Sunday in church. Well, two actually…

05.31.2009

It’s been another glorious weekend of sunshine, so I’ve spent most of it exploring – pretty unsuccessfully most of the way.

Saturday, I went looking for an anti-aircraft emplacement, which turned out to be a complete failure. So I headed off to Conington to have a nose at something interesting looking at the side of the old RAF Glatton site. Unfortunately, as is all to often the case, the apparently open access down a farm track on Flash Earth turned out to be a blocked and inaccessible route on the ground. I’m going to have to plan a different angle of attack, as I’m sure it’s something that might turn out to be an interesting explore. Read more

George was right.

05.28.2009

This country annoys the hell out of me.

This evening, I nipped out for a quick explore at a track a couple of miles from home. It’s a public byway, so I have every right to travel down it. Unfortunately though, it’s massively overgrown, so I got my arms ripped to pieces by wild roses and brambles, and the odd nettle sting just to add to the misery. In the end, I had to turn back as the path became completely impassable.

So, I come home thinking that the way to tackle things is to go back with a machete to beat back the nettles and other rough stuff, allowing me to get to where I’m trying to reach. Only thing is, we now live in the Orwellian nightmare that is Brown’s Britain. So I end up spending 5 minutes finding out how much a decent machete would cost (only about a tenner), but over an hour working out whether I’m allowed to use one for a perfectly legitimate reason on a public byway.

In the end, it turns out that yes, you can carry one – but that you run the significant risk of being arrested and charged with possession of an offensive weapon if the Police decide that your reason for carrying it isn’t entirely worthy.

Where the hell did this country go wrong? I look back at life in the 70s, compare it to now and can’t for the life of me see how one turns into the other. There’s simply no common sense left any more – and every way you turn, there’s some draconian nanny state law or measure to block virtually anything remotely interesting or adventurous.

For all our modern creature comforts, the more time passes, the more I think I’d rather live in the early 20th century than right now. Coming Up For Air sure beats having to suffer the indignity of living in 1984.

Planes, trains and sea defences.

05.25.2009

I’ve had a hectic but enjoyable weekend, fitting 3 explores in around various other bits of more mundane life.

First up Saturday, King’s Lynn coastal defence battery at Ongar Hill. It was a hot and humid afternoon, and a bit of a treck down to the site, but worthwhile nonetheless. Originally built to house a pair of 6 inch guns, the gun houses, magazine and observation tower still remain.

King's Lynn Coastal Defence Battery

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So many places, so little time.

05.22.2009

3 day Bank Holiday weekend, no work, but a few things I’ve got to get done which are going to restrict the time left for exploring. Sooo, where to go?? I’ve got dozens of places on my list to get to, but I haven’t got the time for big sites.

Think I might have to head up to Kings Lynn tomorrow afternoon to visit a coastal defence site I want to see. There’s at least one bunker there to practice my low light photography skills too, which I’m quite keen to have the chance to do. If I’m left with any time to spare, there a few unusual pillpoxes to pick up on the way home. Not too sure about the rest of the weekend though….

Ramsey, Cambridgeshire ROC Post

05.21.2009

Finally, an evening with some half decent weather and a few hours to spare to get out and explore a bit. Over the years, I’ve noticed ROC posts around, but never seen one up close, so I decided to head over to Ramsey to see the post there.

I’d seen loads of pictures of the post online and knew I wasn’t in for much. I had the post tagged on the satnav, but hadn’t realised that the road down to the site was unmade, or just how close it was to the side of RAF Upwood.

Initially, I was greeted by a huge mess of blackberry bushes and thought for a while that the post was buried amongst them. To my relief, as I walked further down the path the site greeted me, clear of heavy undergrowth and still surrounded by wire fencing.

Ramsey ROC Post

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Defence of Britain Google Earth database to Garmin GPS

05.17.2009

Supposedly, we’re due a long hot summer here in the UK. Call me cynical, but I’m not entirely sure I believe this. The weather just lately has been mad – bright sunshine one minute, dull and cloudy the next. Yesterday, the wind got so strong at one point I was struggling to walk into it. An hour later, it was glorious sunshine again.

Today looks to be a washout, with little chance to get out exploring (although as I type this, the sun has suddenly decided to show itself again!) so I decided to set about trying to convert the Defence of Britain Database to Garmin format so I could upload it to my Nuvi satnav.

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Balls of Steel – Earith Redoubt

05.16.2009

Very nearly an epic fail today but, in the end, a local site I’d saved for a quiet evening turned out to be pretty interesting.

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