Friday 18 August 2017

A week with Number 85

With the Worth Valley running mid-week Steam services every day now, and me (Ben) working from home at the moment, there are plenty of opportunities for a bit of daytime train photography when I'm on a break.  This post features shots taken over a week, with the locomotive in use being the ex-Taff Vale Railways veteran, number 85.

On the way back from town one morning a sudden rain shower had me having to shelter under some trees, and frankly in the right place at the right time when the train came past at Damems...

...which also put me in a good spot for the return service half an hour later.

One benefit of the service running is that (with a local persons railcard) it can be used in place of the bus if I'm feeling lazy, so on the trek out to Frizinghall to see our work in the Bradford Open at Cartwright Hall.

Towards the end of the week I went back out again, this time in wellies and taking advantage of the low river level in the heatwave, to try some new angles from actually inside the river.

Not too bad, but not too different to the shots from the riverbank.  Also the lighting didn't help for this shot, but then it was an experimental angle.

Friday 11 August 2017

Black Country Museum... Monochromatic

Nice as the museum was, the weather wasn't great, with the classic Tuppaware-Lid Sky going on, so we thought we'd try a few pics in monochrome whilst we were there, mainly around the mine, the canal basin and the town.

So that's that.  The museum was good as ever, and given they're getting a big chunk of investment to expand the museum (with a 1940's-1960's high street) it should get even better soon.  We'll probably return again in the summer hols, hopefully in better weather.

Monday 7 August 2017

Black Country Museum... Nature

Still at the Black Country Museum for this posting, and where last time Ben focussed on pics of the industry, this time Ben and I (Amy) focus a bit more on where the natural world meets the man-made.  (Incidentally if it seems I haven't been doing as many photos recently, it is because I haven't; instead I've been doing a lot of sculpture and ceramic, to be shown in a post in a couple of weeks).

Down by the slightly overgrown canal arm into the Lime Kilns, near the town area.

A family of moorhens were nesting near the end of the canal, and I snapped a few shots of the birds swimming nearby.

Some impressive poppies growing up around the base of the kilns

Finally a few of the boats docked up near the end.

Saturday 5 August 2017

Black Country Museum... Iron and Steel

Earlier in the year we went to the Black Country Living Museum in my (Ben's) old home town of Dudley.  One of the options is to buy the 'Unchained' ticket where you can get unlimited return visits for a year, and thus with us having a day to kill recently on the weekend of the RAF Cosford Airshow, we thought we'd go back to the museum. 

The first visit back in Feb was mainly The Childs racing around doing half-term activities.  This time there was more chance for a leisurely explore, and to spend a bit more time taking photos, so there are lots of pics spread over a few updates.  This time, mainly some of my pics of the more industrial elements of the museum.

Detail on the Cast Iron house near the entrance, a whole semi-detached house made from metal plates bolted together.

A lovely spiral staircase inside.

And a fluted faux-Greek column, again from cast iron.

More detail shots near the forge, at the canal basin...

Then into a preserved workshop.  The white walls and light pouring in from the ceiling were quite impressive when you first entered, especially as the building was a traditional, dark brick structure from the outside and the light interior was a bit unexpected.

Up on top of the Lime Kilns, just because I like a random shed.

Then up to the small mine.

The tram was running, an ex Wolverhampton Tramways Corporation double-decker.

A lovely interior on the tram, all polished wood and stained-glass toplight windows.

Some of the fleet of preserved buses and trolleybuses were out on display too near the top terminus.

Out front as gate guard, the industrial Manning Wardle tank loco "Winston Churchill".  I remember this being plinthed on display at the Pensnett Trading Estate when I was younger (and where the loco had worked before preservation), though back then it was in pretty poor condition, so it is nice to see it in better nick now.

Speaking of transport, a last shot on the way out of the museum looking up towards town, over the site of the old Dudley Station (and later Freightliner container terminal).  The railway stood derelict here since being abandoned in the 1990's, with various promises of reopening as a railway, or the metro tram, or experimental light rail, ever since.  I spent years planning on going down there and walking the old line, documenting it, but never got chance (Dudley Railway Tunnel in particular was meant to be a good Urbex, but stories of people running into violent metal thieves stealing the tracks, and homeless junkies, put me off a bit at the time).  Anyway the old rails are being ripped up supposedly to allow work to start on the Metro finally, though I'll believe it when I see it...

Next time, some wildlife shots Amy took around the museum.