Thursday, 6 July 2017

Ideal scenery

Check out this Robert MacFarlane tweet, and the replies that follow for a whole host of ideas on different people's ideal landscapes... Some wonderful images and brief descriptions ideal for sharing...


Sunday, 2 July 2017

Islands: a Radio 4 season

A series of programmes which are being played in a series on Island life. This is available to listen to again for a month or so, so if you're reading this after Summer 2017 you may not be able to hear some or all of them.
Thanks to the wonderful artist Ellis O' Connor for the tipoff to this on Twitter.
If you're interested in the idea of islands, then these will be well worth following. A list of some of the programmes is here.
I'm particularly interested in the sharing of some stories by George Mackay Brown, who is forever connected with the town of Stromness on Orkney.
Some will also be interested in a repeat of Bill Bryson's 'Notes from a Small Island', which is available in five episodes.

This connects with the work I am going to be doing over the summer with Peter Knight, funded by an Innovative Geography Teaching Grant. You will see our work on this developing on this website.

Image: Copyright BBC - used to publicise the Islands season - reminiscent of Roger Dean's Yes album covers...

Around the World in 80 Days

A few days ago, Mark Beaumont visited the Reform Club. He was paying homage to Phileas Fogg: the hero of Jules Verne's 'Around the World in 80 Days'.
The reason was that after his earlier record breaking circumnavigation by bike, Mark headed off earlier today on an attempt to go around the world in 80 days.


I will be introducing the journey to our students tomorrow, so that they can hopefully follow the journey over the summer, and there will be some rewards for those who show some evidence of this on their return in September, by which time Mark will hopefully be well on his way... what an epic journey and physical and mental effort lies ahead of him...

To follow the journey, see Mark Beaumont on Facebook, or follow @MrMarkBeaumont on Twitter.

The main website for the journey is at Artemis World Cycle.
Here's the route:
Images: Copyright Mark Beaumont on Facebook/Twitter / The Guardian

For teachers wanting to introduce students to the journey, Mark has teamed up with Twinkl Resources, who have created a series of resources. These are a mixture of FREE and subscriber only, and are attractively presented and linked to some useful curriculum areas.

Mark is raising money for Orkid Studio.


Orkidstudio works to benefit communities through innovative architecture, construction and social enterprise.

We believe that creativity has the power to inspire and instil pride within people regardless of race, nationality or circumstance and we use architecture, design and enterprise as tools for relieving poverty and transforming lives.

Our build projects focus on the process of design and construction rather than just the final product. We believe this process is a powerful tool for affecting social change and empowering people through the sharing of skills and knowledge on site.

With a strong belief in the power of enterprise to affect social change, we work on projects and with partners that support and drive the local economy. We engage local resources and women in construction to create high quality built spaces that promote health, education and equality.

Mark's hoping to raise £10 for every mile that he cycles.

Wednesday, 21 June 2017

The Second Brightest Star

A surprise new album from Big Big Train, to be released on Friday, just 2 months after the previous one...
Liking this first track, and the theme of the album

“Our writing over this period has focused on the English landscape, the people that work on the land and their folklore stories."
This album:
“explore landscapes, rivers and meeting places and take the listener on voyages of discovery across the world and to the stars.”

Also looking forward to seeing them live later in the year...

Sunday, 4 June 2017

Lauret Savoy on landscape


Lauret Savoy, author of Trace: Memory, History, Race, and the American Landscape, talks with Associate Editor Sergei Lobanov-Rostovsky about seeing with new eyes, how landscape leaves its traces on us, and the unvoiced history of the American continent.
Savoy argues that contending with both the beauty of American landscape and the violence of American history requires recognizing that the power to segregate memory has worked in concert with the power to segregate people throughout American history, and how a fragmented understanding of human experience on this continent has led to an artificial separation between ideas about nature and ideas of race, concepts that were intimately connected even before this nation began.