Category Archives: Other Ramblings - Page 3

High Time

The Heron Tower at 100 Bishopsgate is 230 metres (755 ft) tall and has a massive 70,000-litre aquarium containing over 1,200 fish in the Reception area on the ground floor.

I was there for work purposes and didn’t have a camera so shot these pix on my Android phone. It has 46 floors and I was only on Floor 17 when I shot these pix

Sadly one of London’s most noticeable landmarks ‘The Gherkin’ (30 St Mary Axe) was on the other side of the tower to me so couldn’t get any shots of that. I intend to go back to visit the Sky Bar on the 40th Floor and shoot some proper long exposure night stills across London with my 40D…


‘That fish tank’ (end on)

Room with a view (17th Floor)
The ‘L’ shaped building with the relatively low roof at the 9 O’Clock position is Liverpool Street Station, one of the busiest stations in the United Kingdom

‘That fish tank’ (shot taken by someone else and ganked from the internets)

Peace, Tranquility and F-16’s…

Duty calls and it was time to ‘do the right thing’ and take Mrs Billy Goat away for our anniversary…..three weeks of Pin The Tail On The Donkey later and we settle on this idyllic resort tucked up in a pine forest in downtown Yalanci Bogaz, Türkiye.

All the boxes were ticked:

Child Free Resort – Tick
All Inclusive – Tick
Peace and Quiet – Tick
F-16’s running bombing missions into Syria…..Huh?

Yep, you guessed it… vacation all year and we pick the ONE WEEK when Syria starts throwing its toys over the fence and the Turkish Military’s patience finally wears thin……cue Syrian Radar Positions being targeted while we were (ironically) lounging around at an area in this place called The Relax Pool 🙂

This is NOT what you should see while chilling at the pool on vacation:

Huh F-16's ??

The rest are actual shots of the place, plus a bona fide Turkish Bath (yep we had one like the proper pale tourists that we were posing as….) and some cheesy seafront shots from the nearest town.

Hosçakalin 🙂

Wonky is not Shonky

Orbital Wonky

There is a God….and he likes a bassline 🙂

Many of us shed more than a tear when the Hartnoll brothers hung up their Oberheim Xpanders and Alesis sequencers in 2004 and told the world they were splitting up, we sat huddled round our stereos listening forlornly to Snivilisation and Orbital 2 like we had just lost something great.

In 2008 a ray of hope brought smiles to our faces when 20 Years After Chime happened at The Big Chill. Promising murmuring then carried on for several years until Loopz posted news of another album…

Fast forward to 2nd April 2012 and Wonky hit the streets to the joy of eager fans. It could have gone either way but although there is some clever adoption of contemporary genres such as Dubstep (an unexpected move to these ears), but don’t forgot the current generation of clubbers were probably not even born when Chime took dancefloors by storm in 1989. The innovative ‘Orbital Sound’ is very much still there and after a couple of spins this is a very strong album indeed, Stringy Acid had me smiling ear to ear and nodding my head like Flat Eric in my car as the windows rattled to the bassline.

At first I was dubious about the Electro and Dusbtep twists, never before have the Hartnoll brothers done anything other than lead by example but I think it actually works very well and stops it sounding too retro and derivative, they were right and I was wrong…

The expectation was huge but Wonky delivers on all fronts

Dog rides bike….no REALLY!!!

Thanks to Coastkid for bringing this to my attention as I follow his excellent blog.

This is a Dalmation actually riding a bike…..yep, for real…check it out:


New but the same…(Blog Migration)

My hosting company are shutting down the Blogware platform this blog used to run on so I’ve been forced to migrate the old blog to their new WordPress platform. This was done yesterday with minimal effort after wading through a 22 page technical document and I managed to export all the old crap and move it over here with no loss…..well maybe some loss (hence this post)

Four years of articles and photo’s came across seamlessely but I seem to have screwed up with my links to other blogs/sites so if I had a link to you on the old blog and it’s not there now it’s not cos I don’t like you anymore, it’s just that they got lost in the ether someplace and are now doomed to be shivvering in cold, black cyberspace for eternity.

So if you actually read this blog and I did link you previously then please hit me up in the comments section and I’ll re-link you 😉

Goat Dude – 2012

1 RIFLES Wristband Appeal

I'm not normally one for politics or war but I've been following these guys for several months now and have become sympathetic to their cause after learning a whole bunch about what they are doing out in Afghan both inside the wire and outside the wire by way of official MoD sources and officially sanctioned blogs.

If you want to read something eye opening, emotional and about as real as it gets please read all the deployment posts by RAF Sgt Alex Ford (who thankfully got back alive this week after completing his tour). Lots of soldiers stay inside the wire out there but Alex spent lots of time outside the wire on patrol with the Military Stabilisation Support Team working with the Task Force Helmand Battle Group and his blog posts are heart felt and real.

RAF Airmans Blog

1 RIFLES are currently deployed in Afghanistan on a seven month tour of duty. Casualties are sadly part of the job (the 3 RIFLES Battlegroup lost 30 soldiers and many more seriously injured). Please take a few minutes to read the following pages and support in any way you can.

1 Rifles Support

In memory of the Fallen

GoatCam Live

Lame excuse to update this Blog but here's some hot live goat action:

GoatCam Live

Live until 4th September

The Goats Are Trying To Kill Me…

Social event yesterday………….meet my family:

Insane Goat Posse Take One – Mad Cousin Eddie

Goat Imposter 1

Goat Imposter 2

Insane Goat Posse Take Two – Mad Cousin Eddie Redux

Grave of the Sundew

I visited East Carlton Park a few days ago as we had to entertain a young family member for a few hours. As well as being the location for East Carlton Hall it also houses a Heritage Center for the Corby Steelworks.

Some history (Copyright Wikipedia) on both the Steelworks and the famous Sundew Dragline:

Stewarts & Lloyds Ltd moved to Corby, Northamptonshire in November 1932, enabling them to make use of the local iron ore to feed their blast furnaces and Bessemer steel converters. The new construction was carried out to a very tight timetable, from the clearing of the site in 1933 the first of the Corby blast furnaces was lit in May the following year. This was followed by coke from the new coke ovens the following month and the ore preparation and sinter plants in September. No.2 blast furnace was lit in November and the first steel came from the Bessemer converters on 27 December. The last of the originally planned blast furnaces (No.3) was lit in October 1935. Following a rebuild to increase capacity of No.2 furnace Corby works became the third cheapest pig iron  producing plant in the world.

The end of Stewarts & Lloyds ownership ceased in 1967 when the steel industry was nationalised for the second time, and they became part of the British Steel Corporation. Due to the high cost and low quality of local iron ore, steel production at Corby was set to close in November 1979. This was delayed until 21 May 1980, due to a national steel strike, when the last coil came off the mill. In nearly 40 year of steel production they had produced almost 2.5 million tons of steel. Tubemaking continues to this day, initially based on steel supplied from Teesside, and today Corus  Tubes is the largest customer of steel from South Wales.

Sundew Dragline
Built by Ransomes & Rapier  and named after the winning horse of the 1957 Grand National (Sundew), it began work in a Rutland iron ore quarry belonging to Stewarts & Lloyds that year. At the time of its construction Sundew was the largest walking dragline in the world, weighing 1675 tons. With a reach of 86 metres and a bucket capacity of 27 tons the machine was able to move a substantial amount of material in a relatively short period.

Propulsion was via two large moveable feet which could be used to “walk” the dragline forwards and backwards, while directional control was provided by a large circular turntable under the body of the machine.

Sundew remained until operations at the quarry ceased in 1974 and plans were then devised to relocate the machine to a recently opened British Steel quarry near Corby. At a cost of £250,000 and taking two years to complete it was decided that dismantling, moving and reconstructing the machine was not a viable option, and so over a nine week period in 1974 Sundew was walked thirteen miles from its home near the village of Exton in Rutland to a site north of Corby. During the walk the dragline crossed three water mains, ten roads, a railway line, two gas mains and a river, before finally reaching its new home.

As part of a major restructuring of British Steel in the late 1970s the Corby site was closed down and there was no longer any need for a large dragline to assist in the recovery of iron ore. On 4 July 1980 Sundew walked to its final resting place and the huge boom was lowered onto a purpose built earth mound. There it remained for seven years until being scrapped over a six month period from January to June 1987.

East Carlton House

Mould for a 7 ton ingot

The finished 7 ton ingot

Old bucket from a Ransomes & Rapier W1400

More Bucket

Even more bucket

A Ransomes & Rapier W1400 Dragline (similar to Sundew)

Shunting engine used in the Steelworks

Green Light

Ok, time to breathe again….

Things have been very stressful since February, Mrs Billy Goat was suspected of having a very serious illness and all this time has been spent at hospitals getting loads of tests done, waiting for results, then getting more tests done, waiting…..blah blah.

Bikes (and pretty much everything else) have been on hold, hence the lack of posts here but on Friday we got the letter we have both been waiting for and luckily for us she has the all clear

So its Green Light time at Goat Central…..normal service will resume here shortly….stand by for a bunch of new posts

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