(-l) January 2021

First, an apology. In order to keep the pages in the correct position on the site map, I numbered each month. Unfortunately I started in 2018 with number 2. It is now 2021, and I have run out of numbers, so we are now on dashes. I am not sure what will happen in 2022, but I hope then we can look back on a happy and healthy 2021 and my problem will be a minor one.

1 January

Cold and crisp

This morning the weather was beautiful, and even the thick frost didn’t put me off venturing to Highcliffe Castle for a few pictures. They were OK, nothing special, but then I moved on to Mudeford Quay. The header picture on this page was taken from there. It was indeed a day for photography, photographers were rampant! You can see two of them in action below.

Sadly, they were too late. Just half an hour before, the water and frost had been beautiful, still and calm. I make no apology for publishing all the pictures below, to show you what I mean. Note that the colours may be inconsistent, but I chose them to suit the image. Remember View Full Size, bottom right, when viewing the gallery. You can then use the back button to return. Larger versions are on SmugMug in a new window.

Finally, I never thought that ducks and gulls could look so good. This was the scene by the road.

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3 January

Another School Display

This morning, after looking at the Homebase development, I saw another display on the fence of Christchurch Junior School. The first picture is quite uplifting. Click it for a larger version (back to return). A teacher from the school was passing by, and saw me photographing the display. I asked her how the children were coping with the virus precautions. She laughed and said that the children were fine, but it was hard work for the teachers: “You have to keep saying, ‘Two metres … two metres … two metres.” As  an ex-teacher I made her smile when I said it must be a lot harder than just telling them not to run in the corridor!

However, my intellectual pretensions were somewhat diminished when I asked her what the pictures on the wall were. “Are they planets?” said I innocently. “No,” she replied, “they are Christmas baubles.” Whatever, they looked great on the fence. 

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4 January

A (fairly) Interesting Journey

It was meant to be a quick trip to Christchurch to visit M&S. The aim was to drive down Lymington Road and then on to Somerford Road, with the plan being to park at Two Riversmeet. So, left at the roundabout, and I came across this:

‘So what?’ I hear you say. Well, it is of the development at 153 Somerford Road, last updated in August 2020. The sign on the van says South Coast Demolition, and the man in the van smilingly told me that it is going to start today. Sadly, getting in was impossible as the gate was padlocked, so I left them to wait, and ventured forth to Two Riversmeet.

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Sadly , when I arrived I decided not to park there, it was being used as a Covid-19 testing centre. It seemed very well-organised. even cheerful, and it was definitely busy. I photographed the large sign and was surprised to see, when I got it on the computer, that it had been recycled. You can even read the old text behind it. Well done, BCP Council, frugality at all times!

Most of the car park was taken up:

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5 January

Ambury Lane – Something New

You may remember the burned-out car near Sainsbury’s, by the path leading from Ambury Lane. That was cleared and a post erected so that other cars could not be driven down there. I was surprised today to see that a barrier has also been erected at the other side. It goes the full length of the path, and there is even a smart construction to allow pedestrians to go through.

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7 January

Cold and Quiet

Today I took a big risk. As you know, people are supposed to stay home because of the pandemic. We are allowed out for shopping or exercise, so I combined the two, parking in the lay-by near Stony Lane and walking into town along Stony Lane and then Purewell/Bridge Street. I did see two covid Marshalls, but fortunately escaped interrogation!

The morning was cold, and there was quite a frost and fog. The view of the Priory from the Bridge was beautiful, the tower merging into the mist:

Click for larger, back to return. Note that the bird is not my skill, it was an unnoticed accident!

Venturing forth, the next stop was the Priory, to see if there was any information about access and services during the lockdown. All was clearly explained by the notice in the porch.

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Desperately looking for interesting things to photograph, I then spotted the flags above the (closed) Bookends shop. I saw an unusual one, which has probably been there for years, but I had missed. It is actually AFCB – Bournemouth football – with their crest in the middle. Click to see the gallery.It was quite breezy, and even after a few minutes it was difficult to get a clear view of the flag.

Finally, to cheer you up – or not -here is Saxon Square this morning.

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9 January

Definitely Lockdown

Just a short entry today. The Quomps was very quiet, even the swans looked lonely! Click to view the gallery, remember View Full Size, bottom right.

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13 January

Don’t Tell!

This afternoon I took my permitted once-daily exercise. Although it is supposed to be only exercise, which implies continuous activity – vigorous or calm – without distractions, I took my camera. Would I be allowed to stop exercising for a few seconds? Anyway, I risked it. The best picture is below, a beautiful afternoon with three (yes, three) people enjoying the scenery. As I said, don’t tell!

Get a large version, around 6Mb, in a new window.

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16 January

Transylvania Highcliffe/Walkford

I hadn’t realised, but on Highland Avenue I saw this blue plaque on number 3.

I had not heard of Gerald Brosseau Gardner (1884-1964), but there is an amazing amount available online, especially Wikipedia. You can read much more there (it is fascinating), but one item did make me smile:

‘Gardner was a supporter of the right wing Conservative Party, and for several years had been a member of the Highcliffe Conservative Association, as well as being an avid reader of the pro-Conservative newspaper, The Daily Telegraph.’

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17 January

An Interesting Walk

As today had started off so pleasantly, what better than to go on a decent walk? I will not write much here, the pictures below will describe the sights. Click to view the galleries.

On the way to the zig-zag path, the cruise ships were still visible.

Two pictures from the path:

On to Highcliffe Castle. There was a surprising sign there, with bulbs inside, presumably for nocturnal illumination. Some people posed with it.

Then it was back to Highcliffe. Despite the lockdown, the playground was busy.

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21 January

After the Storm

It was a beautiful morning today, after the continual heavy rain of yesterday. You will probably be aware of the floods which have ravaged much of the country this morning: you can read about it in the Daily Mail (where else!). Anyway, here is one man this morning relaxing on the Quay:

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23 January

Ambury Lane – Something New

This morning dawned bright, cold and slightly frosty, so great weather for a walk down Ambury Lane. Nothing special happened there, though I did meet the man who lives in the caravan. Over the bridge, and there were six horses, three of them looking rather miserable and quiet, the others hunting for tasty morsels in the bushes.

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Over the bridge, the white cats were looking out of the window of the flats. I had to wait a short time for them both to be in the right position, but fortunately they co-operated eventually.

‘Who is that twerp with the camera?’ Click for a much larger image, back to return

Finally, Bob has been doing much more in his garden on the corner of Somerford and Edward Roads. He was just as cheerful ever, and I was able to investigate thoroughly. View the gallery below.

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28 January

Look and You Shall See

I hadn’t! This morning in Druitt Gardens I read the notice board for the Hall properly, though I had only glanced as I had walked past before. It is quite interesting.

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Then I noticed the posters on the wire fence. After trudging through dank ground they too were interesting. describing some of the delights of the gardens.

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Here is a link to their website. Sadly I clicked on the gallery, but it was empty.


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30 January

Not Today

The pictures below are a bit of an indulgence, as I wanted to try ‘image compare’ in WordPress. Usually, of course, its use is to compare a scene today with the same scene in the past, to show the changes and developments. However, I don’t go back that far, so below I have used two pictures taken last Sunday (24 January) showing a wide and a zoomed view of a cruise ship visible from Highcliffe. There was an interesting article in the Echo about this yesterday.

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