Showing posts from February, 2017

The Commonwealth Institute becomes the Design Museum - magnificent but.....

 I think the Guardian sums it up nicely - The Design Museum review – a magnificent achievement, but… It is an achievement to preserve it.  Wait a minute. This is one of the great London Modernist buildings - in some ways the only great London Modernist building. and we are gratefully that it was not demolished or ruined. Instead it has been saved, against the odds. So magnificent achievement. But. bits of it demolished, the surviving block squashed between two dull modern buildings.  On entry the fantastic roof slab is hidden behind a square set of wooden floors. It looks like what it is, modern structures squatting in a wonderful interior. You glimpse the wonderful interior from the front. From the front the original roof is not show cased.   This is very disappointing if you are interested in the Commonwealth Institute building. If you are interested in the Design Museum building then what a great entry. Up the stairs crowded displays and in between glimpses of a magnific

The Royal Exchange Murals!

If you have a spare moment pop into the Royal Exchange at Bank, go upstairs and wander around the perimeter to look at these paintings. Save The Royal Exchange Murals! | Spitalfields Life

What's the Moon doing at Stonehenge

I take a lot of people to Stonehenge. I have a fairly good idea what the sun does in relation to the landscape and the stones. But the moon has been beyond me.  So I have been trying to work it out.  draw a little diagram with the sun over to the left, the earth over to the right and put the moon orbiting the earth, with the new moon between the earth and the sun and the full moon on the other side of the earth and the half moons at right angles. That really helps Moonrise The moon takes a month to go around the Earth. At new moon the moon is near the Sun, and it therefore rises at Sunrise and sets at Sunset but is not very visible because it is near the sun. At full moon by contrast the moon is on the opposite side of the earth to the Sun – hence we see the entire moon reflecting the sun light. Therefore the moon rises at sunset, and sets at sunrise. In between these times the moonrise gradually changes. So waxing crescent moon the moonrise

Why are England's heritage bodies supporting the Stonehenge Bypass? - Apollo Magazine

Good article explaining that the proposed tunnel should extend the entire length of the World Heritage Site, not just the NT property. Please take the time to object to these proposals and suggest a longer tunnel. 'What is certain is that Stonehenge needs a revised proposal that tackles its traffic problem. This might loop the route of a new bypass wholly outside the boundaries of the WHS, or bore a longer tunnel below its full width. What is uncertain, as they face this fir st test, is whether England’s new frameworks for heritage protection are robust enough to meet this need. Highways England’s six-week public consultation on the Stonehenge Bypass closes on 5 March. You can contribute your views through their website. '…/a303-stonehenge/ ' Why are England's heritage bodies supporting the Stonehenge Bypass? - Apollo Magazine

The Window Tax - a tax on light and air

You paid tax for 10 windows or more, and a higher rate for 20 windows or more.  At some point it was lowered to 6 then raised again to 8, then abolished in 1851 as it was felt to be a tax on 'light and air. What was the The Window Tax? : It was a banded tax. For instance, in 1747 for a house with ten to fourteen windows, the tax stood at 6d. per window, fifteen to nineteen windows, 9d., and exceeding twenty or more, 1s.. The tax was raised six times between 1747 and 1808. By then the lowest band started at six windows. This was raised in 1825 to eight windows.

What to do with your slides

Paul Stamper FSA has a useful proposal: (.Salon380 The Society of Antiquaries of London Online Newsletter (Salon) ‘In part’, he writes, ‘it’s the sheer number of slides which can be so daunting. I’d suggest the only way forward is to be ruthless, and to do a rapid triage. First, family slides, including ones where offspring are providing scale against ruins, should be passed to relatives. The great mass which might be termed “Where I went on my holidays” – views of Exeter cathedral or the Leaning Tower of Pisa – plus slides copied from books for lecture purposes, could (and should) be binned with the clearest of consciences. This would then leave the third category, which is material potentially of interest to posterity such as pictures of excavations, or of lost or changed vernacular buildings, townscapes and industrial landscapes.

Introduction to Select Bibliography of Published London Diaries | British History Online

Here are a few London diaries to get through. Introduction to Select Bibliography of Published London Diaries | British History Online

Did the Mona Lisa have syphilis? | Art and design | The Guardian

The Guardian quotes the Old Operating Theatre Museum as its source for Snail - water which the Mona-Lisa is recorded as purchasing.  And as the Snail Water at the Museum was used for syphillis then makes the case that she had syphillis. I think this is very much a distant maybe. Because firstly does a woman buying a medicine always buy it for herself? Secondly, snail water was not just used for syphilis, it was used for a variety of ailments in that region of the body. This is part of what the Guardian says. Did the Mona Lisa have syphilis? | Art and design | The Guardian : Perhaps it was the disgusting, punitive nature of this concoction that made it seem a pungent cure. Snail water was still being used in the 18th century; books from the time are very specific about its medicinal value. The Pharmacopœia pauperum (1718) gives this recipe: Take Garden-Snails cleansed and bruised 6 Gallons, Earth-Worms washed and bruised 3 Gallons, of common Wormwood, Ground-Ivy, and Cardu

Portraits of Female Scientists at the Geology Society.

This looks like fun! Raising Horizons is a photographic exhibition organised by TrowelBlazers, in collaboration with photographer Leonora Saunders and supported by Prospect Union. The exhibition consists of 14 contemporary female scientists photographed as their historical counterpart. The portraits show the real diversity of women working today, at the same time as drawing striking visual connections to their forebears. The Geological Society

The Kiosks Of Whitechapel | Spitalfields Life

Excellent photos o the The Kiosks Of Whitechapel | Spitalfields Life in an article by the Gentle Author

Mobile Devices: engaging your audience on the go.

Digital Futures Training Programme Museum of London Mobile Devices: engaging your audience on the Go. I attended a half day training course at the Museum of London. These are some notes I made, It was give by Rhiannon Looseley, and Josh Blair from Museum of London Digital Learning and organised by Alec Ward. Any mistakes in these notes are mine and this has not been proof read or approved by them. Summary – the training showed how easy it was to include a digital element to educational workshops. There are lots of free apps which can be used for creative elements of a workshop. The apps are so simple that they hardly need to be taught, and in a 20 minute section of a workshop can help reinforce learning in a fun way and which will allow the participants to take something home to show or share with friends and parents. Ideas were also given as to how additional content to a visit can be created using digital. Don't do Digital for Digital's Sake Why its g

Agatha Christie in the Isokon building

This surprised me Agatha in this temple of Modernism. Quite a surprise. Isokon building - Wikipedia

"A Pioneer and a Founder": Remembering Ivor Noël Hume | Making History

"A Pioneer and a Founder": Remembering Ivor Noël Hume | Making History