The Great Ouse at High Tide

Some stuff about the Great Ouse at high tide, some stuff about evolutionary biology, lots of pictures and links.


Having finally completed (after a couple of false starts – fortunately not a DQ offence in the blogosphere!) my post about the Metropolitan line I now have this offering which includes some links and a couple of quality infographics.


This morning the Great Ouse was at very high tide. Cormorant Platform was almost enitrely submerged. There was also a high tide yesterday morning, but not quite so high as this – I have pictures from both for comparison purposes.

The first three pics are from yesterday.
The first three pics are from yesterday.

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One of several pics from today that indicate just why the marshland around old Boal Quay is most definitely not suitable for building on!
One of several pics from today that indicate just why the marshland around old Boal Quay is most definitely not suitable for building on!
Not suitable for building on!

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In addition to these, my walk this morning provided some other splendid pictures. I saw a small rodent by the water near the bandstand, and a hare, a member of the lagamorph order of mammals later on in the walk. The lagamorphs and rodents form a cohort (intermediate between an order and a class in the system of classification) called Glires. For a fun and digestible account of these relationships and others among living things I recommend Richard Dawkins’s book “The Ancestors Tale: A Pilgrimage to the Dawn of Life”.

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An excellent read.
An excellent read.

I also got a few more pictures of other things that I consider worth sharing…

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I have some petitions to share with you, but will start with the other links first:

First up, this from counterpunch titled “Return to Crisis – Things Keep Getting Worse

My next two links both come from the Corbyn campaign:

The wonderful kittysjones has this piece turning her guns on the Daily Mail for its (and Tory MuPpet Ian Liddell-Grainger’s) response to the news that UN Special Raporteur on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Catalina Devandas Aguilar will be investigating the UK’s welfare reforms to see if they constitute human rights abuses. Ms Jones’ excoriation of the Daily Mail is an excellent read.

My next link is to a story of yet another outrage perpetrated by religious zealots, brought to my attention by newhumanist. This is the story of an Indian rationalist murdered in his own home.

Courtesy of pertinentproblems comes this account of why TTIP would be bad for Europe.

Cosmos Up, a regular source of good material, have this about New Horizons’ next target.


First up, courtesy of comes this one having a go at Virgin Trains over the amount by which they are increasing their fares.

My next two links are both concerned with women’s rights:

My remaining petitions all concern one man, the


First, Maggie Zolobajluk’s well merited victory celebration (kudos also to Mike Sivier of Vox Political whose FOI request started the whole process).

Second, this from thepetitionsite demanding IDS’s resignation.

Finally, this petition to parliament to assess the full impact of cuts to support & social care for disabled people.


A couple of classics to end this post:

Corbyn hitting the nail on the head.
Corbyn hitting the nail on the head.
A hilarious guide to the dark art of quote manipulatiion.
A hilarious guide to the dark art of quote manipulation.

The World Athletics Championship – A Retrospective

A Retropsective on the World Athletics Championships, More on the Inhumane Despicable Sociopath case, some photographs and some important links.


As well as my title piece I have some photos, links and infographics to share, including a section following up my much shared “Inhumane Despicable Sociopath” post..


At the World Athletics Championships which concluded yesterday Britain won a total of four gold medals, their best ever. Mo Farah with both the 5,000 and 10,000m, Greg Rutherford (Long Jump) and Jessica Ennis-Hill (Heptathlon) all ascended the top step of the podium in Beijing, all having experienced Olympic misery there seven years previously. There were also a stack of best ever performances from less experienced British athletes, encapsulated by BBC TV in this infographic…

Young Guns

Shelayna Oskanp-Clarke had never previous broken two minutes for the 800m, and until Proctor did so no British female long jumper had ever gone beyond 7.00m. The performances of Asher-Smith and Hitchon were also British records. Dina Asher-Smith having already become the first British woman go sub 11 seconds for the 100m and being part of the 4*100m relay team now has three British records against her name.


Partly because of a twitter storm conceived by a well known twitter user named Gail which tied in perfectly with it my blog post about the revelations of DWP deaths, forced out after a long and hard fought campaign, was very widely shared. I have a number of superb related links to share in this section:

Now, a few infographics about this story, starting with this great tweet:

Killer Stat

This, formatted like a DWP case study, differs from them in being a true story:

Simons Story

Finally to the end this section, a screendump from a text book of the future that somehow appeared on my screen…



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I am dividing this in to two main subsections, starting with…


Within this section I am starting with a case which is reaching a conclusion soon…


I have blogged about this outrageous case of an autistic grade 6 boy facing a lifeltime with a felony conviction, but since the case is now going through the courts I include these two links:

Also, for twitter users (I have already done so btw), here is a temporary profile pic you may wish to use in solidarity with Kayleb:




I start with a couple of petitions:

I have three more links to purely text based material:

  1. From patienttalk comes this about helping a disabled child to have a better experience at school.
  2. This from Shelter about the fact that golf courses take up as much of England as does housing.
  3. This post from anotherangryvoice deals with the much peddled myth that national economies are like families.

My last link is to a wonderful protest song by Welsh singer Charlotte Church.

Australia Fall to Brutal Broad-side

An account of the extraordinary first day of the 4th ashes test at Trent Bridge, some links and infographics.


The 4th Ashes test at Trent Bridge got under way today. As well as a brief account of the day I have some links and other bits to share.


England 274-4 approaching the close of Day 1 with Root still there on 124 sounds like a solid, no frills opening day but actually England won the toss, put Australia in and this happened…


Stuart Broad’s (yes, Brisbane newspaper, the guy you call the tall English medium pacer) 8-15 beaten on wickets taken in an ashes innings by an English bowler only by Jim Laker’s Old Trafford double act of 1956 (9-37 1st inns, 10-53 2nd inns). In all test history only two cheaper eight wicket hauls have been taken, both in the 19th century for England against South Africa: 8-7 by George Lohmann and 8-11 by Johnny Briggs.

The irony behind this tale of woe (for them) is that Australia, acting very much in the style of 1990s England, had attempted to strengthen their batting by bringing specialist batsman Shaun Marsh in for his all-rounder brother Mitchell.

The nearest an opening day of an ashes match in my lifetime has come to being this one-sided was at Melbourne in 2010 (Aus 98 all out, Eng 157-0 in response).

Sometime between now and 6PM Monday, unless the weather puts up more of a fight than the Aussies have managed, the little urn will be returning to English possession.

For more check this word document: THE 4TH ASHES TEST MATCH


In my last post but one I mentioned a story about an autistic child being refused access to a supervised play area in a branch of IKEA. Well I have now used to create a petition around this issue. I urge you all to sign and share.

Some of my readers may also a recall a 38degrees petition regarding a museum whose creator gained planning permission by lying about his intentions. Well the story has moved a little further, with this effort to create a museum that really is dedicated to women’s history.

My penultimate general share comes courtesy of thepoorsideoflife and is a horrifying story about a full-time carer being scandalously treated.

Finally, courtesy of Patheos, comes this story of a small victory for secularism.


I am delighted to have several autism-related stories to share:



Two things:

  1. I hope that you have enjoyed this and that some of you will share.
  2. I would like to end by thanking Stephen Hurrell, author of the book I reviewed in my last post for acknowledging said post and following me on twitter.

Sunday, Monday, Today

An account of the last few days, with some excellent pictures, some important links and a great infographic courtesy of Dr Lisa Sulsenti.


My last blog post was about my cousin Olivia’s wedding on Saturday. This post tells of Sunday, Monday and today, with plenty of pictures. Also, I have some links and infographics to share. Talking of sharing, I hope that some of you will choose to share this post as well.


While possessed of precisely zero architectural appeal, the Kegworth Hotel and Conference Centre is clean and comfortable…


I have plenty of good pictures from inside the hotel…

This is a 24 hour roman numeral clock - can you spot the deliberate mistake in the numbering?
This is a 24 hour roman numeral clock – can you spot the deliberate mistake in the numbering?

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Detail from the ornamental glasswork at the reception desk.
Detail from the ornamental glasswork at the reception desk.

My bedroom had some pictures as well…

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You will note a degree of duplication between the public pictures and those in the rooms!
You will note a degree of duplication between the public pictures and those in the rooms!


My cousin Richard and his fiancee Ida are off to her native Sweden soon, and he had the idea of a farewell pub lunch at the Plough in Normanton on Soar. Eventually after a few cancellations, 12 of us were there for this excellent meal, which we ate outside overlooking the river itself, much used by boats and birds…

Richard and Ida
Richard and Ida

I have lots of splendid pictures from this event, and both the food and drink were magnificent.


Tables overlooking the Soar
Tables overlooking the Soar


The local product - look up Leciester Rugby Club for more on the name.
The local product – look up Leciester Rugby Club for more on the name.

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As well as boats at surface level, a plane flew high over our heads.
As well as boats at surface level, a plane flew high over our heads.


I travelled back as a passenger in my aunt’s car, since we live very close together in King’s Lynn. Taking pictures while in transit is not easy, but this one worked…


After helping my aunt to unload her car I walked back to my flat by way of another river on which boat travel is not unknown, the Great Ouse…



Knowing the effect that such a busy weekend would have on me I had taken the precaution of booking this week as leave to enable myself to have some quiet time. Last night was a group meeting for KLASS (more on this in a future blog post), but apart from that it has been a very quiet couple of days.

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To give you an idea of how vast an eyesore this building is, this photo was taken from a point that is a 20-minute walk from the building itself!
To give you an idea of how vast an eyesore this building is, this photo was taken from a point that is a 20-minute walk from the building itself!



I have as usual plenty of links to share with you, starting with…


  1. From the Humane Society comes this on banning trophy hunting.
  2. From comes the call for the US Government to do the right thing and extradite Walter Palmer to Zimbabwe so that he can be charged for his crime.
  3. Huffington Post provide this story about a certain Sabrina Corgatelli posing alongside her kills.
  4. And this is’s take on the same story.
  5. From the same source as 4 comes this on Giraffes.
  6. From comes this climate change petition.


From 38Degrees by way of Green Party leader Natalie Bennett, comes a petition entitled “Celebrate suffragettes not serial killers”. I quote the opening paragraph of their explanation and urge you to sign and share:

“A new museum gained planning permission by promising ‘the only dedicated resource in the East End to women’s history’, but has now been unveiled as a venue dedicated to the violent crimes of Jack the Ripper”.

A shocking story of religious persecution from Patheos in which a seven year old was the victim, merely for telling a classmate that they did not attend church

My next story concerns a police officer who is already facing a lawsuit for handcuffing children in a very dangerous way, and should as the story makes clear be suffering more than that (defo a jail term measurable in years for this crime).

My next link is to a petition calling on Lego to produce toys that show disabled people in a positive light.

Now, a sad blast from the past. Unbelievably Kevin Healey is still suffering impersonation on twitter and still apparently receiving no protection – please either sign and share the petition if you have not already done so or keep on sharing it to apply pressure to twitter.

I found my last link by way of the aforementioned Natalie Bennett, and it is to a story in the Yorkshire Evening Post about a crackerjack plan for a disused railway viaduct in Leeds.


Dr Lisa Sulsenti has produced this infographic providing guidelines on fireworks…


I have some important stuff to share with you before getting into the main body of my post, and I can promise you plenty of cool pictures.


First up today, courtesy of 38degrees comes this tribute to Ealing Hospital.

Next, from comes an update on the “Justice for Kayleb” petition. Having just mentioned one young boy with autism, I take the opportunity of introducing you to another, via a twitter feed set up to support him.

Tom Pride is on fine form, with two pieces exposing the Tories in different ways:
1)A selection of especially vile opinions expressed by Tories.

2)The story of a supposedly undecided audience member at a recent TV debate who was actually known to be a Tory.

My final link is to a picture that tells more than many words, and segues into the rest of the post.

This is the graphic I have linked to, with grateful acknowledgement to Team4Nature.
This is the graphic I have linked to, with grateful acknowledgement to Team4Nature.


I decided to do a very brief (words wise) post about nature because I received some important information that required sharing from Team4Nature, and having been out for a walk yesterday I have some pictures to share that fit with the topic.

Therefore, on the principle that one picture can speak a thousand words, here are some of the best from yesterday…


This is from Thursday, as is the next pic.
This is from Thursday, as is the next pic.

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A white butterfly enjoying itself among some green leaves.
A white butterfly enjoying itself among some green leaves.


Saving Ashcroft

This is a personal account of Thursday’s public meeting of the Save Ashcroft campaign, with some extra information and contact details for the campaign thrown in.

On Thursday 8th January in Norwich there was a public meeting organised by the Save Ashcroft Campaign.

Ashcroft is a women only mental health facility in Norfolk – the only one in the entire county to be precise.

To quote from the online petition that has been running on this issue, which is available at

Why is this important?

Ashcroft provides essential care services for women who experience mental health difficulties. It is an almost unique service, being one of only two women-only specialist mental health units in the country and is a hugely valuable resource.

Norfolk should be proud of its assets, not trying to save a few pounds forcing Ashcroft to close its doors.

More information about Ashcroft and this campaign can be found at:

To contact the campaign email or visit the Save Ashcroft Facebook page or @SaveAshcroft on twitter. Mention twitter, my own following on @aspitweets has just topped the 1,500 mark.

The meeting was very inspiring with lots of moving stories from people who have previously benefited from the existence of Ashcroft. Simon Wright MP, ultra loyal member of the coalition government whose cuts (which he voted for time after time) showed up and was given an absolute roasting, which was quite amusing to listen to. The current state of play is that funding has been secured for seven beds for three years, which is excellent but not enough – the only acceptable final position is that Ashcroft’s future is 100% guaranteed.

I only have a few pictures this time…

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