Tamar Living

Quickie #2 12th November 2019

I popped into this local visitor attraction this morning.

When I asked Brian, the Centre volunteer for today why he joined this tiny new museum as a guide. His answer was simple.

” Because I’ve been in construction all my life.I just love seeing something that has been designed by engineers, fulfilling its purpose effectively” he explained

Enthusiasts are so great to talk to, alongside his extensive knowledge of both bridges I also learnt that Brian had started life in a drawing office.His technical drawing skills were way more advanced than my meagre ‘O’ level. He explained that final, finished-build,technical drawings were done on waxed linen and that the fabric was amazing quality, if there was any spare you could take it home and wash the wax off to reveal beautiful fabric to sew with.

It must be a fabulous experience to draw on waxed linen, I find it hard to imagine the process. The smells and textures would be so different from the usual paper. Perfect though if a tea spillage occurred..

Amazing fact, and the excuse for this picture. The workers on the bridge wore normal every day clothes and used no safety gear. There are photographs of men at work in flat caps and suits. Maybe not as visually pleasing as this shot, more ordinary. This image is a strange mix of ordinariness in an extraordinary location.

Image credit. Tamar Bridge Visitor Centre

Friday 15th November 2019

This stretch of mud is one of my favourite sights. It appears on the banks of the Tamar. Pill Creek feeds into the main River at Saltmill; at low tide it’s serpiginous track into the main body of water is clear to see. There are many others that can be seen from the road bridge but this one is easy to get close to on foot. I never plan my walks to deliberately to see it but serendipity is kind several times a year. Time stops still for a bit when I catch it at perfection. It recalibrates me until the next time.

Plymouth quietly having a moment.

A Plymouth Mackerel- Juliet Cornell

Plymouth was quietly having a bit of a moment in the National Media this week. Firstly the Eddystone Lighthouse was a google doodle. Strangely to mark its 321st anniversary of the first time it was lit.

https://www.google.com/doodles/321st-anniversary-of-the-first-lighting-of-eddystone-lighthouse

Then The Guardian ran an article about the city centre being designated as a conservation area.

https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2019/nov/16/plymouth-city-centre-designated-conservation-area?CMP=share_btn_link

This could be a coincidence or a sign that the City PR team are ramping up the pressure now Mayflower 400 is just edging into view. Commemorating a 400 year shared history with what is now the USA and the sailing of the Mayflower , Mayflower 400 is a multi location celebration. Plymouth was the port the Mayflower successfully set sail from to reach America.

https://www.mayflower400uk.org/

2020 also sees the opening of The Box, a long awaited reincarnation of the Museum and Art gallery. Reimagined and re-engineered to bring contemporary, world class exhibition space to the West Country.

A Hard-Hat tour of The Box

https://plymhearts.org/thebox/

An earlier article in the Guardian puts into perspective the struggle the city is overcoming to grab some headlines. The actual amount of war time damage was so shrouded in secrecy that it is rarely mentioned in the way London or Coventry are. Without proper mention of the damage it is difficult to then applaud the regeneration.

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/apr/11/post-industrial-plymouth-business-social-enterprise?CMP=share_btn_link

It’s good to see Plymouth getting some well deserved positive press.