January 2019

2 January

A Little Late …

… but it starts the year 2019. This morning while I was walking along Barrack Road, I saw another Silent Soldier. These silhouettes were, of course, placed around the country by November 2018 to commemorate the hundredth anniversary of the end of World War One. This soldier, I think, is actually from the navy, but apologies if I am wrong: it is not one of my few areas of expertise!

Click for a larger version

6 January

Not Anytime – It’s Tomorrow!

On what is a rather drab day, I was surprised to see a lot of action in the new Anytime Fitness. It was busy with people popping in and out.

So I ventured in, to be told that it is opening tomorrow (Monday) at noon. The lower section will be used, as well as the first floor. I asked if I could photograph it, but was unfortunately denied. I’m sure it will be great, but for now here is a picture of the still impressive ground floor section.

Here is a link to their website for this branch.

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7 January

Goodbye Santa, until next year!

Santa leaving Somerford

Robert is at it again! This morning, at around 10am, he was on the roof preparing to take down Santa and his sleigh.

You may remember the various posts about these displays, at the corner of Somerford and Edward Roads.

Here is December’s. Have a look round for others.

The next theme is going to be Kevin the Carrot (left). I assume this is the correct image. I had not heard of him until Robert told me, my strongest childhood memory being Bill and Ben the Flowerpot men!

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9 January

Update on the Beach Slope

You may remember the closure of the slope to the beach, at the corner of Avon Run Road and Southcliffe Road. Well, work is now going on apace:

Sunny day, and hard at work.
Click for a larger version

There are notices nearby giving the schedule and an letter giving an explanation. For convenience, the text is copied below the image.


Contractor mobilisation – w/c 3rd December 2018
Expected completion by – 25th January 2019

The council apologises for any inconvenience these maintenance works may cause to your enjoyment of the coastline.


22 November 2018
Dear Sir/Madam


The Council writes to inform you of the works to replace the Friars Cliff Access Ramp, at the junction of Avon Run Road and Southcliffe Road.

Avon Construction Ltd has been appointed to undertake the works.

The existing failed ramp will be removed and new retaining walls and ramp constructed. During the construction there will be times when plant or equipment will be in use, but the contractor will make every effort to keep disturbance to a minimum.

The contractor is scheduled to commence during the week beginning 3rd December 2018 with completion by the end of January 2019.

Operational hours will be Monday to Friday between the hours of 07:30 and 17:00.

The Council apologises for any disturbance or noise as a consequence of these works.

Jonathan Ross
Property, Engineering and Car Parking Manager

Christchurch and East Dorset Councils

Echo update, 15 January

Today an article appeared in The Echo. The reason for the closure and subsequent rebuilding was described:

Chunks of concrete had broken off from the exterior wall of the ramp, leaving metal pins exposed. Elsewhere, some of the wooden panels on the outside of the wall were missing.

Click the image to read the article

Note that, impressively, they were allowed inside the fence to take the photograph. There are this and two other pictures in the article.

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10 January

Till the Cows Come Home …

This morning I was walking along Hawthorn Road, near Ambury Lane and about half a mile from Somerford. A very dirty Land Rover approached behind me, and the farmer warned me to get out of the way, as the cows were being moved. He even suggested that he could wait while I went on ahead. I ignored him! Another farmer got out.

The driver stopped a short distance ahead. As I passed the other farmer, he warned me to be careful, and said that he would let the cows out in a minute or so. I ignored him, but decided to hurry anyway!

I stopped next to the Land Rover and had a pleasant chat with the ‘senior’ farmer. The cows were approaching, and he told me that there were about 100 of them. I was grumbling about the cold – it was very frosty – and he said that it is much worse when it is pouring freezing rain. In any case, I suspect that he would not have let something as minor as that worry him!

All this happened close to the Somerford estate. There is a lot of hard, dirty farming work going on: it is from the town to the country in ten minutes!

The farmer waits…
Click for a larger picture

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13 January

Spotted Today

As you may be aware, the toilets in Saxon Square are to be rebuilt. This will start tomorrow. Other, temporary facilities will be provided during the rebuild, which will take around twelve weeks, leaving the area ready for the new tourist season.

Here is an article in the Echo about the rebuild, and click the picture below to see them as they are now. The article also acts as a record for posterity, if you pardon the expression! Note that, of course, I have only taken pictures of the men’s toilets!

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17 January

Here We Go Again!

You may remember the road works caused by the installation of a pedestrian crossing near the Meteor Centre on Somerford Road. This was the scene today, showing the warning about yet more roadworks, with the still-covered crossing in the background.

The good news is that in an article in The Echo, we are told that ‘Following discussions between Dorset County Council engineers and the retail park developers, who installed the crossing, the “remedial work” is scheduled for four weeks. At present the work is not expected to need temporary traffic lights.’

It has been a lengthy project, as the Oddments/September page and subsequent articles show.

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