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Monday, 30 May 2022

Clouds and Trains and Planes

 Whenever the wether permits we spend our late afternoons most enjoyably on the Terminal 3 / Wendy House / Man-cave balcony.   The sights, sounds, skies, trains and air traffic between them provide constant interest.  The more so nowadays with i-phone Apps for weather and air traffic constant updates. does just what it says. tells us what's above us - a constant stream at that time of day, about 50/50 divided between internal UK flights and international flights, mainly from London to America and Iceland.  It also pipes up with planes in distress (squawk 7700) anywhere in the world.  The words "May-Day, May-Day" shout out and you can go straight to the flight concerned.  Usually you see it divert and descent to some  nearby airport - most often it's a passenger in need of urgent medical treatment.  Once we saw the actual plane as it diverted to BAE Systems at Wharton, near Blackpool

The Apple weather app is amazing and gives upcoming rain showers to the very minute.  The clouds provide confirmation.  I enjoyed a recent heavy thunderstorm under the protection of the new roll-out canopy.  Very cosy.

Here are a couple of recent cloud pictures, both taken from the sit-out balcony:

Monday, 16 May 2022

That Banking Now

 There have been several posts about the precipitous banking below Terminal 3 - the Wendy House.   This is how it looked in September 2020

The Lay of the Land plants have established themselves well, considering the very poor soil,  The enormous tree stump is prominent but how would it all look in a couple of years?  Answer:

Pretty much as intended.  Safe access for weeding is just about impossible so the modern (and lazy) approach is doing well.  The large 'bush' to the right is rambling roses and other planting choices are left to mother nature.  It is, or was, a railway embankment after all.  The top level between the scaffolding fence and the grey cladding will soon be alive with bush roses, buddleias and two standard bay trees.  The dry stone walls are effective as retainers and give  some formality to the wilderness.  Importantly these days, the bees love it.

And for the staircase fans:

Wednesday, 4 May 2022

Fairport Convention Drop By

Fairport Convention are an evergreen and world famous folk rock group.  They were playing to a sell-out Victoria Hall in Settle last week.  Longtime friends Chris and Nigel Schofield travelled from Bradford to see and hear them and they tipped us off that they would like to see the water tower.  Nigel had written a book about Fairport Convention back in the day when he was a radio broadcaster specialising in their sort of music.  Sure enough they just turned up at The Sidings gate next morning.

That evening their next performance was in Carlisle so they had planned to take the train there, naturally.  Their equipment went up by road and they were in luck on the train on three counts.

1. their train was delayed so they were able to wait in the sunshine at Settle station, and to admire it

2. they savoured S&C coffee from the trolley which was being manned (personed?) by fan Andrea.

3. On-Train-Guide Mike Coates was returning on their train to his home in Carlisle so he was able to give them his undivided attention and commentary on the journey

We do get to meet some fascinating people living where we do.