher echelons of the fast breeder nuclear industry, the Royal Navy and Rolls Royce. Even though I was always towards the lower end of the class, as each year went by, I was dragged along by the very high standards so that on finishing some 30 of the 32 in the class went on to University. Each night I would endure a journey involving two buses taking an hour and a quarter, sometimes battling through blizzards in the dark to deposit my brother, the cattleman's son and I at the end of the mile and a half farm road. We had the freedom to drive our own cars from there to the house even at the age of thirteen.

 

Which type of school was best for me? Both were best. Brambletye undoubtedly taught me self-discipline and respect, kept me fit and healthy. But without life at the comprehensive school I could have been scared of the outside world, completely institutionalised by the limits of the school boundaries and routines. But perhaps I should thank Brambletye for making me want to explore more, starting me on a journey in life that has so far taken me to almost 60 countries. Married now for twenty-five years, with three fine children and director of a highly respected business at Manchester airport I look back on life so far with no regrets and fond memories of my years at Brambletye. I am what I am much because of Brambletye. It's not all good: my wife still has to tell me to change my socks and underwear more frequently!

 

My name never did get on those big boards in the main hall, but featuring in four separate photos in Peter Blencowe's history of the school makes me realise that even though I never made the First Eleven, Second Eleven or even Third Eleven in football, it was the mix of characters and abilities that made the school what it was and every boy can be very proud to have been part of its history.

 

I was surprised, in 2008, to discover Brambletye Preparatory School had risen to become the most expensive prep school in the country.

 

www.spurnpoint.com/Spurn_Point.htm

  

Spurn is a very unique place in the British Islands. Three and a half miles long and only fifty metres wide in places.

Extending out in to the Humber Estuary from the Yorkshire coast it has always had a big affect to the navigation of all vessels over the years. Help to some and a danger or hindrance to others. This alone makes Spurn a unique place.

Spurn is made up of a series of sand and shingle banks held together with mainly Marram grass and Seabuckthorn. There are a series of sea defence works built by the Victorians and maintained by the Ministry of Defence, till they sold Spurn to the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust in the 1950s. The defences are in a poor state, breaking down and crumbling. This is making Spurn a very fragile place wide open to the ravages of the North Sea.

One of the most striking features of Spurn is the black and white lighthouse near to the end of Spurn. Now just an empty shell not used since it was closed down at dawn on the thirty first of October 1986.

There have been many Lighthouses on Spurn over the years the first recorded at around 1427. The present light was built from 1893 TO 1895. The small tower on the beach on the Estuary side was originally the low light. It was built and put in to operation at around 1852. This light was no longer needed when the present lighthouse was opened in 1895.At a later date the light was removed and it was used as a store for explosives and later as a water tower. The tank can still be seen on the top. When it was operational there was a raised walkway from the shore to the lighthouse so it could be reached at all stages of the tide.

The present lighthouse was built to replace an old lighthouse that was positioned just to the south of the present one. You can still see the round perimeter wall surrounding the old keepers cottages and the base of the old lighthouse which had to be demolished due to it settling on it's foundations making it unsafe.

The only light on Spurn today is a flashing green starboard light on the very end of the point and the fixed green lights marking the end of the Pilots jetty.

Because of Spurns ever moving position there have been many Lighthouses over the years. There is a very good book by George.de.BOAR, called History of the Spurn Lighthouses, produced by the East Yorkshire Local History Society. This is one of a series of books on local history.

  

www.spurnpoint.com/Around_and_about_at_Spurn.htm

  

Around and about there are plenty of places to eat and drink. Starting from the north of Spurn at Kilnsea there is the Riverside hotel offering good quality food drink and accommodation. Coming south towards Spurn and still in Kilnsea there is the Crown and Anchor pub. A welcoming place serving bar meals fine beers and offering bed and breakfast at very reasonable rates. At the crossroads before you turn towards Spurn there is the Spurn heritage coast visitors centre. Where there is a small cafe and exhibition. At the entrance Spurn point nature reserve is an information centre and bird observatory selling books pamphlets, etc., and the last toilet on Spurn.

Past the lighthouse is the last car park. Two hundred metres further on you find the Humber Lifeboat and Pilot stations. Near the houses is a Small caravan selling tea, coffee, cold cans, hot and cold food, crisps and sweets.

All are open all year round apart from the heritage centre which is open thought the season.

 

BIRD WATCHING.

Is a very popular pastime as Spurn is internationally famous for birds. There are up to two hundred species recorded at spurn every year. Some of which are extremely rare. The Marmora's Warbler seen at Spurn In June 1992 was only the third recorded in Britain.

 

SEA FISHING.

The beaches of Spurn provide some of the best sea fishing in the area, with Cod and Whiting and Flats being caught through the winter and Skate, Flats and Bass through the summer. There is sport to be had all the year.

At the very end of Spurn is deep water ideal for Cod but this only fishes best two hours either side of low water, the tide is to strong at other times. All along the seaward side of Spurn is good for all species of fish at all times though over high water being the better. The riverside of Spurn is very shallow and only produces Flats and the bass over high water.

 

THE BEACH.

 

The beaches at Spurn are of soft sand and shingle. Whichever way the wind is blowing you can just pop over the dunes to the outer side. There are fossils and all manners of things to find beach combing. Swimming is not safe any were near the point end as there are very strong tides at up to six knots at times. But in side Spurn around the point car park is perfect at high water. The beach does not shelf to fast and very little tide. You can have the place to your self at times, as Spurn is never really busy weekdays.#

A very popular pastime at Spurn is Fossil hunting. There is a good abundance of fossils to be found in amongst the pebbles and shingle.

The Shark Trust has a very interesting PDF file tell you all about Shark Skate and rays the mermaids purses you find on the beach are egg shells from sharks and Rays. Click the link to down load the Shark Trust Brochure.

 

WALKING.

Walking or strolling at spurn is very easy, as there are no hills. There are various sign posted paths up and down the point. For the fit a complete walk round the whole point is about 8 miles, taking in all the point round the point end and back to the "warren" information place at the start of Spurn. You will need good footwear, as much of the paths are sand. There is limited access for disabled, but not to the point end, as you have to go via the beach.

You can park your car at the point car park and walk round the point end and back to the car park about a mile, or just stroll around the point were you choose. The only place you are not allowed to go are down the pilot's jetty and the centre square of the Lifeboat houses.

In spring and early summer Spurn is covered with a large amount of wild flowers of all species.

There are common to the not so common; from Orchids to bluebells. I must remind you Spurn is a nature reserve and the picking of all flowers is prohibited. When visiting please enjoy Spurn, as it is a very beautiful place and leave only your footprints.

 

Horse Riding.

 

There is riding available nearby at the North Humberside Riding Centre. The stables are ideally located with rides along quiet country lanes, by-ways, plus miles of sandy beach and riverbanks. The cross-country course offers a variety of fences for both the novice and the more experienced rider.

 

www.spurnbirdobservatory.co.uk/

 

A Brief History of Spurn Bird Observatory

 

Following visits to Spurn by several members of the Yorkshire Naturalists' Union in the late 1930's, a communal log for ornithological observations was instituted in 1938. This included a roll-call of species, the beginnings of a recording system, which later became standard in bird observatories. Realising the potential of the Spurn peninsula for the regular observation of bird migration a group of enthusiasts, notably Ralph Chislett, George Ainsworth, John Lord and R.M. Garnett, had the idea of setting up a bird observatory, with the Warren Cottage at the northern end of the peninsula as an ideal headquarters. Unfortunately the outbreak of war forced them to put their plans on hold but shortly after hostilities ceased a lease for Warren Cottage was obtained from the War Department and the observatory was established shortly afterwards under the auspices of the Y.N.U. with the four members mentioned above forming the first committee. A preliminary meeting was held in September 1945 to decide on the site for a Heligoland trap, work on which was begun almost immediately and the first bird (a Blackbird) was ringed on November 17th. The first minuted committee meeting was held on March 9th 1946 and the observatory was opened to visitors at Whitsuntide that year.

Initially coverage was limited to the main migration seasons, being extended to winter weekends in the early 1950's to trap and ring some of the large numbers of Snow Buntings which used to occur at that time of year and gradually coverage was increased (whenever possible) to cover the late spring and summer. In 1959 there was an important development when the Yorkshire Naturalists' Trust (now the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust) became the owners of the peninsula and thus the observatory's landlord. In 1960 a full time warden was appointed by the Trust, and although having no official connection with the observatory the fact of having an observer on the peninsula year-round inevitably helped to improve the ornithological coverage. This was especially the case from 1964 when the current warden, Barry Spence, was appointed, in conjunction with the fact that an interest in birds and their migrations was steadily growing and more bird-watchers were staying at the observatory, often for longer periods.

When the observatory opened there was accommodation for seven visitors in Warren Cottage and facilities included two chemical toilets, the Warren Heligoland trap and an ex-army hut as a ringing hut. Over the next ten years a further five Heligoland traps were constructed along the peninsula, although today only three remain in existence. In 1959 the observatory gained the use of the Annexe, one of two ex W.D. bungalows built at the Warren during the early 1950's, thus increasing the accommodation capacity to seventeen and providing much improved toilet facilities. Over the years the accommodation and facilities have been gradually improved to try to make the visitor's stay at Spurn as comfortable as possible. Other improvements have also taken place, in 1968 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Point was converted into a ringing laboratory ready for the first B.T.O. Ringing Course, held in autumn of that year and in 1971 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Warren was also converted into a ringing laboratory. The other part of this building became a laboratory for the use of students of Leeds University but this also became available to the observatory in the mid 1980's when the University no longer had a use for it. Subsequently it was converted into a self-contained accommodation unit for two, complete with kitchen facilities, and although officially known by the somewhat unimaginative name of Room F (the rooms in the Annexe being known as Rooms A, C, D & E, - whatever happened to Room B?), it was somewhat irreverently christened "Dunbirdin" by regular visitors to Spurn.

In 1965 a sea-watching hut was erected east of the Warren beyond the line of the former railway track. Due to coastal erosion it became necessary to move this in late 1974, when it was hoped that it would last at least as long as it had in its first position. Alas this was not to be, as the rate of erosion increased dramatically in the mid 1970's, necessitating a further move in early December 1977. In that year a clay bank had been built across the field behind Warren Cottage (Clubley's field) to prevent the flooding of arable land by wind-blown sea water, but on January 11th 1978 Spurn suffered its worst flooding ever when a strong to gale-force north-westerly wind combined with a spring tide. In late 1981 due to extensive construction works at Easington a large quantity of boulder clay became available and this was used to build up and extend the bank across Clubley's field, south towards Black Hut and north beyond Big Hedge to join up with an existing bank (which had been built in 1974) behind the scrape. In 1982 the sea-watching hut was repositioned on top of this bank, where it remained until the bank itself was washed away in the early 1990's.

A number of other changes to the observatory recording area began to take place from the early 1970's, including extensive building operations at the Point, commencing in 1974, with the construction of a new jetty for the Humber Pilot boats, new housing for the Spurn Lifeboat crew and the conversion and renovation of various existing buildings for use by the Coastguard and the Pilots. In 1978 following damage to the existing road south of the Warren area a new tarmac road was laid to the west of the original one, this lasted until 1988 when a second "new road" loop had to be laid, followed in 1991 by the construction of the existing loop road running along the Humber shore from just south of the Warren to just beyond Black Hut. The construction of this road resulted in the destruction of the actual Black Hut, although the area still bears the name. In 1981 the lines of wartime concrete anti-tank blocks running from the seashore to the Canal Zone were removed to fill in a breach at the Narrow Neck. This resulted in the southward extension of the Scrape field by the farmer up to Big Hedge and the start of a gradual decline in the condition of this hedge and its attractiveness to birds. In 1982 a local resident excavated a pond for shooting purposes in the wet area adjoining the Canal Zone. This never really proved successful and the land was later purchased by the Y.W.T. and the pond enlarged to become what is now known as Canal Scrape. In 1984 a famous Spurn landmark, the Narrows "Hut", a wooden migration watch shelter which had stood at the Narrow Neck for twenty-three years, was set fire to by person or persons unknown and completely destroyed, it was replaced the following year by a more solid construction made from breeze-blocks.

A period of considerable change began in 1988 when the Spurn peninsula was designated as part of the Spurn Heritage Coast. Projects undertaken include the enlargement of the Canal Scrape mentioned above and the erection of a hide overlooking it, a hide overlooking the Humber wader roost at Chalk Bank, a public sea-watching hide alongside the observatory one, provision of additional car-parking space, the restoration of the short-turf habitat in the Chalk Bank area, provision of footpaths, etc. A major project was the renovation of the Blue Bell in Kilnsea for use as offices, an information centre and a small cafe, which became fully operational in 1995. Another fairly recent project has been the creation of another scrape/pond on Clubley's field.

In 1996 the observatory celebrated its fiftieth anniversary, and for the first time in its history SBO employed a full time seasonal warden. This position has since been expanded and the observatory now enjoys the services of a year- round warden. In 1998, with a view to the future, a small bungalow in Kilnsea was purchased with money bequeathed by the late John Weston, a long time committee member, who regrettably died in 1996. This was followed in 1999 by the purchase of a strip of land adjacent to the property and is now known as the ‘Church Field’, this is planted with a sacrificial crop every year, and has also had several groups of trees planted and a feeding station placed in the north-east corner. Access to this field is available by becoming a member of ‘Friends of Spurn Bird Observatory’, a venture set up in 2003 to eventually help with the building of a new observatory when the old one falls way to the sea.

 

 

www.spurnpoint.com/Spurn_Point.htm

  

Spurn is a very unique place in the British Islands. Three and a half miles long and only fifty metres wide in places.

Extending out in to the Humber Estuary from the Yorkshire coast it has always had a big affect to the navigation of all vessels over the years. Help to some and a danger or hindrance to others. This alone makes Spurn a unique place.

Spurn is made up of a series of sand and shingle banks held together with mainly Marram grass and Seabuckthorn. There are a series of sea defence works built by the Victorians and maintained by the Ministry of Defence, till they sold Spurn to the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust in the 1950s. The defences are in a poor state, breaking down and crumbling. This is making Spurn a very fragile place wide open to the ravages of the North Sea.

One of the most striking features of Spurn is the black and white lighthouse near to the end of Spurn. Now just an empty shell not used since it was closed down at dawn on the thirty first of October 1986.

There have been many Lighthouses on Spurn over the years the first recorded at around 1427. The present light was built from 1893 TO 1895. The small tower on the beach on the Estuary side was originally the low light. It was built and put in to operation at around 1852. This light was no longer needed when the present lighthouse was opened in 1895.At a later date the light was removed and it was used as a store for explosives and later as a water tower. The tank can still be seen on the top. When it was operational there was a raised walkway from the shore to the lighthouse so it could be reached at all stages of the tide.

The present lighthouse was built to replace an old lighthouse that was positioned just to the south of the present one. You can still see the round perimeter wall surrounding the old keepers cottages and the base of the old lighthouse which had to be demolished due to it settling on it's foundations making it unsafe.

The only light on Spurn today is a flashing green starboard light on the very end of the point and the fixed green lights marking the end of the Pilots jetty.

Because of Spurns ever moving position there have been many Lighthouses over the years. There is a very good book by George.de.BOAR, called History of the Spurn Lighthouses, produced by the East Yorkshire Local History Society. This is one of a series of books on local history.

  

www.spurnpoint.com/Around_and_about_at_Spurn.htm

  

Around and about there are plenty of places to eat and drink. Starting from the north of Spurn at Kilnsea there is the Riverside hotel offering good quality food drink and accommodation. Coming south towards Spurn and still in Kilnsea there is the Crown and Anchor pub. A welcoming place serving bar meals fine beers and offering bed and breakfast at very reasonable rates. At the crossroads before you turn towards Spurn there is the Spurn heritage coast visitors centre. Where there is a small cafe and exhibition. At the entrance Spurn point nature reserve is an information centre and bird observatory selling books pamphlets, etc., and the last toilet on Spurn.

Past the lighthouse is the last car park. Two hundred metres further on you find the Humber Lifeboat and Pilot stations. Near the houses is a Small caravan selling tea, coffee, cold cans, hot and cold food, crisps and sweets.

All are open all year round apart from the heritage centre which is open thought the season.

 

BIRD WATCHING.

Is a very popular pastime as Spurn is internationally famous for birds. There are up to two hundred species recorded at spurn every year. Some of which are extremely rare. The Marmora's Warbler seen at Spurn In June 1992 was only the third recorded in Britain.

 

SEA FISHING.

The beaches of Spurn provide some of the best sea fishing in the area, with Cod and Whiting and Flats being caught through the winter and Skate, Flats and Bass through the summer. There is sport to be had all the year.

At the very end of Spurn is deep water ideal for Cod but this only fishes best two hours either side of low water, the tide is to strong at other times. All along the seaward side of Spurn is good for all species of fish at all times though over high water being the better. The riverside of Spurn is very shallow and only produces Flats and the bass over high water.

 

THE BEACH.

 

The beaches at Spurn are of soft sand and shingle. Whichever way the wind is blowing you can just pop over the dunes to the outer side. There are fossils and all manners of things to find beach combing. Swimming is not safe any were near the point end as there are very strong tides at up to six knots at times. But in side Spurn around the point car park is perfect at high water. The beach does not shelf to fast and very little tide. You can have the place to your self at times, as Spurn is never really busy weekdays.#

A very popular pastime at Spurn is Fossil hunting. There is a good abundance of fossils to be found in amongst the pebbles and shingle.

The Shark Trust has a very interesting PDF file tell you all about Shark Skate and rays the mermaids purses you find on the beach are egg shells from sharks and Rays. Click the link to down load the Shark Trust Brochure.

 

WALKING.

Walking or strolling at spurn is very easy, as there are no hills. There are various sign posted paths up and down the point. For the fit a complete walk round the whole point is about 8 miles, taking in all the point round the point end and back to the "warren" information place at the start of Spurn. You will need good footwear, as much of the paths are sand. There is limited access for disabled, but not to the point end, as you have to go via the beach.

You can park your car at the point car park and walk round the point end and back to the car park about a mile, or just stroll around the point were you choose. The only place you are not allowed to go are down the pilot's jetty and the centre square of the Lifeboat houses.

In spring and early summer Spurn is covered with a large amount of wild flowers of all species.

There are common to the not so common; from Orchids to bluebells. I must remind you Spurn is a nature reserve and the picking of all flowers is prohibited. When visiting please enjoy Spurn, as it is a very beautiful place and leave only your footprints.

 

Horse Riding.

 

There is riding available nearby at the North Humberside Riding Centre. The stables are ideally located with rides along quiet country lanes, by-ways, plus miles of sandy beach and riverbanks. The cross-country course offers a variety of fences for both the novice and the more experienced rider.

 

www.spurnbirdobservatory.co.uk/

 

A Brief History of Spurn Bird Observatory

 

Following visits to Spurn by several members of the Yorkshire Naturalists' Union in the late 1930's, a communal log for ornithological observations was instituted in 1938. This included a roll-call of species, the beginnings of a recording system, which later became standard in bird observatories. Realising the potential of the Spurn peninsula for the regular observation of bird migration a group of enthusiasts, notably Ralph Chislett, George Ainsworth, John Lord and R.M. Garnett, had the idea of setting up a bird observatory, with the Warren Cottage at the northern end of the peninsula as an ideal headquarters. Unfortunately the outbreak of war forced them to put their plans on hold but shortly after hostilities ceased a lease for Warren Cottage was obtained from the War Department and the observatory was established shortly afterwards under the auspices of the Y.N.U. with the four members mentioned above forming the first committee. A preliminary meeting was held in September 1945 to decide on the site for a Heligoland trap, work on which was begun almost immediately and the first bird (a Blackbird) was ringed on November 17th. The first minuted committee meeting was held on March 9th 1946 and the observatory was opened to visitors at Whitsuntide that year.

Initially coverage was limited to the main migration seasons, being extended to winter weekends in the early 1950's to trap and ring some of the large numbers of Snow Buntings which used to occur at that time of year and gradually coverage was increased (whenever possible) to cover the late spring and summer. In 1959 there was an important development when the Yorkshire Naturalists' Trust (now the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust) became the owners of the peninsula and thus the observatory's landlord. In 1960 a full time warden was appointed by the Trust, and although having no official connection with the observatory the fact of having an observer on the peninsula year-round inevitably helped to improve the ornithological coverage. This was especially the case from 1964 when the current warden, Barry Spence, was appointed, in conjunction with the fact that an interest in birds and their migrations was steadily growing and more bird-watchers were staying at the observatory, often for longer periods.

When the observatory opened there was accommodation for seven visitors in Warren Cottage and facilities included two chemical toilets, the Warren Heligoland trap and an ex-army hut as a ringing hut. Over the next ten years a further five Heligoland traps were constructed along the peninsula, although today only three remain in existence. In 1959 the observatory gained the use of the Annexe, one of two ex W.D. bungalows built at the Warren during the early 1950's, thus increasing the accommodation capacity to seventeen and providing much improved toilet facilities. Over the years the accommodation and facilities have been gradually improved to try to make the visitor's stay at Spurn as comfortable as possible. Other improvements have also taken place, in 1968 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Point was converted into a ringing laboratory ready for the first B.T.O. Ringing Course, held in autumn of that year and in 1971 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Warren was also converted into a ringing laboratory. The other part of this building became a laboratory for the use of students of Leeds University but this also became available to the observatory in the mid 1980's when the University no longer had a use for it. Subsequently it was converted into a self-contained accommodation unit for two, complete with kitchen facilities, and although officially known by the somewhat unimaginative name of Room F (the rooms in the Annexe being known as Rooms A, C, D & E, - whatever happened to Room B?), it was somewhat irreverently christened "Dunbirdin" by regular visitors to Spurn.

In 1965 a sea-watching hut was erected east of the Warren beyond the line of the former railway track. Due to coastal erosion it became necessary to move this in late 1974, when it was hoped that it would last at least as long as it had in its first position. Alas this was not to be, as the rate of erosion increased dramatically in the mid 1970's, necessitating a further move in early December 1977. In that year a clay bank had been built across the field behind Warren Cottage (Clubley's field) to prevent the flooding of arable land by wind-blown sea water, but on January 11th 1978 Spurn suffered its worst flooding ever when a strong to gale-force north-westerly wind combined with a spring tide. In late 1981 due to extensive construction works at Easington a large quantity of boulder clay became available and this was used to build up and extend the bank across Clubley's field, south towards Black Hut and north beyond Big Hedge to join up with an existing bank (which had been built in 1974) behind the scrape. In 1982 the sea-watching hut was repositioned on top of this bank, where it remained until the bank itself was washed away in the early 1990's.

A number of other changes to the observatory recording area began to take place from the early 1970's, including extensive building operations at the Point, commencing in 1974, with the construction of a new jetty for the Humber Pilot boats, new housing for the Spurn Lifeboat crew and the conversion and renovation of various existing buildings for use by the Coastguard and the Pilots. In 1978 following damage to the existing road south of the Warren area a new tarmac road was laid to the west of the original one, this lasted until 1988 when a second "new road" loop had to be laid, followed in 1991 by the construction of the existing loop road running along the Humber shore from just south of the Warren to just beyond Black Hut. The construction of this road resulted in the destruction of the actual Black Hut, although the area still bears the name. In 1981 the lines of wartime concrete anti-tank blocks running from the seashore to the Canal Zone were removed to fill in a breach at the Narrow Neck. This resulted in the southward extension of the Scrape field by the farmer up to Big Hedge and the start of a gradual decline in the condition of this hedge and its attractiveness to birds. In 1982 a local resident excavated a pond for shooting purposes in the wet area adjoining the Canal Zone. This never really proved successful and the land was later purchased by the Y.W.T. and the pond enlarged to become what is now known as Canal Scrape. In 1984 a famous Spurn landmark, the Narrows "Hut", a wooden migration watch shelter which had stood at the Narrow Neck for twenty-three years, was set fire to by person or persons unknown and completely destroyed, it was replaced the following year by a more solid construction made from breeze-blocks.

A period of considerable change began in 1988 when the Spurn peninsula was designated as part of the Spurn Heritage Coast. Projects undertaken include the enlargement of the Canal Scrape mentioned above and the erection of a hide overlooking it, a hide overlooking the Humber wader roost at Chalk Bank, a public sea-watching hide alongside the observatory one, provision of additional car-parking space, the restoration of the short-turf habitat in the Chalk Bank area, provision of footpaths, etc. A major project was the renovation of the Blue Bell in Kilnsea for use as offices, an information centre and a small cafe, which became fully operational in 1995. Another fairly recent project has been the creation of another scrape/pond on Clubley's field.

In 1996 the observatory celebrated its fiftieth anniversary, and for the first time in its history SBO employed a full time seasonal warden. This position has since been expanded and the observatory now enjoys the services of a year- round warden. In 1998, with a view to the future, a small bungalow in Kilnsea was purchased with money bequeathed by the late John Weston, a long time committee member, who regrettably died in 1996. This was followed in 1999 by the purchase of a strip of land adjacent to the property and is now known as the ‘Church Field’, this is planted with a sacrificial crop every year, and has also had several groups of trees planted and a feeding station placed in the north-east corner. Access to this field is available by becoming a member of ‘Friends of Spurn Bird Observatory’, a venture set up in 2003 to eventually help with the building of a new observatory when the old one falls way to the sea.

 

This is a collaborative art collection where writers use my portraits to explore individual characters. As a long term project, I am hoping to publish a book containing the photographs and accompanying stories. Art, in both forms, has wonderfully varied interpretations and these are (hopefully) paired examples of how artists can work together to form more complex pieces.

 

As with my photographs, all stories published here are copyrighted.

 

Hope you enjoy and, as always, email me if you have questions, feedback, or wish to contribute.

 

Below is the first combined effort.

  

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Photography by, Cassandra M. Kammerer

Short story written by, S.J.L.

   

You will never learn my real name. Some of your predecessors have asked, one even pleaded, but boundaries exist and I am quite particular. You lost all freedom when you told me your name Douglas, even if the loss was not immediately perceptible, and only by extension of my own gracious nature are you able to make these self-indulgent inquiries now. Your struggling questions are amusing, but as fruitless as the group counseling sessions to overcome your substance addiction. My confidence in your ability to fail is complete, but I offer one last recommendation: accept the vast weakness within yourself before I finish my latte and our time is up. Already shaking with confusion? Lamentable, but thankfully this is not really about you.

 

Hollow. That is the description I first wrote on my notepad about you. I see your skepticism, but here is where I circled it. Right at the top, what does it read? Page One. It took less than one minute to fully diagnose you and I have, on several occasions, encapsulated you to my colleagues as such: hollow. We are professionals and the sharing of such information was done under strict ethical code, of course. They had similar men as patients, celebrities like yourself, and needed comparative data. It is what we do, you see, we aggregate data from the weak to bolster our understanding of how not to be. Then we publish articles and books, creating our canon of behavioral norms and expectations. I choose the word canon carefully, Douglas. Your mother, who was also a patient of mine before she took her own life, was deeply fixated on a canon of her own, the Catholic worldview of her youth: heaven and hell – or, perhaps more simplified, good and evil. It was the great pendulum swinging through the landscape of her mind. Have you ever glimpsed away from yourself to ponder what it might take for a Catholic to commit suicide? How fractured she needed to be?

 

Are you actually displaying emotions for her suddenly? Where were you when she took the hatchet to her arm? Incidentally, I have always respected her choice in tools. If the magazines are to be believed, you were in Monaco, halfway through a month-long binge. You denied the veracity of those photographs, even to me; but, looking at you now, I think you are ready to admit you left the country knowing she was crumbling before your eyes. You were too weak even to try.

 

As I was saying, my colleagues and I do not see the evil or good of men. We identify weakness and prescribe strength. People like your mother, taught to worship a collapsed god, cannot be helped because their foundation is based on the archaic treatises of goatherds. Centuries of reinterpretation cannot change the simple fact her savior committed suicide, paving the way for her own. Taught to emulate weakness, and unable to locate conviction, she crawls to me, expecting her terrors and self-hate to disappear – which is not how therapy works, as you now fully appreciate.

 

How long did you wait after learning of her death before seeking my guidance? Three weeks? I remember you wore a disguise when you came through my office door. Yes, of course it was a disguise. Even in your deepest alcoholic engorgement, you never allowed yourself to be unshaven, let alone wear an Orioles ball cap. Please don’t insult my intelligence by claiming it was grief. Your girlfriend, who you may not realize has been on my weekly itinerary for over a year, told me what you said enroute to the funeral. Do you remember? No? You said, “Mom was a deranged lunatic. I am leaving this sideshow early because La Traviata opens tonight.” And you did.

 

Why am I saying these things? This is our last session, Douglas, and soon you will have found the cure to your hate-filled anxieties and the logical conclusion to your addiction. No, this is not tough love, for at least two reasons: first, a doctor cannot love her patient and remain objective; second, as previously stated, you are merely the thin shell of a human being and unworthy of anyone’s love. Hollow, remember? I am not passing judgment; I am treating you for an illness, one you have carried since you were eight years old. We have discussed the incident several times, so it should come as no shock the genesis was with the wagon, your friend Christine, and those two boys. She begged for your help when they were chasing her, but the boys threatened to take your wagon. She had even kissed you at the roller rink three weeks prior and you had exchanged valentine’s cards. For such a young age, the two of you had shared much. But you did not get out of your wagon for Christine, and those two boys brutalized her. Her parents moved to Florida shortly thereafter and you never saw her after that day. Your mother told me once she prayed desperately for that girl to pull through her surgeries, but what help did you offer?

 

You understood the ramifications of sticks and stones, right? Did their yells of victory or her screams of pain hurt you? Did you cry for her or only for yourself? You did not become feeble that day, for all children are; rather, it was the day you learned about the connection between cowardice and survival. Your addiction is the outward manifestation of the fear and weakness permeating your mind – it is the gaseous cloud filling the empty space normal people lack.

 

No, I don’t mind if you have a drink. I anticipated you might and had my secretary ensure the mini-bar was properly stocked. We are celebrating, after all – me with my latte and you with your bourbon. There is no need to bark obscenities, Douglas. You cannot visit a surgeon and become agitated when her delicate scalpel technique causes tissue to swell. The pain is natural and expected and the disease you have coruscating through your system has had twenty-nine years to fester.

 

Yes, I am a surgeon. I carve apart the minds and experiences of my patients and remove desiccation when I am allowed. Therapy is artfully complex in this way – regulatory and behavioral obstacles at every turn. Your girlfriend, Evelyn, understands this, but your mother did not. She needed me to cut her, wept for me to do so, but never once gave me permission. You are miserably similar to her in this way, refusing to sign the necessary paperwork. I am, in a sense, your five hundred dollar an hour barfly; or was, since our relationship is now over.

 

Time, nipping at your ankles, has caught hold finally. You have run dry on individuals to blame and the fiasco of your life will be reprinted for the slathering masses to devour. I know it can be heartbreaking to learn the thoughts you labeled as hope in your mind are false; however, you simply must appreciate those thoughts were never true. You would never consent to hope, not Douglas Clarion. Yes, you may have another drink; in fact, consider all three of those bottles a gift.

 

Now why would you ask me such a question? Vain until your last breath, Douglas. I grasp why women adore you, but it would be inappropriate for me to officially comment on your attractiveness. No, you may not kiss me, but it was sweet of you to ask. It lets me know you recognize I am in control. Control is the bedrock of civilized life, be it social or technological. Let’s examine your own civility: even now, knowing you will die soon if you continue, you are unable to prevent your own hand from raising that glass to your mouth; your life is chronicled for you by a professional mob armed with telescoping lenses and legally sanctioned deceit; food, clothing, and transportation is handled by servants, much like a toddler; and Evelyn counts herself fortunate if you can manage an erection more than once a month. Has there ever been anything more pathetic than a sagging philanderer?

 

No need to scowl, Douglas – it makes you seem ill-tempered and foul. I am explaining something critical, if you would pay attention. For all your wealth and luxury, you are remarkably uncivilized. By extension, I cannot in good conscience grant you the rights and privileges I do normal human beings. It is one of the fundamental reasons you are no longer my patient – I am not a veterinarian, after all.

 

There are tissues on the end-table if you wish to dry up your face, but it is time to stand up from the couch. No, I do not find you contemptible because you are crying. Everyone cries, Douglas, even me. No, I will never cry over you because you are a disgrace, filled with purposeless and unguided shame.

 

Which brings our session to its inevitable close. My latte is finished and you have managed, amazingly, to consume the entire bottle of bourbon. Be sure to try my other gifts after you arrive home tonight. I pronounce you cured. Yes, just like that. Please, Douglas, do not ruin the moment with more obscenities. I want to remember you exactly as you are right now. My secretary will collect the final payment on your way out.

 

* * * *

 

Good Morning, Jenny. Who is my nine o’clock? Mrs. Garnier? Are her files on my desk already? Very well. No, I was running late today and did not read the newspaper, what happened? Mr. Clarion was found dead in his penthouse? Was it an overdose? My my, the paparazzi will have a field day with this tragic story. Call Evelyn Wilson and schedule her tomorrow morning and cancel Garnier and my other morning appointments. I am feeling exultant today, Jenny, and will be at Linney’s having a spa facial – care to join me? My treat… Excellent. I have wanted to pick your brain for ages and this is the perfect opportunity.

This is a scanned print from a collection of photographs taken by the late Jim Taylor A number of years ago I was offered a large number of photographs taken by Jim Taylor, a transport photographer based in Huddersfield. The collection, 30,000 prints,20,000 negatives – and copyright! – had been offered to me and one of the national transport magazines previously by a friend of Jims, on behalf of Jims wife. I initially turned them down, already having over 30,000 of my owns prints filed away and taking space up. Several months later the prints were still for sale – at what was, apparently, the going rate . It was a lot of money and I deliberated for quite a while before deciding to buy them. I did however buy them directly from Jims wife and she delivered them personally – just to quash the occasional rumour from people who can’t mind their own business. Although some prints were sold elsewhere, particularly the popular big fleet stuff, I should have the negatives, unfortunately they came to me in a random mix, 1200 to a box, without any sort of indexing and as such it would be impossible to match negatives to prints, or, to even find a print of any particular vehicle. I have only ever looked at a handful myself unless I am scanning them. The prints are generally in excellent condition and I initially stored them in a bedroom without ever looking at any of them. In 2006 I built an extension and they had to be well protected from dust and moved a few times. Ultimately my former 6x7 box room office has become their (and my own work’s) permanent home.

  

It was the development of our second generation website with its photo gallery located quite cleverly on Flickr, rather than making our own site unwieldy, that led me to start uploading photos to Flickr. It was initially for my own and historic company photos but with unlimited storage and reasonable upload speeds I soon started uploading other stuff. Scanning one of Jims photos was a random choice one winters evening, initially very slow and time consuming I nevertheless stuck with it and things just snowballed. It was obvious that there are a lot of people interested in this type of thing. I can now scan and edit in Photoshop in a minute or so per print. Out of over 30,000 images on Flickr I have around 3500 of Jims photos. I don’t promote myself on Flickr – at all! So my viewing figures grow organically, without using the mutual favourite awarding etc. that is endemic on Flickr. The statistics tell me that travel (I don’t do porn) is the most popular genre. My travel photos, particularly later stuff receive far more views than transport. The transport stuff will hit a ceiling and then build very slowly over time, with lots of people coming back to them again and again. Travel of course is far more inclusive but there is an unbelievable amount out there, far more than the 1980’s UK transport stuff. The travel and landscape photos have pushed the views past 12 million, with a current average of around 40,000 views a day, peaking with an upload from a new destination at around 90,000 views. I recall being excited with a 100 views.

 

My reasons for buying the collection were mixed. On the one hand it was a unique snapshot of the transport industry, predominantly in the north of England, from around 1980 onwards. This was my patch and my era. I passed my Class One a few days after my 21st birthday in 1980 and spent the next 17 years being a Jack the Lad on the road, waving at and crossing paths with many of the wagons that Jim photographed, in fact my owns wagons are in the mix. Jim did travel to Scotland extensively and into the Southern Hemisphere a number of times hence there is a broad range of material in his collection. I knew I wouldn’t get a chance like it again. On the other hand the reason I gave up hauling scrap around the North of England in a Foden eight wheeler was the diagnosis of an incurable form of Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma at the age of 38, although a low grade cancer I was already a widower with four young children and I was looking at an uncertain future and it terrified me. I wasn’t remotely ill but was treated with Chemotherapy, again, I wasn’t ill and didn’t need time off work. The shock however brought me to my senses and I came off the road, I joined the normal world, up at 6.30 not 4.30am. I didn’t realise it at the time but I had closed the door on my wagon driving days. I was worried that, at some point, I wouldn’t be able to work physically hard, bearing in mind the family business is a scrap yard – a physical sort of environment. I had it in my mind that there was a possibility that I could use my own and Jims photos to supplement my income, I had four kids to feed and I knew there wouldn’t be any family financial support – it’s not that sort of family. I still have the NHL although thankfully you wouldn’t know it. This type of thing is now considered treatable – not curable- after around forty endoscopies, a 100 stomach biopsies, bone marrow samples and endless scans of different types, I may well get to die of old age, not cancer. It was discovered almost by accident at the time, not illness on my part, and long may it stay that way! The lack of illness made the shock all the greater though.

 

I hope to avoid posting images that Jim had not taken his self, however should I inadvertently infringe another photographers copyright, please inform me by email and I will resolve the issue immediately. There are copyright issues with some of the photographs that were sold to me. A Flickr member from Scotland drew my attention to some of his own work amongst the first uploads of Jims work. I had a quick look through some of the 30 boxes of prints and decided that for the time being the safest thing for me to do was withdraw the majority of the earlier uploaded scans and deal with the problem – which I did. whilst the vast majority of the prints are Jims, there is a problem defining copyright of some of them, this is something that the seller did not make clear at the time. I am reasonably confident that I have since been successful in identifying Jims own work. His early work consists of many thousands of lustre 6x4 prints which are difficult to scan well, later work is almost entirely 7x5 glossy, much easier to scan. Not all of the prints are pin sharp but I can generally print successfully to A4 from a scan.

 

You may notice photographs being duplicated in this Album, unfortunately there are multiple copies of many prints (for swapping) and as I have to have a system of archiving and backing up I can only guess - using memory - if I have scanned a print before. The bigger fleets have so many similar vehicles and registration numbers that it is impossible to get it right all of the time. It is easier to scan and process a print than check my files - on three different PC's - for duplicates. There has not been, nor will there ever be, any intention to knowingly breach anyone else's copyright. I have presented the Jim Taylor collection as exactly that-The Jim Taylor Collection- his work not mine, my own work is quite obviously mine.

 

Unfortunately many truck spotters have swapped and traded their work without copyright marking it as theirs. These people never anticipated the ease with which images would be shared online in the future. I would guess that having swapped and traded photos for many years that it is almost impossible to control their future use. Anyone wanting to control the future use of their work would have been well advised to copyright mark their work (as many did) and would be well advised not to post them on photo sharing sites without a watermark as the whole point of these sites is to share the image, it is very easy for those that wish, to lift any image, despite security settings, indeed, Flickr itself, warns you that this is the case. It was this abuse and theft of my material that led me to watermark all of my later uploads. I may yet withdraw non watermarked photos, I haven’t decided yet.

 

To anyone reading the above it will be quite obvious that I can’t provide information regarding specific photos or potential future uploads – I didn’t take them! There are many vehicles that were well known to me as Jim only lived down the road from me (although I didn’t know him), however scanning, titling, tagging and uploading is laborious and time consuming enough, I do however provide a fair amount of information with my own transport (and other) photos. I am aware that there are requests from other Flickr users that are unanswered, I stumble across them months or years after they were posted, this isn’t deliberate. Some weekends one or two “enthusiasts” can add many hundreds of photos as favourites, this pushes requests that are in the comments section ten or twenty pages out of sight and I miss them. I also have notifications switched off, I receive around 50 emails a day through work and I don’t want even more from Flickr. Other requests, like many other things, I just plain forget – no excuses! Uploads of Jims photos will be infrequent as it is a boring pastime and I would much rather work on my own output.

 

None of my photographs are free to use – without my permission - only free to view! If you breach my copyright you are stealing what is mine and if I find out, I will pursue the case until you rectify the situation. Arguments that attempt to justify copyright theft are just excuses for theft from people with little or no understanding of copyright law – or more frequently- deliberate, selective, misinterpretation of the law – to suit their own ends. I have never knowingly refused a reasonable request, I don’t join groups but am quite happy for people to add photos to groups. I dislike exchanging long and time consuming emails – I prefer to talk on the phone, being the opposite of anti-social in person, you can’t shut me up. I am generally speaking an anti-social, social networker, I just don’t have the time for it, in fact, I joke that I am going to start a social network for internet anti-social people, you’ll just register your name and that’s it – no networking and endless mindless twaddle. Face-less Book? The antidote to Facebook. I like to get out and chat to people face to face and welcome customers with an interest in photography in to my office to chat on a regular basis. I also print – and give- A4 prints to many of the drivers that visit our yard. I photograph wagons and plant that I come into contact with in a day’s work I don’t go looking to photograph them in my free time. Wagons are a necessary evil in my life these days and they cost me money – every day! For the extensive story and history of JB Schofield &sons Ltd look here; www.jbschofieldandsons.co.uk/

 

So far photography remains a hobby, and I refuse any offers to turn it into a business, the regulations surrounding scrap and transport and the running of the yard keep me occupied most of the time. In my free time I cycle hard for fitness, walk hard for pleasure, fitness, and the challenge, take photos for pleasure and the challenge, edit them because I have to, and lastly, drink wine because I want to. There isn't time for another business. The kids are now adults and all of them work for me, and with me, another challenge.

 

 

www.spurnpoint.com/Spurn_Point.htm

  

Spurn is a very unique place in the British Islands. Three and a half miles long and only fifty metres wide in places.

Extending out in to the Humber Estuary from the Yorkshire coast it has always had a big affect to the navigation of all vessels over the years. Help to some and a danger or hindrance to others. This alone makes Spurn a unique place.

Spurn is made up of a series of sand and shingle banks held together with mainly Marram grass and Seabuckthorn. There are a series of sea defence works built by the Victorians and maintained by the Ministry of Defence, till they sold Spurn to the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust in the 1950s. The defences are in a poor state, breaking down and crumbling. This is making Spurn a very fragile place wide open to the ravages of the North Sea.

One of the most striking features of Spurn is the black and white lighthouse near to the end of Spurn. Now just an empty shell not used since it was closed down at dawn on the thirty first of October 1986.

There have been many Lighthouses on Spurn over the years the first recorded at around 1427. The present light was built from 1893 TO 1895. The small tower on the beach on the Estuary side was originally the low light. It was built and put in to operation at around 1852. This light was no longer needed when the present lighthouse was opened in 1895.At a later date the light was removed and it was used as a store for explosives and later as a water tower. The tank can still be seen on the top. When it was operational there was a raised walkway from the shore to the lighthouse so it could be reached at all stages of the tide.

The present lighthouse was built to replace an old lighthouse that was positioned just to the south of the present one. You can still see the round perimeter wall surrounding the old keepers cottages and the base of the old lighthouse which had to be demolished due to it settling on it's foundations making it unsafe.

The only light on Spurn today is a flashing green starboard light on the very end of the point and the fixed green lights marking the end of the Pilots jetty.

Because of Spurns ever moving position there have been many Lighthouses over the years. There is a very good book by George.de.BOAR, called History of the Spurn Lighthouses, produced by the East Yorkshire Local History Society. This is one of a series of books on local history.

  

www.spurnpoint.com/Around_and_about_at_Spurn.htm

  

Around and about there are plenty of places to eat and drink. Starting from the north of Spurn at Kilnsea there is the Riverside hotel offering good quality food drink and accommodation. Coming south towards Spurn and still in Kilnsea there is the Crown and Anchor pub. A welcoming place serving bar meals fine beers and offering bed and breakfast at very reasonable rates. At the crossroads before you turn towards Spurn there is the Spurn heritage coast visitors centre. Where there is a small cafe and exhibition. At the entrance Spurn point nature reserve is an information centre and bird observatory selling books pamphlets, etc., and the last toilet on Spurn.

Past the lighthouse is the last car park. Two hundred metres further on you find the Humber Lifeboat and Pilot stations. Near the houses is a Small caravan selling tea, coffee, cold cans, hot and cold food, crisps and sweets.

All are open all year round apart from the heritage centre which is open thought the season.

 

BIRD WATCHING.

Is a very popular pastime as Spurn is internationally famous for birds. There are up to two hundred species recorded at spurn every year. Some of which are extremely rare. The Marmora's Warbler seen at Spurn In June 1992 was only the third recorded in Britain.

 

SEA FISHING.

The beaches of Spurn provide some of the best sea fishing in the area, with Cod and Whiting and Flats being caught through the winter and Skate, Flats and Bass through the summer. There is sport to be had all the year.

At the very end of Spurn is deep water ideal for Cod but this only fishes best two hours either side of low water, the tide is to strong at other times. All along the seaward side of Spurn is good for all species of fish at all times though over high water being the better. The riverside of Spurn is very shallow and only produces Flats and the bass over high water.

 

THE BEACH.

 

The beaches at Spurn are of soft sand and shingle. Whichever way the wind is blowing you can just pop over the dunes to the outer side. There are fossils and all manners of things to find beach combing. Swimming is not safe any were near the point end as there are very strong tides at up to six knots at times. But in side Spurn around the point car park is perfect at high water. The beach does not shelf to fast and very little tide. You can have the place to your self at times, as Spurn is never really busy weekdays.#

A very popular pastime at Spurn is Fossil hunting. There is a good abundance of fossils to be found in amongst the pebbles and shingle.

The Shark Trust has a very interesting PDF file tell you all about Shark Skate and rays the mermaids purses you find on the beach are egg shells from sharks and Rays. Click the link to down load the Shark Trust Brochure.

 

WALKING.

Walking or strolling at spurn is very easy, as there are no hills. There are various sign posted paths up and down the point. For the fit a complete walk round the whole point is about 8 miles, taking in all the point round the point end and back to the "warren" information place at the start of Spurn. You will need good footwear, as much of the paths are sand. There is limited access for disabled, but not to the point end, as you have to go via the beach.

You can park your car at the point car park and walk round the point end and back to the car park about a mile, or just stroll around the point were you choose. The only place you are not allowed to go are down the pilot's jetty and the centre square of the Lifeboat houses.

In spring and early summer Spurn is covered with a large amount of wild flowers of all species.

There are common to the not so common; from Orchids to bluebells. I must remind you Spurn is a nature reserve and the picking of all flowers is prohibited. When visiting please enjoy Spurn, as it is a very beautiful place and leave only your footprints.

 

Horse Riding.

 

There is riding available nearby at the North Humberside Riding Centre. The stables are ideally located with rides along quiet country lanes, by-ways, plus miles of sandy beach and riverbanks. The cross-country course offers a variety of fences for both the novice and the more experienced rider.

 

www.spurnbirdobservatory.co.uk/

 

A Brief History of Spurn Bird Observatory

 

Following visits to Spurn by several members of the Yorkshire Naturalists' Union in the late 1930's, a communal log for ornithological observations was instituted in 1938. This included a roll-call of species, the beginnings of a recording system, which later became standard in bird observatories. Realising the potential of the Spurn peninsula for the regular observation of bird migration a group of enthusiasts, notably Ralph Chislett, George Ainsworth, John Lord and R.M. Garnett, had the idea of setting up a bird observatory, with the Warren Cottage at the northern end of the peninsula as an ideal headquarters. Unfortunately the outbreak of war forced them to put their plans on hold but shortly after hostilities ceased a lease for Warren Cottage was obtained from the War Department and the observatory was established shortly afterwards under the auspices of the Y.N.U. with the four members mentioned above forming the first committee. A preliminary meeting was held in September 1945 to decide on the site for a Heligoland trap, work on which was begun almost immediately and the first bird (a Blackbird) was ringed on November 17th. The first minuted committee meeting was held on March 9th 1946 and the observatory was opened to visitors at Whitsuntide that year.

Initially coverage was limited to the main migration seasons, being extended to winter weekends in the early 1950's to trap and ring some of the large numbers of Snow Buntings which used to occur at that time of year and gradually coverage was increased (whenever possible) to cover the late spring and summer. In 1959 there was an important development when the Yorkshire Naturalists' Trust (now the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust) became the owners of the peninsula and thus the observatory's landlord. In 1960 a full time warden was appointed by the Trust, and although having no official connection with the observatory the fact of having an observer on the peninsula year-round inevitably helped to improve the ornithological coverage. This was especially the case from 1964 when the current warden, Barry Spence, was appointed, in conjunction with the fact that an interest in birds and their migrations was steadily growing and more bird-watchers were staying at the observatory, often for longer periods.

When the observatory opened there was accommodation for seven visitors in Warren Cottage and facilities included two chemical toilets, the Warren Heligoland trap and an ex-army hut as a ringing hut. Over the next ten years a further five Heligoland traps were constructed along the peninsula, although today only three remain in existence. In 1959 the observatory gained the use of the Annexe, one of two ex W.D. bungalows built at the Warren during the early 1950's, thus increasing the accommodation capacity to seventeen and providing much improved toilet facilities. Over the years the accommodation and facilities have been gradually improved to try to make the visitor's stay at Spurn as comfortable as possible. Other improvements have also taken place, in 1968 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Point was converted into a ringing laboratory ready for the first B.T.O. Ringing Course, held in autumn of that year and in 1971 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Warren was also converted into a ringing laboratory. The other part of this building became a laboratory for the use of students of Leeds University but this also became available to the observatory in the mid 1980's when the University no longer had a use for it. Subsequently it was converted into a self-contained accommodation unit for two, complete with kitchen facilities, and although officially known by the somewhat unimaginative name of Room F (the rooms in the Annexe being known as Rooms A, C, D & E, - whatever happened to Room B?), it was somewhat irreverently christened "Dunbirdin" by regular visitors to Spurn.

In 1965 a sea-watching hut was erected east of the Warren beyond the line of the former railway track. Due to coastal erosion it became necessary to move this in late 1974, when it was hoped that it would last at least as long as it had in its first position. Alas this was not to be, as the rate of erosion increased dramatically in the mid 1970's, necessitating a further move in early December 1977. In that year a clay bank had been built across the field behind Warren Cottage (Clubley's field) to prevent the flooding of arable land by wind-blown sea water, but on January 11th 1978 Spurn suffered its worst flooding ever when a strong to gale-force north-westerly wind combined with a spring tide. In late 1981 due to extensive construction works at Easington a large quantity of boulder clay became available and this was used to build up and extend the bank across Clubley's field, south towards Black Hut and north beyond Big Hedge to join up with an existing bank (which had been built in 1974) behind the scrape. In 1982 the sea-watching hut was repositioned on top of this bank, where it remained until the bank itself was washed away in the early 1990's.

A number of other changes to the observatory recording area began to take place from the early 1970's, including extensive building operations at the Point, commencing in 1974, with the construction of a new jetty for the Humber Pilot boats, new housing for the Spurn Lifeboat crew and the conversion and renovation of various existing buildings for use by the Coastguard and the Pilots. In 1978 following damage to the existing road south of the Warren area a new tarmac road was laid to the west of the original one, this lasted until 1988 when a second "new road" loop had to be laid, followed in 1991 by the construction of the existing loop road running along the Humber shore from just south of the Warren to just beyond Black Hut. The construction of this road resulted in the destruction of the actual Black Hut, although the area still bears the name. In 1981 the lines of wartime concrete anti-tank blocks running from the seashore to the Canal Zone were removed to fill in a breach at the Narrow Neck. This resulted in the southward extension of the Scrape field by the farmer up to Big Hedge and the start of a gradual decline in the condition of this hedge and its attractiveness to birds. In 1982 a local resident excavated a pond for shooting purposes in the wet area adjoining the Canal Zone. This never really proved successful and the land was later purchased by the Y.W.T. and the pond enlarged to become what is now known as Canal Scrape. In 1984 a famous Spurn landmark, the Narrows "Hut", a wooden migration watch shelter which had stood at the Narrow Neck for twenty-three years, was set fire to by person or persons unknown and completely destroyed, it was replaced the following year by a more solid construction made from breeze-blocks.

A period of considerable change began in 1988 when the Spurn peninsula was designated as part of the Spurn Heritage Coast. Projects undertaken include the enlargement of the Canal Scrape mentioned above and the erection of a hide overlooking it, a hide overlooking the Humber wader roost at Chalk Bank, a public sea-watching hide alongside the observatory one, provision of additional car-parking space, the restoration of the short-turf habitat in the Chalk Bank area, provision of footpaths, etc. A major project was the renovation of the Blue Bell in Kilnsea for use as offices, an information centre and a small cafe, which became fully operational in 1995. Another fairly recent project has been the creation of another scrape/pond on Clubley's field.

In 1996 the observatory celebrated its fiftieth anniversary, and for the first time in its history SBO employed a full time seasonal warden. This position has since been expanded and the observatory now enjoys the services of a year- round warden. In 1998, with a view to the future, a small bungalow in Kilnsea was purchased with money bequeathed by the late John Weston, a long time committee member, who regrettably died in 1996. This was followed in 1999 by the purchase of a strip of land adjacent to the property and is now known as the ‘Church Field’, this is planted with a sacrificial crop every year, and has also had several groups of trees planted and a feeding station placed in the north-east corner. Access to this field is available by becoming a member of ‘Friends of Spurn Bird Observatory’, a venture set up in 2003 to eventually help with the building of a new observatory when the old one falls way to the sea.

 

A view to the Humber Estuary from Spurn.

 

www.spurnpoint.com/Spurn_Point.htm

  

Spurn is a very unique place in the British Islands. Three and a half miles long and only fifty metres wide in places.

Extending out in to the Humber Estuary from the Yorkshire coast it has always had a big affect to the navigation of all vessels over the years. Help to some and a danger or hindrance to others. This alone makes Spurn a unique place.

Spurn is made up of a series of sand and shingle banks held together with mainly Marram grass and Seabuckthorn. There are a series of sea defence works built by the Victorians and maintained by the Ministry of Defence, till they sold Spurn to the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust in the 1950s. The defences are in a poor state, breaking down and crumbling. This is making Spurn a very fragile place wide open to the ravages of the North Sea.

One of the most striking features of Spurn is the black and white lighthouse near to the end of Spurn. Now just an empty shell not used since it was closed down at dawn on the thirty first of October 1986.

There have been many Lighthouses on Spurn over the years the first recorded at around 1427. The present light was built from 1893 TO 1895. The small tower on the beach on the Estuary side was originally the low light. It was built and put in to operation at around 1852. This light was no longer needed when the present lighthouse was opened in 1895.At a later date the light was removed and it was used as a store for explosives and later as a water tower. The tank can still be seen on the top. When it was operational there was a raised walkway from the shore to the lighthouse so it could be reached at all stages of the tide.

The present lighthouse was built to replace an old lighthouse that was positioned just to the south of the present one. You can still see the round perimeter wall surrounding the old keepers cottages and the base of the old lighthouse which had to be demolished due to it settling on it's foundations making it unsafe.

The only light on Spurn today is a flashing green starboard light on the very end of the point and the fixed green lights marking the end of the Pilots jetty.

Because of Spurns ever moving position there have been many Lighthouses over the years. There is a very good book by George.de.BOAR, called History of the Spurn Lighthouses, produced by the East Yorkshire Local History Society. This is one of a series of books on local history.

  

www.spurnpoint.com/Around_and_about_at_Spurn.htm

  

Around and about there are plenty of places to eat and drink. Starting from the north of Spurn at Kilnsea there is the Riverside hotel offering good quality food drink and accommodation. Coming south towards Spurn and still in Kilnsea there is the Crown and Anchor pub. A welcoming place serving bar meals fine beers and offering bed and breakfast at very reasonable rates. At the crossroads before you turn towards Spurn there is the Spurn heritage coast visitors centre. Where there is a small cafe and exhibition. At the entrance Spurn point nature reserve is an information centre and bird observatory selling books pamphlets, etc., and the last toilet on Spurn.

Past the lighthouse is the last car park. Two hundred metres further on you find the Humber Lifeboat and Pilot stations. Near the houses is a Small caravan selling tea, coffee, cold cans, hot and cold food, crisps and sweets.

All are open all year round apart from the heritage centre which is open thought the season.

 

BIRD WATCHING.

Is a very popular pastime as Spurn is internationally famous for birds. There are up to two hundred species recorded at spurn every year. Some of which are extremely rare. The Marmora's Warbler seen at Spurn In June 1992 was only the third recorded in Britain.

 

SEA FISHING.

The beaches of Spurn provide some of the best sea fishing in the area, with Cod and Whiting and Flats being caught through the winter and Skate, Flats and Bass through the summer. There is sport to be had all the year.

At the very end of Spurn is deep water ideal for Cod but this only fishes best two hours either side of low water, the tide is to strong at other times. All along the seaward side of Spurn is good for all species of fish at all times though over high water being the better. The riverside of Spurn is very shallow and only produces Flats and the bass over high water.

 

THE BEACH.

 

The beaches at Spurn are of soft sand and shingle. Whichever way the wind is blowing you can just pop over the dunes to the outer side. There are fossils and all manners of things to find beach combing. Swimming is not safe any were near the point end as there are very strong tides at up to six knots at times. But in side Spurn around the point car park is perfect at high water. The beach does not shelf to fast and very little tide. You can have the place to your self at times, as Spurn is never really busy weekdays.#

A very popular pastime at Spurn is Fossil hunting. There is a good abundance of fossils to be found in amongst the pebbles and shingle.

The Shark Trust has a very interesting PDF file tell you all about Shark Skate and rays the mermaids purses you find on the beach are egg shells from sharks and Rays. Click the link to down load the Shark Trust Brochure.

 

WALKING.

Walking or strolling at spurn is very easy, as there are no hills. There are various sign posted paths up and down the point. For the fit a complete walk round the whole point is about 8 miles, taking in all the point round the point end and back to the "warren" information place at the start of Spurn. You will need good footwear, as much of the paths are sand. There is limited access for disabled, but not to the point end, as you have to go via the beach.

You can park your car at the point car park and walk round the point end and back to the car park about a mile, or just stroll around the point were you choose. The only place you are not allowed to go are down the pilot's jetty and the centre square of the Lifeboat houses.

In spring and early summer Spurn is covered with a large amount of wild flowers of all species.

There are common to the not so common; from Orchids to bluebells. I must remind you Spurn is a nature reserve and the picking of all flowers is prohibited. When visiting please enjoy Spurn, as it is a very beautiful place and leave only your footprints.

 

Horse Riding.

 

There is riding available nearby at the North Humberside Riding Centre. The stables are ideally located with rides along quiet country lanes, by-ways, plus miles of sandy beach and riverbanks. The cross-country course offers a variety of fences for both the novice and the more experienced rider.

 

www.spurnbirdobservatory.co.uk/

 

A Brief History of Spurn Bird Observatory

 

Following visits to Spurn by several members of the Yorkshire Naturalists' Union in the late 1930's, a communal log for ornithological observations was instituted in 1938. This included a roll-call of species, the beginnings of a recording system, which later became standard in bird observatories. Realising the potential of the Spurn peninsula for the regular observation of bird migration a group of enthusiasts, notably Ralph Chislett, George Ainsworth, John Lord and R.M. Garnett, had the idea of setting up a bird observatory, with the Warren Cottage at the northern end of the peninsula as an ideal headquarters. Unfortunately the outbreak of war forced them to put their plans on hold but shortly after hostilities ceased a lease for Warren Cottage was obtained from the War Department and the observatory was established shortly afterwards under the auspices of the Y.N.U. with the four members mentioned above forming the first committee. A preliminary meeting was held in September 1945 to decide on the site for a Heligoland trap, work on which was begun almost immediately and the first bird (a Blackbird) was ringed on November 17th. The first minuted committee meeting was held on March 9th 1946 and the observatory was opened to visitors at Whitsuntide that year.

Initially coverage was limited to the main migration seasons, being extended to winter weekends in the early 1950's to trap and ring some of the large numbers of Snow Buntings which used to occur at that time of year and gradually coverage was increased (whenever possible) to cover the late spring and summer. In 1959 there was an important development when the Yorkshire Naturalists' Trust (now the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust) became the owners of the peninsula and thus the observatory's landlord. In 1960 a full time warden was appointed by the Trust, and although having no official connection with the observatory the fact of having an observer on the peninsula year-round inevitably helped to improve the ornithological coverage. This was especially the case from 1964 when the current warden, Barry Spence, was appointed, in conjunction with the fact that an interest in birds and their migrations was steadily growing and more bird-watchers were staying at the observatory, often for longer periods.

When the observatory opened there was accommodation for seven visitors in Warren Cottage and facilities included two chemical toilets, the Warren Heligoland trap and an ex-army hut as a ringing hut. Over the next ten years a further five Heligoland traps were constructed along the peninsula, although today only three remain in existence. In 1959 the observatory gained the use of the Annexe, one of two ex W.D. bungalows built at the Warren during the early 1950's, thus increasing the accommodation capacity to seventeen and providing much improved toilet facilities. Over the years the accommodation and facilities have been gradually improved to try to make the visitor's stay at Spurn as comfortable as possible. Other improvements have also taken place, in 1968 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Point was converted into a ringing laboratory ready for the first B.T.O. Ringing Course, held in autumn of that year and in 1971 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Warren was also converted into a ringing laboratory. The other part of this building became a laboratory for the use of students of Leeds University but this also became available to the observatory in the mid 1980's when the University no longer had a use for it. Subsequently it was converted into a self-contained accommodation unit for two, complete with kitchen facilities, and although officially known by the somewhat unimaginative name of Room F (the rooms in the Annexe being known as Rooms A, C, D & E, - whatever happened to Room B?), it was somewhat irreverently christened "Dunbirdin" by regular visitors to Spurn.

In 1965 a sea-watching hut was erected east of the Warren beyond the line of the former railway track. Due to coastal erosion it became necessary to move this in late 1974, when it was hoped that it would last at least as long as it had in its first position. Alas this was not to be, as the rate of erosion increased dramatically in the mid 1970's, necessitating a further move in early December 1977. In that year a clay bank had been built across the field behind Warren Cottage (Clubley's field) to prevent the flooding of arable land by wind-blown sea water, but on January 11th 1978 Spurn suffered its worst flooding ever when a strong to gale-force north-westerly wind combined with a spring tide. In late 1981 due to extensive construction works at Easington a large quantity of boulder clay became available and this was used to build up and extend the bank across Clubley's field, south towards Black Hut and north beyond Big Hedge to join up with an existing bank (which had been built in 1974) behind the scrape. In 1982 the sea-watching hut was repositioned on top of this bank, where it remained until the bank itself was washed away in the early 1990's.

A number of other changes to the observatory recording area began to take place from the early 1970's, including extensive building operations at the Point, commencing in 1974, with the construction of a new jetty for the Humber Pilot boats, new housing for the Spurn Lifeboat crew and the conversion and renovation of various existing buildings for use by the Coastguard and the Pilots. In 1978 following damage to the existing road south of the Warren area a new tarmac road was laid to the west of the original one, this lasted until 1988 when a second "new road" loop had to be laid, followed in 1991 by the construction of the existing loop road running along the Humber shore from just south of the Warren to just beyond Black Hut. The construction of this road resulted in the destruction of the actual Black Hut, although the area still bears the name. In 1981 the lines of wartime concrete anti-tank blocks running from the seashore to the Canal Zone were removed to fill in a breach at the Narrow Neck. This resulted in the southward extension of the Scrape field by the farmer up to Big Hedge and the start of a gradual decline in the condition of this hedge and its attractiveness to birds. In 1982 a local resident excavated a pond for shooting purposes in the wet area adjoining the Canal Zone. This never really proved successful and the land was later purchased by the Y.W.T. and the pond enlarged to become what is now known as Canal Scrape. In 1984 a famous Spurn landmark, the Narrows "Hut", a wooden migration watch shelter which had stood at the Narrow Neck for twenty-three years, was set fire to by person or persons unknown and completely destroyed, it was replaced the following year by a more solid construction made from breeze-blocks.

A period of considerable change began in 1988 when the Spurn peninsula was designated as part of the Spurn Heritage Coast. Projects undertaken include the enlargement of the Canal Scrape mentioned above and the erection of a hide overlooking it, a hide overlooking the Humber wader roost at Chalk Bank, a public sea-watching hide alongside the observatory one, provision of additional car-parking space, the restoration of the short-turf habitat in the Chalk Bank area, provision of footpaths, etc. A major project was the renovation of the Blue Bell in Kilnsea for use as offices, an information centre and a small cafe, which became fully operational in 1995. Another fairly recent project has been the creation of another scrape/pond on Clubley's field.

In 1996 the observatory celebrated its fiftieth anniversary, and for the first time in its history SBO employed a full time seasonal warden. This position has since been expanded and the observatory now enjoys the services of a year- round warden. In 1998, with a view to the future, a small bungalow in Kilnsea was purchased with money bequeathed by the late John Weston, a long time committee member, who regrettably died in 1996. This was followed in 1999 by the purchase of a strip of land adjacent to the property and is now known as the ‘Church Field’, this is planted with a sacrificial crop every year, and has also had several groups of trees planted and a feeding station placed in the north-east corner. Access to this field is available by becoming a member of ‘Friends of Spurn Bird Observatory’, a venture set up in 2003 to eventually help with the building of a new observatory when the old one falls way to the sea.

 

www.spurnpoint.com/Spurn_Point.htm

  

Spurn is a very unique place in the British Islands. Three and a half miles long and only fifty metres wide in places.

Extending out in to the Humber Estuary from the Yorkshire coast it has always had a big affect to the navigation of all vessels over the years. Help to some and a danger or hindrance to others. This alone makes Spurn a unique place.

Spurn is made up of a series of sand and shingle banks held together with mainly Marram grass and Seabuckthorn. There are a series of sea defence works built by the Victorians and maintained by the Ministry of Defence, till they sold Spurn to the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust in the 1950s. The defences are in a poor state, breaking down and crumbling. This is making Spurn a very fragile place wide open to the ravages of the North Sea.

One of the most striking features of Spurn is the black and white lighthouse near to the end of Spurn. Now just an empty shell not used since it was closed down at dawn on the thirty first of October 1986.

There have been many Lighthouses on Spurn over the years the first recorded at around 1427. The present light was built from 1893 TO 1895. The small tower on the beach on the Estuary side was originally the low light. It was built and put in to operation at around 1852. This light was no longer needed when the present lighthouse was opened in 1895.At a later date the light was removed and it was used as a store for explosives and later as a water tower. The tank can still be seen on the top. When it was operational there was a raised walkway from the shore to the lighthouse so it could be reached at all stages of the tide.

The present lighthouse was built to replace an old lighthouse that was positioned just to the south of the present one. You can still see the round perimeter wall surrounding the old keepers cottages and the base of the old lighthouse which had to be demolished due to it settling on it's foundations making it unsafe.

The only light on Spurn today is a flashing green starboard light on the very end of the point and the fixed green lights marking the end of the Pilots jetty.

Because of Spurns ever moving position there have been many Lighthouses over the years. There is a very good book by George.de.BOAR, called History of the Spurn Lighthouses, produced by the East Yorkshire Local History Society. This is one of a series of books on local history.

  

www.spurnpoint.com/Around_and_about_at_Spurn.htm

  

Around and about there are plenty of places to eat and drink. Starting from the north of Spurn at Kilnsea there is the Riverside hotel offering good quality food drink and accommodation. Coming south towards Spurn and still in Kilnsea there is the Crown and Anchor pub. A welcoming place serving bar meals fine beers and offering bed and breakfast at very reasonable rates. At the crossroads before you turn towards Spurn there is the Spurn heritage coast visitors centre. Where there is a small cafe and exhibition. At the entrance Spurn point nature reserve is an information centre and bird observatory selling books pamphlets, etc., and the last toilet on Spurn.

Past the lighthouse is the last car park. Two hundred metres further on you find the Humber Lifeboat and Pilot stations. Near the houses is a Small caravan selling tea, coffee, cold cans, hot and cold food, crisps and sweets.

All are open all year round apart from the heritage centre which is open thought the season.

 

BIRD WATCHING.

Is a very popular pastime as Spurn is internationally famous for birds. There are up to two hundred species recorded at spurn every year. Some of which are extremely rare. The Marmora's Warbler seen at Spurn In June 1992 was only the third recorded in Britain.

 

SEA FISHING.

The beaches of Spurn provide some of the best sea fishing in the area, with Cod and Whiting and Flats being caught through the winter and Skate, Flats and Bass through the summer. There is sport to be had all the year.

At the very end of Spurn is deep water ideal for Cod but this only fishes best two hours either side of low water, the tide is to strong at other times. All along the seaward side of Spurn is good for all species of fish at all times though over high water being the better. The riverside of Spurn is very shallow and only produces Flats and the bass over high water.

 

THE BEACH.

 

The beaches at Spurn are of soft sand and shingle. Whichever way the wind is blowing you can just pop over the dunes to the outer side. There are fossils and all manners of things to find beach combing. Swimming is not safe any were near the point end as there are very strong tides at up to six knots at times. But in side Spurn around the point car park is perfect at high water. The beach does not shelf to fast and very little tide. You can have the place to your self at times, as Spurn is never really busy weekdays.#

A very popular pastime at Spurn is Fossil hunting. There is a good abundance of fossils to be found in amongst the pebbles and shingle.

The Shark Trust has a very interesting PDF file tell you all about Shark Skate and rays the mermaids purses you find on the beach are egg shells from sharks and Rays. Click the link to down load the Shark Trust Brochure.

 

WALKING.

Walking or strolling at spurn is very easy, as there are no hills. There are various sign posted paths up and down the point. For the fit a complete walk round the whole point is about 8 miles, taking in all the point round the point end and back to the "warren" information place at the start of Spurn. You will need good footwear, as much of the paths are sand. There is limited access for disabled, but not to the point end, as you have to go via the beach.

You can park your car at the point car park and walk round the point end and back to the car park about a mile, or just stroll around the point were you choose. The only place you are not allowed to go are down the pilot's jetty and the centre square of the Lifeboat houses.

In spring and early summer Spurn is covered with a large amount of wild flowers of all species.

There are common to the not so common; from Orchids to bluebells. I must remind you Spurn is a nature reserve and the picking of all flowers is prohibited. When visiting please enjoy Spurn, as it is a very beautiful place and leave only your footprints.

 

Horse Riding.

 

There is riding available nearby at the North Humberside Riding Centre. The stables are ideally located with rides along quiet country lanes, by-ways, plus miles of sandy beach and riverbanks. The cross-country course offers a variety of fences for both the novice and the more experienced rider.

 

www.spurnbirdobservatory.co.uk/

 

A Brief History of Spurn Bird Observatory

 

Following visits to Spurn by several members of the Yorkshire Naturalists' Union in the late 1930's, a communal log for ornithological observations was instituted in 1938. This included a roll-call of species, the beginnings of a recording system, which later became standard in bird observatories. Realising the potential of the Spurn peninsula for the regular observation of bird migration a group of enthusiasts, notably Ralph Chislett, George Ainsworth, John Lord and R.M. Garnett, had the idea of setting up a bird observatory, with the Warren Cottage at the northern end of the peninsula as an ideal headquarters. Unfortunately the outbreak of war forced them to put their plans on hold but shortly after hostilities ceased a lease for Warren Cottage was obtained from the War Department and the observatory was established shortly afterwards under the auspices of the Y.N.U. with the four members mentioned above forming the first committee. A preliminary meeting was held in September 1945 to decide on the site for a Heligoland trap, work on which was begun almost immediately and the first bird (a Blackbird) was ringed on November 17th. The first minuted committee meeting was held on March 9th 1946 and the observatory was opened to visitors at Whitsuntide that year.

Initially coverage was limited to the main migration seasons, being extended to winter weekends in the early 1950's to trap and ring some of the large numbers of Snow Buntings which used to occur at that time of year and gradually coverage was increased (whenever possible) to cover the late spring and summer. In 1959 there was an important development when the Yorkshire Naturalists' Trust (now the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust) became the owners of the peninsula and thus the observatory's landlord. In 1960 a full time warden was appointed by the Trust, and although having no official connection with the observatory the fact of having an observer on the peninsula year-round inevitably helped to improve the ornithological coverage. This was especially the case from 1964 when the current warden, Barry Spence, was appointed, in conjunction with the fact that an interest in birds and their migrations was steadily growing and more bird-watchers were staying at the observatory, often for longer periods.

When the observatory opened there was accommodation for seven visitors in Warren Cottage and facilities included two chemical toilets, the Warren Heligoland trap and an ex-army hut as a ringing hut. Over the next ten years a further five Heligoland traps were constructed along the peninsula, although today only three remain in existence. In 1959 the observatory gained the use of the Annexe, one of two ex W.D. bungalows built at the Warren during the early 1950's, thus increasing the accommodation capacity to seventeen and providing much improved toilet facilities. Over the years the accommodation and facilities have been gradually improved to try to make the visitor's stay at Spurn as comfortable as possible. Other improvements have also taken place, in 1968 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Point was converted into a ringing laboratory ready for the first B.T.O. Ringing Course, held in autumn of that year and in 1971 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Warren was also converted into a ringing laboratory. The other part of this building became a laboratory for the use of students of Leeds University but this also became available to the observatory in the mid 1980's when the University no longer had a use for it. Subsequently it was converted into a self-contained accommodation unit for two, complete with kitchen facilities, and although officially known by the somewhat unimaginative name of Room F (the rooms in the Annexe being known as Rooms A, C, D & E, - whatever happened to Room B?), it was somewhat irreverently christened "Dunbirdin" by regular visitors to Spurn.

In 1965 a sea-watching hut was erected east of the Warren beyond the line of the former railway track. Due to coastal erosion it became necessary to move this in late 1974, when it was hoped that it would last at least as long as it had in its first position. Alas this was not to be, as the rate of erosion increased dramatically in the mid 1970's, necessitating a further move in early December 1977. In that year a clay bank had been built across the field behind Warren Cottage (Clubley's field) to prevent the flooding of arable land by wind-blown sea water, but on January 11th 1978 Spurn suffered its worst flooding ever when a strong to gale-force north-westerly wind combined with a spring tide. In late 1981 due to extensive construction works at Easington a large quantity of boulder clay became available and this was used to build up and extend the bank across Clubley's field, south towards Black Hut and north beyond Big Hedge to join up with an existing bank (which had been built in 1974) behind the scrape. In 1982 the sea-watching hut was repositioned on top of this bank, where it remained until the bank itself was washed away in the early 1990's.

A number of other changes to the observatory recording area began to take place from the early 1970's, including extensive building operations at the Point, commencing in 1974, with the construction of a new jetty for the Humber Pilot boats, new housing for the Spurn Lifeboat crew and the conversion and renovation of various existing buildings for use by the Coastguard and the Pilots. In 1978 following damage to the existing road south of the Warren area a new tarmac road was laid to the west of the original one, this lasted until 1988 when a second "new road" loop had to be laid, followed in 1991 by the construction of the existing loop road running along the Humber shore from just south of the Warren to just beyond Black Hut. The construction of this road resulted in the destruction of the actual Black Hut, although the area still bears the name. In 1981 the lines of wartime concrete anti-tank blocks running from the seashore to the Canal Zone were removed to fill in a breach at the Narrow Neck. This resulted in the southward extension of the Scrape field by the farmer up to Big Hedge and the start of a gradual decline in the condition of this hedge and its attractiveness to birds. In 1982 a local resident excavated a pond for shooting purposes in the wet area adjoining the Canal Zone. This never really proved successful and the land was later purchased by the Y.W.T. and the pond enlarged to become what is now known as Canal Scrape. In 1984 a famous Spurn landmark, the Narrows "Hut", a wooden migration watch shelter which had stood at the Narrow Neck for twenty-three years, was set fire to by person or persons unknown and completely destroyed, it was replaced the following year by a more solid construction made from breeze-blocks.

A period of considerable change began in 1988 when the Spurn peninsula was designated as part of the Spurn Heritage Coast. Projects undertaken include the enlargement of the Canal Scrape mentioned above and the erection of a hide overlooking it, a hide overlooking the Humber wader roost at Chalk Bank, a public sea-watching hide alongside the observatory one, provision of additional car-parking space, the restoration of the short-turf habitat in the Chalk Bank area, provision of footpaths, etc. A major project was the renovation of the Blue Bell in Kilnsea for use as offices, an information centre and a small cafe, which became fully operational in 1995. Another fairly recent project has been the creation of another scrape/pond on Clubley's field.

In 1996 the observatory celebrated its fiftieth anniversary, and for the first time in its history SBO employed a full time seasonal warden. This position has since been expanded and the observatory now enjoys the services of a year- round warden. In 1998, with a view to the future, a small bungalow in Kilnsea was purchased with money bequeathed by the late John Weston, a long time committee member, who regrettably died in 1996. This was followed in 1999 by the purchase of a strip of land adjacent to the property and is now known as the ‘Church Field’, this is planted with a sacrificial crop every year, and has also had several groups of trees planted and a feeding station placed in the north-east corner. Access to this field is available by becoming a member of ‘Friends of Spurn Bird Observatory’, a venture set up in 2003 to eventually help with the building of a new observatory when the old one falls way to the sea.

 

This is a scanned print from a collection of photographs taken by the late Jim Taylor A number of years ago I was offered a large number of photographs taken by Jim Taylor, a transport photographer based in Huddersfield. The collection, 30,000 prints,20,000 negatives – and copyright! – had been offered to me and one of the national transport magazines previously by a friend of Jims, on behalf of Jims wife. I initially turned them down, already having over 30,000 of my owns prints filed away and taking space up. Several months later the prints were still for sale – at what was, apparently, the going rate . It was a lot of money and I deliberated for quite a while before deciding to buy them. I did however buy them directly from Jims wife and she delivered them personally – just to quash the occasional rumour from people who can’t mind their own business. Although some prints were sold elsewhere, particularly the popular big fleet stuff, I should have the negatives, unfortunately they came to me in a random mix, 1200 to a box, without any sort of indexing and as such it would be impossible to match negatives to prints, or, to even find a print of any particular vehicle. I have only ever looked at a handful myself unless I am scanning them. The prints are generally in excellent condition and I initially stored them in a bedroom without ever looking at any of them. In 2006 I built an extension and they had to be well protected from dust and moved a few times. Ultimately my former 6x7 box room office has become their (and my own work’s) permanent home.

  

It was the development of our second generation website with its photo gallery located quite cleverly on Flickr, rather than making our own site unwieldy, that led me to start uploading photos to Flickr. It was initially for my own and historic company photos but with unlimited storage and reasonable upload speeds I soon started uploading other stuff. Scanning one of Jims photos was a random choice one winters evening, initially very slow and time consuming I nevertheless stuck with it and things just snowballed. It was obvious that there are a lot of people interested in this type of thing. I can now scan and edit in Photoshop in a minute or so per print. Out of over 30,000 images on Flickr I have around 3500 of Jims photos. I don’t promote myself on Flickr – at all! So my viewing figures grow organically, without using the mutual favourite awarding etc. that is endemic on Flickr. The statistics tell me that travel (I don’t do porn) is the most popular genre. My travel photos, particularly later stuff receive far more views than transport. The transport stuff will hit a ceiling and then build very slowly over time, with lots of people coming back to them again and again. Travel of course is far more inclusive but there is an unbelievable amount out there, far more than the 1980’s UK transport stuff. The travel and landscape photos have pushed the views past 12 million, with a current average of around 40,000 views a day, peaking with an upload from a new destination at around 90,000 views. I recall being excited with a 100 views.

 

My reasons for buying the collection were mixed. On the one hand it was a unique snapshot of the transport industry, predominantly in the north of England, from around 1980 onwards. This was my patch and my era. I passed my Class One a few days after my 21st birthday in 1980 and spent the next 17 years being a Jack the Lad on the road, waving at and crossing paths with many of the wagons that Jim photographed, in fact my owns wagons are in the mix. Jim did travel to Scotland extensively and into the Southern Hemisphere a number of times hence there is a broad range of material in his collection. I knew I wouldn’t get a chance like it again. On the other hand the reason I gave up hauling scrap around the North of England in a Foden eight wheeler was the diagnosis of an incurable form of Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma at the age of 38, although a low grade cancer I was already a widower with four young children and I was looking at an uncertain future and it terrified me. I wasn’t remotely ill but was treated with Chemotherapy, again, I wasn’t ill and didn’t need time off work. The shock however brought me to my senses and I came off the road, I joined the normal world, up at 6.30 not 4.30am. I didn’t realise it at the time but I had closed the door on my wagon driving days. I was worried that, at some point, I wouldn’t be able to work physically hard, bearing in mind the family business is a scrap yard – a physical sort of environment. I had it in my mind that there was a possibility that I could use my own and Jims photos to supplement my income, I had four kids to feed and I knew there wouldn’t be any family financial support – it’s not that sort of family. I still have the NHL although thankfully you wouldn’t know it. This type of thing is now considered treatable – not curable- after around forty endoscopies, a 100 stomach biopsies, bone marrow samples and endless scans of different types, I may well get to die of old age, not cancer. It was discovered almost by accident at the time, not illness on my part, and long may it stay that way! The lack of illness made the shock all the greater though.

 

I hope to avoid posting images that Jim had not taken his self, however should I inadvertently infringe another photographers copyright, please inform me by email and I will resolve the issue immediately. There are copyright issues with some of the photographs that were sold to me. A Flickr member from Scotland drew my attention to some of his own work amongst the first uploads of Jims work. I had a quick look through some of the 30 boxes of prints and decided that for the time being the safest thing for me to do was withdraw the majority of the earlier uploaded scans and deal with the problem – which I did. whilst the vast majority of the prints are Jims, there is a problem defining copyright of some of them, this is something that the seller did not make clear at the time. I am reasonably confident that I have since been successful in identifying Jims own work. His early work consists of many thousands of lustre 6x4 prints which are difficult to scan well, later work is almost entirely 7x5 glossy, much easier to scan. Not all of the prints are pin sharp but I can generally print successfully to A4 from a scan.

 

You may notice photographs being duplicated in this Album, unfortunately there are multiple copies of many prints (for swapping) and as I have to have a system of archiving and backing up I can only guess - using memory - if I have scanned a print before. The bigger fleets have so many similar vehicles and registration numbers that it is impossible to get it right all of the time. It is easier to scan and process a print than check my files - on three different PC's - for duplicates. There has not been, nor will there ever be, any intention to knowingly breach anyone else's copyright. I have presented the Jim Taylor collection as exactly that-The Jim Taylor Collection- his work not mine, my own work is quite obviously mine.

 

Unfortunately many truck spotters have swapped and traded their work without copyright marking it as theirs. These people never anticipated the ease with which images would be shared online in the future. I would guess that having swapped and traded photos for many years that it is almost impossible to control their future use. Anyone wanting to control the future use of their work would have been well advised to copyright mark their work (as many did) and would be well advised not to post them on photo sharing sites without a watermark as the whole point of these sites is to share the image, it is very easy for those that wish, to lift any image, despite security settings, indeed, Flickr itself, warns you that this is the case. It was this abuse and theft of my material that led me to watermark all of my later uploads. I may yet withdraw non watermarked photos, I haven’t decided yet.

 

To anyone reading the above it will be quite obvious that I can’t provide information regarding specific photos or potential future uploads – I didn’t take them! There are many vehicles that were well known to me as Jim only lived down the road from me (although I didn’t know him), however scanning, titling, tagging and uploading is laborious and time consuming enough, I do however provide a fair amount of information with my own transport (and other) photos. I am aware that there are requests from other Flickr users that are unanswered, I stumble across them months or years after they were posted, this isn’t deliberate. Some weekends one or two “enthusiasts” can add many hundreds of photos as favourites, this pushes requests that are in the comments section ten or twenty pages out of sight and I miss them. I also have notifications switched off, I receive around 50 emails a day through work and I don’t want even more from Flickr. Other requests, like many other things, I just plain forget – no excuses! Uploads of Jims photos will be infrequent as it is a boring pastime and I would much rather work on my own output.

 

None of my photographs are free to use – without my permission - only free to view! If you breach my copyright you are stealing what is mine and if I find out, I will pursue the case until you rectify the situation. Arguments that attempt to justify copyright theft are just excuses for theft from people with little or no understanding of copyright law – or more frequently- deliberate, selective, misinterpretation of the law – to suit their own ends. I have never knowingly refused a reasonable request, I don’t join groups but am quite happy for people to add photos to groups. I dislike exchanging long and time consuming emails – I prefer to talk on the phone, being the opposite of anti-social in person, you can’t shut me up. I am generally speaking an anti-social, social networker, I just don’t have the time for it, in fact, I joke that I am going to start a social network for internet anti-social people, you’ll just register your name and that’s it – no networking and endless mindless twaddle. Face-less Book? The antidote to Facebook. I like to get out and chat to people face to face and welcome customers with an interest in photography in to my office to chat on a regular basis. I also print – and give- A4 prints to many of the drivers that visit our yard. I photograph wagons and plant that I come into contact with in a day’s work I don’t go looking to photograph them in my free time. Wagons are a necessary evil in my life these days and they cost me money – every day! For the extensive story and history of JB Schofield &sons Ltd look here; www.jbschofieldandsons.co.uk/

 

So far photography remains a hobby, and I refuse any offers to turn it into a business, the regulations surrounding scrap and transport and the running of the yard keep me occupied most of the time. In my free time I cycle hard for fitness, walk hard for pleasure, fitness, and the challenge, take photos for pleasure and the challenge, edit them because I have to, and lastly, drink wine because I want to. There isn't time for another business. The kids are now adults and all of them work for me, and with me, another challenge.

 

The image above is really ugly!

Please look at it at original size (less than 2 Mb).

 

L'immagine sopra è proprio brutta!

Per favore, guardatela in dimensione originale (meno di 2 Mb).

 

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

 

This is an attempt to convert a digital photo in something looking like a Roy Lichtenstein artwork... my students, at the Funadium photography online tutoring, sometimes make me very strange requests! Maybe because we talk of a lot of other things that seems totally unrelated to photography, too, because to speak just of photography could become boring.

 

For the few who don't know who Roy Lichtenstein was, here it is the usual Wikipedia page, and some artworks can be found on Google Images.

Everything is made with the standard tools of The Gimp, without to add anything to it.

If you don't have The Gimp, download your own copy: no need to look on Emule for a bootleg copy, like for other famous softwares, because The Gimp is free!

 

If you want to try with your own photo, here it is what I do, step by step. In square [] parenthesis there is a reference to to menu to select, and you'll find the values used by me. Feel free to change these values to fit your own image.

This seems a long procedure, but it takes just a 5 minutes, when you know what to do.

And don't be afraid to make a mistake: the Gimp Undo is your friend.

 

1) Duplicate the original image [Image - Duplicate]

 

2) Close the original image [File - Close]

 

3) Save the duplicated image [File - Save] with the extension .xcf, the Gimp native format preserving all the informations

 

4) Duplicate the Backgroud layer [Layer - Duplicate Layer]

 

5) Rename the new layer and call it Newspaper [in the Layers, Channels, etc. window right click the Background Copy layer and choose the menu Edit Layer Attributes...]

 

6) Reduce the number of colors of the Newspaper layer (be sure it is the one evidenced in the layers list) [Colors - Posterize...] - the Posterize levels value used by me is 7

 

7) Blur the borders of the image, to have a smoother color transition [Filters - Blur - Gaussian Blur...] - the values used by me are: Blur Radius 6, method IIR

 

8) Remove speckles from the image [Filters - Enhance - Despeckle...] - the values used by me are: Adaptive OFF, Recursive ON, Radius 5, Black level 2, White level 254

 

9) Apply the newspaper-like filter [Filters - Distorts - Newsprint...] - my values: Input SPI 72, Output LPI 12.0, Cell size 6, Separate to CMYK, Black pullout 100%, Spot function for every color PS Square (Euclidean dot), Oversample 15

 

At this point you have you image looking like a photo printed on a cheap newspaper, but still the black thick borders typical of Lichtenstein are missing. To make them by hand is a boring job, but we have the Gimp making them for us.

BTW, the procedure to make the borders it totally separated by the newspaper effect so, if you want, you can apply just this one to your images.

 

10) In the Layers, Channels, etc. window, click on the Background layer to make it active

 

11) Duplicate the Backgroud layer [Layer - Duplicate Layer]

 

12) Rename the new layer and call it Borders [in the Layers, Channels, etc. window right click the Background Copy layer and choose the menu Edit Layer Attributes...] - if it is not the one at the top of the layer list drag and drop it to the top

 

13) Blur a bit the image, to make it smoother and remove little details, like my beard hairs [Filters - Blur - Gaussian Blur...] - the values used by me are: Blur Radius 3, method IIR

 

14) Trace the edges [Filters - Edge-Detect - Edge...] - my values: Algorithm Gradient, Amount 10, Wrap

 

15) Invert the image [Colors - Invert]

 

16) Desaturate the image [Colors - Desaturate...] - my shade of gray is based on Luminosity

 

17) Raise the contrast, to get rid of small lines [Colors - Brightness-Contrast...] - my values: Brightness 0, Contrast 36

 

18) Grow the darker areas [Filters - Generic - Erode]

 

19) Blur again [Filters - Blur - Gaussian Blur...] - the values used by me are: Blur Radius 3, method IIR

 

20) Make the white color transparent, to have just the dark borders [Colors - Color to Alpha...] - choose a full white (#FFFFFF)

 

Almost done! Now we can take care of small details, like the reflections in the eyes, add captions and cartoon-like audio effects, etc.

Don't forget to save very often!

I explain you just how to recover the eye reflections, since they are not very easy. BTW, this is the only enhancement requiring you a direct intervention on the image: all the rest until now was made using just menus.

 

21) Disable the visualization of the Borders layer poking the little eye (ouch!) on the left of the layer thumbnail in the Layers, Channels, etc. window

 

22) Make the Newspaper layer active clicking on it in the same list

 

23) Reduce the opacity of the Newspaper layer to 20% using the slider at the top of the layer list, to see the Background layer through it

 

24) Add a layer mask to the Newspaper layer [in the Layers, Channels, etc. window right click the Newspaper layer and choose the menu Add Layer Mask...] - initialize it to White (full opacity)

 

25) Now, in the Layers, Channels, etc. window, you have, on the right of the Newspaper thumbnail, a small white rectangle: it is the mask, and everything is black on it is a "hole" to see through it. When a layer has a mask, the active part (the layer or the mask) is evidenced by a white border, and the other one has a black border. To change the activity field between the layer and its mask you must click on the thumbnails.

 

26) Make the Newspaper mask active [click the white rectangle - of course you can't see the white border, but the black one disappears]

 

27) Zoom the image at least at 400%

 

28) Choose the Paintbrush from the Tools palette or from the menu Tools - Paint Tools - Paintbrush

 

29) Check to have a black foreground color (under the Tools palette)

 

30) For the paintbrush use: mode Normal, opacity 100% and select the Circle Fuzzy (19) as brush - the Scale parameter must be adapted to your image and allows you to have larger or smaller brushes

 

31) Paint in black ("dig a hole in the mask") the parts you want to see from the original Background layer

 

32) Make the mask inactive clicking on the Newspaper thumbnail

 

33) Restore the layer opacity to 100% - at this point you must see the original background through the mask hole

 

34) Restore the Borders visibility clicking on the first blank button on the left of the layer thumbnail

 

35) Repeat the procedure from 25) to 33) for the Borders layer

 

36) Zoom back at 100% to check the result

 

37) Save a copy of the image as .JPG [File - Save a Copy...], reply Export to the message telling JPG can't handle transparency and set the Quality to 100%

 

38) Publish on Flickr

 

39) Be prepared to reply to a lot of nice comments

 

For more details you can read the official Gimp manual.

  

At this point there will be something, as usual, telling "Hey, that's no more a photography!"

Did I state the result is a photography, somewhere?

This is just a bunch of numbers corresponding to colored pixels, like every other digital image, even those "coming directly from the camera, wow!".

The difference between a film photography and a digital one is, IMHO, the same between a sailboat and a motoryacht.

Both stay in the water, require a coat of antifouling paint and crash on rocks... but don't try to ask a sail owner which one is better, if you don't want to be heavily insulted.

ANYWAY THIS IS NOT A CRAPPY VIDEO!!!!

 

::::::::::::::::::::::::

 

Questo è un tentativo di convertire una foto digitale in qualcosa che somigli a un'opera di Roy Lichtenstein... i miei studenti, ai tutoring online di fotografia Funadium, qualche volta mi fanno delle richieste molto strane! Forse perché parliamo anche di un mucchio di altre cose che possono apparire totalmente scollegate dalla fotografia, perché parlare sempre di fotografia può diventare noioso.

 

Per i pochi che non sanno chi fosse Roy Lichtenstein, ecco la solita pagina di Wikipedia, ed alcune opere si trovano con Google Images.

Tutto quanto è stato fatto usando le potenzialità native di Gimp, senza aggiungere alcunché.

Se non avete il Gimp, scaricatevene una copia: nessun bisogno di cercarne una pirata con Emule, come per altri software più famosi, perché Gimp è gratis!

 

Se volete provare con la vostra foto, ecco cosa ho fatto, passo per passo. Tra parentesi quadrate [] ci sono i riferimenti ai menu da selezionare, e troverete i valori usati da me. Cambiateli pure per adattarli alla vostra immagine.

Sembra una procedura lunga, ma è un lavoro di 5 minuti, quando si sa cosa fare.

E non abbiate timore di sbagliare: la funzione Annulla è vostra amica!

 

1) Duplicate l'immagine originale [Immagine - Duplica]

 

2) Chiudete l'immagine originale [File - Chiudi]

 

3) Salvate l'immagine duplicata [File - Salva] con estensione .xcf, il formato nativo di Gimp che preserva tutte le informazioni

 

4) Duplicate il livello Sfondo [Livelli - Duplica livello]

 

5) Rinominate il nuovo livello e chiamatelo Giornale [nella finestra Livelli, Canali, ecc. fate un click destro sul livello Sfondo copia e scegliete il menu Modifica attributi di livello...]

 

6) Riducete il numero di colori del livello Giornale (accertatevi che sia quello evidenziato nella lista dei livelli) [Colori - Posterizza...] - il numero di Livelli di posterizzazione usato da me è 7

 

7) Sfocate l'immagine, per avere una transizione più morbida tra i colori [Filtri - Sfocature - Gaussiana...] - i valori usati da me sono: Raggio di sfocatura 6, metodo IIR

 

8) Smacchiate l'immagine [Filtri - Miglioramento - Smacchiatura...] - i valori usati da me sono: Adattivo NO, Ricorsivo SI, Raggio 5, Livello del nero 2, Livello del bianco 254

 

9) Applicate il filtro effetto giornale [Filtri - Distorsioni - Effetto giornale...] - i miei valori: CPP in ingresso 72, LPP in uscita 12.0, Dimensione cella 6, Separa in CMYK, Estrazione del nero 100%, Funzione spot per ogni colore Quadrato PS (punto euclideo), Sovracampionamento 15

 

A questo punto avete la vostra immagine che sembra una foto stampata su un giornale di bassa qualità, ma mancano ancora i bordi spessi tipici di Lichtenstein. Farli a mano sarebbe un lavoro noioso, ma abbiamo il Gimp che li può fare per noi.

A proposito, la procedura per fare i bordi è totalmente separata dall'effetto giornale quindi, se volete, potete applicare solo questa alle vostre immagini.

 

10) Nella finestra Livelli, Canali, ecc., cliccate sul livello Sfondo per renderlo attivo

 

11) Duplicate il livello Sfondo [Livelli - Duplica livello]

 

12) Rinominate il nuovo livello e chiamatelo Bordi [nella finestra Livelli, Canali, ecc. fate un click destro sul livello Sfondo copia e scegliete il menu Modifica attributi di livello...] - se non è il primo della lista livelli trascinatelo in cima alla lista

 

13) Sfumate un po' l'immagine, per farla più soffice e rimovere piccoli dettagli, come i peli della mia barba [Filtri - Sfocature - Gaussiana...] - i valori usati da me sono: Raggio di sfocatura 3, metodo IIR

 

14) Tracciate i bordi [Filtri - Rilevamento margini - Spigoli...] - i miei valori: algoritmo Gradiente, Quantità 10, Avvolgi

 

15) Invertite l'immagine [Colori - Inverti]

 

16) Desaturate l'immagine [Colori - Desaturazione...] - le mie sfumature di grigio sono basate su Luminosità

 

17) Alzate il contrasto, per eliminare le linee più sottili [Colori - Luminosità-Contrasto...] - i miei valori: Luminosità 0, Contrasto 36

 

18) Allargate le aree scure dell'immagine [Filtri - Generici - Erodi]

 

19) Sfocate di nuovo [Filtri - Sfocature - Gaussiana...] - i valori usati da me sono: Raggio di sfocatura 3, metodo IIR

 

20) Rendete il colore bianco trasparente, per avere solo i bordi scuri [Colori - Colore ad Alfa...] - scegliete un bianco pieno (#FFFFFF)

 

Quasi finito! Ora possiamo prenderci cura dei piccoli dettagli, come i riflessi negli occhi, aggiungere fumetti ed effetti audio da cartoon, ecc.

Non dimenticate di salvare molto spesso!

Vi spiego solo come recuperare i riflessi negli occhi, visto che non è molto semplice. Tra parentesi, questo è l'unico miglioramento che richiede un intervento diretto sull'immagine: tutto il resto finora è stato fatto usando solo i menu.

 

21) Disabilitate la visualizzazione del livello Bordi cliccando l'occhio (ahi!) a sinistra dell'iconcina del livello nella finestra Livelli, Canali, ecc.

 

22) Rendete attivo il livello Giornale cliccandolo nella stessa listar

 

23) Riducete l'opacità del livello Giornale a 20% usando il cursore sopra la lista dei livelli, per vedere il livello Sfondo attraverso di esso.

 

24) Aggiungete una maschera di livello al livello Giornale [nella finestra Livelli, Canali, ecc. fate click destro sul livello Giornale e selezionate il menu Aggiungi maschera di livello...] - inizializzatela a Bianco (opacità completa)

 

25) ora, nella finestra Livelli, Canali, ecc., avrete, a destra dell'iconcina del Giornale, un rettangolino bianco: è la maschera, e tutto quanto è nero è un "buco" per vederci attraverso. Quando un livello ha una maschera, la parte attiva (il livello o la maschera) è evidenziata da un bordino bianco, mentre l'altra parte lo ha nero. Per cambiare il campo di attività tra un livello e la sua maschera bisogna cliccare sulle iconcine.

 

26) Rendete attiva la maschera del livello Giornale [cliccate il rettangolino bianco - naturalmente non potete vedere il bordo bianco, ma quello nero sparisce]

 

27) Zoomate l'immagine almeno al 400%

 

28) Scegliete lo strumento Pennello dalla finestra degli strumenti o dal menu Strumenti - Disegno - Pennello

 

29) Verificate di avere il nero come colore di primo piano

 

30) Per il pennello usate: modalità Normale, Opacità 100% e selezionate come Pennello il Circle Fuzzy (19) - il parametro Scala deve essere adattato alla vostra immagine e vi permette di avere pennelli più grandi o più piccoli

 

31) Dipingete di nero ("fate un buco nella maschera") le parti che volete vedere dal livello originale Sfondo

 

32) Rendete inattiva la maschera cliccando sull'iconcina del livello Giornale

 

33) Ripristinate l'opacità del livello a 100% - a questo punto dovreste vedere lo sfondo originale attraverso i buchi della maschera

 

34) Ripristinate la visibilità del livello Bordi cliccando sul primo bottone bianco a sinistra dell'iconcina del livello

 

35) Ripetete la procedura da 25) a 33) per il livello Bordi

 

36) Zoomate indietro a 100% per verificare il risultato

 

37) Salvate una copia dell'immagine in formato .JPG [File - Salva una copia...], rispondendo Esporta al messaggio che vi avvisa che il JPG non può gestire la trasparenza ed impostando la Qualità a 100%

 

38) Pubblicate la foto su Flickr

 

39) State pronti a rispondere ad un mucchio di gentili commenti

 

Per più dettagli potente consultare il manuale ufficiale Gimp (in italiano).

  

A questo punto ci sarà qualcuno che dice, come al solito, "Ehi, ma quella non è più una fotografia!"

Ho affermato da qualche parte che il risultato è una fotografia?

Questo è solo un mucchio di numeri corrispondenti a pallini colorati, come qualsiasi altra immagine digitale, comprese quelle "come è uscita dalla macchina, wow!"

La differenza tra una fotografia su pellicola e una digitale è, secondo me, la stessa che c'è tra una barca a vela ed una a motore.

Entrambe stanno nell'acqua, hanno bisogno di una mano di antivegetativo e si schiantano sugli scogli... ma non provate a chiedere ad un velista cosa è meglio, se non volete essere insultati pesantemente.

IN OGNI CASO QUESTO NON È UN VIDEO!!!!!!

   

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

I am, paradoxically, posting this desktop both despite and because of the fact that my setup has not changed in any meaningful way for several months now. "Despite," in that I feel bad about not posting more often. Most of my spare time has been annexed by another large creative project, and I miss the unbroken hours of Rainmeter tweaking I used to do. "Because," in that there is still some value in taking stock of this setup: it has proven itself as a highly practical, unobstrusive, and all-around great arrangement. I just love it the way it is, and like all the best designs, it makes me feel like I want to use my notebook, and that it's going to do exactly what I want it to do.

 

For the first time since Lightning Sunset, I'm going to go through my entire arsenal of core applications and detail how they're being used and why.

 

(By the way, there's another reason why I feel like showing off my computer today: I just received a RAM upgrade, from 1 GB to 2 GB. I swear, it's halfway to a brand new computer. Even with all of the stuff below - every single one, running simultaneously - I don't break a 50% memory load. It is geekily glorious.)

 

- - - - - - -

 

Clouds

 

As anyone who follows my desktops knows, I go through wallpapers pretty rapidly, while having a few favorites that I regularly return to. This has become one of them. I love the style of having a single crisp, asymmetrical object surrounded by a simple, subtle gradient. It's a great synthesis of the functional and the aesthetic; fresh and stimulating, without being distracting or gaudy. (Via cain.)

 

- - - - - - -

 

Lakrits

 

I really love this visual style for XP; it's become one of lassekongo83's most popular, and deservedly so. Its most distinguishing feature, one which is inexplicably rare among Windows shell themes, is that it inverts the colors, giving Explorer, Notepad, etc. a dark-gray background against light-gray text. It is wonderfully soft on the eyes, especially late at night.

 

Of equal importance, it also finally makes Windows itself match the light-on-dark theme common to my Rainmeter, Firefox, et al. I think it was nitzua who pointed out that some of the most carefully-crafted desktop themes are shattered the minute you open the start menu. So it's a real pleasure to have a genuinely customized work environment, not just the illusion of one.

 

Aside from those, I'm just enamored of its simple grays. Lakrits is a legitimately minimalist VS, and I'll miss it muchly when I make the jump to Windows 7.

 

- - - - - - -

 

Startups

 

- Start Killer.

- Taskbar Shuffle.

- D-Color.

 

These really haven't changed since the Lightning Sunset days. I wrote an individual paragraph for each of them before I realized that I was just repeating myself from 16 months ago. The common thread here is that they're all tiny apps which enhance the taskbar and the desktop in extremely logical, intuitive, "I can't believe it didn't do this by itself" ways.

 

- - - - - - -

 

Virtual Shell

 

- Autohotkey.

- Launchy. Skin: Enigma.

- Rainmeter. Skins: Enigma 2.6, customized.

 

It's these three apps which really change the way I use my notebook. As you probably know, I use Autohotkey to

 

- Launch core apps, documents and settings with universal hotkeys. (Firefox is Win+F, Thunderbird is Win+T, Notepad is Win+N, Google Wave is Win+W, etc.) In addition, the other two get very prominent hotkeys as befits their status: I can start up Launchy with Win+F11, and Rainmeter with Win+F12.

- Adjust the transparency of the active window and taskbar.

- Minimize, maximize, restore, and Alt+Tab using only the Alt key and the mouse.

- Control iTunes with universal hotkeys.

- Send certain commonly-used phrases when triggered, ala Texter.

 

Launchy, meanwhile, does pretty much everything else. My devout adoration of Launchy has never wavered. Summoning any app, folder, document, control panel module, song, picture, video, theme, log, and search engine in less than ten keystrokes? Win. (And I still use Calcy all the time, too.)

 

Rainmeter, by now, speaks for itself. See the notes for more details. The only thing that deserves specific mention is that Rainmeter no longer requires assistance from a third-party app like Desktop Coral to reserve space at the edge of the screen. You can now redefine the coordinates of Windows' desktop work area in your theme file. Basically, I used to require three apps - Rainmeter, CD Art Display, and Desktop Coral - to achieve this effect. Now I can do it in one.

 

- - - - - - -

 

Yod'm 3D

 

With my new RAM upgrade (and please accept my half-hearted apology for going on about it), it really costs me nothing to keep this light, attractive three-dimensional desktop manager running at all times. It activates when the mouse enters either bottom corner, so the overall perception is one of physically rotating the cube - very intuitive, I've found.

 

- - - - - - -

 

Trillian

 

Trillian, like Launchy, may as well be a startup app. I keep it running all the time, even when playing games or watching movies. I can't stand being out of digital contact; it's like living without a phone. These days, I use Trillian to connect to Skype and Twitter, as well, which only reaffirms its value to me: the more tasks a single app can cover, the more I love it.

 

The reason I can't abide Miranda or Pidgin is that neither (as far as I can tell) is capable storing logs in a plaintext, single-file format. This is a necessity for me, since I'm constantly looking up messages from old conversations, even months or years later, and nothing beats bringing it up in three strokes with Launchy and searching directly in Notepad.

 

- - - - - - -

 

Dropbox

 

I've tried a lot of synchronization and backup services in the past. Before Dropbox, I was a big fan of a Firefox extension (I can't remember the name) which let you upload files directly to your Gmail account space. My desire for this genre can be summed up as "a USB stick in the cloud," and Dropbox is the first one that I've kept and used for over a year. It's perfect, and as the storage capacity increases over time, so does my loyalty.

 

- - - - - - -

 

iTunes & Last.fm

 

I know you all hate iTunes. I don't blame you, I'm just convinced that we're not actually using the same program. I don't know what I'm doing differently, but on my laptop, iTunes and its library (3500+ songs now) load in under 5 seconds, handle just as smoothly as Firefox, and do virtually everything I want a media player to do. I keep trying alternatives - I actually haven't yet uninstalled Songbird after trying the new version last week - but as long as iTunes ain't broken, I have no desire to fix it.

 

Last.fm, on the other hand, is an experiment. I'm simply interested in keeping track of my music listening habits and comparing them with others'. The scrobbler does its thing and never interferes with my work in any way, so for the moment I'm happy to give it a home. It loads automatically with iTunes, too, which is nice - one less thing to worry about.

 

- - - - - - -

 

Thunderbird 2.0

 

I have not upgraded to Thunderbird 3. I kept trying it with each beta release, and then the final version, and I was quite disappointed each time. As it stands, the interface is quite bulky, the folder labels are inexplicably verbose. The "Smart Folders" really bulk up the "unread" view, too, which is pretty ironic, since I've always relied on it to serve as my condensed, consolidated reading list. As if that wasn't enough, it also insists on synchronizing virtually all of my email, including the spam folders - which also appear in the "unread" view. I admit, I'd like to be able to view flash applets without having to open feed items in Firefox, but it's just not enough to beat the cons.

 

So I'm sticking with 2.0 for the time being. Like iTunes, Thunderbird simply meets all my requirements. It is my consummate message center: all five of my email accounts synchronized via IMAP, plus my RSS feeds, all together in one simple view. I use exactly one extension: Minimize to Tray, which lets me keep Thunderbird available at all times without taking up valuable taskbar space.

 

At some point, I do hope to have Thunderbird (email/RSS), Trillian (IM/IRC/Twitter) and Google Wave integrated into a single elegant client. I'm sure the day is coming. But for now, I feel I've brought them together on my system in the most efficient way available to me.

 

- - - - - - -

 

Google Wave Notifier

 

Until Thunderbird or Trillian get a Wave plugin, I can't say no to this lovely little tray app. Like Last.fm, it does its job and minds its own business, and it does both so damn well that it passed my stringent filters with surprising ease.

 

- - - - - - -

 

Firefox

 

My Firefox is still pretty much as seen here: just a box with an address bar. I use keyboard shortcuts to toggle my bookmarks and menubar, and, naturally, back/forward. Additionally, I use keywords to access search engines - for example, to Google "Lifehacker," I just type "g lifehacker". Once you get used to it, it saves an awful lot of time.

 

While I did jump on the Awesome Bar bandwagon for the first few months, I'm now trying to bookmark more aggressively. This is because, when my history and cache are clear, Firefox loads in under one second. It beats Chrome on my system. You just can't beat that.

 

I do want to mention something to users of Lazarus Form Recovery, an extension that I heartily recommend. It's saved me, on numerous occasions, from losing hours and hours of writing. However, 99% of the time, it's something I'd written just minutes prior, and lost due to a crash; I've never needed to recover something days or weeks after the fact. So I strongly recommend clearing your Lazarus cache (which is kept separately from the main Firefox cache) and setting it to purge saved forms if they're older than a week or so. Before I realized this, Firefox sometimes took up to a minute and a half to load, no matter what else I tried to speed it up. Now, as I mentioned, it freaking beats Chrome at its own game.

 

- - - - - - -

 

I am currently running virtually all of these apps. Firefox has a dozen tabs, I've got four conversations in Trillian, and iTunes is playing the score of The Thin Red Line. And I'm clocking in at a whopping 40% memory use. RAM is cool.

 

- - - - - - -

 

Merry Christmas. :)

www.spurnpoint.com/Spurn_Point.htm

  

Spurn is a very unique place in the British Islands. Three and a half miles long and only fifty metres wide in places.

Extending out in to the Humber Estuary from the Yorkshire coast it has always had a big affect to the navigation of all vessels over the years. Help to some and a danger or hindrance to others. This alone makes Spurn a unique place.

Spurn is made up of a series of sand and shingle banks held together with mainly Marram grass and Seabuckthorn. There are a series of sea defence works built by the Victorians and maintained by the Ministry of Defence, till they sold Spurn to the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust in the 1950s. The defences are in a poor state, breaking down and crumbling. This is making Spurn a very fragile place wide open to the ravages of the North Sea.

One of the most striking features of Spurn is the black and white lighthouse near to the end of Spurn. Now just an empty shell not used since it was closed down at dawn on the thirty first of October 1986.

There have been many Lighthouses on Spurn over the years the first recorded at around 1427. The present light was built from 1893 TO 1895. The small tower on the beach on the Estuary side was originally the low light. It was built and put in to operation at around 1852. This light was no longer needed when the present lighthouse was opened in 1895.At a later date the light was removed and it was used as a store for explosives and later as a water tower. The tank can still be seen on the top. When it was operational there was a raised walkway from the shore to the lighthouse so it could be reached at all stages of the tide.

The present lighthouse was built to replace an old lighthouse that was positioned just to the south of the present one. You can still see the round perimeter wall surrounding the old keepers cottages and the base of the old lighthouse which had to be demolished due to it settling on it's foundations making it unsafe.

The only light on Spurn today is a flashing green starboard light on the very end of the point and the fixed green lights marking the end of the Pilots jetty.

Because of Spurns ever moving position there have been many Lighthouses over the years. There is a very good book by George.de.BOAR, called History of the Spurn Lighthouses, produced by the East Yorkshire Local History Society. This is one of a series of books on local history.

  

www.spurnpoint.com/Around_and_about_at_Spurn.htm

  

Around and about there are plenty of places to eat and drink. Starting from the north of Spurn at Kilnsea there is the Riverside hotel offering good quality food drink and accommodation. Coming south towards Spurn and still in Kilnsea there is the Crown and Anchor pub. A welcoming place serving bar meals fine beers and offering bed and breakfast at very reasonable rates. At the crossroads before you turn towards Spurn there is the Spurn heritage coast visitors centre. Where there is a small cafe and exhibition. At the entrance Spurn point nature reserve is an information centre and bird observatory selling books pamphlets, etc., and the last toilet on Spurn.

Past the lighthouse is the last car park. Two hundred metres further on you find the Humber Lifeboat and Pilot stations. Near the houses is a Small caravan selling tea, coffee, cold cans, hot and cold food, crisps and sweets.

All are open all year round apart from the heritage centre which is open thought the season.

 

BIRD WATCHING.

Is a very popular pastime as Spurn is internationally famous for birds. There are up to two hundred species recorded at spurn every year. Some of which are extremely rare. The Marmora's Warbler seen at Spurn In June 1992 was only the third recorded in Britain.

 

SEA FISHING.

The beaches of Spurn provide some of the best sea fishing in the area, with Cod and Whiting and Flats being caught through the winter and Skate, Flats and Bass through the summer. There is sport to be had all the year.

At the very end of Spurn is deep water ideal for Cod but this only fishes best two hours either side of low water, the tide is to strong at other times. All along the seaward side of Spurn is good for all species of fish at all times though over high water being the better. The riverside of Spurn is very shallow and only produces Flats and the bass over high water.

 

THE BEACH.

 

The beaches at Spurn are of soft sand and shingle. Whichever way the wind is blowing you can just pop over the dunes to the outer side. There are fossils and all manners of things to find beach combing. Swimming is not safe any were near the point end as there are very strong tides at up to six knots at times. But in side Spurn around the point car park is perfect at high water. The beach does not shelf to fast and very little tide. You can have the place to your self at times, as Spurn is never really busy weekdays.#

A very popular pastime at Spurn is Fossil hunting. There is a good abundance of fossils to be found in amongst the pebbles and shingle.

The Shark Trust has a very interesting PDF file tell you all about Shark Skate and rays the mermaids purses you find on the beach are egg shells from sharks and Rays. Click the link to down load the Shark Trust Brochure.

 

WALKING.

Walking or strolling at spurn is very easy, as there are no hills. There are various sign posted paths up and down the point. For the fit a complete walk round the whole point is about 8 miles, taking in all the point round the point end and back to the "warren" information place at the start of Spurn. You will need good footwear, as much of the paths are sand. There is limited access for disabled, but not to the point end, as you have to go via the beach.

You can park your car at the point car park and walk round the point end and back to the car park about a mile, or just stroll around the point were you choose. The only place you are not allowed to go are down the pilot's jetty and the centre square of the Lifeboat houses.

In spring and early summer Spurn is covered with a large amount of wild flowers of all species.

There are common to the not so common; from Orchids to bluebells. I must remind you Spurn is a nature reserve and the picking of all flowers is prohibited. When visiting please enjoy Spurn, as it is a very beautiful place and leave only your footprints.

 

Horse Riding.

 

There is riding available nearby at the North Humberside Riding Centre. The stables are ideally located with rides along quiet country lanes, by-ways, plus miles of sandy beach and riverbanks. The cross-country course offers a variety of fences for both the novice and the more experienced rider.

 

www.spurnbirdobservatory.co.uk/

 

A Brief History of Spurn Bird Observatory

 

Following visits to Spurn by several members of the Yorkshire Naturalists' Union in the late 1930's, a communal log for ornithological observations was instituted in 1938. This included a roll-call of species, the beginnings of a recording system, which later became standard in bird observatories. Realising the potential of the Spurn peninsula for the regular observation of bird migration a group of enthusiasts, notably Ralph Chislett, George Ainsworth, John Lord and R.M. Garnett, had the idea of setting up a bird observatory, with the Warren Cottage at the northern end of the peninsula as an ideal headquarters. Unfortunately the outbreak of war forced them to put their plans on hold but shortly after hostilities ceased a lease for Warren Cottage was obtained from the War Department and the observatory was established shortly afterwards under the auspices of the Y.N.U. with the four members mentioned above forming the first committee. A preliminary meeting was held in September 1945 to decide on the site for a Heligoland trap, work on which was begun almost immediately and the first bird (a Blackbird) was ringed on November 17th. The first minuted committee meeting was held on March 9th 1946 and the observatory was opened to visitors at Whitsuntide that year.

Initially coverage was limited to the main migration seasons, being extended to winter weekends in the early 1950's to trap and ring some of the large numbers of Snow Buntings which used to occur at that time of year and gradually coverage was increased (whenever possible) to cover the late spring and summer. In 1959 there was an important development when the Yorkshire Naturalists' Trust (now the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust) became the owners of the peninsula and thus the observatory's landlord. In 1960 a full time warden was appointed by the Trust, and although having no official connection with the observatory the fact of having an observer on the peninsula year-round inevitably helped to improve the ornithological coverage. This was especially the case from 1964 when the current warden, Barry Spence, was appointed, in conjunction with the fact that an interest in birds and their migrations was steadily growing and more bird-watchers were staying at the observatory, often for longer periods.

When the observatory opened there was accommodation for seven visitors in Warren Cottage and facilities included two chemical toilets, the Warren Heligoland trap and an ex-army hut as a ringing hut. Over the next ten years a further five Heligoland traps were constructed along the peninsula, although today only three remain in existence. In 1959 the observatory gained the use of the Annexe, one of two ex W.D. bungalows built at the Warren during the early 1950's, thus increasing the accommodation capacity to seventeen and providing much improved toilet facilities. Over the years the accommodation and facilities have been gradually improved to try to make the visitor's stay at Spurn as comfortable as possible. Other improvements have also taken place, in 1968 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Point was converted into a ringing laboratory ready for the first B.T.O. Ringing Course, held in autumn of that year and in 1971 part of one of the derelict buildings at the Warren was also converted into a ringing laboratory. The other part of this building became a laboratory for the use of students of Leeds University but this also became available to the observatory in the mid 1980's when the University no longer had a use for it. Subsequently it was converted into a self-contained accommodation unit for two, complete with kitchen facilities, and although officially known by the somewhat unimaginative name of Room F (the rooms in the Annexe being known as Rooms A, C, D & E, - whatever happened to Room B?), it was somewhat irreverently christened "Dunbirdin" by regular visitors to Spurn.

In 1965 a sea-watching hut was erected east of the Warren beyond the line of the former railway track. Due to coastal erosion it became necessary to move this in late 1974, when it was hoped that it would last at least as long as it had in its first position. Alas this was not to be, as the rate of erosion increased dramatically in the mid 1970's, necessitating a further move in early December 1977. In that year a clay bank had been built across the field behind Warren Cottage (Clubley's field) to prevent the flooding of arable land by wind-blown sea water, but on January 11th 1978 Spurn suffered its worst flooding ever when a strong to gale-force north-westerly wind combined with a spring tide. In late 1981 due to extensive construction works at Easington a large quantity of boulder clay became available and this was used to build up and extend the bank across Clubley's field, south towards Black Hut and north beyond Big Hedge to join up with an existing bank (which had been built in 1974) behind the scrape. In 1982 the sea-watching hut was repositioned on top of this bank, where it remained until the bank itself was washed away in the early 1990's.

A number of other changes to the observatory recording area began to take place from the early 1970's, including extensive building operations at the Point, commencing in 1974, with the construction of a new jetty for the Humber Pilot boats, new housing for the Spurn Lifeboat crew and the conversion and renovation of various existing buildings for use by the Coastguard and the Pilots. In 1978 following damage to the existing road south of the Warren area a new tarmac road was laid to the west of the original one, this lasted until 1988 when a second "new road" loop had to be laid, followed in 1991 by the construction of the existing loop road running along the Humber shore from just south of the Warren to just beyond Black Hut. The construction of this road resulted in the destruction of the actual Black Hut, although the area still bears the name. In 1981 the lines of wartime concrete anti-tank blocks running from the seashore to the Canal Zone were removed to fill in a breach at the Narrow Neck. This resulted in the southward extension of the Scrape field by the farmer up to Big Hedge and the start of a gradual decline in the condition of this hedge and its attractiveness to birds. In 1982 a local resident excavated a pond for shooting purposes in the wet area adjoining the Canal Zone. This never really proved successful and the land was later purchased by the Y.W.T. and the pond enlarged to become what is now known as Canal Scrape. In 1984 a famous Spurn landmark, the Narrows "Hut", a wooden migration watch shelter which had stood at the Narrow Neck for twenty-three years, was set fire to by person or persons unknown and completely destroyed, it was replaced the following year by a more solid construction made from breeze-blocks.

A period of considerable change began in 1988 when the Spurn peninsula was designated as part of the Spurn Heritage Coast. Projects undertaken include the enlargement of the Canal Scrape mentioned above and the erection of a hide overlooking it, a hide overlooking the Humber wader roost at Chalk Bank, a public sea-watching hide alongside the observatory one, provision of additional car-parking space, the restoration of the short-turf habitat in the Chalk Bank area, provision of footpaths, etc. A major project was the renovation of the Blue Bell in Kilnsea for use as offices, an information centre and a small cafe, which became fully operational in 1995. Another fairly recent project has been the creation of another scrape/pond on Clubley's field.

In 1996 the observatory celebrated its fiftieth anniversary, and for the first time in its history SBO employed a full time seasonal warden. This position has since been expanded and the observatory now enjoys the services of a year- round warden. In 1998, with a view to the future, a small bungalow in Kilnsea was purchased with money bequeathed by the late John Weston, a long time committee member, who regrettably died in 1996. This was followed in 1999 by the purchase of a strip of land adjacent to the property and is now known as the ‘Church Field’, this is planted with a sacrificial crop every year, and has also had several groups of trees planted and a feeding station placed in the north-east corner. Access to this field is available by becoming a member of ‘Friends of Spurn Bird Observatory’, a venture set up in 2003 to eventually help with the building of a new observatory when the old one falls way to the sea.

 

Information from: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Downtown_Manhattan

 

Lower Manhattan is the southernmost part of the island of Manhattan, the main island and center of business and government of the City of New York. Lower Manhattan or "downtown" is defined most commonly as the area delineated on the north by 14th Street, on the west by the Hudson River, on the east by the East River, and on the south by New York Harbor (also known as Upper New York Bay). When referring specifically to the lower Manhattan business district and its immediate environs, the northern border is commonly designated by thoroughfares approximately a mile-and-a-half south of 14th Street and a mile north of the island's southern tip: Chambers Street from near the Hudson east to the Brooklyn Bridge entrances and overpass. Two other major arteries are also sometimes identified as the northern border of "lower" or "downtown Manhattan": Canal Street, roughly half a mile north of Chambers Street, and 23rd Street, roughly half a mile north of 14th Street. Anchored by Wall Street, in Lower Manhattan, New York City is the financial capital of the world[1][2][3][4][5][6][7] and is home to the New York Stock Exchange, the world's largest stock exchange by market capitalization of its listed companies.

 

The lower Manhattan business district forms the core of the area below Chambers Street. It includes the Financial District (often referred to as Wall Street, after its primary artery) and the former site of the World Trade Center. At the island's southern tip is Battery Park; City Hall is just to the north of the Financial District. Also south of Chambers Street are the planned community of Battery Park City and the South Street Seaport historic area. The neighborhood of TriBeCa straddles Chambers on the west side; at the street's east end is the giant Manhattan Municipal Building. North of Chambers Street and the Brooklyn Bridge and south of Canal Street lies most of New York's oldest Chinatown neighborhood. Many court buildings and other government offices are also located in this area. The Lower East Side neighborhood straddles Canal. North of Canal and south of 14th Street are the neighborhoods of SoHo, the Meatpacking District, the West Village, Greenwich Village, Little Italy, Nolita, and the East Village. Between 14th and 23rd streets are lower Chelsea, Union Square, the Flatiron District, Gramercy, and the large residential development Peter Cooper Village—Stuyvesant Town.

 

Contents [hide]

1 History

1.1 Historic sites

1.2 In fiction

2 Recovery and future

3 Defining downtown

4 Government and infrastructure

5 Economy

6 Education

6.1 Higher education

6.2 Primary and secondary education

6.2.1 Public schools

6.2.2 Private schools

6.2.3 Parochial schools

7 See also

8 References

9 External links

  

[edit] History

 

The Cooper Union at Astor Place, where Abraham Lincoln gave his famed Cooper Union speech, is one of downtown's most storied buildings.

Lower Manhattan skyline, 1931

Union Square

The Lower Manhattan skyline in 2008. The noticeable gap where the World Trade Center stood is visible towards the top of the image, where construction cranes can be seen.

Manhattan ChinatownThe Dutch established the first European settlements in Manhattan, which were located at the lower end of the island.[8] The first fort was built at the Battery to protect New Netherland. In 1771, Bear Market was established along the Hudson shore on land donated by Trinity Church, and replaced by Washington Market in 1813.[9] Washington Market was located between Barclay and Hubert Streets, and from Greenwich to West Street.[10] The area remains one of the few parts of Manhattan where the street grid system is largely irregular. Throughout the early decades of the 1900s, the area experienced a construction boom, with major towers such as 40 Wall Street, the American International Building, Woolworth Building, and 20 Exchange Place being erected.

 

In the 1950s, a few new buildings were constructed in lower Manhattan, including an 11-story building at 156 William Street in 1955.[11] A 27-story office building at 20 Broad Street, a 12-story building at 80 Pine Street, a 26-story building at 123 William Street, and a few others were built in 1957.[11] By the end of the decade, lower Manhattan had become economically depressed, in comparison with midtown Manhattan, which was booming. David Rockefeller spearheaded widespread urban renewal efforts in lower Manhattan, beginning with construction One Chase Manhattan Plaza, the new headquarters for his bank. He established the Downtown-Lower Manhattan Association (DLMA) which drew up plans for broader revitalization of lower Manhattan, with the development of a world trade center at the heart of these plans. The original DLMA plans called for the "world trade center" to be built along the East River, between Old Slip and Fulton Street. After negotiations with New Jersey Governor Richard J. Hughes, the Port Authority decided to build the World Trade Center on a site along the Hudson River and the West Side Highway, rather than the East River site.[citation needed]

 

Through much of its history, the area south of Chambers Street was mainly a commercial district, with a small population of residents—in 1960, it was home to about 4,000.[12] Construction of Battery Park City, on landfill from construction of the World Trade Center, brought many new residents to the area. Gateway Plaza, the first Battery Park City development, was finished in 1983. The project's centerpiece, the World Financial Center, consists of four luxury highrise towers. By the turn of the century, Battery Park City was mostly completed, with the exception of some ongoing construction on West Street. Around this time, lower Manhattan reached its highest population of business tenants and full-time residents.[citation needed]

 

Since the early twentieth century, lower Manhattan has been an important center for the arts and leisure activities. Greenwich Village was a locus of bohemian culture from the first decade of the century through the 1980s. Several of the city's leading jazz clubs are still located in Greenwich Village, which was also one of the primary bases of the American folk music revival of the 1960s. Many art galleries were located in SoHo between the 1970s and early 1990s; today, the downtown Manhattan gallery scene is centered in Chelsea. From the 1960s onward, lower Manhattan has been home to many alternative theater companies, constituting the heart of the Off-Off-Broadway community. Punk rock and its derivatives emerged in the mid-1970s largely at two venues: CBGB on the Bowery, the western edge of the East Village, and Max's Kansas City on Park Avenue South. At the same time, the area's surfeit of reappropriated industrial lofts played an integral role in the development and sustenance of the minimalist composition, free jazz, and disco/electronic dance music subcultures. The area's many nightclubs and bars—though mostly shorn of the freewheeling iconoclasm, pioneering spirit, and do-it-yourself mentality that characterized the pregentrification era—still draw patrons from throughout the city and the surrounding region. In the early twenty-first century, the Meatpacking District, once the sparsely populated province of after-hours BDSM clubs and transgendered prostitutes, gained a reputation as New York's trendiest neighborhood.[13]

  

Lower Manhattan viewed from the Brooklyn Heights "Promenade".

[edit] Historic sites

This section does not cite any references or sources.

Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (November 2009)

 

The New York Stock ExchangeThe most famous landmark[clarification needed] in lower Manhattan is now the former World Trade Center site. Before the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, the Twin Towers were major New York icons.

 

The area contains many old and historic building and sites, including Castle Garden, originally the fort Castle Clinton, Bowling Green, the old United States Customs House, now the National Museum of the American Indian, Federal Hall, where George Washington was inaugurated as the first U.S. President, Fraunces Tavern, New York City Hall, the New York Stock Exchange, renovated original mercantile buildings of the South Street Seaport (and a modern tourist building), the Brooklyn Bridge, South Ferry, embarkation point for the Staten Island Ferry and ferries to Liberty Island and Ellis Island, and Trinity Church. Lower Manhattan is home to some of New York City's most spectacular skyscrapers, including the Woolworth Building, 40 Wall Street (also known as the Trump Building), the Standard Oil Building at 26 Broadway, and the American International Building.

 

[edit] In fiction

In terms of atmosphere, Batman writer and editor Dennis O'Neil has said that, figuratively, "Batman's Gotham City is Manhattan below Fourteenth Street at eleven minutes past midnight on the coldest night in November."[14]

 

[edit] Recovery and future

This section does not cite any references or sources.

Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (November 2009)

 

After the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001, lower Manhattan lost much of its economy and office space. While the area's economy has rebounded significantly, as of April 2010, the enormous site once occupied by the World Trade Center site remains under construction. The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation plans to rebuild downtown Manhattan, by adding new streets, buildings, and office space.

  

The Lower Manhattan skyline before the 11 September 2001 attacks, from the Staten Island Ferry in December 1991.

The Lower Manhattan skyline after September 11, in 2006.

[edit] Defining downtown

See also: Downtown

 

Chess players in Washington Square ParkDowntown in the context of Manhattan, and of New York City generally, has different meanings to different people, especially depending on where in the city they reside. Residents of the island or of The Bronx generally speak of going "downtown" to refer to any southbound excursion to any Manhattan destination.[15] A declaration that one is going to be "downtown" may indicate a plan to be anywhere south of 14th Street—the definition of downtown according to the city's official tourism marketing organization[15]—or even 23rd Street.[16] The full phrase downtown Manhattan may also refer more specifically to the area of Manhattan south of Canal Street.[12] Within business-related contexts, many people use the term downtown Manhattan to refer only to the Financial District and the corporate offices in the immediate vicinity. For instance, the Business Improvement District managed by the Alliance for Downtown New York defines Downtown as South of Murray Street (essentially South of New York City Hall), which includes the World Trade Center area and the Financial District. The phrase lower Manhattan may apply to any of these definitions: the broader ones often if the speaker is discussing the area in relation to the rest of the city; more restrictive ones, again, if the focus is on business matters or on the early colonial and post-colonial history of the island.[citation needed]

 

As reflected in popular culture, "downtown" in Manhattan has historically represented a place where one could "forget all your troubles, forget all your cares, and go Downtown," as the lyrics of Petula Clark's 1964 hit "Downtown" celebrate. The protagonist of Billy Joel's 1983 hit "Uptown Girl" contrasts himself (a "downtown man") with the purportedly staid uptown world.[17] Likewise, the chorus of Neil Young's 1995 single "Downtown" urges "Let's have a party, downtown all right."

 

[edit] Government and infrastructure

Prior to the September 11 attacks, the headquarters of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey were located in the World Trade Center.[18]

 

[edit] Economy

Lower Manhattan is the fourth largest business district in the United States, after Midtown Manhattan, the Chicago Loop, and Washington, D.C., and will regain the title of 3rd after the completion of 1 World Trade Center, also known as Freedom Tower.[citation needed]

 

After the September 11 attacks occurred, many companies which had operations in Lower Manhattan began negotiations to lease office space outside of Lower Manhattan.[19]

 

The headquarters of AOL are located at 770 Broadway.[20] The headquarters of Verizon Communications are located at 140 West Street.[21] The headquarters of Ambac Financial Group are in Lower Manhattan.[22] The headquarters of PR Newswire are in Lower Manhattan.[23]

 

Prior to the September 11 attacks, One World Trade Center served as the headquarters of Cantor Fitzgerald.[24] Prior to its dissolution, the headquarters of US Helicopter were in Lower Manhattan.[25] When Hi Tech Expressions existed, its headquarters were in Lower Manhattan.[26][27]

 

[edit] Education

[edit] Higher education

 

Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC) is part of the large City University of New York (CUNY) systemInstitutions of higher education in Manhattan south of 14th Street include:

 

Benjamin Cardozo School of Law

Berkeley College—Lower Manhattan Extension Center

Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC)

College of New Rochelle—DC 37 Campus

Cooper Union

Metropolitan College of New York

The New School

New York Law School

New York University (NYU); also houses the Fales Library Downtown Collection

Pace University

Pratt Institute—Manhattan Center

St. John's University—School of Risk Management, Insurance, and Actuarial Science

[edit] Primary and secondary education

[edit] Public schools

 

Stuyvesant High SchoolThe New York City Department of Education operates New York City's public schools. The northeastern corner of lower Manhattan is covered by New York City School District 1, whose northern border is 14th Street. The rest of the area lies within School District 2, which covers midtown and part of upper Manhattan as well. District 1 is served by over twenty elementary and middle schools. The district's high schools include:

 

Bard High School Early College

Cascades High School

East Side Community High School

Henry Street School for International Studies

Lower East Side Preparatory High School

Marta Valle Secondary School

New Explorations into Science, Technology and Math High School

University Neighborhood High School

Urban Assembly School of Business for Young Women

Public high schools in District 2 south of 14th Street include:

 

High School of Economics and Finance

Leadership & Public Service High School

Millennium High School

Murry Bergtraum High School

Pace University High School

Seward Park High School

Stuyvesant High School

Unity High School at the Door

University Neighborhood High School

[edit] Private schools

Private schools in the area include:

 

Claremont Preparatory School

[edit] Parochial schools

Parochial schools in the area include:

 

St. James Elementary School

[edit] See also

New York City portal

Chinatown, Manhattan

Manhattan

[edit] References

^ "The World's Most Expensive Real Estate Markets". CNBC. www.cnbc.com/id/29862382/The_World_s_Most_Expensive_Real_.... Retrieved 2010-05-31.

^ "The Best 301 Business Schools 2010 by Princeton Review, Nedda Gilbert". books.google.com/books?id=dWA7aEbsy8QC&pg=PA154&d.... Retrieved 2010-05-31.

^ "Financial Capital of the World: NYC". Wired New York/Bloomberg. wirednewyork.com/forum/showthread.php?t=22541. Retrieved 2010-05-31.

^ "The Tax Capital of the World". The Wall Street Journal. April 11, 2009. online.wsj.com/article/SB123940286075109617.html. Retrieved 2010-05-31.

^ "JustOneMinute - Editorializing From The Financial Capital Of The World". justoneminute.typepad.com/main/2010/04/editorializing-fro.... Retrieved 2010-05-31.

^ "London may have the IPOs...". Marketwatch. www.marketwatch.com/story/credit-crunch-shows-new-york-is.... Retrieved 2010-05-31.

^ "Fondos - Londres versus Nueva York" (PDF). Cinco Dias. www.cincodias.com/articulo/mercados/Londres-versus-Nueva-.... Retrieved 2010-05-31.

^ Rankin, Rebecca B., Cleveland Rodgers (1948). New York: the World's Capital City, Its Development and Contributions to Progress. Harper.

^ "A Public Market for Lower Manhattan" (PDF). New York City Council. www.nyccouncil.info/pdf_files/reports/publicmarket.pdf.

^ Millstein, Gilbert (April 24, 1960). "Restless Ports for the City's Food". The New York Times.

^ a b Bartnett, Edmond J. (December 25, 1960). "Building Activity Soars Downtown". The New York Times.

^ a b Brown, Charles H. (January 31, 1960). "'Downtown' Enters a New Era". The New York Times.

^ Steinberg, Jon (2004-08-18). "Meatpacking District Walking Tour". New York Magazine. nymag.com/visitorsguide/neighborhoods/meatpacking.htm. Retrieved 2008-03-07.

^ O'Neil, Dennis. Afterword. Batman: Knightfall, A Novel. New York: Bantam Books, 1994. 344.

^ a b NYC Basics, NYCvisit.com. Retrieved on December 2, 2007.

^ See, e.g., Hotels: Downtown below 23rd Street, Time Out New York; "Residents Angered By Bar Noise In Downtown Manhattan", NY 1 News, March 3, 2006. Both retrieved on December 3, 2007.

^ Downtown: Its Rise and Fall, 1880-1950 by Professor Robert M Fogelson. Yale University Press, 2003. ISBN 0300098278. pg 3

^ "About the Port Authority." Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. June 22, 2000. Retrieved on January 22, 2010.

^ Bagli, Charles V. and Leslie Eaton. "After the attacks: The exodus; Seeking New Space, Companies Search Far From Wall St." The New York Times. September 14, 2001. Retrieved on January 22, 2010.

^ "Company Overview." AOL. Retrieved on May 7, 2009.

^ "Customer Support Contacts." Verizon Communications. Retrieved on February 18, 2009.

^ "Contact Us." Ambac Financial Group. Retrieved on December 11, 2009.

^ "Worldwide Offices." PR Newswire. Retrieved on February 27, 2010.

^ "office locations." Cantor Fitzgerald. March 4, 2000. Retrieved on October 4, 2009.

^ "Contact Us." US Helicopter. Retrieved on September 25, 2009.

^ Ward's Business Directory of U.S. Private and Public Companies, 1995: Alphabetic listing, G-O Volume 2. Gale Research, 1995. "2073. Retrieved from Google Books on July 28, 2010. "Hi Tech Expressions Inc. 584 Broadway New York, NY 10012." ISBN 0810388316, 9780810388314.

^ "Playin fair video-game manufacturers target an untapped market -- Girls." Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. June 12, 1994. K-1. Retrieved on July 28, 2010. "Meanwhile, over at Hi Tech Expressions, a New York-based software company,"

 

Basic Linux commands

ift.tt/19HTkI8

 

Basic Linux commands

 

Almost These Linux commands are basics except those which relate to package manager, we all know that they differs, Ubuntu, Mint ... use Apt, Arch uses Pacman ...

Here are some Basic Linux commands :

Display Linux distributor's ID

lsb_release -is

Display Linux release number

lsb_release -rs

Display Linux code name

lsb_release -cs

Display machine hardware name

uname -m

List all PCI devices, such as display card and ethernet card.

lspci

Reclaim memory which stores pagecache, dentries and inodes

echo 3 > /proc/sys/vm/drop_caches

Display a list of modules in the Linux Kernel

lsmod

List USB devices

lsusb -v

Display the status of ethernet card

sudo ethtool eth0

List hardware

sudo lshw

List harddisk partitions

sudo fdisk -l

Display SATA harddisk parameters

sudo hdparm -I /dev/sda

Display disk space usage

df -h

Display file/folder space usage

du -bsh FOLDER_NAME

Display amount of free and used memory

free

Display processes

ps -e

Display a tree of processes

pstree

Display processes dynamically

top

Terminate a process with a given process id

sudo kill -9 PROCESS_ID

Terminate all processes with a given name

sudo killall PROCESS_NAME

List files which are opened by a given process

lsof -p PROCESS_ID

lsof -c PROCESS_NAME

List processes which opened a given file

lsof FILE_NAME

List processes which are using port 80

lsof -i :80

Configure an ADSL connection

sudo pppoeconf

Starts up ADSL connections

sudo pon

Shuts down ADSL connections

sudo poff

Display MAC of a given IP address

arping IP_ADDRESS

Display NetBIOS name of a given IP address

nmblookup -A IP_ADDRESS

Display IP address and MAC

ifconfig -a

Display route

netstat -rn

Set MAC of ethernet interface

sudo ifconfig eth0 hw ether 00:11:22:33:44:55

Display information of a domain name

whois example.com

Display the network path to a given host

tracepath example.com

Request an IP address from DHCP server

sudo dhclient

Temporarily restart an init script

sudo /etc/init.d/SCRIPT_NAME restart

Temporarily stop an init script

sudo /etc/init.d/SCRIPT_NAME stop

Add a user

sudo adduser USER_NANE

Delete a user

sudo deluser USER_NAME

Change user password

sudo passwd USER_NAME

Changes user fullname, office number, office extension, and home phone number information.

sudo chfn USER_NAME

Display user information

finger USER_NAME

Temporarily prevent a user from logging in

sudo usermod -L USER_NAME

Revoke the operation above

sudo usermod -U USER_NAME

Add a user to admin group

sudo usermod -G admin -a USER_NAME

Set the HTTP proxy

export http_proxy=http://PROXY.DOMAIN.NAME:PORT

Modify the information displayed after logging in

sudo vim /etc/motd.tail

Choose the input method for X Window

im-switch -c

Convert the file name from GBK to UTF8

convmv -r -f gbk -t utf8 --notest FILE_NAME

Convert the file content from GBK to UTF8

iconv -f gbk -t utf8 FILE_NAME

Convert tags in '*.mp3' from GBK to UTF8

find . -name '*.mp3' -execdir mid3iconv -e GBK {} \;

Read a long file

less FILE_NAME

Print lines matching a pattern

grep REG_EXP FILE_NAME

Display a list of file name. The files contain a given string.

grep -lr REG_EXP PATHNAME

Display all '.txt' file

find . -name '*.txt'

Create two empty files

touch file_name_1 file_name_2

Create directory. Create parent directories as needed.

mkdir -p /tmp/a/b/c/d/e

Change working directory to the home folder

cd

Change working directory to the previous working directory

cd -

Display hidden files

ls -a

Copy directory. Preserve links, file mode, ownership, timestamps.

cp -a SOURCE_DIRECTORY DEST_DIRECTORY

Determine file type

file FILE_NAME

Output the last 6 lines

tail -n 6 FILE_NAME

Copy files via SSH

scp -rp FILE_NAME USERNAME@HOST:DEST_PATH

Rename '*.rm' files to '*.rmvb' files

rename 's/.rm$/.rmvb/' *

Change the file name to lowercase

rename 'tr/A-Z/a-z/' *

Display subdirectories in current directory

ls -d */.

Display file number in current directory

ls . | wc -w

Extract "*.gz" file

gunzip FILE_NAME.gz

Extract "*.tar.gz" file

tar zxf FILE_NAME.tar.gz

Extract "*.tar.bz2" file

tar jxf FILE_NAME.tar.bz2

Do compression

tar czf FILE_NAME.tar.gz FILE1 FILE2 FILE3

tar cjf FILE_NAME.tar.bz2 FILE1 FILE2 FILE3

Displays a calendar

cal

cal MONTH YEAR

Set the date and time via NTP

sudo ntpdate ntp.ubuntu.com

Poweroff your computer

sudo halt

sudo shutdown -h now

Poweroff your computer in 23:00

sudo shutdown -h 23:00

Poweroff your computer after 60 minutes

sudo shutdown -h +60

Reboot your computer

sudo reboot

sudo shutdown -r now

If you want some program to start up automatically, please put '.desktop' files into '$HOME/.config/autostart'

You can configure "preferred applications" by this file "$HOME/.local/share/applications/mimeapps.list"

Continuously monitor the memory usage

watch -d free

Display HTTP HEAD response

w3m -dump_head example.com

Display file content with line number

nl FILE_NAME

Eliminate Rootkit

sudo rkhunter --checkall

Change hostname

sudo hostname new_name

"Tasksel" group software packages into "task"s. You can select a "task" and then install all necessary software packages. It is easy to set up LAMP servers or cloud computing servers.

Show all tasks

tasksel --list

Display the extended description of a task

tasksel --task-desc lamp-server

List the packages which are parts of a task

tasksel --task-packages lamp-server

Install/remove a task

gksudo tasksel

Change Process priority

renice NEW_PRIORITY `pgrep NAME_OF_PROCESS`

example: renice 5 `pgrep firefox`

renice -5 `pgrep wine-server`

high low

NEW_PRIORITY = -19, -18, -17 [...] 18, 19, 20

Clear Bash history

history -c

If you want to use colorful "ls", that is, use colors to distinguish types of files, you can add these lines in $HOME/.bashrc:

if [ "$TERM" != "dumb" ]; then

eval "`dircolors -b`"

alias ls='ls --color=auto'

fi

$HOME/.thumbnails/ directory is a cache dir GNOME makes when you browse through your folders in nautilus.

It contains thumbnail pictures of picture files you've previously looked at.

You can get its total size by

du -bs $HOME/.thumbnails/

You can delete the files in the .thumbnails directory that haven't been accessed for seven days, to free disk space.

find $HOME/.thumbnails/ -type f -atime +7 -exec rm {} \;

Capture screen after 10 seconds

gnome-screenshot -d 10

Capture current window after 10 seconds

gnome-screenshot -wd 10

Start GConf editor:

Press Alt+F2, type 'gconf-editor'.

Set apt source

sudo software-properties-gtk

sudo software-properties-kde

Display the packages which are not installed but have remained residual config

dpkg -l | awk '/^rc/ {print $2}'

Add a PPA repository:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:PPA-REPOSITORY-NAME

Display a list of files. The files are installed from a given package.

dpkg -L PACKAGE_NAME

Display a list of packages. The packages installed a given file.

dpkg -S FILE_NAME

Display a list of packages. The name of packages matches given regex pattern.

apt-cache search REG_EXPRESSION

Display a list of packages. The packages provide a given file.

apt-file search FILE_NAME

Display a list of packages. The given package depends on the list of packages.

apt-cache depends PACKAGE_NAME

Display a list of packages. These packages depend on the given package.

apt-cache rdepends PACKAGE_NAME

Prompt for a disk to be inserted and then add the disc to the source list.

sudo apt-cdrom add

Install the newest versions of all packages currently installed on the system.

sudo apt-get upgrade

Delete residual package configuration files.

dpkg -l | grep ^rc | awk '{print $2}' | sudo xargs dpkg -P

Automatically install necessary files for './configure ; make ; make install'

sudo auto-apt run ./configure

Save the list of packages currently installed on your system.

dpkg --get-selections | grep -v deinstall > SOME_FILE

Then use the file to restore packages.

dpkg --set-selections < SOME_FILE ; sudo dselect

After running "sudo apt-get install", "*.deb" files are stored in "/var/cache/apt/archives"

You can clean this directory by:

sudo apt-get clean

Display URL for a given package

apt-get -qq --print-uris install PACKAGE_NAME

Display some statistics about the apt cache

apt-cache stats

Display all package name

apt-cache pkgnames

Display some information of a given package

apt-cache show PACKAGE_NAME

ift.tt/1b8Eb9g

Hair: Neva: Sensitive Black; By Fri.day

Eyes: Sunburst by Shapes by Zada

Skin: Grace: First Romance-Tan: by Chaisuki

Vest, Stole, and Shirt, by Argrace.

Eyelashes: by Chandra Meehan

 

>> Name: Adagio

>> Age: 20 Physical

>> Species: Human

>> Blood type: B+

>> Height: 6'7"

>> Weight: 250 lbs

>> Gender: Female

>>Eyes: Blue

>>Enhancements: Shorter synapses and enhanced neurotransmitters, Triple dense Muscular system, Datajack. Combined Oragic/Cybernetic Brain, Metabolizes Platinum

>>Memory Implants: Language ( English ), Intermediate Medical Skills, Job Skills ( Classified ), Dance ( Multiple Styles )

................................................................................................................................................

 

>>Dossier: Adagio is a genetic construct using the base DNA of Taellinu Aichi. While Taellinu is the main genetic base, others strains of genes have been used to alter her overall appearance to look different from the genetic samples. While Adagio is technically unrelated to Taellinu, enough genetic match would be present that one could find a close enough link to perhaps claim Taellinu as either a sister or mother. Philosophically this is the case, however if known by Adagio this would, in all likelihood be adamantly denied. Adagio would view herself as a unique person, but in several ways she is only as unique as any other purpose built human being, and this would indeed be true for her.

 

>>Adagio was created to be security personnel for Ashagi Corporation, under the watchful eyes of Doctors Aylin Daviau, and Temp Parkin. The project was also overseen and approved along the way by Sauscony Selei, whom Adagio is a replacement for due to Adagio’s ‘inherently unstable’ nature. It is due to the input of Miss. Selei that Adagio bears no or little physical resemblance to her genetic forebears. Due to the insights and visions of her creators the problems inherent in Sauscony have been corrected, such as an overly brittle bone structure, weak muscles, and inability to fight.

 

>>Adagio herself is a cold un-emotive woman that on the surface takes pleasure from nothing. She has the same drawn look on her face on duty and off, part of the image she keeps up as an ‘iron fist in a velvet glove’ as she sees herself anyway. This mindset leads her to try to be as efficient, quick, and as lethally effective as possible. She views her work for Ashagi as the reason for her entire existence, which in fact, it is. Adagio, unlike most beings like her, does not possess any memories of their previous forms, the reasoning for this is that Sauscony viewed Adagio as a sort of child, a sort of culmination of her being. A chance to undo what had been done to her, too doom her to a life imposed upon her by someone else, for the explicit purpose of prolonging her own life, it was deemed that adagio should be ‘given’ a life part of the reason as to why she contains none of her memories, personality, or beign.

 

>>As for the ‘improvements’ to Adagio over a regular human a triple dense musculature, increased response times, reflexes etc, this works by an increase in efficiency of synapse transmitters. However Adagio is no faster than the average human because of the added weight do to the dense muscles. The added muscle density of course means a high strength per pound ratio than a normal human, and due to quicker synapses Adagio ‘could’ become faster than normal if the right parts are given the proper degree of exercise. That is to say any further improvement over her ‘normal’ body must be done ‘the old fashioned way’ through hard work and exercise.

 

>>The fact that Adagio has more efficient neurotransmitters and quicker synapses than normal may seem a blessing, leading to faster reflexes and perhaps to faster memory recall. However a side effect of this is Adagio’s always rigid way of carrying herself. She is affected to such a degree that ‘wound up’ and ‘tense’ would fail to do her justice. Instead of the normal reactions to such things her brain would seem to have compensated for this by negating the usage of nearly all receptors involved with emotional response.

 

>>The knowledge that Adagio was implanted with was a fairly customized data set chosen by her creators, including normal language skills Adagio has knowledge required for her job including, hand to hand combat skills, skills with hand guns and blades to a limited degree, and as a personal touch by Sauscony Adagio should have some skill with dance. While this knowledge set is not expected to get adagio through her entire life, it is merely meant as the ground work for more improvement.

 

The First Measure

On The First Day

 

Well My first day was, Unique. I awoke to one of my creators Doctor Daviau. While I cannot say for sure everything about her, she seems efficient.

 

I later encountered a young girl, nellie. She seems to be a friend of one of the researchers here. She displayed what seems to be a keen intelligence, She could benefit the company eventually, I presented this to Doctor Daviau and she Agrees.

 

I Later met Doctor Parkin, My Other creator, She is an interesting one, i'll have to find out more. Later in the day i helped he rin a rescue operation of one of our employeees. we were successful in our attempts.

 

Barline

 

The Second Measure

The Second Flight

 

Well i have succeeded in furnishing my apartment to my specifications. It is more efficient now. I think that my coworkers are starting to like me more, despite my icy manner. If I had a logical explanation i'd give one.

 

Barline

 

The Third measure

Aurora in 4 voices

 

Well today started out just lovely. Someone set off a bomb downtown. When I went out side I could see the smoke and dust from it. I have no idea who set it or what purpose it could have been. I'm fairly certain it wasn't a warning from the mayor though. But even if it wasn't, I know this I won't be bothering his staff anymore. Even though that little stunt worked to some degree it didn't work when the cops came in.

 

Last night with Nellie seems to have been productive, she may be even more intelligent than I had assumed. She may be of great benefit eventually.

 

Along the lines of work I filled out my contract this morning. Apparently I'm being paid quite well, I'm quite pleased to be earning 250K a year, and I wonder what the paychecks of others are like.

 

The haulers fell through on my shipments. Thankfully I was able to get the business card for a Hideo Inaka, hopefully he'll be able to provide me with the items I need. I could probably get what I need through Ashagi, but I don't think that Ashagi deals in weaponry, at least of the type I'm needing.

 

The Yakuza fell through Also. Fortunately Black Star came through on the Beretta, and Aylin is covering the armor. I'll speak with doctor Parkin about the blades.

 

On another note I've been placed in charge of Shoya, it should be interesting to see what happens with her. Her morale is in the shitter and she badly needs someone to support her. I just hope that I can provide that need.

 

Barline

 

The Fourth measure

The wings of hope

 

Today has been interesting, I was able to obtain some blades from Doctor Parkin, who tried me out in a sparring match, and I will admit I have along way to go, but at least I have some minor skills. My strength is my greatest weapon and my greatest weakness it seems, I need to learn to be more Fluid in combat.

 

Fortunately my Skill or lack there of didn't matter in an encounter I had shortly after Obtaining the blades.

 

On the bright side the Haulers came through on the body armor at least. The bodysuit is an Impact resistant style, it would seem to be made of a form of cloth with pockets of High density gel perhaps silicone inside. It should provide adequate protection against blades and impact damage, if I'm right it should have some minor ballistics protection capabilities as well. They did however also obtain a thin armored vest for me, while it is quite thin and flexible, mobility matters to me more than weight.

 

BlackStar would seem to be coming through on the firearms side of things, I'll be happy to see if they deliver as promised.

 

Barline

_________________

 

I Feel that I should record my lessons with doctor Parkin so that i should learn from them in the Future, this is the first one.

 

Adagio: would nod slowly. “I apologize for my misunderstanding. I hope to earn these blades then, she’d remove the tanto from her self and draw the Katana. “You gave me the knowledge doctor I should be skillful enough to not kill you, and I shall make every effort to not, and yes I trust you Doctor.” With that she’d fall silent and coldly enter a ready position and make a fairly standard downward strike towards the doctor using all her strength and speed behind the blow, obviously a novice but the Doctor said she wanted to test her strength so she’d start by putting it on display, as he’d bring her arms down with the strike the doctor could perhaps notice adagio’s shoulders tensing hard showing a good deal of the enhanced striations and structure beneath her soft skin.

 

tempestual Parkin eyes the strike carefully, her sword licking out to parry it aside....she wouldn’t even try blocking a strike with that kind of power behind it. Even so, her arm would be jarred, a heavy tremor running up to her shoulder. Stepping to the left, she would suddenly dive into a roll, her blade seemingly a mere extension of her arm as it flicks forward. Unless blocked, it would slice a cut in Adagio's jeans, the very tip of it cutting the material. An amused smirk would be directed at Adagio "don’t use the standard forms......you are going to fight, not duel......." she will have ended up, by the beige chair, on her back, seemingly relaxed, and completely at ease....for some reason choosing this position.

 

Adagio: would coldly cast her eyes in the direction of temps as she hears the lades clang together for the first time. Barely noticing temps motions she would try to bring her blade down to protect her legs but she’d respond too slow, a limitation of both her skills and her slower reflexes. She’d look coldly down and see her pants hanging a little more limply in one area and she’d remain silent at the Doctors wisdom she’d just flick her blade downward as she’d rush quickly forward her powerful legs driving her forward on the balls of her feet, once she was within range of the Doctor she’d try an upward sweeping move with the tip of the blade facing down towards the ground possibly gouging her hardwood flooring.

 

tempestual Parkin eyes widen slightly, but the smile on her face indicates her contentment at the move chosen. Smooth leg muscles ripple, combining with defined abdominals to contort her body, her feet flying backwards over her head to raise herself to a crouch. A wide smile is directed at adagio “good good......you dint go for the down-swing as i expected". Without a pause, she would suddenly attack, her form in no way rigid, but free-flowing....she seemed to follow no set discipline, mixing styles and attacks. Her left leg rises, foot stamping harshly into the seat of the chair to drive her light form off the ground, hopefully avoiding any swipe made at her by adagio in the process. She would contort her body, spinning in the air, her sword lancing out three times before she lands, each time, it the blade would be turned. The first would be directed at Adagio's elbow, the next at her wrist, the last at her hand, hoping to dislodge the blade from her grip. Regardless, she would land in a feral crouch on the chaise, waiting

 

Adagio: would raise an eyebrow at the motion thinking it nearly impossible for a moment and she’d attribute it to years of training and the Doctor being a neko. She’d try o make a could slices at the Doctor as she would launch into the air she’d make the smallest of winces feeling the blade bite successfully into her three time in all the targeted spaces, and her grip loses significantly, only holding the katana in a two handed death grip had kept it in her hands. She’d frown little bit keeping her heavy handed double grip on the blade and she’d spin h r body towards the Doctors right side apparently aiming for a leg when she’d suddenly reverse the course taken as quickly as her muscles would allow and try an upward jab from the left. For Adagio it would probably be a more risky maneuver than it was worth, in all likelihood better left up to the Doctor to try and execute.

 

tempestual Parkin scoffs slightly, to her own eyes, the move seeming slow, clumsy almost. Dropping to the floor, her back arching, the blade would still catch her, slicing through her top, drawing a clean line of blood across the smooth skin of her stomach. It was ironic, she was about to beat Adagio with the same move she used on Soz. Falling to the floor, her left hand presents a balance point, her right leg straight, strong, as it swings round. In likelihood, it would knock Adagio from her feet, and if this happened as expected, temp would turn her spin into a smooth leap forward. Her sword, seemingly just a blur in its movement would stop, resting upon Adagio's throat, assuming of course it all went as planned. She would then whisper softly "you may keep the swords....but you have a long way to go.....if this was a true fight, i could have killed you any number of times. You cannot just rely on your impressive strength."

 

_________________

  

I had a bit of an encounter today I feel deserves a specil entry in my journal, the file is as follows...

 

Adagio: would raise an eyebrow at the man and secure her pants after finishing with her wound. She'd raise a well shaped eyebrow to the man and speak in her normal icy tone towards the man. "Can I help you?"

 

Bull Hendrassen would approach he slowy crossing through the curtain seperating them and silently he would get a closer look at her eyes and tilt his head to one side in a manner of confusion and then he would rub the side of his head hard, obviously distraught.

 

Adagio: would keep her eyebrows raised and her hands would cross in front of her below the oversized belt buckle just a few inches from the hilt of her Tanto. "Is there something I can do for you sir? Do you have a question about me or something?"

 

Bull Hendrassen lifts a shaky hand up and extends his finger pointing to her face. "you.....cant have those...not right....not right....I dont know....you....must be marked....yes must be....somethings unusual, special maybe? wonder, if it taste good?" he ocassionaly smacks himself in the head with his other hand as if trying to convince himself of something in a rather forceful manner and its obvious this guy is crazy.

 

] Adagio: would frown a little bit and keep her posture and gaze icy, her blue and orange eyes giving the man an icy look." If you're referring to my eyes you'd be right, I'm created, you could view me as a living sculpture of sorts." Even though her features would remain emotionless the man could perhaps pick up a hint of pride.

  

Bull Hendrassen would walk slowly around the medical table, his body language not particularly frightening at the moment as he is not being agressive...but he is closing the distance between them...he is after something. he extends buth hands up towards her face like he is trying to grab her head.

 

Adagio: would back up quickly and her hands would drop to her pants, her right would clasp onto her Tanto, and the left would hit her pocket sending an emergency message from the phone. She'd speak icily at the man her eyes giving the man a look of

 

Bull Hendrassen continues towards her slowly, he is driven, his psyhcosis not letting him back off, he has to know...."have to see....have to....must know...." his movements are still unagressive, but imposing.

 

Adagio: would draw her Tanto quickly from its sheath and she’d hold the blade steadily between herself and the man the edge parallel with the ground. She’d gaze coldly at the man with her emotionless eyes hoping that the body language of the drawn blade would be more than enough. If need be she could easily lunge forward to attack the man.

 

Bull Hendrassen would continue even as she drew the blade he is so absorbed in his driveness to see her eyes that he igrores the blade and walks right on top of it the blade sinking into his abdomen, and he keeps driving himself onto it, it stabbing into him further and further as he walks, the psychosis in his mind telling him that the pain is non-existant, he is above that, ascended from the mortal condition.

 

Adagio: would just coldly raise an eyebrow as she coldly keeps the blade steady putting all of her enhanced strength behind her one handed grip to keep the man where he is even as his blood would begin to cover her hand and run down her arm and mingle with the black silk of her shirt. She'd keep her emotionless icy gaze locked on the man unflinchingly staring at his mask while she tried keeping the man where he was.

 

Bull Hendrassen would have a pleading look in his eyes as he reached ever forward to her face. "please...i MUST SEE!" and he goes to grab her face....

 

Adagio: would raise an eyebrow and she’d flinch a little bit as the man grabs her face, she’d frown a little bit her gaze unflinching leaving her fist tightly gripping the blade still inside of the man. She’d speak coldly to the man as she would stare into those deep dark slits in his mask, her voice as cold as the frozen north, each syllable an icicle hanging in midair. “ Let me go or I spill your guts on the floor”

 

Bull Hendrassen ignores her request for a moment more and uses his thumb and index finger to spread open her eyelid so he can fully examine one of her eyes. he brings the mask in very closely to her face for few moments and tilts his head this way and that while he looks into her eye, his breathing slow and rythmic inside the mask. finally he slowly lets his head go back and he begins to back off the blade.

 

Adagio: would just remain crouched frozen by what just happened, and she would raise an eyebrow seeing the man back off of her blade silently. Once he’s clear of the blade she just watches the blood drip off the tip of her gleaming blade unsure of what exactly just happened before she reverts her icy gaze back to the man.

 

Bull Hendrassen seems not to even notice the stab wound in his midsection. "thank you." he says slowly and pauses for a moment. "i do hope that I have not offended you. you seem a bit tense..." that should be a bit of an obvious statement but he seems completly genuine with his words.

 

Adagio: would rise slowly at the man's now polite actions and she'd just look at her blood covered arm and blade before she'd hit her phone in he rpocket again and just nod silently at the man still chilingly cold and icy, but more confused than anything.

 

Bull Hendrassen nods back slowly. "you must be chosen, you said created, yes you are among us most special people indeed. you have something that sets you apart, yes indeed, apart from others..."

 

Adagio: would raise an eyebrow and she'd frown little bit still holding her blade in her hand she'd wipe the blood from her arm and blade with a medical towel she'd grab with her left hand. "I suppose that's a good thing then?"

 

Bull Hendrassen "yes, very good....you are the only person i have seen in the city that has you eyes, it must be a mark of greatness."

 

Adagio would raise an eyebrow hearing the bit about mark of greatness, she’d frown a little bit and it’d click that it was probably time to get away from this man while he was still polite. “Very well if that’s your opinion anyway.” She’d move to head for the curtain and head to the back door, she would speak icily to the man once more as she walked out. “I’ll see you later then I guess.”

   

_________________

 

Movement II

The Mysterious Sonata

 

The last few days have been quite unique; hell the word unique doesn’t describe them, special momentous, amazing, those are the words that describe them better, along with tormented, anguished, and painful.

 

I had to deal with the death of a good a good friend, Shoya. I feel awful at her death, I barely controlled myself when Lithia killed, her, but It my duty to solve problems, not to start them. I think that’s the whole reason why I held myself back. I actually cried when I carried her dead, headless body into the church, I don’t know if Sister D can forgive me for what I’ve done to her emotionally, I hope that she can forgive me. And I’ve gotten it cleared with the doctors at the MC, I had to lie and say that Serp was the cause of her death; I had to explain the same thing to a catwalker. Doctor Parkin and I are planning her funeral.

 

Speaking of Doctor Parkin, she has begun instructing me in the fields of genetics, she had me study a basic text on the matter and recite what I’d learned. Now she’s having me write a paper on how I’d improve the synapses in a nervous system, I must say the topic is fairly interesting. Overall I’m quite honored to be under the Doctors tutelage.

 

I had to deal with one of my boss’s mind games the other day; I won’t make more mention of it other than it caused me to discharge my weapon in anger. I just hope my emotions don’t all flood me at once, I am unsure if that is something that I can handle, while I like being able to feel, I’d rather not become like Aylin, her emotions are severely stunted it seems.

 

A man named Markko has become an acquaintance with me it seems. I don’t know what to say about him, he’s Intelligent, polite, and is quite complimentary of me. While I enjoy receiving compliments, Doctor Parkin did excellent work on me; I have to wonder if he gives all attractive women compliments such as the ones he gave me. He said that my beauty could make the Blue Lady, the ocean, jealous. I must say while quite the compliment, it seems a little too over the top to be simple politeness.

 

And finally Doctor Daviau has placed me in charge of Soz’s AI daughter, I am unsure of what to say about that. I guess I’ll learn what it’s like to be a parent or caretaker of some sort.

 

Barline

_________________

 

Movement IV

Adagio in Reprise

D.S al Coda

 

I have died, I have risen, and I have been reborn anew.

 

Perhaps that sounds a bit to full of myself but that is the case, apparently I have suffered a death, and when I awkoe from the tank i found that my employent with Ashagi has been terminated. though I owe them a thank you for what they have givn me. Per my instructions for memory implantation into a new body should teh need have ever arisen, Half of my brain ha sbeen replaced witha CPU operating in sync with my organic brain. Sadly something seems to be wrong with it. The Cio-cybernetic neurons that were suppose dto ahve been added in to allow this were not installed it semms. So I effectivly function with two largely independent brains. This will be a problem that I need to solve.

 

I came back and thought that Amara, my lover, would be pleased to see me again. Sadly I wa smistaken the woman was in hysterics and almost killed me in the TZ. I don't know what she went through emotionally, but I feel sorry for what she had to endure from me.

 

I kept sending he rmessages at least two short texts a day to let he rknow that i stillloved her, nthing mor ethen that. Finally the otehrnight she agreed to meet me again at the sushi bar. At first she was quite quiet with me, and thinsg starte dto get worse when chi showed up. With what he has done to Amara I can only understand why she ran off. I followed her of course to the Quinntukhat bridge, trying to comfort her. if there is one thing I never want to see again its my darling in tears the way she was teh othernight. We wound up in each others arms though, and i think the groundwork is there for us now.

 

With my termination at Ashagi I am now free to choose my own career path and I have, as the representative of the Bio-Mechs. I think the position shows my talents well. debate, political speech, understanding of business, all of my personal skills will ocme into play here. I Have also begun crossing over my genetics knowledge into the realm of the cybernetic. That can only be invaluable. So far i've drafted a contract with DuPlotte industries for various raw materials an dparts, and anotehr contract with the League of Engineers, for a 96GB connection for the HQ.

 

In other news I've begun Modeling for Artika at the gallery, and well it's more fun than I thought it would be, and well with teh fact im not skin and bones I never thought I could be a model, not after those mainland agencies said I had too much muscle tone.

 

Barline

_________________

 

Movement V

Pachelbels Canon in A

 

She said yes!

 

A few days ago at the Freetown days ball, my darling,my beautiful Amara finally said yes! I forget the exact words we used, I think it was something sappy along the lines of "Let me be yours forever darling." "I can't do that Adagio, but I can say yes." Sappy I know but it works. Anyway our next hurdle is showing the Father that we desrve to be wed in holy Matrimony. Nothing could have made me happier, I almost feel sorry for the workouts I've been putting Amara through.

 

After that we went to teh church to pray, it was quite the personal journey I think. WIth what Amara wants us to do, join teh Parish watch, I do not know if I should. I know that politically it might look good. But How will that conflict with my duties with the Bio-Mechs. I mean hell, with Serp and Mirage in the organization, I don't think I'm compatible. But if Amara wants it I'll try to join. I guess I should see exactly where this all ends up then hmm?

 

Whole Rest

_________________

 

Movement VI

The Light Aria

 

things have begun to change since the onset of my project. I began this work with the intent in increasing my intellect to something worthy of my creator. But things have taken some interesting turns. I've altered my metabolism for starters, I now metabolize platinum. I thought that I could alter my metabolism in such a way that only my braincells would be affected by this, to allow for faster synapses and quicker times for the electrical impulses thatrace through my brain, that race through everybody's brain. I also kickstarted the growth of my brin to produce more braincells and to develop the areas o fmy brain with little use, trying to make my thought process more efficient.

 

This technology if applied right could save people from Alzheimers or parkinsons. Hell virtually any degnerative neural condition.

 

But I was wrong.

 

The platinum has bonded with my skin as well a smy entire nervous stem. While it may look pretty, developing that was the single most painful experience of my life. I have no idea how I survived. I know i would be dead now had it not been for Amiya's Internevtion. Though even though my metabolism has stabilized, my brain still continues to grow.

 

i did this with the hopes of boosting my overall intelligence by 100 points, and combining my organic and cybernetic brains. the most recent scans from last friday show that I was right about that much at least. With the accelerated growth my intelligence quotient rests somewhere around the 400 mark plus or minus 75 either way. But it has come at a cost.

 

My brains have grown to become one, but I now posess at least three times the normal amount of bran cells, and the amount of gyri and sulci are at a level of concentration ten times higher than the average human. This is my saving grace that my brain is still growing denser and not physocally larger. It's amiya's help that has saved my life thusfar, but with my need for that treatment reaching astronomically expensive proportions, I need help from my creators.....Ashagi.

 

barline

   

Delphi was founded in the 'navel' of the known world by the Greek father god Zeus , he released two eagles that circumnavigated the world, where the two eagles met became the place to talk to their gods via the oracles or pythos. Apollo had a temple here.Before this, the major ancient site, a place of pilgrimage for Greeks

had been the Gates of Hades or the Underworld.

 

These Gauls (later some became Galatians) reached Delphi, to attack the Temple of Apollo in mid winter.An inscription near the oracle perhaps from older times was 'Know Thyself'.Delphi became the site of a major temple to Phoebus Apollo, as well as the Pythian Games and the famous prehistoric oracle. Even in Roman times, hundreds of votive statues remained, described by Pliny the Younger and seen by Pausanias.

 

Carved into the temple were three phrases: γνῶθι σεαυτόν (gnōthi seautón = "know thyself") and μηδέν άγαν (mēdén ágan = "nothing in excess"), and Ἑγγύα πάρα δ'ἄτη (eggýa pára d'atē = "make a pledge and mischief is nigh"), In ancient times, the origin of these phrases was attributed to one or more of the Seven Sages of Greece.

 

Additionally, according to Plutarch's essay on the meaning of the "E at Delphi"—the only literary source for the inscription—there was also inscribed at the temple a large letter E.Among other things epsilon signifies the number 5.

 

According to one pair of modern scholars, "The actual authorship of the three maxims set up on the Delphian temple may be left uncertain. Most likely they were popular proverbs, which tended later to be attributed to particular sages."

  

A great actual and mythic battle began, recorded well after Greece was under Rome's dominion.

The Greeks had asked the gods for help to protect their sacred temple and treasury which was a focal point of their lives. Accordingly ,the pleas were 'answered' and there were earthquakes and thunderbolts and even rock slides from nearby Mount Parnassus upon the enemy. Still the Celts or Gauls fought on , a famous earlier story to Alexander the Great when he went north of the Danube briefly and met chieftains of the Gauls or Celts , who implied they were only fearful of the sky falling in....so he might have considered them too reckless rather than brave ...he may have thought they might fear him?

 

24.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_mcbsidHvJH1qaxacfo1_500.jpg

 

The Greeks again asked for divine help. During the night, the Celts were said to 'panic' and fight each other. Pausanias,writing over 300 years later in Roman times ,described the mayhem as "causeless terrors are said to come from the god Pan". Eventually the Celts retreated after suffering grievous losses, 26,000 dead, according to the Greek historian Pausanias in later times. Here is Pausanias describing the battle which was fought with symbolic divine aid (or knowledge of a primal fear of the Celts) as mentioned earlier to Alexander the Great of Macedonia :

 

Pausanias (geographer), Greek traveller, geographer, and writer (Description of Greece) of the 2nd century AD. As a Greek writing under the auspices of the Roman empire, he found himself in an awkward cultural space, between the glories of the Greek past he was so keen to describe and the realities of a Greece beholden to Rome as a dominating imperial force. His work bears the marks of his attempt to navigate that space and establish an identity for Roman Greece.

Pausanias has the instincts of an antiquary.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pausanias_%28geographer%29

 

Ptolemy Keraunos (Greek: Πτολεμαῖος Κεραυνός, died 279 BC) was the arrogant ,murderous King of Macedon from 281 BC to 279 BC. His epithet Keraunos is Greek for "Thunder" or "Thunderbolt". See more on him here:

balkancelts.wordpress.com/

However, although Keraunos was at the zenith of his power, he did not live long afterwards. In 279 BC he was captured and killed (beheaded) during the wars against the Gauls led by Bolgios ("Lightening" ) who conducted a series of mass raids against Macedon and the rest of Greece.His death brought anarchy to the Greek states, since none of his successors were able to bring stability. This situation lasted about two years, until Antigonos Gonatas defeated the Gauls in the battle near Lysimachia, Thrace, in 277 BC, After this victory he was recognized king of Macedon and his power extended eventually also to south Greece.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Antigonus_Gonatas_British_Muse...

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:AntigonusGonatas.jpg

The Antigonid dynasty was a dynasty of Hellenistic kings descended from Alexander the Great's general Antigonus I Monophthalmus ("the One-eyed"). It was one of four dynasties established by Alexander's successors, the others being the Seleucid dynasty, Ptolemaic dynasty and Attalid dynasty. The last scion of the dynasty, Perseus of Macedon, who reigned between 179-168 BCE, proved unable to stop the advancing Roman legions and Macedon's defeat at the Battle of Pydna signaled the end of the dynasty.

 

skyelander.orgfree.com/celts4.html

  

Spanish language source internet illustration on ancient tribal attire.

www.housebarra.com/EP/ep04/15celtclothes.html

Several versions out there, if copyrighted please let me know.

Source is likely to be.... from an interesting book called 'Rome's Enemies 2 Gallic and British Celts', #158 in the Ospreys , Men-At-Arms Series, by Peter Wilcox and Angus MacBride (ISBN: 0850456061), 1985. The paintings, done by McBride, (see his picture here)

www.flickr.com/photos/roondorozhand/3234794396/

are based on literary descriptions and archeological finds and are said to be as accurate as possible at this time. www.flickr.com/photos/ancientgreekmapsandmore/2133688042/

 

www.youtube.com/watch?v=BZPd2DS5sq4

 

(NO , Not a~vik~ing, they who came from the north, hundreds of years later).See theTaking of the Temple at Delphi by the Gauls, 1885 by Alphonse Cornet a French Academic Classical artist born 1814 - died 1874.

 

The earliest directly attested examples of a Celtic language are the Lepontic .Lepontic is an extinct Alpine language that was spoken in parts of Rhaetia and Cisalpine Gaul between 550 and 100 BC. It is generally regarded as a Celtic language, although its exact classification within Celtic, or even within the western Indo-European languages, has been the object of debate...

inscriptions, beginning from the 6th century BC.The Continental Celtic languages were spoken by the people known to Roman and Greek writers as Keltoi,...

are attested only in inscriptions and place-names. Insular Celtic is attested from about the 4th century AD in ogham inscriptions, although it is clearly much earlier. Literary tradition begins with Old Irish from about the 8th century. Coherent texts of Early Irish literature. Early Irish literature-The earliest Irish authors:It is unclear when literacy first came to Ireland. The earliest Irish writings are inscriptions, mostly simple memorials, on stone in the ogham alphabet, the earliest of which date to the fourth century..., such as the Táin Bó Cúailnge (a legendary tale from early Irish literature, often considered an epic, although it is written primarily in prose rather than verse)...(The Cattle Raid of Cooley), survive in 12th-century recensions. According to the theory of Professor John T. Koch is an American academic, historian and linguist who specializes in Celtic studies, especially prehistory and the early Middle Ages....

and others.The Tartessian language, also known as Southwestern or South Lusitanian, is a Paleohispanic language once spoken in the southwest of the Iberian Peninsula: mainly in the south of Portugal , but also in Spain...may have been the earliest directly attested Celtic language with the Tartessian written script used in the inscriptions based on a version of a Phoenician script in use around 825 BC.

  

GREEK RELIEF writing on tablet 3RD BCE

Decree of the town of Cos, Greece. Inscription on stone about the conquest of Delphi by the Gauls under Brennus in March 278 BCE, followed by news of the expulsion of the Gauls from Delphi in the Archaeological Museum, Istanbul, modern Turkey.

 

www.lessing-photo.com/dispimg.asp?i=10010366+&cr=1679...

 

Synonyms: Bryth, Gaul: The Raven King

 

A Brennos , Brennos of the Senones, first appears as the Celtic or Gaulish hero who led the Celtic sack of Rome. During the third century BCE the Celtic expansion led them to the Po valley in Italy. Fearful of this expansion the Etruscans called , on their adversaries, Rome for assistance. The Romans sent three envoys to meet the Celtic leaders. However, one of the Roman envoys killed a Celtic chief and Rome sent an army of 40 000 to meet these 'barbarians'. When the Celts learned of the Roman army moving towards them, Brennos (most likely a chiefly title rather than a real name, like a Duke, see below) marched the Celts off to meet the Romans. The Celts met the Romans at the River Allia, the Romans panicked at the sight of all those crazed Celts, and many Roman soldiers even drowned in the River in attempt to escape. A few made it back to Rome and informed the Senate about the battle at Allia (the date of the battle, July 18, became known as Alliaensis, and was considered thereafter to be a very bad day to do any public activity). The Roman citizens, rightfully fearing that the Celts were headed toward Rome, fled in a panic (much like the soldiers at Allia). By the time the Celts/ Gauls arrived, Rome had been deserted, with the exception of several elderly patricians. These old patricians were sitting in a courtyard, believing that if they were to sacrifice their lives for Rome in its most dire hour of need, Rome's enemies would then be thrown into panic and confusion, and Rome thereby saved. This nearly worked, but the spell of quietude was broken and Rome was looted and the old men killed. They advanced on the Capitol, but were thwarted by plague and a night-time attack was spoiled by cackling of geese. However, about seven months, later the Romans decided to negotiate and the Celts agreed to leave if the Romans would pay them 1,000 pounds of gold. The Celts were accused of using false weights, upon which Brennos (the Celtic chieftain) is said to have thrown his sword on the scales and loudly declare, "Vea victus", or "woe to the defeated".

 

www.flickr.com/photos/96490373@N02/14550761807/

 

cgi.ebay.com/Ancient-Roman-Dictator-Brennus-c1915-Card-/3...

 

www.flickr.com/photos/summoning_ifrit/4211154813/

 

The early 4th century BCE a vast group of Gauls sacked the city of Rome. Romans gave it up rather easily, actually. Most fled to neighbouring cities like Veii while the Senate, priests, and what was left of the Roman army migrated to the Capitol - defending and taking refuge in the temples there. The Gauls made easy pickings of what they found in the city. According to Livy:

 

For several days they had been directing their fury only against bricks and mortar. Rome was a heap of smouldering ruins, but something remained - the armed men in the Citadel, and when the Gauls saw that, in spite of everything, they remained unshaken and would never yield to anything but force, they resolved to attempt an assault. At dawn, therefore, on a given signal the whole vast horde assembled in the Forum; then, roaring out their challenge, they locked shields and moved up the slope of the Capitol." (5.43)

 

The Romans, however, used the advantage of being at the top of the hill and managed to beat the Gauls back. Yet the Gauls were determined and even though they had destroyed most of the food and supplies in their initial sack of the city, they began a siege on the hill.

 

During all of this, officials in Veii were determined to get a message through to the Roman Senate - despite the fact that the Senate was under siege. As the old saying goes, 'if there's a will, there's a way', and a young Roman soldier named Pontius Cominus managed to do it. "Floating on a life-buoy down the river to Rome, he took the shortest way to the Capitol up and over a bluff so steep that the Gauls had never thought of watching it." (5.46) But the Gauls did find out about it and figured if he could do it, then they should all be able to do it too.

 

One starlit night, they made the attempt. Having first sent an unarmed man to reconnoitre the route, they began the climb. It was something of a scramble: at the awkward spots a man would get a purchase for his feet on a comrade below him, then haul him up in his turn - weapons were passed up from hand to hand as the lie of the rocks allowed - until by pushing and pulling on another they reached the top. What is more, they accomplished the climb so quietly that the Romans on guard never heard a sound, and even the dogs - who are normally aroused by the least noise in the night - noticed nothing. It was the geese that saved them - Juno's sacred geese, which in spite of the dearth of provisions had not been killed. The cackling of the birds and the clapping of their wings awoke Marcus Manlius - a distinguished officer who had been consul three years before - and he, seizing his sword and giving the alarm, hurried, without waiting for the support of his bewildered comrades, straight to the point of danger. (5.46)

  

And that is either Roman spin or real history of how the sacred geese of Juno saved Rome - since after that last attempt, the lack of food forced the Gaul to accept payment from the Romans to leave the city alone.

www.mmdtkw.org/AU0308bJunoMonetaGeese.jpg

 

www.mmdtkw.org/AU0308gBrennerPass.jpg

 

www.mmdtkw.org/AU0308gBrennusFrenchMaritimeSculpture.jpg

 

While Brennus I was evil personified to the Romans, he was a hero to transalpine people.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_the_Allia

 

"Other Greek and Roman synchronisms have a more obvious historical symbolism, as may be the casewith the Polybian synchronism we saw above, between Dionysius’s siege of

Rhegium and the Gallic sack of Rome."

 

wxy.seu.edu.cn/humanities/sociology/htmledit/uploadfile/s...

 

www.unrv.com/empire/gallic-sack-of-rome.php

 

REFOUNDING THE CITY:

ENNIUS, LIVY, AND VIRGIL

The city of Rome has now been successfully founded in historical time—whether

that time is focalized as Greek or Roman—but we have not yet reached the end of

the story. As everyone knows, the city of Rome kept having to be re-founded, and

the patterns of refoundation drastically reconfigure the trajectory of movement

from myth to history that we have been following so far.188

Ennius’s most explicit surviving allusion to the date of the foundation of the city

in fact comes at the moment when the city had just been virtually destroyed, and

was on the verge of vanishing from history, after the sack by the Gauls in 387/6

b.c.e.189 The context is a speech in which Camillus persuades the Senate not to

move to Veii, but to refound the city instead (154–55 Skutsch):

Septingenti sunt paulo plus aut minus anni

augusto augurio postquam incluta condita Roma est.

It is seven hundred years, a little more or a little less,

since famous Rome was founded by august augury.

How this seven-hundred-year period between Romulus’s foundation and the sack

of Rome by the Gauls actually worked remains a mystery, at least to me.190 Still, we

should not overlook the symbolic significance of this number in its own right. The

importance of the seven-hundred-year period has been very well illustrated in the

fascinating book Die rhetorische Zahl, written by a scholar with the gloriously apt

name of Dreizehnter.191 Dreizehnter does not mention this passage of Ennius, but

he collects a great deal of interesting material about seven hundred years as the life

span of a city or an empire from foundation to extinction, or from foundation to

virtual extinction or only just-escaped extinction. In various traditions that he

examines there were seven hundred years from the foundation to the destruction

of Melos, Carthage, and Macedonia, or from the foundation to the virtual extinc-

(Myth into History I: Foundations of the city)

tion of Sparta.192 What we see in the Ennius passage, in other words, is that the city

was virtually destroyed and came within an ace of fulfilling the seven-hundred year

doom. The point will have been accentuated by Ennius’s book divisions.

Camillus’s speech comes at the end of book 4, and the regal period ended with

book 3, so that up to this point in the Annales we have had only one self-contained

volume of Republican history, and if things had gone differently tha