As we were saying previously…
More images from the Tewkesbury Classic Vehicle Festival of 2019. Special thanks to the owners of these vehicles for taking the trouble of keeping these oldies on the road for us all to see.
DRW 2019 Created 19/08/2019.
As we were saying previously…
More images from the Tewkesbury Classic Vehicle Festival of 2019. Special thanks to the owners of these vehicles for taking the trouble of keeping these oldies on the road for us all to see.
DRW 2019 Created 19/08/2019.
It’s that time of the year when all manner of vintage, rare, strange and wonderful vehicles converge on the town and show off. I have been a regular attendee since 2016 and the results of my visits are all buried in the archives of this blog (somewhere).
The problem with posting about the festival is that many of the cars have featured here before and finding previously un-photographed cars is not as easy as it would seem. However, there are often new vehicles that catch my eye and I like getting those to add to my already impressive stash of vintage car pics.
Unfortunately they have raised the entry fee to £7.50 and that may come back to bite the organisers. The changeable weather also played a major role in attendance and at one point it was touch and go whether we would have rain or not. Fortunately the rain stayed away and the sun did pop in for a look. The usual obstacles were also there, the people seemingly rooted to the spot, the aimless and lost cellphone users, kids doing their thing and pram pushers doing their best to bulldozer everybody over. Fortunately they did not allow dogs or we would have been besieged by heaps of mutts pee-ing on hubcaps and tripping everybody up. Oh, and as usual I ask myself: “why do women even bother attending?”. Because of the position of the sun many images are taken from the same side and tend to loom similar. Realistically you can only really photograph a car from a few positions given the limitations of space etc.
I have no real theme this year and the images are of cars that caught my eye. I am not a car buff though so identification of some may be impossible. The vehicles on this page have been identified as they have info sheets or badges that could be used to ID them with.
There were a few vehicles that made me ooh and aaah: the first being this really stunning customised 3 wheel Morgan. It was magnificent.
The second was this wonderful old Fiat 500 Topolino
and then there was this very stunning Nissan Figaro
This was also the first time that there were so many Figaros on show. They are nice little quirky cars and were introduced in 1991 although we never saw this model in South Africa.
Naturally there were masses on Mini’s in all shapes and sizes, but two stand out for me this year: The first is a Mini Moke
and the second was this very nice Morris Mini Traveller
Other cars that caught my eye:
Motor cycles were not as well represented as they should be and there were a number of curiosities amongst them.
The British love the Volkswagen Kombi and there are lots of them that that have been converted into camper vans. A number of these were on display and you cannot really show them off in their entirety.
That is more or less the vehicles that I can ID, there are a lot of others that I cannot. They may be seen over the page.
DRW 2019 Created 19/08/2019. Special thanks to the owners of these vehicles for taking the trouble of keeping these oldies on the road for us all to see.
Today Oriana sailed from Southampton under her new name “Piano Land”. Stripped of her new P&O corporate branding she headed off to an uncertain future in China. It is possible she will be very successful in her new role and only time will tell. Fair weather and safe seas for your future Oriana. You will not be forgotten.
The images below are all courtesy of Steve Carrett and are used with permission.
Steve Carrett shot this video of her departure.
* end update*
Ships are strange things, they are sometimes regarded with fondness by those who sail in them, and there are plenty of examples of that affection. I am sure that nobody really gives a hoot about a mass produced airliner, but a classic ship is a whole different ball game. Sadly this month sees the withdrawal of one of the few remaining classic cruise ships left. It was announced that the Oriana was to be withdrawn and had been sold for service in China in August.
What makes her special is that she was built as a replacement for the legendary Canberra and incorporates aspects of her design in her structure. While she does not have the wonderful curves of the Great White Whale, she was a worthy successor, becoming more popular each year and building up a legendary following.
The logic behind her disposal is a puzzling one, and there are a few possible scenarios: she could be mechanically troublesome, she does not fit in with the Carnival Cruises group “image”, she is getting on in years (she was launched on 30 June 1994), there are not enough balcony cabins in her, etc. We are not privy to these decisions, but we sure as heck can condemn them.
My own association with the ship dates from 1997 when I undertook a short hop from Durban to Cape Town on her and I was also able to work on her as a baggage handler back in 2013. It was never fun to work on board her when doing baggage because you literally worked yourself to a standstill.
A VOYAGE ON THE ORIANA.
22-03-97 to 24-03-97. Durban-Cape Town
The announcement that Canberra would be replaced by a new ship was greeted with much dismay by everybody. The concept vessel shown to the media was criticised as being too much like a wedding cake and too little like Canberra. She was built by Joseph Meyer of Papenburg, Germany and entered service in 1995. Soon it was announced that this ship, known as Oriana, would be calling in Durban during her 1997 world cruise. The time had come for us to sail again. I was one of the first South Africans to book the short Durban to Cape Town trip, I phoned as the voyage was made available. Needless to say I took what I could get! The berth that I chose was a shared 4 berth inside cabin. This berth was guaranteed but I would only know my cabin number once the ship arrived, something that would play in my favour once she was in Durban.
Then it was time to wait and watch the exchange rate. The ship was due in Durban on 22 March, arriving in Cape Town on 24 March, a short 1 day and two night hop. By now Rudi had booked as well and we started counting the days.
As the sailing grew closer I decided that I would return to Durban on Symphony just for fun and went ahead and booked that as well. Now I had two ships to look forward to and an empty bank account.
Today (22 June) was supposed to be the Model Steam Rally held by the – Model Steam Road Vehicle Society (MSRVS). Unfortunately a group of “travellers” descended on the town and were flooded out of their camp site. They then moved to higher ground and the area where the rally was to take place was vandalised, forcing the cancellation of the rally. I missed the rally last year as I was elsewhere, and was really looking forward to it this year.
However, I decided to hold my own photo essay based on images that I took in 2016 and 2017, after all I do not get too many opportunities to see live steam in action. The steamer are not full size replicas, but half, quarter and smaller replicas and have all the charm of the real thing but without the need for heavy workshop and a crane.
There are not too many cars on display at the event, but they are fun to see, and I have to admit I have my favourites.
That blue Zephyr is really a blast from my past.
There is also a nice variety of bric-a-brac for sale at the sale tables, and of course a chance to acquire a handy new hammer (or two). I always used to argue with one of my work colleagues about how hammers are so important that there are at least 2 songs about them!
I am not sure whether there is a song about scales though.
One of the exhibitors had a really complicated small town on display along with the associated vehicles and people. It was really fascinating because there was so much small detail.
This is only a small part of the exhibit though. It was very difficult to photograph because of the angles and compactness of the display. Small replica steam engines and trains are really amazing pieces of engineering in their own right, and a number of them were on display.
However, we were probably all here to see the steam engines, and this is a collection of images from the three events that I attended. I hope you enjoy them as much as I enjoyed seeing them. Maybe next year we will be luckier.
Special thanks to all those who put in so much effort into keeping this hobby alive.
DRW © 2019. Images are from 2015.2016 and 2017. Created 22/06/2019
It is about time I posted about my newest toy boat. I mentioned her briefly on my other toy boat post some months ago, and in between then and now I have acquired another one, albeit in a poor condition too.
The new boat is missing a funnel, masts and some of the lifeboats. The forward bulwark is also broken and that has damaged the foredeck. However, I suspect this ship may be a newer iteration because it does not suffer as much from the warping of the superstructure like the first one does. The funnel and deck in the foreground come from the 2nd boat and it is badly warped so I will remove the deck area and replace it. The new funnel has been glued but needs more coats of paint.
So, I have 2 ships that are in need of work, and sailing, although at the moment our weather is as such that there is a lot of water but no way to access it (that may change as flood warnings are in force for Tewkesbury as of today).
This is the clockwork motor (prop shaft leads off to the right), and is wound though the shaft in the centre of the image which comes up into the funnel.
You can see a slight colour difference in the 2 ships below, which really supports my theory that the one may be much older.
I may just repaint one of them in UC colours and leave the other in an assembled stated but unpainted. It’s a lot of hull to paint and I do not feel up to doing it. So, at this moment this is where I am at. Once I get some sun I will take more pics. but till then I will continue to work on them both. I will be honest, I really like this pair, they may be somewhat out of scale and warped and generally quite tatty, but they are wonderfully quirky models and I would have loved to have had one as a child. I believe that they were available in SA, but apart from that information know nothing further.
The real ship looked like this:
The big flood never happened thankfully, although I did get to try out my new ship in the flooded field where I live. Unfortunately the water was full of grass clippings and they kept jamming the prop. It was also very difficult trying to juggle the ship, camera, string and myself so I gave up quite quickly.
Afloat on my local puddle:
And there you have it, a pair of interesting models from a different era. The real Pretoria Castle was acquired by Safmarine and entered service as SA Oranje in 1966 and she went to the breakers in 1975. The models date from either the 1950’s or mid 1960’s. They are almost as old as I am.
DRW © 2019. Created 13/06/2019
Occasionally we vintage cars passing through town and sometimes they stop so I can get a pic (or 3). Today I spotted what turned out to be a Stoneleigh Chummy 4 Season from 1924.
It is not the first time I have seen this particular vehicle, but the first time I have managed to get pics of it.
There is not a lot about these vehicles out there, and at the moment all I can really say is that Stoneleigh was made by Armstrong Siddeley. Hopefully at some point I will find more info. They certainly do not make them like that anymore.
And while rooting through my pics for another post I found the following information sheet:
Special thanks to the owner of this rare beauty, thanks for preserving her for us to enjoy so many years after she was built.
DRW © 2019. Created 19/05/2019
Every year in mid April we commemorate the loss of the Titanic. It is a well known story that has been analysed, filmed, written about, speculated on and done to death. My own interest in the ship came about when I read about the spot where she had gone down, that ships avoided for fear of encountering bodies. In later years I would raid the local libraries for books about the ship and try my best to obtain a model of her. I have however lost my interest in the ship and now concern myself with other things because realisically there is not much more that I can add to the story of the ship and its people.
The last interesting discovery that I made was in Liverpool where the Transatlantic trade was dominated by the Mauretania and her sister. Titanic and her sisters would not use that city as a base, but rather use Southampton. However, Titanic was registered in Liverpool and there is a memorial to her in that city.
The memorial commemorates the 244 engineers who lost their lives in the disaster. It was designed by Sir William Goscombe John and constructed circa 1916 and is a Grade II* listed building.
The memorial is inscribed:
IN HONOUR OF
ALL HEROES OF THE
MARINE ENGINE ROOM
THIS MEMORIAL WAS ERECTED
BY INTERNATIONAL INSCRIPTION
THE BRAVE DO NOT DIE
THEIR DEEDS LIVE FOREVER
AND CALL UPON US
TO EMULATE THEIR COURAGE
AND DEVOTION TO DUTY
More images of the memorial are available on the relevant page at Allatsea
While it is easy to remember the passengers who lost their lives in the disaster; the crew tend to get forgotten, especially the men who remained at their posts right up till the end. Irrespective though, over 1500 people lost their lives on this day in 1912 in a disaster that has somehow become the “poster boy” for maritime disasters, and the only North Atlantic liner that almost everybody knows about.
DRW © 2019. Created 15/04/2019
By train to Magaliesburg. 12AR-1535
I got the opportunity to travel with Susan on 4 April 2009 from Maraisburg Station to Magaliesburg. The same consist as before was used and the schedule was almost identical to my previous trip with Elize. Some of the images used here were taken linesiding or when I intercepted other trips at Magaliesburg.
Past Millsite and the rows of derelicts that were not as fortunate as Susan was, and any goods wagons that were being shunted,
And once that was past you could really relax and enjoy the ride for awhile and listen to the loco in front. At some point you would start the long climb towards the grain silos,
This time around I had opted for lunch at the hotel, but I did not bail out there, but hung around at the station for awhile to watch them turn Susan.
And as usual, there was brightwork to be polished. These preserved loco’s are always turned out very well because they showcase our proud steam heritage. Susan, as station pilot in Germiston, was always in a supershine condition, there was a lot of pride in these machines, and that is still true today.
In 2016 I visited London and ended up exploring Little Venice and Paddington Station, and of course my trip to South Africa meant I would invariably end up in the area again. I had spent the morning of the 22nd at the Natural History Museum in London (most of it in the queue), and on my arrival back in London I had roughly 3 hours to kill depending on when I got back from Heathrow. I had more or less decided to spend that time looking around close to the station as it was not really feasible to head down to anywhere else. Paddington and Little Venice were my best options because I really wanted to see whether I could find any Paddington Bear statues in the area.
I left my very heavy luggage at the Station and armed with a map of “The Pawprint Trail” headed onwards. The weather was not really great, and I was not dressed warmly as I had not taken much warm clothing with me on the trip. I had two places I wanted to find and hopefully to photograph the Paddington Statues at those spots. I already had 3 of the statues mentioned on the map:
The first Paddington I was after was near Sheldon Square and close to the one corner of Paddington Station. Unfortunately it was rush hour and very difficult to find the statue in the rush of people heading to and from the station. Fortunately I found him, and he was feeling kind of blue by the looks of it. Taking an image of him was also difficult as he was under a bridge with sunlight on one side and darkness on the other, and did I mention people walking past just as I hit the shutter button?
The image to the left has been lightened a bit as his face was mostly in shadow. My pic taken I was about ready to head out looking for number 2, but I was also intrigued to see mention of a Michael Bond statue on the map I had been given at the Paddington Shop on the station. It was not too far away and involved crossing the Paddington arm of the Grand Union Canal where I was and heading towards Paddington Green. It did look do-able so I turned my bows into the general direction and off I went. I had roughly 90 minutes to complete the job and I would also be able to have a look at the Church of St Mary on Paddington Green while I was in the area.
The area around Paddington Station looks like this:
I headed towards a footbridge that theoretically came out close to where the Michael Bond statue was, this is the view looking back from where I had come.
The bridge crossed under Westway but instead of heading to where the statue was I headed off on a tanget which lead me away from where I should be going. It was quite a pretty area though with many old buildings in it.
Parking was at a premium and cars were stuck bumper to bumper as drivers tried to nab a spot that somebody was trying to vacate. The building above is part of “St Mary’s Mansions”
I continued walking along St Mary’s Terrace until I reached the Regents Canal. It was home to many narrow boats and quite difficult to get an image that encompassed the whole canal.
Behind me was the very imposing Catholic Apostolic Church in Maida Avenue but I was unable to get anywhere close to it as the grounds were firmly locked.
I could not quite work out how this area related to where I wanted to be so I decided to return the way I came and see whether I could find the statue again. Returning to the footbridge I walked in the opposite direction from which I had come and duly found the statue of Michael Bond and two others. Actually it was not a statue but a laser cut silhouette artwork and one of three artworks. It appears as if there are associated plaques at the artworks, but I did not look too closely.
Close by was the Church of St Mary on Paddington Green and an associated hall that appeared to be a nursery school. The church was not a large one and it had an associated graveyard. Unfortunately it was not open so I could not go inside to warm up. It was becoming decidedly miserable by now and I was seriously considering returning to the station.
The church was built between 1788 and 1791 and burials ceased in the churchyards in 1857 when the space ran out. There are two burials areas, the first being around the church and the original area next to the church grounds depicted below.
The church under my belt I headed back towards that station and the Paddington basin where the other Paddington statue was. It was not too long a walk, but a very chilly one.
The statue was shown as being on the left bank and close to the “Fan Bridge” which was in the down position. I could however not find the statue and had to ask for help from a yellow hi-vis vested person.
Instead of being outside the statue is actually inside a building which explains why I couldn’t see it.
Mission accomplished it was time to head off to catch my train, although I did have an hour to kill till it left and I spent that reading, pacing and looking at my watch, the departure boards and the passing crowds. Once again the train was one of the new British Rail Class 800’s and I had travelled in one on my way to London on the 22nd. I was able to grab a pic of the old and the new on this occasion, and in 2016 when I was here only the Class 43’s were evident.
I finally boarded my train at 11.25 and at 11.36 the train started to move and I was on my way home. I still had 4 hours of travel ahead of me, but was getting closer all the time. I had originally considered staying in London overnight and only returning home on the 8th, but given the weather and my own state of tiredness it is a good thing I did not.
DRW © 2019. Created 08/03/2019
It is now 19.30 on the evening of the 7th and I am back home, surrounded by washing, empty suitcases, clothing, postcards and heaps of other odds and ends that I brought back with me. My flight left last night at 9 pm, and we landed just after 6 this morning. I have spent the time between then and 4 pm in queues, trains, buses and Paddington Station.
A lot happened between my previous post of the 24th of February and now. I split my time between my brother’s house and my friends on the West Rand, although was not as active in the local cemeteries as I was previously. My mother is surprisingly strong, but I fear that she is trapped inside her body and is probably hating every minute of it. Unfortunately we had to make the decision that we made in 2017, there were no more options available to us. Sadly she is surrounded by other elderly women of various ages, many never get visited and lead out their lonely lives in the home. I am afraid that in some cases they have outlived their children, or their children are no longer in the area or in the country.
There is a lot I can say about South Africa. Corruption has seriously damaged the economy, and the continued demand by Eskom for higher tariffs is met with disgust as the public recalls how easily Eskom and the corrupt in it seemingly burnt money with impunity. To this date no high profile crooks have been arrested for corruption and they continue to lead the high life, safe in the knowledge that they got away with it.
The few malls that I visited were also showing the effects of the economic downturn, with empty shops and fewer buying customers visiting them. Generally though I had good service from 99% of the people I encountered in my travels in and around the West and East Rand. The petrol price continues to bite though, and of course the traffic jams in Johannesburg are even worse as a large portion of the one freeway has had to be closed to repair some of the supports and bridges that are part of it.
Muffin the cat continues to amuse, at this moment he is thinking of entering politics and is trying to register his own political party called “The Fishycookie Party”. By his reckoning he could be the chief poohbah in the next election because at least he wont be corrupt, although is liable to sleep in parliament.
Again I got to enjoy the pets of my brother and friends during this trip, and it is amazing how they enrich our lives; there is never a dull moment when you have a cat or a dog.
The weather back in South Africa was hot and very uncomfortable as I really prefer the relatively cooler summers of the UK. I do not do heat well! We did have a typical highveld thunder/rain storm in my last week, and I had forgotten how much water these could dump and how bad the thunderstorms can get in Johannesburg. Back in the UK it was overcast and drizzly where I live, but the march to Summer continues.
Food prices continue to rise and I did quite a few comparisons with the prices I gathered way back in 2017. These are just a few examples that I spotted, and some items may have been on sale. The items are not indicative of my own personal preferences and are sourced through leaflets and shops I visited in the West and East Rand. Petrol was R14.08 pl 95 octane and R13.86 for 93 octane (02/03/2019)
6 Eskort Gold Medal Pork Sausages: R44.91
Kellogs Corn Flakes (750gr) R49.99
Beef Biltong R320/kg
Oreo 16’s R14.99
Sedgewick’s Old Brown Sherry 750 ml R44.95 (R39 in duty free at ORT airport)
Milo 500gr tin R51.99
2 Litres Coke R16.99
Cadbury’s Chocolate (80g slab) R19.95
Oral B electric toothbrush R499.95
Jungle Oats (1kg) R26.99
Weetbix (900 gr) R38.99
Wellingtons Tomato Sauce (700 ml) RR18.99
Baby Soft 2 ply toilet rolls (18’s) R124.99
Lipice (4.6 g) R22.99
Sunlight dishwashing Liquid (750 ml) R32.99
Joko Tea (60 bags) R32.99
Milo (500 gr) R54.99
Ricoffy (750 g) R79.99
Mrs Balls Chutney (470 g) R28.99
Douwe Egberts Pure Gold coffee (200 g) R119.99
Crystal Valley salted butter (500 gr) R47.99
Nature’s Garden mixed veg (2,5kg) R25.99
30 Large eggs R49.99
Stork Country Spread 1kg R29.99
Dewfresh milk 6×1 Litre R69.99 (R11.99 ea)
Gordons Gin 750ml R99.99
Hunters Dry 12x440ml Cans R129.99
30 Extra large eggs R44.99
Ultra Mel Custard 1 Litre R22.99
Enterprise Back Bacon 200gr R23.99
Fresh chicken breast fillets (R59.99/kg
Huletts white sugar (2.5 kg) R39.99
Lipton ice tea (1,5 litre) R17.99
King Steer burger R64.90, Regular chips: R15.90 2019
95 Octane petrol R14.08, (/02/03/2019)
4 Finger Kitkat R8.99
48 Beacon Mallow Eggs R79.99
Tabasco Sauce (60ml) R38.99
DRW © 2019. Created 07/03/2019