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Boyd's photo diary.

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Mon 31 Dec 2012
To end the year I headed up to the summit of Hurst Hill on Anglezarke to photograph the firework displays around Chorley. It is also a good view point for the Winter Hill transmitter masts.

This footpath near White Coppice was awash and the water almost covered the footbridge as the wettest English year on record came to an end.

Wide view of the White Coppice Cricket Field

Last photo of 2012. The transmitter masts on Winter Hill photographed from Hurst Hill

Wed 26 Dec 2012

I'd been walking through some very wet fields near Appleby-in-Westmoreland so as I walked though the town of Appleby I took the opportunity to enjoy walking in firm ground and also visit these 17th century Almshouses which were built by Lady Anne Clifford (1590 - 1676) in May 1651. The red doors really were that vivid. This is a wide view being a stitch of 6 overlapping images.

Tue 25 Dec 2012

Today is Christmas Day. The Christmas day meal was at my brother's house so I enjoyed a walk along the Leeds and Liverpool canal to get there. This view is of Stony Flat Bridge near Wheelton. As can be seen it is far from flat.
Sun 23 Dec 2012

Its been raining for ages but this morning it was sunny. Even so the ground is saturated and many of the lanes and tracks are awash. This view is by the road in Heath Charnock.

Fri 21 Dec 2012

Who was Miranda?


Many years ago when I started work as a water supply engineer in Preston we had a wonderful mermaid statue at a water intake in the Trough of Bowland. The statue’s name was Miranda and it was made by George Aldersley who was one of the senior engineers at the office where I worked. In his spare time he was an excellent artist and sculptor. George died many years ago and the mystery of the statue’s name seemed to have died with him. Colleagues said the model for the statue was George’s wife, but she was called Madge, so where did Miranda come from?

The 1948 film poster

The other woman in his life was his daughter Jill (1943-2007), but she was only 7 or 8 when Miranda was sculpted. Both Madge and Jill were acomplished artists.

Recently I was contacted by Philip Jepsen who runs a fascinating website about mermaid statues around the world called mermaidsofearth. He’d seen Miranda on my website on the March 2010 blog and suggested a solution to the mystery.
A small book on the history of Preston Waterworks was published in 1953 by E. C. Oakes to commemorate 100 years of Public Water Supplies in Preston. There is a photo of Miranda in the book. George moved to Preston around the late 1940s or early 1950s, so Miranda dates from somewhere between 1950 to 1953.
In 1948 a British film was released called Miranda staring:
Glynis Johns,
Googie Withers,
Margaret Rutherford and others.
Philip emailed me a link to the 1948 film poster showing Glynis Johns as the mermaid. As soon as I saw it I saw George’s Miranda. The only difference is that it is the left to right. That’s exactly what George would have done so it wasn’t obvious where he got the inspiration. All the dots seem to be joined. Welcome home Miranda.

Miranda keeping an eye on the intake in 1967

The same view in Mar 2010

Miranda in Mar 2010

The Miranda film poster
reversed left to right

A very similar pose

Tue 18 Dec 2012

I was setting out on a walking trip into the Cumbrian Pennines when I looked back to see this view of the distant hills. They had a surreal look about them.
Sun 16 Dec 2012

There was a break in the weather so I went for a short walk from the Belmont Road to investigate the old quarry at Adam's Delph. On the way I came across this interesting brick structure. It's odd shape didn't give away what its purpose may have been. There are no other buildings for miles.

Near the house of Piccadilly on the Belmont Road is and old wall with coping stones of hollow fireclay. This is the only place where I've seen this style of coping.

Thu 13 Dec 2012

It was worth the early drive this morning to see the sun rising behind Helvellyn as I climbed above Thornthwaite in Cumbria. Within a few minutes the sun vanished into the clouds and that's' the last I saw of it while on the fells.
Wed 12 Dec 2012

The carved name plaque was fitted to the Whittle-le-Woods Jubilee Stone this afternoon.

The 2 ton block of Millstone Grit came from a local quarry and was recently erected on Waterhouse Green.

The carved stone on the east face depicts The Royal coat of arms of the United Kingdom and the description:
‘Erected to commemorate H M Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee 1952 – 2012’

The village Christmas tree is next to the stone so I tried a couple of different views; one during the day and the other the next night.

Whittle-le-Woods Jubilee stone by day

Whittle-le-Woods Jubilee stone at night

Whittle-le-Woods Jubilee stone at night

Sun 09 Dec 2012

Botany Bay Mill was the former Canal Mill (cotton) built in 1856.
As I walked home from Chorley I saw this attractive view of the building reflected in the Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

Above St Peter's Church in Belmont this area of land is being cleared. It looks like it’s due for development so we'll just have to wait and see what happens.

Thu 06 Dec 2012
On my way to Cannock to give a talk to the Cannock Photographic Society I made a detour to Cannock Chase and had a look at the German War Graves cemetery. It was opened in 1967 and its purpose was to bring together the German military personnel and German civilian internees of both World Wars to one location. It contains nearly 5,000 German and Austrian graves

Cannock Chase German War Graves cemetery

Cannock Chase German War Graves cemetery

During the First World War when there was a large military camp at Cannock Chase which became the base for the New Zealand Rifle Brigade. There was also a prisoner-of-war hospital with 1,000 beds, and both camp and hospital used the burial ground. Cannock Chase War Cemetery contains 97 Commonwealth burials of the First World War, most of them New Zealanders, and 286 German burials. There are also three burials of the Second World War.

Next to the German cemetery is the Cannock Chase Commonwealth War Cemetery.

Wed 05 Dec 2012

The annual Christmas meal for the Senior Citizens of Whittle-le-Woods was held in the village hall at lunchtime. It was a magnificent occasion with local singers providing entertainment before and after the meal. Most of the prizes and presents had been donated and there were enough to ensure that everyone took something home.
The highlight of the event was local singer Emily Jones who had the most amazing voice.

Whittle-le-Woods village hall.

Cllr Eric Bell (who was  Chorley's Mayor 2003-2004), local singer Emily Jones
and Cllr June Molyneaux (current Mayor)

The Senior Citizens Christmas meal in Whittle-le-Woods village hall.

Behind the scenes a band of unsung volunteers

Presents and Prizes for everyone



The first motorway to be opened in the UK was the Preston By-pass on 5 Dec 1958 by the then Prime Minister, Harold MacMillan. That was 54 years ago today. It was originally just 2 lanes in each direction.

It ran to the east of Preston and linked the A6 at Bamber Bridge, south of Preston, with the A6 at Broughton to the north, a distance of 8.25miles.

Subsequently it became part of the M6, the longest motorway in the United Kingdom

The M6 at junction 29 from the A6

Sun 02 Dec 2012
Yesterday 01 Dec 2012 the Whittle-le-Woods Christmas tree was put up on Waterhouse Green. This evening I took this photo.
After photographing the Christmas tree I walked along the canal and saw this view of the Top Lock Pub at Wheelton.



Sat 01 Dec 2012
It was nice to see the lights illuminating Lowe Farm as I walked home along Town Lane.
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