Sunday 20 June 2021

Sunday Variety



Today's service is live and ON-LINE.
 Click on this link (here),
which will take you to the YouTube page.
Then click on the icon for today's date.


THAT Footty Match!

fbb has never been a great lover of "the beautiful game", so needs to draw his knowledge and understanding from others. So this is how it appears. Despite the support of several bus companies, it was a draw.
But Scotland won because they should have lost!

And England lost because they should have won. The English pundits could not bring themselves to say how poor England's performance was, using words like disappointing and lacklustre.
But apparently, both teams are "capable of going forward to the next stage" - or, presumable are similarly incapable.

It's good to get that cleared up!

fbb will stick to public transport both in full size and 4mm to the foot models.

HS2 - Let's Get Real?
Some organisations, whilst campaigning hard, seem to have a more reasoned view on the highly polarising question of HS2 versus "nature". fbb is loathe to get involved because both sides, understandably, only quote the statistics that support their view. Here is the Woodland Trust's summary.
It is, frankly, hard to see how any new rail route can avoid some destruction, but, equally nowadays, any major civil engineering contract can be fastidious in its requirement to replace and even extend areas of lost greenery.

So here is a bit of factual information, possibly. The map below shows (or purports to show), in bright green, all the areas of protected woodland in the broad brush area of The Chilterns through which HS2 will controversially speed.
Inside the small yellow circle is a small chunk of protected woodland ...
... and the pink bit that will be "destroyed".

Bearing in mind the vast amount of new planting, this MIGHT be a reasonable price to pay for taking oodles of cars off the road?

Clearly the concerns are real in the minds of Tory Party voters!

Another Heritage Livery
Like many urban areas, greater Newcastle-upon-Tyne spawned a number of small companies taken over, fairly quickly, by the British Electric Traction Company.

One such was Tyneside which started with a single tram route ...
... which ran from North Shields to Gosforth and Wallsend.
It operated from 1902 to 1930 when it closed down. But in 1920 the company began running motorbuses in a rather distinguished green livery.
It was absorbed by Northern (later Go Ahead) but the use of the name and livery continued ...
... until National Bus days; but still the fleetname hung on until 1975.

The Tynemouth company had a similar history but started earlier, in 1882 no less, although the company was officially incorporated in 1899.
Again, buses joined the fleet, this time in a rich maroon colour.
Buses in poppy red appeared ...
... and for a while the company name appeared on "Newcastle" yellow vehicles.
But, historically, the first Tynemouth bus ran in 1921 to Blyth.

This 100th anniversary of this event is commemorated by a Go Ahead North East heritage livery. The bus reprises that maroon paint job, and includes all three versions of the Tynemouth fleetname; offside original ...
... modernised at the back end ...
... and National Bus Company on the nearside.
Very nicely done indeed!

Hulleys Does It Again
First, Alton Towers ...
... then Manchester ...
... then Manchester Airport.
... and now:-
Skeggy on Saturday and Scarborough on Sunday from 3rd July.

This is a real blast from the past when most bus companies would run excursions to the seaside at the weekends during the summer.
Another brave step forward by Hulleys.

And now; what you have all been waiting for ...
One of the problems with this railway modelling lark is that the railway is outside and much of the storage is outside in well sealed plastic boxes.
That meant that whenever work was needed or trains were to be run there would need to be a sort through various boxes to find what you wanted; a search which was often fruitless as tools and materials had disappeared to the planet Zog in some kind of timewarp,

So buy a cheap plastic flat pack cupboard. 
Snag number one - there were no textual instructions, just an exploded diagram which led, rapidly, to an exploded fbb. The finished cupboard was held together with little rubber grommets which pinged off into eternity.
The back panel was made of very thin flexible plastic ...
... which pinged out of its slots at the slightest provocation or no provocation at all.

In essence it required an octopus to assemble it! Mrs fbb helped, but the impending threat of violence to both persons by both persons meant that her support became moral and remote!

Every time you thought all the bits were in place, something twanged. The problem was one of very basic engineering - there were no triangles! Triangular brackets give strength and rigidity. Absence of triangles produces weakness and the wobbles.

So glue on some triangles and all will be well.
And it was, hopefully! Models and scenic modules were loaded in and the doors closed and "bolted" with the help of a small screwdriver.
But, the next day, fbb was coffing his quaffee when he head a clunk.

Oh yes; oh no! A gust of wind had pushed the cupboard over to rest at an ungainly angle on the fbb limo, pinged open the doors and cast a heap of models ignominiously onto the parking area. Nothing much was broken, but hastily it was all shoved back in a heap.
Thanks to the presence of two very heavy oak and glass Sheffield Transport bus stop flags (they don't make them like that any more!) the cupboard is temporarily stable.
But it needs a permanent stability, a problem which is currently with the consulting engineer (fbb), the project manager (fbb), the maintenance department (fbb) and the focus group (fbb).

Despite this crisis and its effect on fbb's mental health there will be a blog tomorrow!

Puzzle picture item postponed until tomorrow.

 Next Rail Re-opening Report : Monday 21st June 

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