Sunday, 24 September 2017

The Ramsgate Tugs Called Aid a bit of Canterbury sketching.

I think this is a picture of one of the elusive Ramsgate tugs called Aid that isn't the double ended two funnelled tug called Aid you usually see, a bit of compulsive clicking on the picture should enlarge it a bit. I think this would date from around 1870 but am not really sure.

This is the one you usually see which came to Ramsgate in around 1885, I think although I could well be wrong.

Anyway any help with this conundrum as always appreciated.

I spent most of today in Canterbury

This one now has a blueish sky although it didn't photograph well.

as for the grey building in the foreground, it was yeller then grey now whitish, I don't want to talk about it.

As you see from the books that went out in the bookshop on Saturday, plenty of children’s and local history books including a copy of the elusive Thanet at War, which we never seem to be able to get enough copies of, here is the link to the pictures of them

Saturday, 23 September 2017

Buoys will be buoys around 1890 at Ramsgate Harbour, Canterbury bus fail, bit of sketching

The nautical equipment having a rest from the sea and lying around in Ramsgate harbour has a magnetic attraction for me, not sure why, anyway to cut a short story shorter I bought this ephemera of nautical ephemera and doubt there would have been many other takers.

I went to Canterbury by bus today, purely a leisure activity, although somehow the bus has a bit of a third class feel to it although it does get me from the middle of Ramsgate to the middle of Canterbury in less than an hour. 

I did a bit of painting as you can see St Anslem’s chapel is a bit of a spot the difference and the people painted from the upstairs window of Chocolate Café are disappointingly small.

I also bought a wifi camera as I see a vague future of vlogging, to expand on this one, wifi (sports) cameras connect to your mobile phone by wifi and the screen of your phone becomes the camera’s viewfinder, this means you can actually see what you are doing without standing behind or in front of the camera.  

Like the various bits of nauticalia around the harbour I find it difficult to resist unusual technology, particularly cameras.

The bus back from Canterbury to Ramsgate didn’t turn up at all so I had to get the next one, which as there was nothing on the supposedly “Live Updates” website, made me feel like a third class traveller again.

Obviously the car is tempting, worse for the environment and I have very little experience of busses, so feel I shouldn’t be able to see obvious and rectifiable faults, saying the website has live updates and then it not working being the most obvious.

We should, need to tempt people away from unnecessary car use, silly really.

Anyway here is a panorama of Ramsgate Harbour

If you want the full sized picture here is the link where you can download it

Some pictures of bosses in the cathedral  

A few other pictures from today 

David Ridgway - Students Exhibition - at York Street Gallery in Ramsgate,

Friday, 22 September 2017

Ramsgate Harbour in the 1800s photo from the other end, spot the difference with the painting of the waterfront from The Royal to The Alexander from Pavilion, some out and about into the sun pictures of Ramsgate this evening.

I think this picture of Ramsgate Harbour probably dates from around 1890, the low level of water in the inner basin is probably because the sluices have been run to clear the silt from the outer harbour, the boats are fishing smacks.
The watercolour draft sketch is doing what they do, I hope to do a few more from the Pav before the the winter comes.
I thought a Teletubbies type sun over Ramsgate would be interesting and it proved difficult to photograph this is the link to the rest of this evening's photos

I have been catching up on emails and think I have done all of this month’s local history queries, so if you have sent me a local history question and I haven’t replied, please send it again.  

I am writing this post while cooking curry so it may be a bit disjointed, a busy day in the bookshop this is the link to the photos of the books we put on the shelves

An interesting thought on modern life and recorded music that having gone around the the whole loop of buying vinyl records, cassette tapes, and then c.d.s I recently bought a new album as a vinyl record.

I often buy secondhand vinyl records, but for the last, how long is it? I don't know. The new albums have been c.d.s, my thinking here is at least it will play,even if it gets scratched and it is difficult to misplace.

Thursday, 21 September 2017

A view of Ramsgate westcliff taken from around the harbour end of York Street in the 1800s, some thoughts on gold watercolour paint

I would think this picture of Ramsgate was taken in about 1870
One now and two around 1900
I have been off out and about playing with gold watercolour paint 

the sign is written on in Schmincke watercolour which i bought in Canterbury today, it definitely looks gold rather than yellowy brown and the paint behaves lime other watercolour paint and not like acrylic.

A fair amount of local history and travel books went out in the bookshop yesterday this is the link to the photos of them

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

A good Catch at Ramsgate in about 1900, some thoughts on PPI, about 40 pictures of Ramsgate this evening, my preliminary Ramsgate Watercolour sketch and Turner Contemporary appoints 8 new trustees.

I would say this picture of the Ramsgate fishermen with their catch probably dates from about 1900, after 1893 anyway as you can see the top of the Custom House which was built then.

The original photo is in a pretty bad way and very small so I nearly didn’t recognise it, from the way its blown up I think it must have been a contact print.

I did manage to get to Wetherspoons at the end of the working day and there was about half an hour before the light became too difficult for me  to paint.

I think a bit more of this and I will try one on better paper, as you can see from the photo some of the proportions are no quite right.

Over the last 30 years or so I have occasionally borrowed money from the bank and I had a sneaky feeling that on some occasions the bank had miss-sold me things that I only bought to get the loan. I think it was probably all the spam emails and phone calls that eventually lead me to look into this. Anyway current legislation means that banks have to have their own department to sort this out, so I went on to my own banks website filled in the online form and they have started giving me back the money that they shouldn’t have taken.

Turner Contemporary have announced the appointment of eight new trustees today, here is the link to all of their trustees biogs and photos

A short walk to the west after painting, here is the link to the photos

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Wetherspoons at Ramsgate Royal Victoria Pavilion a review, the beginnings of a watercolour sketch and about 100 photos.

Lunch at the new Wetherspoons in Ramsgate today, which was cheese and ham panini, cost about £6.50 which also included a soft drink. I could either have had chips with it or salad, I chose the salad option. It was very good, took less than 15 minutes to arrive and I managed to get some watercolour sketching and lunch in during my lunch hour.  

I have four concepts of The Pavilion, the historical one which is based on old pictures and guides and my visit when it was in a very bad state in 2010 these are covered in the blog post I wrote immediately after my visit, here is the link to the post this post has links to the pages of pictures I took inside, back then.

The other two concepts are much more normal use of the building, one dates from when I worked for The Pleasurama Group back in the 1970s, as a mechanic of sorts my job was to mend things and at that time Star Dust Amusement Arcade was owned by the group and had plenty of amusement machines to mend I also made occasional forays into the casino part to mend the one armed bandits in there. The other is today’s visit here is the link to my mobile phone pictures taken there today 

Later on, as there were three other people working in the bookshop, I’m afraid I skived off from work an hour early and carried on painting, the other people put the books away in the bookshop, here is the link to the pictures of them

The refurbished Pavilion is a real asset to Ramsgate and a lot of this is to do with the view across the harbour towards the waterfront with its diverse historic architecture.

Any late nigh visits to the night club or casino are hazy memories and I don’t think count that much.

The pictures I took with my camera today, mostly a short walk after painting from the pavilion are here

Something that I found interesting was that nearly all of the tables in the sun on the decking on the pavilion roof were taken apart from those reserves for non smokers, which produced the strange empty but desirable area. 

Monday, 18 September 2017

Penguin in Ramsgate Harbour, Manston DCO minor update,

Says on this one,“Penguin” yacht belonging to the artist-author, Donald Maxwell, who wrote and illustrated “Unknown Kent”, “A Detective in Kent”, and many other books. He was in this port owing to damage in a gale, and had been hauled up on the slipway at Moses’ shipbuilding yard, the last craft to use it.

With Manston it seems that there are various truths, in the case of this Ellington Park photo the plane was horizontal and the tree leaning but adjusting the photo seemed appropriate.

I have been badgering on about the snags of opening a freight hub, mostly those related to air pollution, so time for an update.

Manston DCO update
Back in mid July we had a consultation about turning the old Manston Airport site into a major airfreight hub.
At the moment the site is owned by a company called Stonehill Park, this is essentially the same people who bought the old Pfizer site when Pfizer were going to pull out and close. This was a success story which even meant that Pfizer kept a small part of their operation going there, a lot of other companies moved there too and at the moment Discovery Park, which is what they called this enterprise, is the main site for employment locally.
Stonehill Park have submitted plans for a mixed use development, this means industrial units and housing, as is usual with large developments this will include doctor’s surgery and schools. Here is a link to their website
The outline planning application has been submitted and you can view it by copying the application ref is OL/TH/16/0550 and putting it in the TDC planning website search box, here is the link to it
The people who want to turn the site into an airfreight hub, obviously don’t own the site and Stonehill Park don’t want to sell it.
The people who want to turn the site into an airfreight hub have been various permutations of a property investment firm called RiverOak.
This started out with an American RiverOak they tried to buy the site from previous owners and were turned down, they subsequently tried to get TDC to buy the site using a compulsory purchase order but were turned down.
During all of this RiverOak changed to a UK branch of the American company and has now become RSP RiverOak Strategic Partners
At the moment they are trying to get the Department for Transport to buy the for them using a thing called a Development Consent Order, DCO.
This is the DCO remit on the Department for Transport’s website:-
“The upgrade and reopening of Manston Airport primarily as a cargo airport, with some passenger services, with a capacity of at least 12,000 air cargo movements per year.”
New Information
Things have been pretty quiet since mid July, but now documents have started to appear on the Department for Transport’s website, I would guess because everyone involved is back from their holidays.

The consultation attracted around 2,000 responses and the DfT have published their summery of their first meeting with RiverOak since the consultation, here is the link
I think one issue here will be whether the consultation was done properly and if it will have to be done again.
What were the old main issues, aircraft noise and water drainage seem to be being addressed by the statutory bodies.
RiverOak say they will submit the application by Christmas.
There is a letter from Save Manston Airport Association which says that they were happy with the consultation process which so many people complained about, here is the link:-
It’s a bit hard to follow what their point is here and as a lot of the issues I had were to do with the applicant’s website not working properly, something the RiverOak accepted and does leave one wondering whether Save Manston Airport Association were happy with it because they didn’t actually try to use it.
Then there is my follow-up which is mostly related to the particulate air pollution issue.
Since I wrote this there has been a new study published in the proceedings of The National Academy of Science give a relationship between measurable pollution levels and the number of years it will knock of people's lives. 10 micrograms per cubic meter of particulate matter pollution reduces life expectancy by 0.6 years.

There is also an increasing body of research pointing to particulate air pollution as one of the main causes of dementia. 

So I have tried and am still trying to get RiverOak to look at mitigating the air pollution associated with an airfreight hub, it’s a case of writing to them and getting no reply, see

Now we are coming close to being able to tell just how much having an airfreight hub at Manston would knock of off local people’s lives, i.e how much earlier people living in the Thanet towns will die if the freight hub is built than if it isn’t.  

I have added the following to help understand the housing and employment issue 

The Thanet employment figures for April - March 2017 i.e. latest published. So does this mean we would need 50% more of everything, schools, hospitals, housing, or if there are 50% more people in employment, Economically Active† 65,000 74.3 80.8 78.0
In Employment† 63,000 71.9 77.7 74.2
Employees† 47,300 54.2 65.2 63.2
Self Employed† 15,700 17.6 12.1 10.6

Unemployed (Model-Based)§ 3,700 5.5 3.8 4.7

Work wise in the bookshop today, here is what went out

After work my walk didn’t go quite to plan, I got up onto the clifftop in front of Wellington Crescent and considered the coast of France, which you can see, but I can’t photograph that well, this was followed by what felt like rain coming on, 
 not sure how much these will expand or what you can see of France
 oh well

Anyway I took a few pictures of the ships at sea and the firemen at The Bench then scurried off back home snapping Destiny’s knitted poppies on the way, here is the link to the photos  

Oh what happened? I thought rain was imminent and in the end it didn't rain, so I feel a bit wosisname.

Sunday, 17 September 2017

Wylde Swan flies away from Wetherspoons, I find a picture of the capstan on the end of the west pier in Ramsgate a bit more painting in Canterbury, Sunday in fact

Sure I have posted this picture before with the bucket dredger Hope and a Ramsgate fishing smack by the lighthouse, you can of course click on it a bit and it will probably expand bit I have cropped out the capstan.

It's the black thing at the end of the arrow, think of it a a cotton-reel with holes around the top to put matchsticks in and you won't be far off. Scale everything up and the people push the matchsticks to wind up the cotton.

back in the day when the only motive power was sail, ships entering the harbour ran aground on the mud-banks to stop them and were warped off with with thick ropes and hard work at the capstan bars.

In Nelson's navy the phrase, start the men, meant hit them to make them push harder.

 I am not a fan of the big breakfast, toast and marmalade at Wetherspoons overlooking the harbour and the sea £3

I fiddled about with my preliminary sketch over breakfast, this one will never become a watercolour painting as it has too many errors, it's really only to give me ideas about what may look good from there.

 So there she goes Wylde Swan under engines, that is. Sorry about the squiff horizons, a more dedicated person would have straightened them

Canterbury next

St Anselm's chapel Canterbury cathedral, I did a bit more to the detail and then realised that the paper was folded and opened out into a bigger bit so thought I would have a go at the left hand bit too.

 's a bit feint at the moment

I did try a panoramic shot with my phone

Anyway a question for experts

 So this Nero place
 says 1698 at the top

 and 1573 further down
 is the top older than the bottom, sorry I mean is the bottom older than the top?
For the dedicated bookshop followers here is the link to the Saturday books