New site!

I’ve now moved on to a self hosted blog, and you can find me here:

See you there!


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Badminton Action Shots!

As part of the Get the World Moving challenge, The University are holding free classes in the Sports Centre. Last week, which was the first activity, involved me playing Badminton with some work colleagues. In order to publicise the event, some Action Shots were taken. I use the phrase Action loosely there, as it’s the first time I’d played for a number of years.


Mind you I enjoyed it that much that I played again this evening!

I also took part in the second activity last night, which was a “Boot Camp” exercise, which was a kind of  Circuit Training Lite! It wasn’t too strenuous, but got the blood pumping!

Meanwhile back to the Badminton, on sunday I came across the Rainbow Backhand Club whilst looking at some of the other blogs I subscribe to. It’s a post by one of my favourite bloggers, Sya over at Make Me a Storybook . check it out, it’s a lovely blog


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Global Student Forum 2011 – Dying for Life

Earlier this month my daughter Devon told me that she was one of ten students selected from her school to attend the National Conference of the 2011 Global Student Forum (GSF 2011).

The Mission of Global Student Forum is to enable school students to critically explore contemporary development issues and their role as global citizens. 

The conference is called Dying for Life: Save the mothers, save the world.

The idea behind GSF 2011 is to “inspire and equip your sixth formers with the knowledge and skills to educate their peers about the greatest health inequity in the world today – the fact that 99% of all pregnancy related deaths occur in the developing world.

There are four learning objectives

1.  Why does a mother die from pregnancy-related complications nearly every minute? 

2.  Why is maternal health so important to families and communities?

3.  What are the barriers to achieving the fifth Millennium Development Goal (MDG5)?

4. How can we act globally and locally towards MDG5? 

The conference is sponsored by The Department for International Development and it’s featured charity is The White Ribbon Alliance for Safe Motherhood.




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Weekly Photo Challenge – Morning

I’ve searched long and hard through my photos to find a morning related shot and as it’s less than two weeks till we go to the Glastonbury Festival, I thought this one would be rather appropriate.

It’s a photo of my son Thomas just surfacing on the morning of 26th June 2008, looking somewhat the worse for wear after the previous night’s festivities!

The 2008 festival was quite controversial as this was the year that Jay Z was one of the headliners. There was alot of fuss about whether a rap artist should be performing, with Noel Gallagher of Oasis particularly vehement in voicing his opinion. But Jay Z pulled off a master stroke by opening his set with Oasis’s Wonderwall.

The sheer variety of the festival and humour of the festival goers is summed up by this placard, referring both to Jay Z and Shaking Stevens, who was also performing at the festival.


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Thursday Tipple

This week’s Thursday Tipple is Bombardier Burning Gold Real Ale brewed by Wells and Young brewery in Bedford. The name Burning Gold comes from William Blake’s hymn Jerusalem.

Here’s the description of Burning Gold from their website:

A precious blend of the finest malts, hops and natural mineral water produces an instantly refreshing beer. Zesty aromas waken the senses, leading to a dry, crisp flavour with more than a hint of citrus on the palate and a smooth lasting finish.

Apparently Wells and Young are the UK’s largest private brewing company, and date back to 1875.

One of the interesting facts about Wells and Young, is that they own the UK rights to brew the Jamaican lager, Red Stripe. A further bit of delving on their website revealed that Red Stripe can be traced back to 1928.

The Red Stripe website is fascinating, with some interesting articles on the history of Jamaican music.






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Get the world moving!

Whilst I was studying, my colleagues at work entered me, as part of a team from our department, into a walking challenge.

It’s called the Global Corporate Challenge and I’m part of a team of seven and over 16 weeks I have to wear a pedometer and log the number of steps on the GCC website. There are 14 teams entered from the University of Lincoln.

All seven team members contribute to the team total and the GCC website coverts these steps into kilometers and plots them on a virtual map of the world.

We started on May 19th, and here’s a record of my progress to date:

To date I’ve walked 133,322 steps which equates to 85.33 km since 19 May.

The University are supporting this event by holding a number of activities at the Sports Centre, the first of which was held today. Originally we were supposed to be playing volleyball, but as only 4 people turned up we ended up playing Badmington for 90 minutes!

Next week, it’s Zumba, now that should be a laugh….

In order to promote the event


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Weekly Photo Challenge – Numbers

I’ve been searching through my photos to find some I could use for this week’s photo challenge and the best I could do have just one number, 7480.

This was the number I was given when I ran in last year’s Run to the Beat Half Marathon in London. It started and finished at the O2 complex, formerly the Millenium Dome.

The reason I selected this marathon was that it had music stations set up around the course, with some of them having bands performing,.

It was my first half marathon in over 20 years. I’d done some training beforehand, but nowhere near enough, so it was somewhat of an ordeal, to say the least! I was hoping for a time of under two hours, and up to 11 miles was on target, but then cramp set in, so the last two miles were somewhat slower. I ended up with a time of two hours ten minutes which wasn’t too bad.

I ran on behalf of a charity called Malaika Kids , which helps raise funds to house orphans in Tanzania. I raised around £350 for the charity, which made it all worthwhile.

So here’s a few photos of yours truly with my number 7480


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Thursday Tipple

After a break for my exams, the Thursday Tipple is back!

This week’s Thursday Tipple is Badger First Gold from Hall and Woodhouse, Independent Family Brewers based in Dorset.

First gold is the name of the single dwarf hop used in this ale. Apparently these hops grow in low hedgerows, “more reminiscent of a vineyard”.

The beer itself has hints of orange zest and dried apricots, and at only 4% abv, went down a treat after a hard day’s work!


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Pikes Peak Cog Railway

Whilst rummaging through some old photos and souvenirs from my travels, I came across this brochure from the Pikes Peak Cog Railway

This was one of the highlights of my 2003 visit to Colorado, I’d been up Pikes Peak before, but never by the cog train.

The journey began at the Manitou Springs depot at 6571 feet, and followed a stream through a steep canyon filled with thick pines and huge boulders. At 11,500 feet the train went above timberline, and among the boulders and tundras I saw Rocky Mountain Big Horned Sheep.

On the final portion of the ascent, I could see Manitou Springs and Colorado Springs, as well as the red rocks of Garden of the Gods.

According to the guide, the view from Pikes Peak is what inspired “America the Beautiful” by Katherine Lee Bates.

The summit is 14,110 feet high and I could see Denver, 60 miles away.

Thr Pikes Peak Cog Train has been running for over 100 years and to quote ” has carried millions of passengers in safety and comfort on an unforgettable and panoramic trip”.

I’d certainly second that, it was truly unforgettable.

Now I’ve found the brochure, I need to find my photos!

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23 Sleeps till Glastonbury!

Now that my exams are over, I can focus my attention on more pleasurable activities, such as the forthcoming Glastonbury Festival. It’s less than three weeks until the gates open on 22nd June 2011 and the tickets were delivered last week, so the antipation levels are mounting!

On my other blog, myrockdatediary , I’ll be recalling some of my experiences at the festival and adding youtube clips of some of the many artists I’ve seen there over the past four years.

But to tie in with the this week’s photo challenge theme of water, here’s a photo taken at the 2007 festival the morning after a torrential downpour flooded the Pyramid Stage field. As you can imagine it was a bit of a mudbath that year

And just to give you an idea of how big the festival is here’s this year’s line up:


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