Archive for the Life the Universe and Other Things Category

Thursday 10th May 2018

Posted in Life the Universe and Other Things on May 12, 2018 by bishshat

IMG_0667IMG_0684IMG_0678IMG_0681

Advertisements

Wednesday 9th May 2018

Posted in Life the Universe and Other Things on May 10, 2018 by bishshat

Been very very sick since returning home Monday ..Food poisoning for sure ..

Spurs 1 Newcastle 0

Champions League football was secured at Wembley Stadium on Wednesday night as our 1-0 win over Newcastle United, coupled with Chelsea only drawing at home to Huddersfield Town, guaranteed a top four finish.

Harry Kane scored the only goal of the game early in the second half, his 28th in the Premier League and 39th in all competitions this term, but we weren’t at our best and had to dig deep right to the very end to take maximum points.

There wasn’t a great deal of real quality in terms of football during the first period but ironically there were a number of good chances for both teams.

We exchanged free-kicks in the opening quarter-of-an-hour, Christian Eriksen bringing a smart save out of Martin Dubvraka before Jonjo Shelvey struck the outside of the post at the other end. Jamaal Lascelles brought a fine stop out of Hugo Lloris on 27 minutes, connecting well with a header which was going in until our skipper dived to palm it away, while Kane volleyed Eriksen’s cross wide before failing to connect with a half-volley on 40 minutes when he only had Dubravka to beat.

nw730hnw730gnw730c

The opening goal came just five minutes into the second half, Jan Vertonghen, Dele Alli and Heung-Min Son all combining to set up Kane, whose right-footed curling effort from 18 yards out beat Dubravka and sent Wembley wild!

It wasn’t game over by any means though and Lloris and Moussa Sissoko were in the right place to prevent Dwight Gayle and Paul Dummett from getting shots away in the same attack. Magpies substitute Jacob Murphy then had a great chance but fired high over the bar from the angle.

nw730enw730bnw730f

News of Chelsea’s draw started to filter through and was greeted by an enormous cheer inside the stadium, but there was still work to be done in our game. It was nervy to the extreme at times, although substitute Danny Rose had a great chance to settle the outcome just before the 90-minute mark but Dubravka denied him.

It mattered not, job done and we’re back in the Champions League.

Monday 7th May 2018

Posted in Life the Universe and Other Things on May 7, 2018 by bishshat

7 5 18 (17)

Why Remain

Stuart J. Wolstenholme

We seldom get around
As though we’re living underground
Our windows shuttered and the blinds well down
We never circulate
We spend our time in contemplating
Why the world continues to go round

With all the bad things
Why remain?
With all the sadness and the pain

We grow things in the yard
It’s easier if you discard
Material possessions like the set
The TV is a bore
We’ve seen the programmes all before
Why bother to repeat them when you get

All the bad things
Why remain?
With all the sadness and the pain

With all the sad things
Why remain?
With all the sadness and the pain

7 5 18 (1)7 5 18 (2)7 5 18 (4)7 5 18 (5)7 5 18 (6)7 5 18 (7)7 5 18 (8)7 5 18 (9)7 5 18 (10)7 5 18 (11)7 5 18 (12)7 5 18 (13)7 5 18 (14)7 5 18 (15)7 5 18 (16)7 5 18 (18)7 5 18 (19)7 5 18 (20)7 5 18 (21)7 5 18 (22)7 5 18 (23)7 5 18 (24)
7 5 18 (25)7 5 18 (26)7 5 18 (27)7 5 18 (28)7 5 18 (3)IMG_0656IMG_0658IMG_0659IMG_0660IMG_0664IMG_0661

Sunday 6th May 2018

Posted in Life the Universe and Other Things on May 7, 2018 by bishshat

Into Manchester to visit the Lowry.

1IMG_0540IMG_0539

Julian Otto Trevelyan

He moved to Paris to become an artist, enrolling at Atelier Dix-Sept, Stanley William Hayter’s engraving school, where he learned etching. He worked alongside artists including Max Ernst, Oskar Kokoschka, Joan Miró and Pablo Picasso.

In 1935, Trevelyan bought Durham Wharf, beside the River Thames in Hammersmith, London. This became his home and studio for the rest of his life and was a source of artistic inspiration to him. He became a confirmed Surrealist and exhibited at the International Surrealist Exhibition, held at the New Burlington Galleries in London.

From 1950 to 1955, Trevelyan taught history of art and etching at the Chelsea School of Art. During 1955–63, he was Tutor of Engraving at the Royal College of Art, rising to Head of the Etching Department where he was influential to many younger printmakers, including David Hockney and Norman Ackroyd.

In 1969, he produced the Thames Suite, a collection of 12 views of the Thames from its upper reaches in Oxford and Henley-on-Thames down to the tidal stretches of London and the Estuary.

IMG_054620180506_11412720180506_114156IMG_055820180506_115209god-mobilethe-alchemist-salford-quays-cgi-resized

Essoldo Stretford

The Longford Cinema is located in the Greater Manchester suburb of Stretford. The Longford Cinema was opened on 12th October 1936. This fabulous building lies on the junction of Edge Lane and Chester Road, opposite the new Stretford Arndale shopping mall. There are two entrances to the building, the main one on Chester Road which was set back from the road in a courtyard (now gone in a road-widening scheme which has brought the entrance to the edge of the pavement) and a secondary entrance on Edge Lane.

e8d88c64db5319811dcba996df1cd628--degenerate-art-salford

It was taken over by the Newcastle based Essoldo Chain in August 1950, and renamed Essoldo. It was closed in September 1965 and was converted into an Essoldo Bingo Club, later becoming a Top Rank Bingo Club. This closed in the 1990’s.

Designed by the architect Henry Elder, it was the height of Art Deco fashion when it was opened by the Mayor of Stretford in 1936. The unusual “cash register” shaped frontage was intended to symbolise the business aspect of show business. The Longford’s debut feature was Tudor Rose starring Nova Pilbeam.

The building incorporated many modern features, such as sound-proofing and under-seat heating, and it was also the first cinema in Britain to make use of concealed neon lighting. It had a seating capacity of 1,400 in the stalls and 600 in the circle, with a further 146 seats in the café area. The foyer featured large murals by Frederick Harry Baines depicting contemporary cinema scenes. When built, the cinema had a short pedestrian approach to the facade, but this was removed when the A56 was widened.

7e01427a65826d6a95de2edf4484dca2essoldo-sie (1)

During the Second World War the building was used for concerts, including one given by a young Julie Andrews. It also played host to the Hallé Orchestra after the orchestra’s own home, the Free Trade Hall, was bombed and severely damaged during the Manchester Blitz of 1940. The orchestra performed twelve concerts at the cinema in the 1942-3 season and more under Barbirolli the following season.

After a change of ownership in 1950, the cinema was renamed the Stretford Essoldo. It continued to operate as a cinema until 1965, when it was converted into a bingo hall, which it remained until its closure in 1995. The building has been unused since then. It was designated a Grade II listed building in 1994.

Screenshot 2018-05-12 21.00.47

It was in the late 1930’s that Manchester businessmen Jackson and Newport, set their sights on building a new Super Cinema in Stretford. The pair already owned Stretford’s Picturedrome Cinema on the corner of King Street and Chester Road (next to where the Post Office now stands) as well as cinemas in Stockport and Reddish. They purchased the site on Chester Road and demolished a terrace of Georgian shops.
They employed architect Henry Elder to design the new building.

IMG_0567IMG_0577

Alder’s architecture was the at the height of art deco fashion; the main entrance on Chester Road was designed in the shape of a cash register flanked by two phallic symbols and the side entrance on Edge Lane was surmounted by a third phallic symbol, these represented Alder’s view that the modern film industry was dominated by money and sex. The commission for the work was given to local firm Normantons of Plymouth Grove, Mr Jackson was Clerk of Works and Jack Siddy was night watchman. The internal decoration was done by Holdings of Brooks Bar and included two huge murals to either side of the main stage by famous artist Frederick H. Baines, they depicted ‘Music and Dance’ on one side and ‘Comedy and Drama’ on the other.
The Longford was a revolution in Cinema Design. The building featured; sound-proofing, under-seat heating and air-conditioning. The foyer was floored in Venetian Marble. The Auditorium was decorated in tangerine and silver-blue art-deco designs. The room also contained a stage, which could be used for theatrical performances by various groups including the Streford Amateur Operatic Society.

23509055_550558015336228_3463588267847317428_o20180506_124137
The building was the first in Britain to be illuminated by neon tube lighting. The arrangement of the business was that the Longford would be used as a Cinema for three weeks of the month and as a theatre for the fourth week. Cinema attendants were forbidden from accepting gratuities. The stalls sat 1400, the balcony sat 600 and the café sat 146.
There was a car park to the rear of the building for free use of patrons, access to this car park was down Trafford Grove. Trafford Grove, which runs in three double blocks along the Bridgewater Canal from St Ann’s Church to the Cinema was built in the 1860’s by Sir Humphrey de Trafford. The Grove was built for Pedestrian access only, the houses having wide front gardens with a narrow walkway between.
Jackson and Newport approached the de Trafford estates for permission to remove the front gardens and put a road between the houses, but due to the tenant’s contracts, this could not be done without the permission of the residents.

84307e48c6169ec31d413a5dfbf15383
The company therefore approached the tenants of the end block and told them that if they agreed to the proposal then they would modernise all their houses and true to their word when the road was completed the Longford Cinema Company installed Bathrooms and hot running water in all the houses which had sacrificed their front gardens
The new Longford Super Cinema & Café was finally opened on 12th October 1936 by the Mayor of Stretford, Alderman Albert Smith. The debut film screened was ‘Tudor Rose’ starring Nova Pilbeam. Entrance tickets ranged from 1s 6d for a seat in the stalls to 3s for a seat in the circle. The Longford Bar & Café occupied part of the first floor, with windows looking out across Chester Road, with comfortable sofas and furniture.
During the Second World War the building was used for Sunday Concerts featuring various stars of screen and stage including a young Julie Andrews and when the Halle was bombed out of The Free Trade Hall in 1940, the Longford played host to the dislodged orchestra under Sir John Barborelli.

23a3ce6d39fffecfc228d868d960feb1--deco-cinema-manchester-england13046726833_b0a2d3fdda

In August 1950, the Cinema was purchased by the Essoldo Circuit, who renamed the building ‘The Stretford Essoldo’ and who continued to run the cinema for about fifteen years, however the television revolution of the late 1950’s and early 1960’s knocked the bottom from the cinema industry and the decision was taken to close the Essoldo in 1965.
The building was put on the Market and purchased by The Ladbrokes Company who reopened it as a bingo hall.

IMG_057320180506_124434
In 1979, Trafford Council were widening Chester Road into a duel carriageway and Compulsory Purchase Orders were put on all the buildings nearby. St Ann’s Church and The Bingo Hall were exempt, but were forced to give up their frontal land. The council bulldozers moved in and demolished the front of the old Cinema, leaving the remaining architecture unbalanced and incomplete.
On the 23rd June 1986 the site was acquired by ‘The Rank Group’, who reopened the old cinema as ‘The Top Rank Club’. They were responsible for the painting of the exterior tiled façade in its distasteful primary colours. The building was listed in the mid 1990’s by The English Heritage but due to falling profits The Rank Group closed the Club in 1995 and it was eventually sold in January 1997 to a business man from Sale. Since that date various plans have been put forward for its future including a gym and health club however nothing has come to pass as yet.

8842599301_80f714d2bb_blarge

The Pyramid Theatre

Located in Sale, Cheshire, now part of Greater Manchester. Designed by the famous British cinema architectural firm, Drury & Gomersall, the Pyramid Theatre is a classic example of an Egyptian-style cinema in Britain and had a 1,940 seating capacity.

outpysa

The frontage although not particularly Egyptian in overall design does have various Egyptian style mouldings and fluted pillars. Internally, the Egyptian theme was again largely mouldings and finishes like Graumans Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood. The theme was included in the specially designed Christie Organ, which is currently installed in the Blue Coat School in Oldham.

The Pyramid Theatre changed hands a couple of times between its opening on 24th February 1934 and 21st December 1942 when it was taken over by Oscar Deutsch’s Odeon Theatres Ltd. chain. It was re-named Odeon on 18th June 1945.

odsastr

In 1981, the Rank Organisation closed 29 of its Odeon cinemas and the lease for the Odeon Sale was bought by the Tatton Cinemas group and it was re-named Tatton Cinema. Stage shows returned to the theatre, however the runing costs caused the lease to revert to Rank in 1984 and the building was closed.

The cinema was purchased by Trafford Borough council for £200,000, but by 1987 the costs to the council were estimated at £1.5 million. A campaign was started to save it from demolition.

In 1988, it was advertised for sale by tender and by 1990 the cinema was converted into an American themed nightclub, known as JFK’s.

20180506_13225920180506_133111

The nightclub closed around 2001 and the auditorium was transformed into a franchised L.A. Fitness Centre, using a former front stalls exit as its entrance. The main entrance and foyers are currently unused. In 2013 it became a Sports Direct Fitness Club.

Undoubtedly the most splendid cinema in Sale was the Pyramid on Washway Road; this was designed by Drury and Gomersall in an “Egyptian” style, hence the name. The Pyramid was built 1933-4 to seat 2,000 at a cost of £70,000. The building included a first-floor cafe advertised as the “rendezvous for discerning folk” and, flanking the cinema, two rows of shops were built in a style which harmonised with the nearby Post Office.

IMG_0597

“Once built, the Pyramid then needed a license to open; the magistrates refused this after opposition from, among others, the Palace and Savoy cinemas and the Regal, Altrincham. A protest meeting was organised by a local committee, which included the vicar of St. Paul’s. The meeting was a success, as the Pyramid’s 2,000 seating capacity was filled and another 2,000 gathered outside; a petition had attracted 18,000 signatures.

“The result was that a license was then granted and the Pyramid was opened for its first public performance on Monday, February 26, 1934 with a film and stage show. It is a cinema typical of prosperous suburbia of the 1930s and was built with a spacious car park. The Pyramid was bought by Rank in 1941 and, later, became an Odeon cinema. The Odeon showed its last film in October 1981; the cinema was sold and later re-opened as the Tatton, finally closing in 1984.”

IMG_0592IMG_0589

The frontage, although not particularly Egyptian in overall design, does have various Egyptian style mouldings and fluted pillars. Internally, the Egyptian theme was again largely mouldings and finishes unlike Graumans Egyptian. The theme was included in the specially designed Christie Organ. This organ was purchased by The Lancastrian Theatre Organ Trust in the early 1980’s and installed in the Blue Coat School in Oldham, where it was used for regular concerts until 2008. The organ is now in storage awaiting a new venue for installation.

IMG_0601

In 1981, the Rank organisation closed 29 of its Odeon cinemas and the Tatton Cinemas group bought the lease for the Odeon Sale and it was re-named Tatton Cinema. Stage shows returned to the theatre, however the running costs caused the lease to revert to Rank in 1984 and the building was closed.

Trafford Borough council purchased the cinema for £200,000, but by 1987 the costs to the council were estimated at £1.5 million. A campaign was started to save it from demolition.

20180506_132859IMG_0594

In 1988, the theatre was advertised for sale; by tender and by 1990 the cinema was converted into an American themed nightclub, known as JFK’s (quite how the Egyptian theme lent itself to this is anyone’s guess!).

The nightclub closed around 2001 and the auditorium has since been transformed into a franchised L.A. Fitness Centre, using a former front stalls exit as its entrance. The main entrance and foyers are currently unused.

intodsbccolcrIMG_0623

Royal Northern Collage of Music for 50th Anniversary concert with Q+A from Barclay James Harvest. A very special evening full of sadness and wonderful music. Yes it did feel like a family event even though I always stay on the edges of such gatherings. It was great to see the lyric sheets. The movie that played on the intro was also lovely. The jacket that John Lees wore on the cover of  Everyone Is Everybody Else was in the foyer and was so tiny.

31961733_10214230246842471_483264746573791232_n1968a31960908_10214230247642491_6628933141182545920_n20180506_16002620180506_160453barclay22

Suicide?

The question mark in the title is often forgotten, missing the point of the song, which is simply “did he jump or was he pushed”. The ghoulish sound effects at the end were created using a twin microphone binaural system on the head of a dummy, which was then thrown out of an upstairs window! Apparently Woolly refused the starring rôle for some reason, although his clogs created the footsteps. I’m reliably informed that the spoken line “are you a member, sir?” is the censored version – the original was “may I see your member, sir?”!!

I woke up to a feeling, it was cold by my side
You had gone with the sunrise, leaving tears in my eyes
I got up with a feeling of an emptiness inside
To the noise of the sidewalk and the silence of my mind
Well I walked out this morning, down a street with no name
To a club called “The Loser”, like a dog that’s gone lame
Took the club elevator to the floor with a view
I took out life subscription – it’s the only one they do

I stepped out on the guard rail, saw the crowds slowly part
Heard a voice shouting “Don’t jump, please for God’s sake let me move my car!”
Felt a hand on my shoulder, heard a voice cry “Just in time!”
Felt the quick push, felt the air rush
Felt the sidewalk, fell in line

The creation of the special effects used at the end of the song are described in Keith and Monica Domone’s official biography. One of the band walked to a service elevator wearing clogs; we hear it ascending, and the rush of air and impact of the victim’s body after he leaps. This latter was recorded by throwing a dummy off the top of the Holiday Inn, Manchester, equipped with binaural microphones in a specially designed set of headphones.

IMG_0619UICY-25564IMG_0605

For No One

A classic anti-war song brings us neatly back to the opening theme of the album. The live version, as captured on Barclay James Harvest Live from later that same year, was even more powerful, with a big build up to the exquisite ending which is, unfortunately, missing from the studio version. Still, a great way to end a fine album, which has a very special place in many fans’ affections.

Please lay down your pistols and your rifles
Please lay down your colours and your creeds
Please lay down your thoughts of being no-one
Concentrate on what you ought to be
Then lay down your bullshit and your protests
Then lay down your governments of greed
Take a look at what lies all around you
Then pray God we can live in peace

Everyone’s a loner ’till he needs a helping hand
Everyone is everybody else
Everyone’s a no-one ’till he wants to make a stand
God alone knows how we will survive

So please lay down your pistols and your rifles
Please lay down your colours and your creeds
Please lay down your thoughts of being no-one
Concentrate on what you ought to be

Everyone’s a loner ’till he needs a helping hand
Everyone is everybody else
Everyone’s a no-one ’till he wants to make a stand

20180506_160725

IMG_0614

Titles

The long and winding road that leads to your door
Here comes the sun it’s alright people shout for more
But were you trying to deceive telling me
All you need is love to succeed
Across the universe one after nine ‘o’ nine
I got a feeling for you blue and I feel fine
I tried so hard to make believe that I’d see
All you need is love to succeed

Lady Madonna let it be
Something in the way you moved me yesterday
All you need is love so they say

The third track from the 1975 Time Honoured Ghosts album is credited Traditional, arranged Lees. According to the official Barclay James Harvest website: “The original concept and arrangement were devised by John and Woolly.”
Lyrically, “Titles” is comprised of the names of various Beatles’ songs, including “The Long and Winding Road,” “Across The Universe” and “Lady Madonna.”

1970bjhb20180506_160720IMG_0606 (2)

The Great 1974 Mining Disaster

In some ways, this song was a forerunner of “Poor Man’s Moody Blues”, in that it was written by deconstructing a well-known song by another band, then rebuilding it with new lyrics. In this case, the original song was the Bee Gees’ “New York Mining Disaster 1941”; which John adapted to comment on the 1974 UK miners’ strike that finally brought down the Conservative government. Subtle alterations to the original lyrics such as changing “don’t go talking too loud, you’ll cause a landslide” to “all you have to do is smile to cause a landslide” were combined with contemporary political and musical references to people such as “a sailor oh so gay” (Prime Minister Ted Heath), “Mister Groan” (miners’ leader Joe Gormley) and songs by David Bowie (“The Man Who Sold The World” and “Space Oddity” about “a major out in space”).

Heard a song the other day
About a major out in space
And though the song was kind of grey
It took me far away
Heard the news the other day
About a sailor oh so gay
And though his policies were grey
They took me far away
‘Cause I couldn’t stand the thought
Of being taken in again

Have you seen my life, Mr. Groan?
Do you know what it’s like to be outside?
All you have to do is smile to cause a landslide
And you do, and you do, Mr. Groan

Heard a song just yesterday
About a man who sold the world away
And though the song was still quite grey
It took me far away
‘Cause I couldn’t stand the thought
Of being taken in again

Have you seen my life, Mr. Groan?
Do you know what it’s like to be outside?
All you have to do is smile to cause a landslide
And you do, and you do, Mr. Groan

20180506_160730barclay-james-harvest

32089910_10215463882046329_4277407738822131712_n

Hymn

The song which has come to be regarded by many as the BJH classic, rivalled only by “Mocking Bird”, had an inauspicious start to its career when, back in the summer of 1971  it was presented, in much the same form, for possible inclusion on Barclay James Harvest And Other Short Stories – and rejected! Fortunately, John persisted with the song, and it was finally accepted for this album. Originally titled “Hymn For A White Lady”, the song is primarily about the dangers of drug abuse, contrasting their illicit thrill with the spiritual “high” of Christianity, although many DJs and listeners have taken it for a straightforward Christmas song. The now traditional shouts of “yeah!” from the fans at the finale of the band’s live shows date back to early performances of the song, where John dedicated it to rock stars who had fallen victim to drugs, saying “let’s hear it for Jimi Hendrix… Paul Kossoff… Janis Joplin…” etc., and fans responded with a roar of approval.

Valley’s deep and the mountain’s so high
If you want to see God you’ve got to move on the other side
You stand up there with your head in the clouds
Don’t try to fly you know you might not come down
Don’t try to fly, dear God, you might not come down
Jesus came down from Heaven to earth
The people said it was a virgin birth
Jesus came down from Heaven to earth
The people said it was a virgin birth
He told great stories of the Lord
And said he was the saviour of us all
He told great stories of the Lord
And said he was the saviour of us all
For this they/we killed him, nailed him up high
He rose again as if to ask us why
Then he ascended into the sky
As if to say in God alone you soar
As if to say in God alone we fly.

Valley’s deep and the mountain’s so high
If you want to see God you’ve got to move on the other side
You stand up there with your head in the clouds
Don’t try to fly you know you might not come down
Don’t try to fly, dear God, you might not come down

ttt

One lyric sheet had The Word a poem by Graeme Edge from The Moody Blues. I was very excited when I found this among the lyric sheets. I would love to have asked John Lees about it. Seeing all these wonderful lyrics was one of the highlights of the day.

1970tourScreenshot 2018-05-12 10.11.18Screenshot 2018-05-12 10.11.27IMG_0625

The Grosvenor Picture Palace

Former cinema and current pub at the corner of Grosvenor Street and Oxford Road in Chorlton-on-Medlock, Manchester, United Kingdom. Built in 1913–15, it was the largest cinema outside London in its day. It is now a Stonegate pub.

The Grosvenor Picture Palace was designed in 1913 by Percy Hothersall (who later designed Manchester’s first supercinema, The Piccadilly, off Piccadilly Gardens in 1922). It is located at the corner of Grosvenor Street and Oxford Road in Chorlton-on-Medlock.

20180506_185729

The cinema opened on 19 May 1915, featuring Blanche Forsythe in Jane Shore; it was described at the time as “Roman-Corinthian of the later Renaissance influence”.

It dates from the period when the first permanent cinemas were being built, with the distinctive design acting as “ostentatious advertising”. The cinema had a capacity of just under 1000 people, making it the largest cinema outside London in its day. A billiard hall was installed in the basement in the 1930s.

IMG_06297OFN_H

It was operated by the H.D. Moorehouse chain, before being acquired by Star Cinema Group in the early 1960s, who used the building both for cinema and bingo. It showed features such as Steve Reeves in Hercules Unchained. It was never a commercial success due to its distance from Manchester’s city centre.

The last films shown were The Passionate Demons and Attack of the Crab Monsters on 18 May 1968, after which the building was used exclusively for bingo. It was later used as a Riley’s Snooker Club for several years; it was then boarded up for several years.

20180506_18583320180506_185935

The two-storey building is rectangular, and is on a corner site with a 3-bay chamfered entrance corner with a pavilion on top. Its facade features green and cream faience and terracotta tiles, and it has 4 bays facing Gosvenor street and 6 bays facing Oxford road. The centre of the Oxford road facade is marked with a raised torch in white terracotta. It has a small attic and a slate roof. It originally had a canopy, which was later removed.

IMG_063420180506_19011420180506_190213

Much of the original interior, including plasterwork, the balcony and the vaulted ceiling, is still present in the building. The inside balcony originally had multi-coloured inlaid panels.

IMG_0647IMG_064820180506_231033Screenshot 2018-05-12 10.12.0920180506_230715Screenshot 2018-05-12 10.12.45Screenshot 2018-05-12 10.13.13Screenshot 2018-05-12 10.12.5555420180506_231923

 

Saturday 5th May 2018

Posted in Life the Universe and Other Things on May 7, 2018 by bishshat

20180505_09175820180505_085012IMG_0420IMG_042620180505_10004820180505_101110IMG_0439IMG_0436IMG_043820180505_10111320180505_10103820180505_10012420180505_102900IMG_04604454gg5gIMG_0463IMG_0476

I went into the centre of Manchester to collect Masa. I was meeting him at 11.30 but was in way early as the weather was so nice and the sky was blue. I parked right by Masa’s hotel The Holiday in and walked to the centre. The Town Hall was closed for refurbishment.

I spent the whole day with Masa and we did as many BJH things as we could.
A boiling hot day and we went first to Doverstones Reservoir a destination North to Saddleworth Moor through Oldham. Here at Doverstones was Wooly’s commemorative bench. What a shock when we got there.

20180505_13543020180505_13543420180505_13192320180505_13542731934710_2207840532564768_1422447319659315200_n31948411_2208210242527797_850631836479520768_n31543270_2207840525898102_3900055369644244992_n
There was a queue of traffic to get in and not a car parking space to be had. It was full to bursting and cars parked on yellow lines waiting for free spaces when people left. Only they were not leaving. It was Saturday on a bank holiday and it was hot. Maybe 28 degrees? I dumped Masa out of the car and he went to leave the flowers I had bought earlier to leave on Wooly’s bench.

291406

Dobcross is located at an ancient crossing point of the River Tame which was formerly used by trans-Pennine packhorses as they travelled east from Lancashire into Yorkshire. Thus the name meaning the place where horses cross.

At this crossing point of the River Tame lies the site of Walk Mill, which derives its name from the way the wool was ‘walked’ or trodden to ‘full’ the cloth before the introduction of mechanical stocks by which the cloth was beaten with fulling hammers to felt and thicken it. Probably the earliest fulling mill in Saddleworth, Walk Mill would have been a common meeting place for the local clothiers.

IMG_048631947073_2208237289191759_3965584183895523328_n31946726_2208237249191763_2007452381117153280_n31947573_2208237215858433_9141988234866196480_n31947385_2208237222525099_3095423049516711936_n

Beginning with Richard, the Lawton family ran the mill from at least the late 16th century, if not earlier, and their later wealth in buildings, land and money probably came from the monopoly held by the fulling mill in finishing locally made cloth. From wool to the innkeeping business, the Lawton family continued to be a prominent family in Dobcross through to the early 19th century.

On the morning of Whit Friday, the traditional Whit Walks, a church procession followed by a service, take place in Saddleworth parish. Saddleworth and District Whit Friday Brass Band contests take place every year on the afternoon and evening of Whit Friday.

The playwright Henry Livings (1929–1998) lived in the village and a Henry Livings Memorial Prize is open to bands who have played on any of the morning’s walks.

20180505_153912

Delph (Old English (ge)delf a quarry) is a village in the Saddleworth civil parish of the Metropolitan Borough of Oldham, in Greater Manchester, England. Historically within the West Riding of Yorkshire, it lies amongst the Pennines on the River Tame.

On Friday 7 April 1780 John Wesley visited the village and preached in a house owned by one of the trustees of the Independent Church. Sadly for him, the locals were not ready to turn their backs on the old Pagan ways, and an angry mob chased John Wesley from the parish with pitchforks, and flaming torches. He retreated with his tail between his legs and declared Delph to have been “forsaken by God”, and that there was “no hope for those feral heathens”.

The centre of the village has barely changed from the 19th century when a number of small textile mills provided employment for the local community.

The etymology of Delph is derived from the Old English word ‘Delf’, meaning a quarry and refers to the bakestone quarries which lay at the lower end of the Castleshaw Valley just north of the village. There is a significant first century AD Roman fort at Castleshaw.

Bakestones were quarried as tiles up to three quarters of an inch thick and used to bake oatcakes and muffins. The industry was in existence well before 1330 and only died out in 1930.

20180505_15394220180505_15493120180505_154001

Mill Boys

Barclay James Harvest

John wrote this song specifically about the Lancashire cotton mills, and therefore includes very local references to such places as Tandle Hills (“Tangle ‘ills” in the local dialect) and Shaw Road, a street in Oldham.

Sky was black, Lord, rain came pouring down
Number 12 bus shuffling down Shaw Road way
Mules keep spinning, black-faced lifers peck the ground
Sun comes up like lightning over Tandle Hills grey
We are mill boys, stuck on the hill boys
Stuck in the mill boys, ’till our dying day
Cotton mill will get you, boy, she’ll take you to your grave
Tell you boy to use your head, apprentice out your days
You’ll end up a nothing, boy, with cotton as your trade
Sun comes up like lightning over Tandle Hills grey

We are mill boys, stuck on the hill boys
Stuck in the mill boys, ’till our dying day
We are mill boys, stuck on the hill boys
Stuck in the mill boys, ’till our dying day
It’s easy to see a poor boy’s blues
When he’s working every day
It’s harder to be there in his shoes
He was born to be that way

IMG_0498IMG_0501

20180505_17330420180505_17560520180505_175542

St Chads Saddleworth

There has been a place of Christian worship on the Parish Church site since 1215 AD, when the first Saddleworth Church was established as a chapel of ease as part of the Rochdale Parish, but in time became the possession of Whalley Abbey. Under the suppression of the churches by Henry VIII, the Abbey had to submit Quick Chapel, as it was then called, to the jurisdiction of Rochdale and more recently in 1866, patronage was transferred to the Bishop of Manchester.

The current grade 2* listed re-build, which stands in its own conservation area, is late Georgian. The interior, which includes the original gallery, has a pleasant warmth to it emanating a surprising light and colour. The stained glass tells the tale of the wildness of the weather in this area and the church does possess a fine Capronier depiction of the Visit of the Magi.

28954434_1997069700321265_1453490518925864193_o291408

The Pots and Pans

The Pots and Pans cenotaph towers over the valleys and villages.

But a bitter debate back in 1919 questioned whether the iconic memorial would actually get off the ground…

The First World War officially ended when the Treaty of Versailles was signed on June 28, 1919, and the rest of that year saw local Saddleworth communities commemorate the fathers, sons and brothers who never returned.

But the idea of erecting a permanent memorial for the district transpired into a heated dispute. There was a massive divide between those advocating a cenotaph and those who wanted something more practical – with the idea of a cottage infirmary a strong alternative.

There was a lack of local medical facilities so the ensuing peace was seen as the opportunity to provide a hospital.

This view was supported by many former soldiers, and local scientist and historian Brandon Brierley claimed a hospital would be ‘a far worthier tribute to our noble dead than a useless obelisk’.

The controversy continued into the 1920s but Saddleworth Council finally pledged their support to building a memorial on Pots and Pans and a design was revealed by Gilbert Howcroft in 1920, with a proposed cost of around £2,000.

Despite growing unemployment and industrial decline, the plan went ahead and the memorial was finally complete in October 1923 after five months of construction.

The names of 259 men were inscribed on the original plaques which loosely faced the village they were representing.

A ceremony was arranged to unveil the new memorial and large crowds battled the Saddleworth rain and wind to listen to speeches from servicemen and a rendition of the Last Post.

Although Pots and Pans cenotaph still stands strong, the ceremony did raise concern over potential damage that ‘outsiders’ could inflict.

Changes were made to the monument following the Second World War when it was decided that Howcroft’s memorial should include names of those who died in the later conflict.

Their inclusion coincided with the addition of Springhead’s fallen servicemen for both World Wars – Springhead possessed their own memorial so were originally excluded from the Pots and Pans obelisk.

The memorial still stands to serve the people of Saddleworth and the annual Remembrance Day celebration is just as poignant and respectful as the original unveiling ceremony of 1923.

hqdefault554y5y5ttt

North BJH

A joint composition written in an attempt to come to terms with Woolly’s suicide, it’s more of an observation about his illness and the effect that it had, not only on him but on all those around him, than a straightforward tribute. Musical references to the Mellotron Cowboy abound, and the “chanted” second half, written on a flight to Japan in August, 2012, comprises the band members’ own very personal recollections of Woolly’s deeds and utterances.

Jez’s piano sound is “Alicia’s keys” by Native Instruments, the ‘Hammond’ is played on the Kronos, then there are Memotron flutes and strings. The synth solo plus one or two finale string parts and a few tinkly sounds are from Native Instruments on the Mac Book, and most of the orchestral part of the finale is done on a Roland Fantom.

On Leave

First you turn your back
Then you walk away
A moth drawn to a flame
Night without a day
Someone calls your name
There’s no sign you hear
No comfort for the sane
No sunshine in your rain

Love is an emotion so strong
It hurts the way you feel
Love is an emotion so strong
You can’t see what’s real
Locked in your devotion
Never finding answers
Guilty of no crime
Just sentence without ending
Now you choose to fly

Haunted by the old, hounded by the new
Thoughts you couldn’t share
Darkness found you there
Just a quip goodbye
Like we didn’t care
And no one there to hold
You falling in despair

Love is an emotion so strong
It hurts the way you feel
Love is an emotion so strong
You can’t see what’s real
Locked in your devotion
Never finding answers
Guilty of no crime
Just sentence without ending
Now you choose to fly

Hide from the sunlight, live in a drama
Unseen moments locked in a camera
Mahleresque singing, beautiful simplicity
Polarised emotions longing synchronicity
It’s not the damage, it’s the deception
Chords that offend like perfect imperfection
Flight times are a-changing
Veiled is the signpost
Rapidly descending
Devil takes the hindmost
Season’s greetings shrouded in sorrow
Postscripted farewells
Hopeless tomorrow
Not for the first time but for the last time
Ball of confusion trying to walk a straight line once again.

RIP, Woolly.

P4152262

KnarrBarnLane1

Preston House

The Barclay James Harvest story begins in the early sixties in the Oldham area of North-West England. John Lees and Stuart “Woolly” Wolstenholme met at Oldham Art School, and formed a band called The Sorcerers, which evolved into The Keepers. Meanwhile Les Holroyd and Mel Pritchard were playing in another local outfit rejoicing in the name of Heart And Soul And The Wickeds. In 1966 a new band was formed from a fusion of the two and performed live shows on a semi-professional basis as The Blues Keepers. The resulting six-piece gradually dwindled to a stable quartet comprising Holroyd, Pritchard, Lees and Wolstenholme, and in the summer of 1967 they turned professional with a new name selected by putting names into a hat, and Barclay James Harvest was born.

Under the patronage of John Crowther, a local businessman and their first manager, they moved into an 18th Century farmhouse called Preston House to write and rehearse, and their spartan lifestyle was captured in a short documentary film made for Granada TV. A one-off single deal was negotiated with EMI’s Parlophone label, and “Early Morning” appeared in April 1968, attracting acclaim and the opportunity to record radio sessions for John Peel. This in turn led to a contract with EMI as the band became one of the first signings to the legendary Harvest label, releasing “Brother Thrush” as their second single in June 1969.

20180505_17073420180505_17130831944493_2208449652503856_1911690536155086848_n20180505_193452

West Brom 1 Spurs 0

West Brom hit us with a late sucker punch to take maximum points at The Hawthorns on Saturday.

Fighting for survival, The Baggies set up to defend deep and soak up pressure and did exactly that. We had almost 75 per cent possession and the shot count was 18-9 in our favour but we only opened up the massed defence twice – Harry Kane was denied by Ben Foster in the first half and the best move of the game presented Erik Lamela with a chance in front of goal after the break but a heavy touch allowed Foster to gather.

2018-05-05T141111Z_1012533483_RC166C042160_RTRMADP_3_SOCCER-ENGLAND-WBA-TOT2018-05-05T152318Z_109137027_RC1334661D30_RTRMADP_3_SOCCER-ENGLAND-WBA-TOT

The goalkeeper also saved well as Victor Wanyama and Christian Eriksen tried their luck from distance and clawed away Fernando Llorente’s late header.

West Brom rarely ventured into our half – especially in the first half – but were always a threat from set-pieces.

954995288wba_amc2

Just about every chance they created was from a set-piece delivery and they finally found a way through in the second minute of added time when Matt Phillips’ corner was turned home by former Spur Jake Livermore.

Friday 3rd May 2018

Posted in Life the Universe and Other Things on May 3, 2018 by bishshat

20180503_1505143rd may 2018 (12)3rd may 2018 (13)3rd may 2018 (14)3rd may 2018 (15)3rd may 2018 (16)3rd may 2018 (1)3rd may 2018 (2)3rd may 2018 (3)3rd may 2018 (4)3rd may 2018 (5)3rd may 2018 (6)3rd may 2018 (11)3rd may 2018 (10)3rd may 2018 (8)20180503_124406IMG_037820180503_150119

The end of an age as the Belfast roof barn comes down.

A Belfast truss was a timber roof structure apparently designed and first used for industrial scale sheds in the town of Belfast, Ireland in the 1860’s. Such trusses were originally designed for use with tarred roofing felt laid onto timber boarding.

The Belfast Truss consists of a lower horizontal member (tie-beam) and a curved upper member (bow) connecting at each extremity. The two members are also connected repeatedly with light section lattices.

The segmental curve of the upper member commonly has a radius of 1/2 of the span of the truss. The setting out of the radiating lines of the lattice was commonly based on two Setting Out Points placed at a distance of 3/4 of the span below the ends of the tie beam. The lattices are set out on radial lines from each setting out point to meet at the arched upper member at equal centres to support the purlins.

The three basic components of the Belfast truss are assembled as follows:

The top arched ‘bow’ comprises two members on each side of the lattice bars;
The ‘tie-beam’ consists of two boards sandwiching the lattice bars; and
The ‘lattice bars’ cross between the tie-beam and the bow with a packing piece at the tie-beam to sandwich the lattice between the two boards of the tie beam.
The resultant shape of a Belfast Truss is that of a bow-strung girder which is a close approximation to the bending moment diagram for evenly distributed load. It is considered an economical type of truss as it makes use of material of small section, in reasonably short lengths with nailed joints. It has been suggested that the roof form developed partly in an attempt to utilize the short off-cuts from the timber trade.

The ends of the bow are anchored to the tie-beam by gusset boards and a metal strap. The purlins spanned between the trusses and supported curved roof covering.

When making the Belfast Truss, the lattice bar bracings are laid and nailed face to face, with spaces at the bottom cord. However each layer is pinched in by half of its thickness so that the braces lay side by side at the top bow. A contractor would easily set out and fabricate such a truss on site.

The speed of construction of the Belfast roof, had great advantages over other forms of roof construction. In America the Belfast roof was also known as the ‘Build Fast’ roof. The speed of construction was due to the fact that it was nailed and prepared on the ground and then hoisted up into position.

IMG_0383IMG_0384IMG_0385IMG_0386IMG_0387IMG_0390IMG_0391IMG_0407IMG_0406IMG_0409IMG_0412IMG_0413

Tuesday 1st May 2018

Posted in Life the Universe and Other Things on May 1, 2018 by bishshat

First of May

Bee Gees

When I was small, and Christmas trees were tall,
we used to love while others used to play.
Don’t ask me why, but time has passed us by,
some one else moved in from far away.

Now we are tall, and Christmas trees are small,
and you don’t ask the time of day.
But you and I, our love will never die,
but guess we’ll cry come first of May.

The apple tree that grew for you and me,
I watched the apples falling one by one.
And I recall the moment of them all,
the day I kissed your cheek and you were mine.

When I was small, and Christmas trees were tall,
do do do do do do do do do…
Don’t ask me why, but time has passed us by,
some one else moved in from far away.

For May Day 2018

Louise Michel

Louise Michel wrote this poem in honor and memory of the Communard Théophile Ferré, Blanquist Delegate to the Police, who refused to recognize a military court’s right to judge him after the defeat of the Commune, and was sentenced to death and executed.

If one day to the cold cemetery I were to go,
brothers, cast on your sister,
like a final hope,
some red carnations in bloom.

In the final days of the empire,
as the people awoke,
red carnation, it was your smile
that told us all was reborn.

And now, go blossom in the shade
of dark and drear prisons,
go blossom near the somber captive,
and tell him we love him.

Tell him that in these changing times
everything belongs to the future;
that the victor with his pallid brow
can die as easily as the vanquished.

20180501_09404020180501_09405720180501_09410920180501_094115s-l1600