Category Archives: architecture

A good wall (St James’s Street)

Thursday 18th October 2018, 2.55pm (day 2,611)

Wall, 18/10/18

This is a good bit of wall. And well lit. It looks like a collage. There must be something philosophical to be said about walls, how a good one is not just a monotonous single surface but an accumulation of bits and pieces over time. I wonder how many walls I have featured on the blog — here’s another good one for example. Not to mention the Berlin Wall….

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Antenna

Wednesday 17th October 2018, 6.35pm (day 2,610)

Emley Moor mast, 17/10/18

The TV mast on Emley Moor, east of Huddersfield, is well-known to anyone who lives in Yorkshire. Built in 1971 (after the previous version fell down due to ice), at 1,084 feet, or 330.4m, it is still the tallest free-standing structure in the UK and the fourth-highest in Europe. Why did I find myself up close to it on this pleasant evening? Well, you know. I get about.

The bit of this photo that troubles me is in the bottom left — the lines being the guy ropes for the radio mast, almost as tall, which stands just nearby, and which I’m pretty sure is new. But I guess you can ignore them.

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The Piece Hall

Monday 8th October 2018, 6.10pm (day 2,601)

Piece Hall, 8/10/18

Halifax’s Piece Hall was built in 1779 and was originally a textile market. It reopened last year after a very expensive restoration project, and certainly is a very smart place now: at the same time it has lost its old ramshackle appeal. Maybe there’s no way of keeping both. It’s not an easy place to photograph from ground level without getting the perpendiculars askew, but I did my best here.

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Stuck at home (with this view)

Monday 1st October 2018, 8.55am (day 2,594)

Nutclough, 1/10/18

The second monochrome shot in a row but it was a way of bringing some added interest to this view. I worked at home all day and did not leave the house. I know it’s a pretty distinctive view, in relative terms. But it is also everyday, for us at least.

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Cemetery, near Sellafield

Wednesday 5th September 2018, 12.50pm (day 2,568)

Churchyard, Sellafield, 5/9/18

I am posting this and tomorrow’s pic while lying in bed on Friday morning recovering from a two-day hike. Between 11.15am on Wednesday morning and 3.30pm on Thursday I walked 30 miles, which I calculate as an average of around 1.05 miles/hour even while I was asleep. No wonder I feel a little delicate this morning.

Anyway, looking back — it’s never easy to choose only one photo to encapsulate a day of varied landscapes and experience, but being very close to the delights of Sellafield nuclear power station (or ‘reprocessing plant’, or whatever it is these days) was certainly a significant feature of day 1. i was hard up against the perimeter fence at one point. It hisses, throbs, puts out strange noises and generally dominates everything round here in West Cumbria. So it can feature today, albeit in the background of this shot of the churchyard where I sat and had my lunch.

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Building materials

Saturday 1st September 2018, 4.50pm (day 2,564)

Half headstone, 1/9/18

This wall has been around for a while, separating the beer garden of the White Lion (the oldest building in Hebden Bridge) from the river. When this wall was built, or last rebuilt anyway, the supply of stones must have been a tad short that day. Whomever this headstone was ‘Sacred to the Memory of…’, let’s hope their spirits aren’t still hanging around to get pissed off.

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Factory, Brighouse

Monday 27th August 2018, 12.55pm (day 2,559)

Factory, Brighouse, 27/8/18

Even after seven years, I do try not to repeat myself on here, and so a steady drip-feed of new places has become the means by which this is facilitated. Brighouse lies south of Halifax, not far away from my home but until today, undepicted on here. I was just passing through today however, and this factory caught my eye — it now functions, I believe, as an indoor climbing gym, perhaps for obvious reasons.

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The Garden of Exile

Friday 24th August 2018, 11.50am (day 2,556)

Garden of Exile, 24/8/18

The building which houses the Jewish Museum in Berlin is one of the most brilliant pieces of architecture I have ever experienced. Even if it were empty of exhibits — and at the moment, due to a renovation, it nearly is — it would make you think. There are these great vertical voids throughout the building, including the ‘Holocaust Tower’, a vast blank space illuminated only by a sliver of light coming in through the top. Another is covered with these metal sculpted faces, representing the innocent dead, that you must walk across in order to traverse the space. Then there is this garden, the ‘Garden of Exile’ — its plants placed high up on these stone pillars. Walking around it, other people appear and disappear randomly from view. This is architecture of genius, and well worth visiting. Though don’t expect to come out of it feeling any happier about the world — except, perhaps, that it has been built in Berlin. That fact alone gives me some hope.

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Lager Sylt entrance (lest we forget)

Thursday 16th August 2018, 2.30pm (day 2,548)

Lager Sylt gates, 16/8/18

Unlike the other Channel Islands, Alderney was completely evacuated in June 1940, eight days before the Germans arrived to occupy it for the next five years. Because of the lack of a civilian population, they pretty much did what they liked here, fortifying the island to an immense degree (to the extent that the Alderney garrison did not surrender until 16th May 1945, a whole week after VE Day). The labour that this required was undertaken mostly by Russian POWs, who were housed in four camps, or lager, each named after German North Sea islands. Lager Sylt was the camp for Jews, run by the SS, and along with nearby Lager Nordeney was thus the only concentration camp — so far — to have been built on British soil. 400 graves of prisoners have been identified on Alderney but many more are estimated to have died here. The only remaining sign of any of the camps are these old concrete gate posts, on the edge of the airport, and the small plaque affixed thereon, fading text declaring that this was the entrance to Lager Sylt.

World War 2 too often gets treated as some big nostalgia kick. But it’s worth remembering that all those years, all that effort and suffering and hardship, was fought for poor bastards like those prisoners, to stop this kind of thing ever happening again.  As time passes and the ruins moulder away, there’s a risk that some people are forgetting this.

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Last Manchester shot (for a little while)

Friday 3rd August 2018, 9.40am (day 2,535)

Library Walk, 3/8/18

A nice, but generic, Manchester shot. But it suffices to make the point that it is the 29th August before I have to go back into the city again for work purposes.

O yes.

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