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Friday, 24 April 2015

A Big Slice of Settle

Excavations on the site of the apartments along The Sidings adjacent to us have exposed some interesting geology:
click to enlarge

On the surface, unsurprisingly there is top-soil below which is a thick layer of boulder clay - presumably from the Ribble Valley Glacier.

Most interestingly though there is then another layer of soil, below which is rock, limestone in this part of the Dales.   That intermediate layer of soil must have been there when the glacier swept over it many thousands of years ago.   So far no hairy mammoths have emerged though.

This fits with what we have observed on our site.   The bottom layer of rock is at just the right level for the foundations of the water tower, comfortingly.

Monday, 20 April 2015

Up to Beattock Summit and Back - via Quintinshill

Yesterday I had an experience - commentating to about 400 people over the Settle-Carlisle line on a Trans Pennine Express train's PA system.

The train was running from Manchester via Beattock summit in Scotland, Carlisle, Settle and back to Manchester - raising money for The Railway Children charity.   Here is our six coach train in Carlisle heading south from Beattock:

click to enlarge

It was organised by The Branch Line Society and trundled into little used sidings and loops, much to the delight of society members.   It takes all sorts.

One of the poignant moments of the day was to traverse the up loop at Quintinshill in Scotland - scene of the UK's worst rail disaster:

Everybody seemed to appreciate the Settle-Carlisle commentary,    Organiser Kev Adlam was kind enough to e-mail saying it was fantastic, absolutely superb!

Better still, they raised £18,000 for the Railway Children.

click to enlarge

And here is a fine portrait of our train at Garsdale.   We felt very privileged indeed when the train made a special stop at Settle just for us.

Friday, 17 April 2015

A Vote of Confidence

Sitting in the evening sunshine, quietly proof-reading the next issue of the FoSCL Journal I became aware of a car screeching to a halt on Station Road.

The driver wound down his window and said hello.   The sun was limiting my view so I said 'Hello, whoever you are - I can't see you'

It was Julian Smith - our MP, who has been a great help recently in twisting arms to get government papers relating to the reprieve of the S&C released.

"The house is looking great, as always" he said as he shot off.

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

We're Restoration Heroes

Next Wednesday sees episode one of a short series of three programmes by George Clarke on Channel 4 - Restoration Heroes - in which George revisits his favourite episodes of Restoration Man.

Next Wednesday it's churches.

The Wednesday after that it's something else and on Wednesday 6th May it is, wait for it, water towers.  TV schedules can change so regard this as provisional.

So, all being well we shall see you again, this time as Restoration Heroes on

Channel 4
8pm for one hour
Wednesday 6th May

Friday, 27 March 2015

A Building Site Next Door

We seem to have started a fashion locally with excavating into the embankment.   A huge great hole is emerging just along The Sidings and the area is becoming a very meaningful building site.   Here is the view form the top of the tower today:

click to enlarge

Immediately outside our goods-yard gates reinforcing bars are being made into mighty great cages which will be lifted into position against the newly exposed cut-away embankment and surrounded with concrete to form a retaining wall.

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

And Another One

The Ribblehead Viaduct just keeps giving

click if it's not big enough for you already

I like this picture by Jack Boskett taken on 21st March.  It is a spectacular image for sure but notice that the viaduct is not level - and that is just how it is.   The northern end (right) is some 12 feet higher than the southern end.   And the whole thing is built on a curve.   Clever eh?

Monday, 23 March 2015

Here we go Again

It has been quiet around here since our building work finished.   Apart from trains through the night of course.   Recent posts on this Blog have mentioned the new building that is to be built into the former railway embankment adjacent to us on The Sidings.

New Neighbours on The Sidings

All the trees were cleared last week and our solar panels don't know what has hit them.  Serious digging is now under way:

Click to make the Tonka toys bigger

This is very reminiscent of the scenes when our part of the embankment was being excavated for our annex.

In fact, we hardly hear a thing with our double and triple glazing.   The dog's a bit confused though.