Dartmoor and Lydford George

The moor is a magnificent expanse in a very crowded countryside. These photos cover two aspects – the moorland around Drake’s Aquaduct and Lydford Gorge, on the edge of Dartmoor.

Dartmoor

Stream

Splash

Path at Lydford Gorge

Grass

Devil’s Cauldron

The Falls

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Do You Know About the Naylor Report?

Do you know what the Naylor Report is? Have you even heard ot it? Well, its one of those pieces of NHS business that is conducted in the background – not secret but certainly not headline news. It will radically change the character of the NHS and you won’t know a thing about it until its all over.

If you want to read up on it you can pore through the entire 65 page document at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/nhs-property-and-estates-naylor-review; however, a brief summary might get you up to speed. The author of the report, Robert Naylor, was asked to survey NHS “surplus” property with an eye toward increasing revenue. He recommended that anywhere from £2 billion to £5 billion worth of property might be worth disposing. This would include car parks, multi story buildings and redundant hospitals.

Note that last one.

In case the various hospital trusts are reluctant to part with their property, the report recommends a bonus for jumping on board and punishment in the form of denial of use of capital funds for building repair to organizations that refuse to go along.

Although some trusts, for example London area hospitals, may (or may not) be sitting on valuable redundant property, many in more rural areas have no assets other than cottage and community hospitals, which are often important to local communities. How do they get to be redundant? Well you close them.

And if these properties are sold, will the profits go to the local trusts? No, they would be returned to the NHS Property Services, a private corporation that manages and oversees sale of NHS property. There are suggestions that these profits might be used to fund as many as 2500 new houses, possibly for medical personnel, but then that might not happen at all.

The bottom line, and there always is one, is that this kind of sell off is only needed because Jeremy Hunt has determined that the NHS needs to save £22 billion over the next few years. This can be done with so-called efficiency savings, service cutbacks (for example, A&E closures), and of course the sale of property.

If you sell off the store, it will be so much cheaper to operate.

 

 

Posted in Healthcare UK, life in the UK, NHS, Save the NHS, UK Politics, UK Poloitics | Leave a comment

Abstracts

I’ve been working on abstracts all year. The form is new for me and really is a stretch. I am way out of my comfort zone, but learning a lot.  Right now I’m working on images that measure depth of field, textures and geometric line

The tide line at Trebarwith Strand.

Lilly

Eastern State Penitentiary

s.

St. Stephens Church door.

Shadows

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Norway

I am usually wary of posting my holiday photos, but these come by special request.

Last fall is took a cruise up the Norwegian coast on the Huertigruten line. The boats deliver mail, packages and freight as well as passengers so it isn’t your usual cruise. No entertainment, no gambling, no dressing for dinner. Just sea, fjords, lots of villages and towns and plenty of time to read, sleep and dream.

Lots of people spent time on deck buried in books. It was a little chilly to my taste. We were nearing the Arctic Circle.

This was the ship we sailed on. It anchored in this inlet where we saw a whale surface.

Two lovely sunsets at sea

The crew had a ceremony when we crossed the Arctic Circle and the King of the Sea dropped ice down your back if you got caught. I didn’t.

Snow in the distance

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Shooting inside a casino

I’ve been told that photography inside casinos is prohibited and even carrying a camera can get you thrown out. But recently I was in Auckland N.Z. where there is a casino embedded in an entertainment complex with hotels, movie theaters and restaurants. The entrance to the theater takes you on a balcony overlooking the gaming floor of the casino. I was blown away by the combinations of darkness and garish lighting, by the people hypnotized by their games and by the electric atmosphere. So I pulled out my Sony A7R and started shooting while my partner kept an eye out for security. Eventually a guard did appear and took an interest in us, but by that time I had plenty of shots. Some are blot.

Slot Machines

Slot Machines

Lady in a Red Jacket

Lady in a Red Jacket

Casino Floor and Bar

Casino Floor and Bar

21

21

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Exhibition Time

Two Old |Boilers and a Camera aka Julia Hobday and yours truly, are mounting the second on their ongoing series of exhibitions. It is a frantic but joyous time, racing around getting last minute frames and mounts, hanging, straightening, rehanging and chatting up the maintenance staff so they’ll be careful when they take our work down to put up a mirror for a wedding tomorrow. The gallery doubles as a wedding venue so sometimes exhibits go up only to come down.

What follows are a few examples of my work this year.Wind Turbines 1 (6 of 35)

Men a Tol Stones

Men a Tol Stones

Exeter St, Davids 6:30am

Exeter St, Davids 6:30am

Lottery Lady

Lottery Lady

Minions June 2015

Minions June 2015

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Dreams of Hawkes Bay

A great many of the people we love live in New Zealand, on the North Island in Auckland and Hawkes Bay. Every year on year when England is wet, windy and dark, we climb aboard a plane and transport ourselves to summer with its long days, warm nights, fresh fruits and hours of friendship and good conversation. Unfortunately, this year’s trip had to be cancelled because of the injection schedule for my AMD treatments. Its not that I don’t like holidays in the village, but this time of year my heart wants to fly and for now it is grounded. So I did the next best thing. I went through some of the photos I took last year to relive the moments.  These are of places around Hawkes Bay.

The headlands on the coast near Waimarama.

The headlands on the coast near Waimarama.

Granny cottage

Granny cottage

Waimaramra (7 of 13)

Posted in Auckland, Hawkes Bay, New Zealand | 5 Comments