Monthly Archives: August 2016

Wednesday 31st August 2016.

Rainy and rather cold this morning and so a ride into Radcliffe and, while there, a pic of The Civic Hall. Well, where The Civic Hall was. Apparently the old baths is being re-vamped into baths and civic complex so the old civic hall site will be used for housing. From Radcliffe centre to Withins and a ride back along the canal. Umpteen gypsy ponies behind Hawthorns and Willowherb …
Canada Geese seem to have left the place but no, further along toward Coney there’s a field-full of ’em.
On the fun front Apple and eu make a good ‘tax’ story-farce. The eu demand that Apple stump-up £11,000,000,000.00p in back tax – Apple say they’ll lose umpteen thousand jobs in tax-cheap Ireland. Britain, shortly no longer subject to eu rules, sneaks in with ‘corporation tax isn’t too bad here …’ ploy. Good old Brexit! Irexit soon eh?
Watched (recorded) Victoria part two. Some say Miss Coleman is ‘too attractive’ to play Victoria but the programme is highly watch-able regardless. They can’t ‘invent’ too much soapy stuff so things are kept tightly realistic with (Sir) Robert Peel (yes, Bury’s own) even having a (slight) Northern accent. One time comic actor Peter Bowles is spot-on as Duke of Wellington. Series is filmed around north of England. Great to watch something with no: badges, guns, PC’s, mobiles, even TV’s.

Tuesday 30th August 2016.

Cool again for out and abouting and, a little off-roading chanced, from one Irwell-side pylon to the next, today.
From under pylon pictured a tiny dog-walkers track runs alongside the river. This is overgrown with H.Balsam and, in parts, Giant Hogweed (Attenborough never had to contend with G.Hogweed!). So you can’t, at the blooming moment, see the track – which runs within a yard of the six-foot-drop river’s edge. From the track, on river’s opposite bank, examples of all three major intrusive plants thrive: Hogweed, Balsam and Knotweed. (Pic 3 today)
Pic one, taken yesterday along Radcliffe Canal, is of swans and five near full-grown cygnets.
On the fun front many general traders are asking the weights and measures folk to re-instate pounds and ounces after brexit. It was an eu direktive that made us use kilo’s etc. Fahrenheit too?
A camera person at Glastonbury Abbey has apparently photographed a ‘hooded monk-like figure’ walking the ruins. The figure has luminous red-eyes …

Monday 29th August 2016 – Bank Holiday.

Sunny but windy with a spot of rain in the air around Warth. The wind probably deemed at least some Bury wind-turbines be switched-off – not sure. But one in Germany caught fire and, at 100 meters high, was too high for firemen’s ladders to reach with a hose-pipe. It’s reported (from 2014) that 120 of these things catch fire – in a very black, smokey way – every year. Thus their carbon-footprint is way off-scale! Mmm … and I thought … silly me. The small-scale Archimedes Screw, at Warth, chugs along nicely, adding juice to the national grid, easily driven by a few gallons of passing River Irwell water. Wildlife abounds all around it and it’s virtually fire-proof.
Autumn, officially, next week. A good time for even the simplest of cameras, especially around natural areas. Apparently the beeb (I think) is doing another ‘Canal Trip’ style film, but this time from a country bus.
Watched Victoria last night (ITV) and they’ve gone for ‘reasonable’ in the so far fairly un-dramatic beginnings of Queen Victoria’s reign. Dr. Who’s one-time side-kick, Jenna, does a sensible portrayal, amid the iffy cgi, and Lord Melbourne, her early advisor, was a really good baddie in one of the Zorro films. Interesting (so far) bio-pic.

Sunday 28th August 2016.

Cool again but okay for getting out – as many others this morning – on bikes. Headline in one msm Sunday onliner was about a house-selling couple unable to do so because of Japanese Knotweed hogging next door’s garden. Much land locally is infested with Knotweed but due to costs (govern-mental guestimate for total eradication is £1,500,000,000.00p) those govern-mental have washed their hands of the stuff. It’s down to land-owners now. So it flourishes virtually unchecked …
As do other introduced intrusive nightmares.
Presently reading a book – The Lake District Murder – originally published in 1935. It’s a good read, possibly because of: No computers, TV’s or mobiles, ‘The Telephone’ use is very limited and the Detective gets about on a motorcycle ‘combination’. (Bike and sidecar) Best of all The Detective, his superior(s) and underlings, are not dysfunctional and there’s no plot-clogging procedural arguments between them all. They’re after a killer and actually help (rather than hinder) each other.
Watched a short (half hour) film about Flying Scotsman’s refurbishment and return to main-line operations last night. Stock film-shots, from locally (Rileys and E.L.R.’s Bury South) and other rail routes. A little ‘detective’ work around E.L.R. areas hints at Scotsman being here in October …
Camera battery is already being charged … the bike oiled …

Saturday 27th August 2016.

Unusual pic this morning was taken last night, as various rellies called at the reality Condorosa before embarking on a Bolton jaunt to watch an Elvis wannabe in a pub. A few hours (and several shots etc.,) later, upon rellies return, the wannabe, Tommy Holland of Bolton, was declared ‘pretty good’ (he’s quite young) and the night had gone well. (A couple more pics on Bossa Nova Babies page … )
Good, cooler, weather again this morning for two-wheeled out and abouting and, being weekend, a few tasty bikes out. Noticed a creak from the bike this morning … at least, I think it was from the bike …
White Egret – a small Heron – was again at Warth near the weir, but it was being hounded by umpteen gulls as it fished by the islands – which are, after some rain, just above water.

Friday 26th August 2016.

Sunny but cooler this morning for the daily six or so miles. Swan family was at the wharf – all five cygnets near full-grown and well – and a pic or two taken.
Temporary traffic lights have gone from Ainsworth Road but they’re still up along Bolton Road near Mile Lane.
There are warnings, in msm, of ‘20,000,000’ motors being on the road later today and over Bank holiday weekend. So far it’s quite normal, i.e., quiet, on local roads. Apparently rail strikes and hols ‘at home’ are adding to more cars being out.
We’re making and selling more cars too. Ditto houses – but there is a brick shortage. And ‘The High Street’ is faring better too. (Except, it seems, Radcliffe Market) Mind you, a planned new supermarket, nearby, might help trade this side of Pilky Way.

Thursday 25th August 2016.

Warm and muggy this morning but no rain for the early out and about. Up at E.L.R. Bury South a shunt engine (Ernest) was crossing the road – this is relatively new – built about 1965 I was told. (:))
Also en-route today were two local secondary schools and, at each, several pupils were at the gates with pass/fail sheets – some laughing, some not.
Ladies ‘roady’ hybrid bike in for a check-over after a couple of years garaged. All is okay and the machine ‘test rides’ very well. Alex Rims – tasty a couple of years back – but they’re even better with the tyres pumped-up. Handlebar and saddle positions are a bit suspect, but the owner isn’t very tall for a 700c wheeled bike.

Wednesday 24th August 2016.

Sunny, warm and dry again early on and a short diversion to check-out water levels at Elton Res. Still low (pic two.) with Balsam and Bull-rushes clogging the inlet by the sailing club car-park. Balsam tops the grass banking a hundred yards away (pic one.)
A slightly longer ride this morning (Dumers to M/C Road) and temporary lights are back near Mile Lane junction on Bolton Road and along Ainsworth Road, Radcliffe. At both it’s easier for cyclists to walk past.
In msm £ is slightly up – not particularly bad news – and house-builders report noticeable increase (20%!) in post brexit new home reservations. Low interest rates will help folk with new mortgages. Several new-home developments locally are all well-subscribed with homes in all ‘size’ brackets. Generally this is good – but (serious) personal debt is on the rise.
Watched first episode of new beeb drama One of us, last night. Unusual (outlandish and very contrived) plot concerning two very rustic families ‘joined’ by a marriage. Much dysfunctionality (drink, drugs) that’s (as expected) dragged-out to the extreme – as the married couple are murdered – to fill the one hour slot mainly with talking heads. It could be Emmerdale but in Scotland.

Tuesday 23rd August 2016.

Total weather change this morning with really warm sun. After extensive reading of Cyclocomputer instruction booklet – huge reading glasses needed as it’s written in the same font that folk use to write books on the head of a pin – it’s been re-set and works great. The regular morning bike-route, around Radcliffe/Bury, clocks at just a few yards over six miles. For a daily outing this is great – at six miles an hour it’s an hour’s run – it usually takes a bit less, say forty-five minutes. Rain, yesterday, meant no early ride but a short evening one revealed umpteen ‘middle-aged’ cyclists heading towards nearby farm-tracks on all sorts of ATB’s. Could have tagged-on to the back of ’em but tracks are littered with Hawthorns – good for business but, then again, not good for business! But roads were also bike busy at that time with sparse car traffic. Warm too. An earlier, own bike, bottom-bracket tightening, with a new outer ring fitted, was repeated on a customer ATB that just needed adjustment – loosen outer ring, tighten inner cup, lock-up outer ring. Running a drop of light oil along axle, so that it runs into bottom-bracket, also helps smooth pedalling. Any crunching means a strip-down with new bearings and grease – not difficult with right tools. These are, of course, old-style bottom-brackets. Newer ones have sealed ‘cassettes’ of bearings and you just screw out old and screw in new – getting the right (sized) one is the tricky bit, there are umpteen of these, some requiring different extraction tools.
Pic, taken in April, is of dinosaur at entrance to Close Park leaning against stainless steel sculpture!

Monday 22nd August 2016.

Non-stop rain again this morning so no outdoor excursions just yet. Driving licence renewal form (age related!) has arrived and, as it’s a free renewal, I’ll probably do it. On occasion licence is handy as I.D. source – e.g., cinema price concessions. Well, every little helps. Had chance to check-out the dashboard of a modern (Mazda) yesterday and to be honest driving such, again, would be a challenge. An old Bentley would be fine. Mind you, even sussing Ed’s new, very modern, bike is, at times, a head-scratcher. But, finally figured-out, after twelve months instruction reading, how to re-set my own bike’s ‘cyclocomputer’. It’s been stuck on 999.99 for yonks.
Car buying is, as ever, for most of us, a vastly expensive experience. So the upsurge in car – leasing tv adverts may point to an alternative. Leased vehicles are usually new or very near new and everything is covered (except fuel), by an initial deposit and then monthly payments – which can be adjusted to allow for low-usage drivers. Lease term is oft three years – then get another. Not ‘cheap’ but mot’s, services and renewals (and even eventual disposal) are someone else’s problem.
Despite brexit British Olympic athletes did very well in the medals count. (In fact it may have been a ‘spur’ perhaps?)
And beeb’s £340,000.00p per annum ‘head of news’ (?) has been spotted aboard Mediterranean yacht apparently ‘in talks’ with Jezza … perhaps actually making a bit of ‘news’ is on the cards.
dvlc ‘site doesn’t work …