Tag Archives: good news

Forgotten, but not gone

With the news the Cutty Sark restoration has been completed and the ship is to reopen to the public later this week, I wondered what had happened to another restoration project that has been ongoing since the 1980s. 

I mean the restoration of the Dunkirk “Little Ship” Medway Queen. Earlier this year, the project was in some doubt due to problems with the funding, as I linked and blogged about at the time. Happily, the problems have been resolved and work has resumed on the ship.

April 2012. 

It seems that the EU funding suspension for our project as at long last been lifted by the EU commission, not after causing many money worries re paying apprentices and their training staff. Hopefully all unpaid back payments as well as funds due will now be paid to the society!

In the time being work still carries on at Bristol, albeit rather slow of late, the bow section is basically complete, but the aft end seems to drag on, reluctance to rivet plate maybe because most will have to be done by old method by hand, as their “auto riveters” will possibly not reach most angles it seems!


The story of the rescue and restoration of this humble paddle steamer is one of tenacity and heartache. Reading through the captions accompanying the gallery on the Society’s unofficial web site, it really does beggar belief that it has taken so long and so much voluntary hard work to save part of the UK’s maritime heritage. 

Here’s a link to the official Medway Queen Preservation Society web site.


BBC News – The tent that turns into concrete in less than 24 hours

The past 12 months have seen a remarkable number of humanitarian crises with earthquakes in Japan and New Zealand and deadly tornadoes in the southern US being among the most recent.

Among new innovations which could help relief efforts is a fabric shelter that, when sprayed with water, turns to concrete within 24 hours.

Invented by two engineers while at university, Concrete Canvas allows aid teams to construct solid structures in emergency zones quickly and easily.

Will Crawford and Peter Brewin showed BBC News how the concrete tent is put together and spoke about what inspired them.

Skipping lightly over the “new innovations” tautology, it’s this kind of original thinking that we should be encouraging in this country. Reliance on service and financial sectors isn’t going to help the UK out of the mess we’re in.

BBC News – Cameron ‘to abandon plans to change forest ownership’

Ministers are preparing to ditch controversial plans to sell thousands of acres of state-owned woodland in England, the BBC understands.

Government sources said they will announce on Friday that the current consultation be halted.

Instead, it is understood a new panel of experts will be set up to look at public access and biodiversity within the publicly-owned woodland.

David Cameron hinted on Wednesday that he was backing away from the policy.

The first of many u-turns, I hope. I sense there’s a lot of anger and resentment swelling from the lower orders.

BBC News – Rod Stewart tells of backstage train set demands

Rod Stewart has revealed he requests a large table in his dressing room when touring so that he can make miniature buildings for his model train set.

The singer has a fan so that glue fumes do not affect his voice and a schedule for cleaning his train set, according to US magazine Model Railroader.

And very good luck to him, I say. I wouldn’t mind 140m2 to fit a model railway in.

BBC News – PM rules out Thames Estuary airport plan

The government has ruled out proposals to build a major airport in the Thames Estuary or Kent to increase flight capacity for London.

The Prime Minister told the House of Commons the government had no plans to construct a new airport in the area.

See? An outbreak of common sense at Westminster, too!

I emailed my local MP about this very issue only yesterday. I got a letter in the mail today — today, mark you, 24 hours later — agreeing with me and stating she would be supporting all calls to reject any proposals for an airport at Hoo or in the Thames Estuary.

Tracey Crouch MP has gone up a notch in my estimation. She might be a Tory, I didn’t vote for her, but she seems to be okay.

Good luck, England!

It’s funny, because the people in charge of bringing coverage to fans repeatedly assure us that they really want women to be interested in sport. And why wouldn’t they? We’re half the population, make up half of their audiences and probably represent more than half of their advertisers’ target market. We don’t have half-sized brains. It’s just hard to remain interested in cheating cricketers and overpaid posers who are so worn out from taking out super-injunctions that they barely have the energy to fall over a football for 90 minutes. Why can’t they give us some sport worth watching?

Well this afternoon, in a bold experiment, “they” will.

I don’t follow rugby. The only sport involving a ball I follow in any depth is cricket. But it’s great to see the ladies’ England team reaching the Rugby Union World Cup Final again.