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Pentax Optio 50's Pictures

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Not Abbeydale Industrial Village
Not Abbeydale Industrial Village (Pentax Optio 50)

I decided not to see the the Uboat that has been moved to Liverpool from Birkenhead, thinking that it would be too far as I was feeling a little tired, so I left it to my Wife for advice. I wish I'd have just gone for my first instinct and gone to Liverpool and be done with it. Quite a lot of driving would have been saved and half a tank of petrol too.

So we headed out on the motorway towards the M62. Approaching the turn-off for Heaton Park she started looking for Abbeydale Industrial Village on the GPS. As soon as this was keyed in we were back on our way home because we were going in the wrong direction completely. So after a long drive there we found it closed for winter. Not wishing to be defeated I looked at the GPS to look for the nearest thing of interest and it came up with Revolution House Museum. With no idea what it was we set out. A while later we were in the vicinity but either we couldn't find it, or it too was closed. So since we were hungry we headed for The Fox Hall, a huge and nice looking pub for a rather late lunch. We saw it on the way to Abbydale but of course we were on a mission then and now we had time on our hands. On the way to the pub my Wife saw a sign for Beauchief Abbey, so in a mad dash to salvage something out of the mammoth drive we followed the sign, only to find a golf course and a closed Abbey. So back on the trail for The Fox Hall

On entering we were intercepted (yes there was no greeting about it) by what looked to be Paul O'Grady's brother who said that there were no tables but we could be put on his list. Looking at his list I spied we were the 6th on it so not bad but could be better. My Wife asked how long we might have to wait (a pretty reasonable question I thought) only to be told that it depended on how long people took to eat... Uhh well yes Einstein. He did finally give us a 10-30 minute guess. He only offered this after he saw our stunned looks after his initial response and then we were offered to the bar. A pint later we left it and it's toilet of the year 2009. Back on the road again, this time heading for home.

Through Hope we started looking for a place to eat, expecting little because we were just expecting anything we found the The Poachers Arms and decided to stop. What a strange place... and that's not bad. It did look like we had just stumbled into someone's house that they had converted into a pub but forgot to remove some of their own stuff. A cross between a pub, front room and restaurant it's a nice change, and the food is good and fresh, it's not been sitting there under heat lamps and the like. Too much fish on the menu for my liking but hey that's just my own personal flaw, not their fault. One Addlestones Premium Cloudy Cider and a full stomach later (I should have had the rump steak, there was nothing wrong with the chicken but I was in a chip mood and steak would have gone down very well too, again my fault) we left for home.

So to the picture. On the way back we came back through Disley. On the way we passed Torkington Park to find the picture I have been trying to take for ages, but since there were nearly zero pictures today I had to hop out and take the snap. I think it's pretty impressive carved out of an old tree that I assume is still in the ground. I'll be disappointed if it were carved off site and planted but suspect that isn't the case, I saw someone on North West Tonight about the very same thing and if it is the same then it'll be all done with chainsaws.

So there we have it, hours and hours of driving to find a picture only 20-30 minutes away.

0 comments have been left22:02 8 Mar 2009Tags: squirrel tree chainsaws torkington
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Communal Changing
Communal Changing (Pentax Optio 50)

Now perhaps I have this all wrong and you can laugh in my face for misreading this, but I suspect I have it all right and the person who wrote this sign got it wrong in at least one way, and that isn't for the fact that the bottom half of the sign has been tacked on as an after thought, or perhaps some computer training is required here, simple stuff like changing the font size so that the whole thing fits.

My main problem with this sign is that “cubicles need to be used by other customers at all time”... all times? 100% of it? Even when I'm using it? I mean I know it's communal changing and when I was a lad changing rooms for the pool didn't have cubicles but from a practical point of view the cubicle at best merely fitted my Daughter and I. I'm not sure there was much room for other customers.

0 comments have been left13:16 14 Feb 2009Tags: sign cubicle pool
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Manchester Snowman
Manchester Snowman (Pentax Optio 50)

We are nothing but resourceful and unorthodox in the house of Zamyatin. You'll see no fossil fuels or carrots not stamped with the RSPCA Freedom Food logo used in out snowmen. Our snowman is allowed the free run of our back garden and if he can operate the gate then Manchester and beyond is his playground. With Mange tout eyebrows and mouth, black pepper eyes and a plastic rose for a nose he's nearly good enough to eat, but does it make him happy... no... not by the looks of it. Even his spade arms aren't enough to force the corners of his mange tout mouth skyward. Perhaps the little peas have been in our fridge too long awaiting a stir-fry that forgot them causing the mange tout and his expression to sag. Perhaps instead his sorrow is because he spies a change in the weather and his time is running short.

For those observant you will notice bits of his eyes are on the floor this could also be his concern... poor chap. Of course the snow today really stopped me getting out on my bike that I took all weekend to sort out for the Monday commute. Mind you I'd not have fancied going out today, the weather was really bad, and that was just the wind forget the horizontal snow. Still it wasn't that bad really, I remember worse and yet all people can talk about is how bad things are as if it's big issue. How would we cope if we got some real snow?



0 comments have been left22:48 2 Feb 2009Tags: snowman snow manchester flash peas
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Victoria Park War Memorial
Victoria Park War Memorial (Pentax Optio 50)

I did try and take a picture of this memorial in Victoria Park two weeks ago but the TYTN II was rubbish. At this time of year and this time of day the sun is behind the memorial making it impossible to take anything but a silhouette of it, the Pentax however allows you to choose the where to take an exposure reading from an then shift the focus. I still reckon that a simple film camera would produce better results.

With my arms and as my Wife reports my face coated in bike oil this Saturday this is the best you're getting I am afraid. The house now smells of citrus degreaser and bike oil from putting the bike back together. There is the usual trail of black oil around the house which as you can imagine gets me no brownie points. With more work to go tomorrow setting the bike up for the morning commute on Monday I'm sure the doghouse is getting nearer.

Going back to the picture, the poppies at the bottom of the memorial are to do with a service that happened last weekend which is connected to the fact that the Air Cadets were in Manchester last weekend but I still don't know what that was for. Any ideas?

0 comments have been left23:02 31 Jan 2009Tags: memorial poppies denton park
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Strictly Come Reality Hack
Strictly Come Reality Hack (Pentax Optio 50)

With a jam packed weekend I was desperate to take some time out to take some pictures despite this. The weekend was filled with a swimming lesson and a Strictly Come Dancing thing in Manchester. Neither of which involved me directly but affected my weekend nonetheless. After parking in Victoria Station and being charged an extra 20p (in)convenience fee for calling them to pay for my parking because all the machine were not working and failing their voice recognition twice (“D” I said not “B”), we dropped my Daughter and my Mother-in-Law off at the MEN Arena and drifted off to go to Urbis to view the Hidden Manchester exhibition. It's an interesting small exhibition which was a little like a watered down and much reduced Urban Explorers photo album. Before all of this my breakfast of raw garlic on toast with tomatoes and olive oil was discovered by my Mum mentioning that there was a strong garlic smell as she sat across the table from me when we took a small break in Urbis's coffee shop. I had to hold my hands up for this one. My Wife described it as a garlicky waft that was coming off me as I passed people, even when I was holding my breath.

This is just a quick picture of the Manchester Wheel reflected in Urbis. Nothing much to comment other than I took loads of pictures like this thinking they were all great but only got one average-ish picture. There were other pictures but they may have to wait for another day. Such as a picture of the names of those who died in World War I who worked for the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway. There's also a picture of the Air Cadets lined up in formation for a ceremony in Manchester Cathedral. But they can be left for another day.

0 comments have been left20:58 25 Jan 2009Tags: wheel urbis reflections clouds
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A Non-Fire Exit
A Non-Fire Exit (Pentax Optio 50)

Whilst in New Mills before the Bridge Picture I noticed this Fire Exit. I can't imagine anyone getting out alive from this building unless they had a key for the padlock. Looks like a Crystal Maze problem to me with people shouting “get the other key you only have 20 seconds... Oh we've lost the Crystal”.

I suspect that the gate would be open during business hours. This being a Sunday it will be closed, but it still it does look a little bit strange. You do tend to wonder what would happen if the greenery were to start blocking the exit whether the door would open padlock or not.

0 comments have been left00:00 18 Jan 2009Tags: closed new mills exit strange
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Stan Brewster's Bridge
Stan Brewster's Bridge (Pentax Optio 50)

Not a great day for pictures. It was overcast and not very bright which gives a sort of overall lighting that provides no depth to anything, despite this we went to Torr just for a walk out. I think this picture at least gives you some depth. The picture here is Stan Brewster's Millennium Walkway. It's a really impressive walkway that swings round giving you a great view of the mill in the left of the picture. I did take some pictures of the mill but to be honest because of the light it was difficult but they may see the light of day on a busy weekend when I don't take any pictures. There is a plaque at the end of the bridge that explains that 5 years after finishing the bridge Stan Brewster was killed in the bombings in London on July 7th.

Also nearby there are remains of another mill and right next door what I would call a backward Archimedes Screw. Normally used for moving water uphill this Archimedes Screw is used to supply half the power requirements of the Coop. Water pours in the top and drives the screw around generating energy. If you want more info then you can if you really want to read the Screw's Blog though I think you have to be pretty interested to keep going back.

Update For those interested here is the Plaque at one side of the bridge.



0 comments have been left22:14 4 Jan 2009Tags: bridge torr mill river walkway
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Peterloo Again
Peterloo Again (Pentax Optio 50)

As promised here’s the new plaque that replaces this one that is embedded into the Radisson Hotel in the centre of Manchester. Red this time because it is a memorable place. It used to be blue before they started colour coding them. The new plaque misses out the detail that they were there to be addressed by Henry Hunt, though on the new one we do get info on what happened after the military dispersal.

0 comments have been left11:51 24 Dec 2008Tags: peterloo plaque radisson
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Blurry Landscape
Blurry Landscape (Pentax Optio 50)

I never said at the start of this they would be good pictures.

On Monday I took a walk around Manchester to find the skating rink now in the new Hardman Boulevard in Spinningfields if you haven't guessed. I did find it and was going to take my annual skate picture but chickened out. Last year I had my daughter with me and kids are a great excuse to do all sorts of things whereas this year it was lunch on a Monday and I thought that I may just look like a bit of a freak in my cycling jacket waggling a camera about at no-one I knew.

On the way to Bridge Street I saw this reflection so whipped out my TYTN II and took a couple of shots and walked back to my office wondering how brilliant they would turn out... the scene did look impressive until I downloaded them and found them blurred. There was camera shake all over the place which is one of the things I hate about digital cameras, they start giving you the impression that there enough light and take the picture and on the whatever inch screen they look good so you download them to find them less than reasonable. I would prefer them to tell you at the time that there could be camera shake and then perhaps you could take precautions.

So as you can guess this isn't a photo from Monday. No I stalked the building all week (all week it's only Wednesday) waiting for some sun and today was the day. But to be quite honest I wasn't feeling it. Perhaps it was the light because I don't think that was as good and perhaps I just felt way too busy at work to wander about taking pictures and perhaps add to that I wanted it to be a good shot. I don't know perhaps it was all of these things. The picture does have a feeling that I was trying to get across but the building reflected is really blurred but then again that's probably a trick of the eye when not looking through a camera. Without a camera a shot always look better and I think my camera chose to focus on the building rather than the reflection.

Anyway here's my effort. A new ultra-modern building reflected in a new ultra-modern building which is a pretty good description of Spinningfields. Another description would be an anonymous collection of glass and steel that could be anywhere and reminiscent of anywhere.

0 comments have been left22:02 17 Dec 2008Tags: reflections spinningfields glass building
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Crewe Eagle
Crewe Eagle (Pentax Optio 50)

It's bad Ju Ju to not post a pic for a month so assuming that I'm going to be hopeless nest weekend I found this in archive. A picture of when we went to Crewe.

This impressive eagle is one of four that used to sit on the train works. From reading the stuff in the train museum in Crewe, there used to be four, but the suspicion that when metal was in short supply two of them were melted down but two survive which now sit on the museum.

What's strange as they said in the museum is that whilst there is a clear as day C (for Crewe we can assume or maybe not), there is a H in there which is something I could not see on the day but in the picture is pretty clear... well from the picture I can see anyway. As far as I am aware no-one knows what the H means.

0 comments have been left20:10 9 Dec 2008Tags: crewe museum train
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