Cricket, Music and Local Elections

Some cricket, some music including references to the Classic FM Hall of Fame, some stuff about upcoming local elections and some photographs.

INTRODUCTION

An odd combination of topics to appear in a title, but all will be made clear in the course of this post. There will of course be some of my photographs as well. 

CRICKET

The English cricket season is well underway. Because of an alteration to the structure of the two divisions of first class counties last season to a first division of eight teams and a second division of ten teams, it is now possible for all 18 first class counties to be in action simultaneously, as was not the case when there were nine teams in each division. Over this Easter weekend, for the first time since 1999 (the last season of the single division championship) all 18 of said sides have been in action. Glamorgan lost heavily to Worcestershire before today was underway. Leicestershire had also suffered an innings defeat at the hands of Gloucestershire. Essex and Somerset also finished early, a century from Alastair Cook anchoring Essex in their fourth innings chase of 255. Warwickshire only kept their match against Yorkshire alive into the fourth day because of some assistance from the weather, and having started the season with back to back innings defeats, and three shocking batting performances out of four innings, they must be considered heavy favourites for one of the relegation spots from division 1. Of the five remaining matches, Nottinghamshire are nearly done and dusted against Durham (since I wrote this Nottinghamshire have completed the job as expected, with nine wickets in hand), and it would also seem to be only a matter of time before Kent finish the job against Sussex (this match has also subsequently reached its predicted conclusion). A draw looks the most likely result in the Surrey versus Lancashire, although Surrey are not out of the woods yet. Hampshire and Middlesex also looks like being a draw, although again the Londoners are not quite safe yet. That leaves only…

DERBYSHIRE VERSUS NORTHAMPTONSHIRE

Overnight this also looked like a draw was the most likely result, with Derbyshire 128 runs to the good with 10 second winnings standing. However, some behind the scenes discussions obviously took place, since Northamptonshire spent the morning session of today feeding Derbyshire easy runs, handing Reece (168) and Godleman (156 not out) a new record opening stand for Derbyshire. A declaration at 351-1 left Northamptonshire two sessions to score 326 for victory. Whatever happens in these two session neither team will emerge from this match with much credit in my book. While Northamptonshire’s motivation was obvious, Derbyshire could easily have declined the offer, backing their batsmen to score off proper bowling. 

MUSIC

The long Easter weekend is when the Classic FM Hall of Fame is unveiled. It is assembled from listener votes. Each participant votes for their first, second and third favourite pieces of classical music, and the votes are all tallied up. The Hall of Fame comprises the top 300 pieces that emerge at the end of the process, and they are played counting down from 300 to 1 between 10AM and 10PM on each day of the weekend (it used when it first started to be 9AM to 9PM). This is the first occasion on which there has been a clash between the Hall of Fame and live cricket. I have resolved that clash by listening to the cricket when it has been on five live sports extra, and to the music at other times. The only exception to this was on Saturday afternoon, when it was time for…

MUSICAL KEYS

A shortage of available NAS West Norfolk Committee members meant that I was there for both sessions. The attendances were unsurprisingly low in both sessions. However, those who were able to make it had a good time. In the second session I renewed my acquaintanceship with Scratch 2, and next time I shall be moving on to another aspect of this program. Here are some pictures…

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Kirsten, one of the two people from Musical Keys who run these sessions, at a very impressive looking keyboard.

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I shall be adding some mathematics to the mix in two weeks time.

LOCAL ELECTIONS

Various places in the UK will be going to the polls on May 4th. Last time I mentioned this subject I said that I was between Labour and Green, and leaning towards Green. Since then, although I have yet to receive anything from any candidates a search of the King’s Lynn & West Norfolk borough council website turned up the following information about who was standing:

candidates

In view of the fact that there are three candidates in this list of four for whom I am absolutely unwilling to vote and that I regard failing to vote as unacceptable my vote will therefore go to Mr Collis, and I urge others who are voting in this election to cast their votes for Mr Collis as well.

Moving on from my own area, there also elections taking place much more extensively in Wales and Scotland. 

WALES

In Llanbadarn Fawr ward, Powys, the Labour Party candidate is none other than Mike Sivier of Vox Political, a fact which he announced in a post titled “Vote for Mike in the local elections!

– Vox Political’s Mike Sivier is standing as a Labour Party candidate for Powys County Council’s Llanbadarn Fawr ward – and there’s more to him than a nice smile [Image: Mike Sivier].

Today, Mike has put up another post about his candidacy under the title “Shadow cabinet minister is right – local elections are about CANDIDATES, not Corbyn“.

SCOTLAND

The big debate in Scotland at the moment is over whether or not there should be a second independence referendum (#IndyRef2) following the UK’s decision to withdraw from the EU, when Scotland was strongly pro-remain. It is not for me as a Sassenach to comment on whether or not Scottish independence is desirable since the only people who should be making decisions about the future of Scotland are the Scots, but I do believe that brexit is a sufficiently major change in circumstances as justify #IndyRef2, especially since one of the main claims of the no camp in 2014 was that an independent Scotland would not be able to join the EU. It would appear, if the article to which I link at the end of this section is anything to go on that the Tories seek to make the local elections in Scotland a sort of ‘pre-referendum’. Anyway, here courtesy of the website indyref2.scot, is a post that goes into detail on the issue, titled “Sending a message

Towards Indyref2…

PHOTOGRAPHS

I posted some photographs in the music section of this post, and I finish the post with some pictures mainly from outside…

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ENDNOTE – CRICKET REVISITED

During the time it took to put the above photos up both Middlesex & Hampshire and Surrey & Lancashire have shaken hands on the predicted draws. These means that only the ‘declaration bowling’ game between Derbyshire and Northamptonshire is still to be settled. 

Super Sharing Saturday – Politics 2: Monroe Wins Defamation Case

An account of Jack Monroe’s splendid victory in a defamation case that centred on twitter.

INTRODUCTION

This is the second politics themed post in this series. In this case it deals with a defamation case that has recently been settled after 21 months. The plaintiff was food blogger and political activist Jack Monroe, while the defendant was someone who cannot be described in broadcastable language and does not deserve to have her name further publicised (the usual adjective used of her is in this context deeply offensive to trolls). 

THE BARE BONES

Jack Monroe launched the case over two tweets posted a few hours apart. The defendant had the opportunity to settle out of court for a mere £5,000 but chose to fight on. This resulted in an award to Monroe of £24,000 and the defendant being ordered to pay costs totalling a further £83,000. 

THE LINKS

I have three links for you about this case. First, by clicking the image below you can read Mike Sivier of Vox Political’s account (the picture is his as well):

Nathan Capone examines the implications of this verdict from a case-law point of view in this post.

Finally, for the completists among you, here is a link to the judgement in full.

PHOTOGRAPHS

As always, I finish by showing some of my own photographs.

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Lot 1556 in James and Sons’ March auction
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Lot 1557
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Lot 1558

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Lot 1559

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This will be the last item to go under the hammer in James and Sons’ March auction.

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Dream Cabinet

INTRODUCTION

This post is my response to Richard Murphy of Tax Research UK’s challenge to come up with a dream cabinet. I do not quite have a full  cabinet here but I do have names, positions and explanations and/ or justifications for all my choices. I will start by listing the names and positions, and will then go into a little more detail in the next section about my reasons.

THE SELECTIONS

These are the positions I have managed to fill:

Prime Minister – Debbie Abrahams

Deputy Prime Minister – Angela Rayner

Chancellor of the Exchequer – Richard Murphy

Home Secretary – Kerry-Anne Mendoza

Foreign Secretary – Clive Lewis

Business Secretary – Rebecca Long-Bailey

Health Secretary – Jo Rust

Environment – Caroline Lucas

Transport – Thomas Sutcliffe

Neurodiversity Minister – Paddy-Joe Moran (askpergers.wordpress.com)

Education Secretary – Michael Rosen

Arts – Anna Bohlin

Sports – Elizabeth Ammon (@legsidelizzy)

Scottish Secretary – Mhairi Black

Disabilities – Paula Peters (DPAC)

Science – Patricia Fara

Work and Pensions – Mike Sivier

Women and Equality – Kate Osamor

Welsh Secretary – Leanne Wood

Defence – Emily Thornberry

Housing and Planning – Sian Berry

We now move on to the the….

EXPLANATIONS/ JUSTIFICATIONS

I will take each position in the order in which they appear above:

Prime Minister – Debbie Abrahams

Debbie Abrahams has impressed me ever since she entered the shadow cabinet to the extent that I was determined to put her in a top position, and in the end I opted for the top position for her.

Deputy Prime Minister – Angela Rayner

Another who has been consistently impressive since her promotion to the front bench. From what I read of her performance on Question time when she had to contend with three very right wing fellow panelists, a Liberal Democrat and the mloderator, Mr Arch-Establishment Dimbleby (I was not able to watch for myself as I refuse to let the BBC have any of my money) she seems to have done a fine job of further underlining her credentials.

Chancellor of the Exchequer – Richard Murphy

We need his kind of economic vision as a matter of urgency, and how better to get it and than have the man himself as chancellor of the exchequer.

Home Secretary – Kerry-Anne Mendoza

Editor of The Canary and author of many splendid articles. I am sufficiently impressed by what I have seen of her that I have no doubts about putting her straight into one of the four so-called “great offices of state”.

Foreign Secretary – Clive Lewis

He was always going to feature somewhere in my dream cabinet, and I have decided that this is the right role for him.

Business Secretary – Rebecca Long-Bailey

Someone else who has said a lot of the right things since joining the front bench.

Health Secretary – Jo Rust

The Labour Party candidate for Northwest Norfolk (my constituency) at the last general election, active in many roles and a passionate supporter of the NHS. Exactly the right kind of person to take on the formidable task of repairing the ruin caused by the likes of Lansley and Hunt.

Environment – Caroline Lucas

I want environmental policy in the hands of someone who is committed to protecting the environment, and to me no one ticks that box more definitively than Ms Lucas.

Transport – Thomas Sutcliffe

I am aware that it is always risky for selectors to pick themselves, but I believe I can justify this one. I have a lifetime’s knowledge of and commitment to public transport. Although I am creator of a London transport themed website, London would actually be at the back of the queue for attention from me is at it is less badly off transport-wise than the rest of the country. 

Neurodiversity Minister – Paddy-Joe Moran

Paddy-Joe is autistic, the author of several books about autism and also writes the askpergers blog. Having decided to revive the idea of this post (see here for more details) it was a question of who to select for it. I wanted my Neurodiversity Minister to be neurodiverse themselves and in the end I went for Paddy-Joe.

Education Secretary – Michael Rosen

He would bring a lifetime’s knowledge and passionate commitment to the post. Education in this country would improve massively with Michael Rosen in this role.

Arts – Anna Bohlin

I do not know whether we could persuade her to come over from Sweden, but I am sure that she would be excellent in this role and would work well with her cabinet colleagues. For more details about her consult her blog

Sports – Elizabeth Ammon

Also known by hew twitter handle – legsidelizzy. In addition to her cricket writing and commentaries she has made some very sound political points. 

Scottish Secretary – Mhairi Black

Always assuming Scotland have not yet declared indepence, I would want Mhairi Black, who is the youngest but also one of the most impressive MPs currently in the house, in my cabinet, and this would seem the ideal role for her.

Disabilities – Paula Peters

I have gone for someone who is disabled and heavily involved in DPAC (Disabled People Against Cuts) for this important role.

Science – Patricia Fara

Author of a book on the history of science, a scientist herself and an impressive speaker (I have heard her give a talk here in King’s Lynn). She got the nod ahead of Brian Cox because I decided that I wanted a woman in charge of science policy.

Work and Pensions – Mike Sivier

Author of the Vox Political blog, carer and very knowledgeable about the misdeeds of the DWP under the Tories he would be an excellent person to undertake the task of putting this area back on track.

Women and Equality – Kate Osamor

Like several of my other choices she has impressed ever since taking her place on the front bench, and she would be well suited to this role.

Welsh Secretary – Leanne Wood

Occasionally sounds too excitable for her own good, but says a lot of good things, and I believe would do them in this role.

Defence – Emily Thornberry

As shadow defence secretary (before being moved to shadow foreign secretary) she was quite impressive.

Housing and Planning – Sian Berry

She ran an excellent campaign for Mayor of London which deserved better reward than third place (in particular, it was a travesty that she ended up behind Goldsmith after he ran such a disgraceful campaign, but also for my money Khan could have had no complaints had she won outright). This is a position I would definitely want in the hands of someone thoroughly committed to protecting the environment. To reuse a remark I originally made as a comment in response to one of Anna’s posts

Preservation of nature needs to be at the heart of planning decisions, not an optional (and often despised) extra. Your battle in Trosa is a battle for all of us everywhere.

PHOTOGRAPHS

After all that text here are some photographs for a bit of light relief…

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The first seven pictures are from yesterday – this is the East Rudham (my parents’ village) egg shop

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Starting with this one my remaining pictures are from today.

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The Trumpocalypse

A post about the outcome of the US Presidential Election.

INTRODUCTION

Welcome to what I promise will be my only post about the result of the US Presidential Election.

‘ELECTABILITY’

Right up until the result was confirmed many reckoned that Hillary was guaranteed to win – indeed late last night Jerry over at WEIT was still confident enough to follow his schedule of posts and put up one bearing the title “Hillary Wins!”. Many of those who were so confident of a Hillary win were not especially enamoured of her as a candidate, but reckoned that alternative was so gruesome as to be ‘unelectable’. At approximately 8AM GMT this morning that notion of ‘unelectability’ was consigned to oblivion when it was confirmed that he had been elected.

LINKS AND INFOGRAPHICS

I will start this section with a link to this very detailed break down of voting patterns (I draw particular attention to the breakdown of voting patterns by income – this makes it clear that the poorest people voted for Hillary – the only brackets in which she was ahead were those with incomes of under $30,000 per annum and those in $30-50,000 bracket).

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Some detail on voter breakdown
lcpem
A good visual representation of who voted which way, found on twitter.
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Another twitter find.
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This map was produced by http://www.independent.co.uk, and accompanied this article.

Next come some links to longer pieces from various people:

I end this section with this sage advice tendered by Catherine Mayer on twitter, which segues into the next and final section of the post:

tweet

DOING SOME RIGHT THINGS

I will start this section by referring you to the 50:50 Parliament petition on change.org, which I made a point of sharing again today, given some of the things that the new POTUS has had to say about women.

Also in circulation is this petition regarding the education of disabled children.

Next comes this petition against the third runway at Heathrow.

The last petition I am going to link to calls for better protection for victims of domestic violence.

To finish, some good news from the Let Bristol Breathe campaign:

Congratulations!

Following the Let Bristol Breathe campaign and the petition you and over 4000 people signed, Bristol City Council has voted unanimously to support a motion calling for urgent steps towards establishing a Clean Air Zone in Bristol.

Two of Bristol’s MPs and the Mayor have also asked to discuss a Clean Air Zone for Bristol with government ministers.

These are just the first steps, but they are in the right direction.

We’ll stay watching to make sure they stick to their promises. If we need your help again with this campaign, we’ll be in touch.

Meanwhile, give yourself a pat on the back or raise a glass to clean and healthy air!

Thanks again,

Jane, Deb, Steve, Sandy and Clare

Pictures, Links and an Open Letter

A post prompted in part by Mike Sivier’s excellent open letter to Angela Eagle and in part by having a few other things to share – enjoy.

INTRODUCTION

This post is a bit of a pot-pourri, although one of the links and the open letter are related.

THE OPEN LETTER AND RELATED LINK

The author of this open letter is Mike Sivier of Vox Political, on whose blog I found it. Here is the open letter in full, followed by a link to the blog post in which I found it:

Dear Ms Eagle,

As a Labour voter of many years’ standing, and a member of the party for the last six, I am writing to express my outrage at your comments following the vandalism of the Wallasey party office.

We can agree that the damage to the window – like any crime – is unacceptable. However:

How dare you claim that it was carried out by a supporter of Jeremy Corbyn, “in his name”? Do you have any evidence? Do the police already know who did it? I think not – otherwise we would no doubt have heard about it.

In fact, Mr Corbyn has made it abundantly clear – many times over the past few weeks, that he finds such behaviour abhorrent and wants members of the party to discuss their differences in a cordial manner. This leads me to my second point:

How dare you try to pontificate to the rest of the party about “bullying”, after the behaviour you have forced Mr Corbyn to endure, together with the other 170+ PLP rebels?

Look at the behaviour that has occurred in YOUR name:

Months of secret plotting against Mr Corbyn after he won the Labour leadership last year;

The intention to mislead the public into thinking the Labour ‘coup’ was prompted by Mr Corbyn’s performance in the EU referendum when it had been pre-planned over many months;

The co-ordinated, on-the-hour resignations of shadow cabinet members throughout June 26 in an effort to BULLY Mr Corbyn out of the Labour leadership;

The purchase of a web domain entitled ‘Angela4Leader’ the day before those resignations;

The hasty and unconstitutional calling and passing of a vote of ‘no confidence’ in Mr Corbyn in another attempt to BULLY him out of office;

(It has been implied that some, or indeed many, Labour MPs were BULLIED into supporting that vote)

The attempted BULLYING of Mr Corbyn himself at a Parliamentary Labour Party meeting;

The many letters by your fellow Labour MPs, trying to BULLY Mr Corbyn into resigning; and

The fabricated smear stories intended to undermine Mr Corbyn’s support among members and, again, BULLY him into resigning – including your claim today about this broken office window.

If you are serious in your claim that bullying “has absolutely no place in politics in the UK and it needs to end”, then perhaps the best way to start would be by ending your own challenge to Mr Corbyn’s leadership, submitting yourself to the mercy of your constituents who are holding a ‘no confidence’ vote on your conduct later this month, and considering your own future in politics.

With kind regards,

Mike Sivier

Link: Vox Political

A NEW POST ON WWW.LONDONTU.BE

I have just put up a new post on my London Transport themed website centred on the Institute of Education.

IOE Close Up

SOME NEW PHOTOS

Just a few photos that I have not previously shared:

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A work colleague who knows of my interest in railwayana gave me this badge. By the way, this union was one of those amalgamated to form the Rail and Maritime Transport workers union (RMT).
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Moorhen with two chicks, upper Purfleet, King’s Lynn
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I saw this near Lynn Sport on Sunday

A TWO DAY AUCTION

An account of James and Sons auction on March 3oth and 31st, with some other stuff at the end.

INTRODUCTION

As the main part of this post, about James and Sons’ March auction (I am also sharing a few other bits at the end) develops it will become obvious why I am doing it now as one big post, and why I have posted very little these last few days.

PART 1: THE PRELIMINARIES (TUESDAY)

With the auction scheduled for Wednesday 30th (lots 1-699) and Thursday 31st (Lots 700-1051) the setup at the venue (The Prince of Wales Suite, Fakenham Racecourse) had to be accomplished on the Tuesday. This day did not require any earlier start than a regular work day would, and although a lot of heavy lifting was involved (a thousand plus lot auction, four people fit to do serious carrying) it was less draining than the other two days.

PART TWO: DAY 1 (WEDNESDAY)

I had to be at the venue by 8AM, which meant leaving my flat at 6:30AM to be sure of catching the 6:50 bus, to make sure that the IT setup was working and to assist with the viewing the precedes the sale. A couple of technical  hitches at the start aside the day went smoothly. There were some great successes, although the flag that we had hoped would raise serious money did not attract a bid high enough to warrant selling it. The books tanked, as anyone with any experience of books at auction would have expected. Lot 466 fell to me, and lot 494, five volumes on Buildings of Scotland, found its way to East Rudham. Here are some pictures from day 1 at the venue…

After the sale had concluded it was time to get the unsold lots from day 1 back to the shop (and they had to go on the top floor of the shop, including four plastic tubs full of back issues of Private Eye magazine). Then finally, work was done for the day.

PART THREE: DAY 2 (THURSDAY)

Fortunately I was able to set off an hour later than on the first day as although I would still have to do some preliminary IT stuff there were unlikely to be many viewers present (and indeed there weren’t). The internet was still very lively however, and a number of the early commemorative and proof coins on this second day sold exceptionally well. The stamps and postal history did not shine especially brightly. Lot 920, an Isambard Kingdom Brunel £2 set, went to me. The last lot went under the hammer just before 12:00, after which it was time for the clear-up. Once we had the first van load back at the shop we stopped for lunch, before doing the unloading, heading back to the racecourse for the last bits and getting them back. At this point there was a break from heavy lifting, during which I obtained a full printed list of those who had signed up to bid via http://www.the-saleroom.com, which ran to a James and Sons record 277 (paddle numbers 400-676 inclusive). There was a little bit more lifting to do before the end of my day, as it was necessary to get some stuff ready for loading for a collectors fair on the morrow. I have some pictures from day 2 as well…

A FINAL THOUGHT ON THE AUCTION

I have not previously been involved in running a two-day auction, and it was an incredibly tiring three days. However, the auction was very successful.

LOTS 466 AND 920

These were the two lots I bid on, and I got both. Both lots attracted my attention because of my special interest (in the best autism circles we do not use the word obsession) in railways (and indeed public transport generally – check out my website www.londontu.be).

LOT 466

This was a rail atlas of Britain, dating from around 1980 (Blake Hall station was open so it is pre-1982, but that whole section of the Central lineEpping– Ongar – was already being considered for closure), and it is very detailed, showing goods and passenger lines. Here are pictures, starting with the images that were available at auction and finishing with some later shots…

466
This was the image that people saw during the auction – the front cover
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The three images starting with this one were also available to internet viewers.

466-b466-c

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A picture showing the Ongar page – and note where the Chelmsford oage continues to…
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The page from which this picture comes…
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A new post in ‘stations’ on my website will be coming soon.
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A joint pic of the images from pps 32 and 33 showing that the downright dishonourable “costs a Priti penny” Patel has nothing approaching a justification for claiming more in expenses than any other MP in the house – her constituency is hardly far-flung!

LOT 920

This was the Brunel £2 set, and I have the image that was available to auction followers, some images taken of it on display at the venue and some further images taken of it at home…

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This image was one of the few at this auction not done me, hence the rookie mistake of showing an ‘obverse’ (just a portrait of a ridiculously over-privileged old woman), when the ‘reverse’ is the key face.
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On display at the auction
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One of the reverses (still at the auction)
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A picture taken at my workstation back at the shop
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The outside of the folder
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The two obverses.
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This one, showing both reverses and the accompanying info is an example of what the auction image should have looked like.
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A close up of the ‘reverse’ showing Brunel in his top hat
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a close-up of the other ‘reverse’, a pattern based on Paddington station

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What the folder looks like closed.

HAIRPIN POINT – UNINTENTIONAL COMEDY FROM THE GOP

I have called this ‘Hairpin Point’ because it represents a switch in direction on this post away from anything connected with my work to other matters. To set the scene, here is a screen-dump from my email inbox:

LOLGOP

The Gun Obsessed Plonkers (GOP for short) have made a spectacular blunder here:

  1. As my email address surely indicates (it ends .co.uk after all) I am not American.
  2. Even I was American the odds against me ever even voting for a Republican, let alone being a registered member would be of the order of zillions to one against.

How someone came to perpetrate a bloomer on this scale I do not know, but it did provide a laugh.

A FEW LINKS TO FINISH

First up from the Daily Mirror comes this story about how putting a kiss at the end of a letter was enough for the DWP to question the professionalism of an MP.

And at the very end, a link to a piece by Mike Sivier of Vox Political about what Labour is doing to attempt to save British Steel, and a follow-up link to a petition on the same subject that has already garnered more than the 100,000 signatures needed for a debate in Parliament:

  1. Mike Sivier’s piece.
  2. The petition (please sign and share to amp up the pressure on Scameron)

 

A SUNDAY SPREAD

An account of a walk, some final thoughts on the IDS resignation, some very brief comments about the six nations and some stuff about the World T20

INTRODUCTION

With my parents and my aunt away I have been left to my own devices this Sunday. So I am producing this post which features the World T20, a short section on the most despised British minister in living memory (yesterday I posted to links to pieces here and here), and today I am making my last comments on him, and what I shall be starting with…

A SUNDAY STROLL

The live commentary from the World T20 having finished and it being sunny outside I set off for a long walk, starting as so often by heading to the river via the Purfleet.

The river front, from the Purfleet to the Millfleet was, as one would expect on a Sunday, quiet, although the survey boats were still in evidence.

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A cormorant in flight – although they fly low they fly very fast, so capturing them using this mode of travel is difficult.

The cormorant in flight above leads on to my efforts to capture a swimming cormorant (even more of a challenge, because if they are in the water they are usually looking for food, so surface only briefly between dives but…)

Old Boal Quay provided nothing of interest, but ‘cormorant platform’, the Nar outfall and the stretch of the Great Ouse adjoining Hardings Pits did…

Cormorant Platform
I had thought there would be no ‘cormorant platform’ shot, but just before leaving the river I got this one.

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We have lift off!

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A second capture of a swimming cormorant in one day.

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Neither Harding’s Pits nor the area around St John’s Walk offered very much, but I did get these pictures between the river and hitting the path along Bawsey Drain to to the town centre…

I walked about halfway along the path that follows Bawsey Drain before crossing a bridge and heading through a field and round the edge of another to a couple of ponds, from the second of which a path leads to Littleport Street, and thence a cut a know well that brings on to the train station and finally home.

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The new cycle park at King’s Lynn station.

THE END OF THE 
INHUMANE DESPICABLE SOCIOPATH

Yesterday morning I woke up to news of the resignation of the most hated of all British government Ministers. His resignation statement was obviously bogus since it mentioned conscience (which he has never possessed). The most popular explanation was that it was a kind of ‘IDS of March’ act with Osborne’s being the back into which the dagger was being plunged. Others thought that it was to enable him to concentrate on campaigning for a ‘Brexit’ vote.

Signs are not encouraging as regards his replacement – Mr Crabb (for he it is – a sideways move from his previous position of Welsh Secretary – sorry about the pun) has a voting record similar to that of the man he replaces. Mr Crabb can hardly fail to be an improvement (that is not so much setting the bar low as not setting a bar at all) but he may very well not be much of one.

I will conclude this section with some of twitter highlights about the man…

IDS Resigns
The resignation picture
IDS Votes on benefits
His voting record on Welfare – a hint as to why this resignation was a matter for celebration

IDS UN Investigation

IDS Poster
Mike Sivier of Vox Political produced this offering.
IDS Pie Chart
One view of the real reason for the resignation.
IDS Epitaph
The best epitaph for IDS’s political career – this excoriation from Salma Yaqoob on Question Time was bang on the money.#

SPORT SUPPLEMENT

Sport usually occupies the back pages of print media, so I have put it at the back of this post. First a brief congratulation to England for completing their six nations grand slam (as with Wales’ obliteration of Italy – 67-14 – and Ireland’s win over Scotland the result was no great surprise). The rest of this section is dedicated to the

WORLD T20

This is going be longer than such a section would usually be because of this post which appeared on whyevolutionistrue yesterday. As you will see, this attempt at an explanation is too long to submit as a comment to someone else’s blog. We start with a glossary of a few important terms:

Innings: can either apply to an individual performance or to the team performance. In a cricket context the singular and plural are spelled the same way – ‘inning’ has no meaning.

Over: A fixed number of legal balls (these days six, though at various times in cricket’s long history four, five and eight have been favoured) that the bowler delivers before the action switches to the other end and another bowler.

Run: The unit in which a team score is measured. It is based on running the length of the cricket pitch, which is worth one. Balls that reach the boundary score four (if they bounce before doing so) or six (if they cross on the full).

Wicket: The construction, comprising three stumps and two bails that the batter defends. Cricket is generally an eleven-a-side game, so each side has ten wickets to defend (as there have be two batsman together).

The World T20 is genuinely a world tournament (unlike some sports, cricket only uses international designations when they are genuinely appropriate!), with the full member nations of the ICC qualifying automatically, and the ‘associate members’ playing a pre-qualifying tournament from which some make it to the main event. The T20 part of the format refers to the format of the matches, where each side gets 20 overs to bat, and bowlers are limited to four overs each (so you better have at least five folk in your team who can bowl decently). Scoring in these matches is generally fast, though the England v South Africa match of a few days ago in which a South Africa tally of 229-4 proved insufficient was exceptional even for this format. The India v Pakistan match that provoked the google doodle which in turn provoked the WEIT post had extra spice because of the political situation which also means that those two countries only ever play each other in global tournaments, never in bilateral series. For the record India won, not without a few scares along the way. This morning GB time there was a match between South Africa and Afghanistan, won by South Africa but with the Afghans giving a very good account of themselves.