Skip to main content
Hatz Off

I've been taking advantage of the weather and flying around this morning taking photos over Kent.

First off, before flying towards Hastings and then a coffee at Lydd, was a shot of Chris Knight's "Hatz" biplane with the pilot wrapped-up against the cold. I had to scrape the ice from my own aircraft before getting going.



Then is was back over the Isle of Thanet, where I live and which looks set to become another one of the Government's "Housing Hotspots."

You can see from the map that the area between Canterbury and Ramsgate, figures in the government's plans to build thousands more houses, without regard to local infrastructure, such as sewage, roads, schools and above all jobs.



If you drive or indeed fly around the island, as I do, the amount of building is now noticeable. You can see the devastation now taking place in Westgate at what used to be St Augustine's, The Abbey School, where I once taught many years ago. The gardens which once saw monks tending their vegetable plots and bee hives, is now an acre of bare soil, as these and the playing fields have now been ripped-up to the edge of the building to prepare the way for a new estate. Posted by Hello


St Augustines, Westgate.

Another school that I attended as a pupil and then as a teacher, was The Charles Dickens in Broadstairs. The school appears to be expanding while the playing fields have fallen victim to housing creep over the last twenty years,as you can see from the bottom left-hand corner of the last photograph.

Where will it all end I wonder? As a pilot, I have a bird's eye view of the concreting-over of Southern England and the spread has to be seen to be believed Ashford will, at the present rate of expansion, grow to meet Dover in the next decade and given the increase in global warming, building more houses, in what is a visible flood-plain along the reach of the Medway valley strikes me as complete insanity! Posted by Hello


The Charles Dickens School, Broadstairs.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

A Christmas Tale

It’s pitch blackness in places along the sea wall this evening and I'm momentarily startled by a small dog with orange flashing yuletide antlers along the way. I’m the only person crazy enough to be running and I know the route well enough to negotiate it in the dark, part of my Christmas exercise regime and a good way of relieving stress.

Why stress you might ask. After all, it is Christmas Day.

True but I’ve just spent over two hours assembling the giant Playmobil ‘Pony Farm’ set when most other fathers should be asleep in front of the television.



I was warned that the Playmobil ‘Pirate Ship’ had driven some fathers to drink or suicide and now I understand why. If your eyesight isn’t perfect or if you’ve had a few drinks with your Christmas lunch then it’s a challenge best left until Boxing day but not an option if you happen to have a nine year old daughter who wants it ready to take horses by tea time.

Perhaps I should stick to technology but then, the instruc…

Merlins over Thanet

Marooned, temporarily at Manston this afternoon are the Merlins over Malta team on the way to the Mediterranean for a display to mark the historic Second World War defence of the island.


Charlie Brown

Unfortunately, the weather over Thanet is appalling this afternoon and the Spitfire and Hurricane can’t get airborne again until it clears, so the celebrity Battle of Britain aircraft pilots, Charlie Brown, Clive Denny and their team-mates are contemplating an evening among the fleshpots of Margate.


Clive Denny (Hurricane) & Charlie Brown (Spitfire) Pilots

I’m rather hoping the weather it will clear through though as they have to get to Jersey before dusk if possible and I have to take some photos of the Spitfire and Hurricane for Pilot Magazine and I’ve always wanted a chance to get in either aircraft!

An Interview with Charlie Brown

They just got off, squadron scramble or what? They were ready and gone in ten minutes towards the nearest patch of blue sky!

An interview with the legendary S…
Median Saleh

I mentioned in the last post, the 1981 expedition that took in Median Saleh, the ruined Nabatean city in Saudi Arabia


A temple carved from the rock from Petra's sister city.

By coincidence, one of the most important train stations on the Hejaz railway sat next to the ruins and when Lawrence of Arabia blew the line in 1917, the trains were trapped there and are still there today, gathering dust and with "Krupp" on the engine casings.


One of the trains, sitting where T.E. Lawrence left themwith Dr Paul Garnett as the passenger

Below, you can see one of the fortified train stations that Lawrence attacked along the Hejaz railway between Damascus and Medina.



More photos Medain Saleh can be found on THIS Site - Apparently you can catch a tourist bus these days, rather different from risking life and limb to cross an unfriendly Saudi Arabia twenty years ago!