Walking down the seafront

Living in Weston-super-Mare and not being allowed to travel due to Covid-19 restrictions, we often make use of the seafront for our allowed exercise. It’s not as though we never walked there before, but now with limited choices, and only so many times you can walk around the area where we live, it’s nice to pop to the seafront. Its a short drive to the seafront from where we live and it was easy to park close to the seafront.

Today it was beautifully clear day, the sun was shining, and it wasn’t too cold. However it was quite windy.

You could see clearly over to Brean Down and even further across to Cardiff and Newport in Wales.

There were kite surfers making the most of the strong winds and the high tide.

Generally we don’t see the sea, as the tidal range in Weston is so huge that for most of the day the sea is some distance away. Today as we walked along the seafront, it was high tide, combined with the winds there were waves crashing down onto the sand.

We walked all the way along the seafront to Knightstone Island and Marine Lake. 

Then it was time to turn around and head back to the car to drive home.

Driftwood

We went for a walk along the seafront.

There was a large amount of driftwood on the beach, including this tree trunk.

No idea where it has drifted from, I did think it might have washed down from the River Severn following the flooding they’ve had recently.

Then and Now – Snowing in Weston Village

This is a regular series of blogs about photographs of the same place taken years apart.

I quite like those Then and Now comparison photographs that you see in books or on the Twitter or Facebook.

I always think I should give them a go. However what I have started to notice is that I have been doing Then and Now photographs unintentionally over the years and have been taking photographs of the same thing or place from the same view or perspective years apart.  The first instance of this that came to my attention was last year in May when I went to Manchester.

However the following photographs were intentionally taken from the same location. I have over the years (when we had snow) taken a particular photograph so here is the 2018 version.

Snow in 2018

This with the wind and the cold was actually some of the worst weather I have seen down here, but as you can see it doesn’t look too bad…

This was how it looked in December 2010. Back then we had very heavy snow.

Snow December 2010

This was how it looked in eleven months earlier in January 2010,  again heavy snow.

Snow Jan 2010

And here it is in February 2009. At this time this was some of the worst weather we had seen in twenty years. This was taken from the other side of the fence.

Snow in 2009

 

It was snowing…

While a lot of the UK was having snow, it did miss us in Weston-super-Mare.

However today it did start to snow and we went out for a walk in the snow.

You can just about see the snow.

Alas it stopped and it has now all melted.

We’ve had some serious snow before as you can see from this photograph from December 2010.

My top ten tweets of 2020

Last year I posted my top ten tweets for 2019 and I did the same in 2018, 2017 and 2016 which was interesting to see which tweets of mine were popular.

So the most popular tweet of 2019 was this one about keeping the old Twitter.

Alas the hack didn’t last too long so we have to use the new Twitter.

So in 2020, my tenth most popular tweet was this one, a response to one about signage in the libraries.

The photo was from an April Fool we did at the library in Gloucestershire College. What was interesting was that it didn’t work, no one noticed the new signs or paid them any attention,.

Though it should be said we never had a problem with swimming in the library again.

The ninth most popular tweet of mine was from an event I attended in February on trans national education and I posted a sketchnote.

The tweet at number eight was about the lack of a door in Matt Hancock’s home office.

The seventh most popular tweet was a picture of Buckingham Palace!

It was a response to an original New York Post tweet that has now been deleted. It talked about the UK Christmas covid-19 planning with a picture of Paris.

Number six, was a link to a story about how students realised they could game an assessment as it was been graded by an AI and not a person.

Wasn’t cheating, it was just doing what was required to get top marks.

Fifth most popular tweet was about shopping centre clocks.

Fourth most popular tweet was another tweet in response to that original New York Post tweet that has now been deleted. It talked about the UK Christmas covid-19 planning with a picture of Paris.

Luckily someone managed to get a screengrab.

The third most popular tweet was about The Sovereign Centre shopping centre, which appears to be chasing the title of the UK’s Worst Shopping Centre…

Back in January I misread a tweet from Stephen Fry and that was the most popular tweet at number two.

So my top tweet  of 2020 was me reminiscing when WHSmith in Bristol went all Dexter.

Then and Now – Knightstone Island

This is a regular series of blogs about photographs of the same place taken years apart.

I quite like those Then and Now comparison photographs that you see in books or on the Twitter or Facebook.

I always think I should give them a go. However what I have started to notice is that I have been doing Then and Now photographs unintentionally over the years and have been taking photographs of the same thing or place from the same view or perspective years apart.  The first instance of this that came to my attention was last year in May when I went to Manchester.

It only really came to my attention that I was doing this a lot, when checking the Places function on the Apple Photos Mac App that I could see I had taken the same photograph of the same thing just years apart!

Living in Weston-super-Mare and visiting the seafront on a regular basis, to be honest I am not too surprised that over the years I have taken photographs of the same place from (roughly) the same perspective. One place I seem to photograph a lot from the same viewpoint is Knightstone Island.

Knightstone Island was originally an island but was then joined with the mainland. Up until the late 1800s the island was in private hands, but was then acquired by the local council who enlarged the island by building a new retaining wall on the north eastern side.  The council also built a new swimming pool and a Pavilion, which both opened in May 1902.  

The Pavilion included refreshment rooms, a reading room, a billiard room and a theatre.  It had electric lighting and a hot water heating system.  Seawater was used in the swimming pool. Band concerts, plays, operas and other shows were performed at the Knightstone Pavilion, films were also shown. However the size of the complex restricted the audience numbers so the site was unable to have big shows or names performing. By the 1970s Knightstone Pavilion was struggling financially and it finally closed in 1991.   There were plans to convert the site into a leisure complex but these never came to fruition and the buildings gradually deteriorated.

This is a view of the island from near the Grand Pier in September 2005.

In 2007 the whole island has been redeveloped.  The Bath House and front section of the ground floor of the Pavilion were converted into commercial premises.  The rest of the Pavilion and the swimming pool were converted into homes and two new apartment blocks were built on the island.

Here is the view in December 2009. You can see the redevelopment on the site. Seeing snow on the beach is always quite a unique view.

This is the (slightly different) view in June 2011.

The same view in May 2018

Another more recent view in January 2019.

Sand Bay

A regular haunt of ours for a Sunday stroll is Sand Bay. I was surprised to find  this week that there was a bundle of new double yellow lines so we couldn’t park on the street. The first car park was full, but we managed to find a space in the other one. These car parks use to be free to use, but are now pay and display. Not too bad in some respects as it was £1 for two hours. So I say regular, but it had been June the last time we had been there! 

Though it was cold, it was still nice enough for a walk along the beach.

The tide was out and it was actually quite challenging to see where the sea was.

I think next time (with the right footwear) we might walk along Sand Point. The last time we did that was in 2016!