Friday, 10 October 2008

Sudley House

Explore the library at Sudley House where you'll find works by Briton Riviere, Turner, Arrowsmith and Samuel Walters.

What is your favourite painting at Sudley House? Read about one of our favourites in the blog.

Featured artist
Edward Coley Burne-Jones is one of the great artistic figures of the 19th century. Find out more about his work here.

Lady Lever Art Gallery

A rare opportunity to see highlights of Lord Leverhulme's collection including watercolours and drawings by Burne-Jones, Constable, Rossetti, Cox and Turner.

Not all of Meresysides art is to be found on the Liverpool side,Indeed,it was may late father who said 'son if you want to see the best art,go and see the art gallery in Port Sunlight' so we did,astounding,is one of the better terms to use about this gallery,even more so when one thinks about it being the private collection of Lord Leverhulme,he was the founder of Sunlight Soap and the way he found packaging to be more acceptable to consumers.

Liverpool 1680 painting

This major exhibition follows 800 years of Liverpool history, from medieval 'Lyverpoole' to 21st century 'Livercool', the European Capital of Culture.

The story behind the painting

The story The painting shows an imaginary scene in a Royalist house during the English Civil War. The Parliamentarian soldiers have taken over the house and are questioning the little boy about his Royalist father.

During the English Civil War (1642-1649), Roundheads (Parliamentarians) and Cavaliers (Royalist) fought against each other in order to gain control of the country. The Roundheads were unhappy with the way King Charles I ruled the country. The Cavaliers were loyal to the King. Oliver Cromwell, a leading Roundhead, had the King executed and then became leader of the country.

The little girl
Behind the boy, his sister stands crying, probably at the thought of what her brother may say, or of being questioned herself.

The young girl was modelled by the artist's niece, Mary Yeames (1868 - 1960).

Who's who

The boy
In the painting we see the young son of a Cavalier being questioned as to the whereabouts of his father by Roundhead soldiers. Yeames was inspired to paint the picture after recognising that frankness and childhood honesty could lead to disastrous consequences. In this situation, if the boy answers honestly, he may endanger his father. However, to save him, the boy may be forced to lie. To the Victorians, children were seen as ideals of truth and honesty. The boy's dilemma would have made this painting very appealing to them.

The young boy in the painting was based on Yeames' nephew, James Lambe Yeames (1873 - 1960). He was about five years old when this was painted.

The women
At the far left of the painting two other women, probably the boy's elder sister and mother, can be seen. The anxiety about his possible answer can clearly be seen on his mother's face. Through a doorway, more Roundhead soldiers are also visible, further emphasising the family's helplessness.

The questioning soldier
This man is asking the boy where his Royalist father is. The soldier and the boy's father support different sides in the English Civil War. If the boy tells him, his father may be captured, or worse. His expression seems calm and friendly. However, he may be behaving this way to try and trick the boy into giving up his father.

The kind soldier
Yeames painted the Roundheads sensitively. The guard with the sobbing young girl seems to be comforting her. This may suggest his sympathy for their situation. Perhaps he has children of his own and would not like to see them questioned in this way.

The soldier with the jewel-box
The gentleman standing at the table, however, appears to be opening the family jewel-box. This and the opened chest in the foreground of the painting hint at the Roundheads searching the house and helping themselves to the family's belongings.

Liverpool european capital of culture 2008

Liverpools Walker Art Gallery

It came as a suprise to some and a blow to others (manchester) when Liverpool was declared as the Capital of European Culture for 2008,how can this be some may ask,well Liverpool has a fantastic heritage going back to Roman times and of course we have some of the worlds most famous paintings,one is in The Walker Art Gallery,it was painted by William Frederick Yeames, 1835-1918,the painting was bought in 1878 and in the first year after the gallery opened,it is one of the favourite paintings on display,there is so much to know about the picture and what is happening.Watch this blog,I will expand on who is whom,what is being said and why.

Thursday, 9 October 2008

The leaving of Liverpool

This will always be a subject close to my heart,it is of course what I did myself,I emigrated to find a new and exciting life elsewhere,I certainaly did! not everyone had the same success,many left after the terrible potato famine in Ireland,imagine,your entire life and future is changed for ever because the potato crops failed,the picture is I beleive of such a family,mother and father,children,bags packed and leaving Liverpool and sailing west to America,it could be any other destination but it fits the needs to this story.

These words are not exactly in the right context with what I have writen above but the places and departures are the same?

Leaving of Liverpool

Fare thee well the Prince's landing stage
River Jersey fare of thee well
I am bound for California
A place I know right well
So fare thee well my own true of
When I return United and we will be
It's not the leaving of Liverpool that grieves me
But my darling when I think of thee

Yes I'm bound for California
By the way of the stormy Cape Horn
But you know I'll write you a letter my love
When I am homeward bound

I have shipped on a Yankee clipper ship
Davy Crockett he is her name
And her captain's name is Burges
And they say she's a floating shame

It's my second trip with Burgess in the Crockett
And I reckon to know him well
If a man is a sailor then he'll be all right
But if not why he's sure in hell

Oh the tug is waiting at the Pier Head
To take us down the stream
Her sales are loose and the anchors stowed
So fare thee well again

Fare thee well to lower Frederick Street
Anson terrace and the Old Park Lane
For I know that it's going to be a long long time
Before I see you again

Liverpools Maggie May

Maggie as The Simpsons know her

The Liver Buildings,Liverpool.

Rod Stewart had a megga hit in the late sixties with the song Maggie May,based on a folk tune about a lady of the night of the same name,she will have frequented Liverpools waterfront and no doubt looked up many a time at the clock on the citys famous Liver Buildings,once the headquaters of Cunard,untill unions strife drove Cunard to abandon Merseyside and move south to calmer waters.Here are the words,read them with a smile on your face.

Maggie May

Rod Stewart/Martin Quittenton

Wake up Maggie I think I got something to say to you
It's late September and I really should be back at school
I know I keep you amused but I feel I'm being used
Oh Maggie I couldn't have tried any more
You lured me away from home just to save you from being alone
You stole my heart and that's what really hurt

The morning sun when it's in your face really shows your age
But that don't worry me none in my eyes you're everything
I laughed at all of your jokes my love you didn't need to coax
Oh, Maggie I couldn't have tried any more
You lured me away from home, just to save you from being alone
You stole my soul and that's a pain I can do without

All I needed was a friend to lend a guiding hand
But you turned into a lover and
mother what a lover, you wore me out
All you did was wreck my bed
and in the morning kick me in the head
Oh Maggie I couldn't have tried anymore
You lured me away from home 'cause you didn't want to be alone
You stole my heart I couldn't leave you if I tried

I suppose I could collect my books and get on back to school
Or steal my daddy's cue and make a living out of playing pool
Or find myself a rock and roll band that needs a helpin' hand
Oh Maggie I wish I'd never seen your face
You made a first-class fool out of me
But I'm as blind as a fool can be
You stole my heart but I love you anyway

Maggie I wish I'd never seen your face
I'll get on back home one of these days

Run away to sea on a Cunard Liner

Thats a lot of Osram lamps!

Thats more or less what my dear old gran did,living as she did on Merseyside and on the Birkenhead side of the river,she was often looking at all those grand ocean liners sailing out of the river,I suppose she thought a trip to New York would be a great idea,even as a cabin maid,so off she went,she left her family and went for a cruise!here is some info on the Sameria,the ship she sailed on.

The Samaria had passenger accommodation for 315 passengers on 1st class, 350 2nd, and 1500 3rd class. She had a crew of 434. Rigging : steel twin screw steamer : 2 steel decks; steel shelter deck partly sheathed with wood and steel shade deck sheathed in wood; 3rd steel deck in forward and after holds; 10 partly cemented bulkheads to shelter deck; flat keel; equipped with wireless, electric light, submarine signaling device and refrigerating machinery; fitted for oil fuel with a flash point above 150° F. Tonnage : 19,602 tons gross, 14,189 under deck and 11,866 net. Bridge 284 feet long on shade deck. Propulsion : 4 steam turbines geared to 2 screw shafts; engine operating at 220 p.s.i.; 2,527 nominal horsepower; 3 double ended and 3 single ended boilers, 36 corrugated furnaces; grate surface 746 sq. ft.; forced draught; engine built by the same company as the hull. Owners : Cunard Steam Ship Co. Ltd. Port of registry : Liverpool. Flag : British Call sign : KLWD. Official registration # : 145923

Hout Bay Yacht Club: sailing, training, mooring

Hout Bay Yacht Club: sailing, training, mooring

Click on the above to open the Hout Bay Yacht Clubs web pages,you can navigate to clubs various sections from the boxes to the left on the home page.

Welcome to Hout Bay

Disclaimer: the following routing information was taken from the HBYC web site,I do not hold myself responsable for such directions,it is in the best interests of sailors and navigators to check any directions as given on an updated paper chart.


Hout Bay Harbour is not a Port Of Entry,those that I know are will be Richards
Bay,Durban,East London,Port Elizabeth,Cape Town and Saldahna,you should clear in at one of those ports first? You may be allowed to arrive at Hout Bay first due to bad weather or other problems but please dont quote me its just an idea (works in Brasil!) This is the Hout Bay Yacht Clubs entry to Hout Bay information,for more info check out

HBYC Approach and Radio

Hout Bay Harbour entrance is at S34 03.070 E18 20.983

Hout Bay Harbour does not maintain a dedicated radio watch.
HBYC Marina Manager may possibly be contactable on CH-71 (Call sign Hout Bay Marina).
If in need of advice on your approach or similar - it may be possible to contact yachts in the marina for advice - try calling "Yachts in Hout Bay Marina".

A safe approach at night or in mist should proceed via the following waypoints:
HB-3 (entrance to the bay) at S34 04.106 E18 21.016
HB-2 (centre of the bay) at S34 03.207 E18 21.332
HB-1 (port turn to harbour approach) S34 02.973 E18 21.198
HBentrance (harbour entrance) at S34 03.070 E18 20.983

Vessels approaching from the North should give the mainland a wide berth past "Oude Schip" due to many submerged rocks in that area.
All Vessels should note the presence of Vulcan Rock, a large semi-submerged rock in the Northern approach, which can not always be seen. Vulcan is located at S34 03.967 E18 18.582
Vessels approaching from the South should give Kommetjie a wide berth due to large waves in that area at times.

On Arrival
Proceed to mooring as arranged with Marina Manager (see Marina page).
If in doubt about mooring number, tie up in vacant berth on the South Side of the Southern Walk-on jetty and contact marina manager at earliest opportunity.
Hout Bay does not have an emergency buoy for tying up on.

Wednesday, 8 October 2008

Check out the opposition and Fluid Film

The bottom line is that with other products most of what you spray when using an aerosol can to apply protection,dissapears into thin air,with Fluid Film,this is not the case.

New York sailing with our Didi Mini Transat

Sergey built his Didi mini from our kit,the later bought his full suit of North Sails from us,we also supplied the deck fittings,rudder and foil,keel and lead ballast too.

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

Thunder, one of our Didi Mini Transat kit builds

Built for pro sailer Piers Dudin,an RYA yachtmaster Ocean,the boat is his way into the Mini Transat class of sailing in Europe.

We had this kit proffesionaly built by a local wooden boat building specialist,we have a number of such craftsmen available,as their time allows.

Monday, 6 October 2008

Looking East off Jarrow 1835

Some news from Mike Ellison,Hebburn web site controller.

The second image posted (by Patrick) is taken from the website of the
American National Gallery, where the painting resides. So it will be a
professional photograph of the actual painting - properly lit, without
reflections. I like it so much because its absolutely classic Turner. As
my missus always says, he was without doubt England's greatest ever

Another Hebburn on Tyne contributor,his name is Patrick,submitted this new shot of the same painting,I wonder if its been cleaned? Patrick says he believes the painting is still in Washington,USA?

I have just found mention to this wonderfull painting by Wm Turner dated 1835,it was Mike Ellison editor of who found it,Jarrow and Hebburn are both towns in Englands east coast,the River Tyne,an area made famous over very many years for good ship building.

Lewmar Self Tailing Winches restored

This is what the Polymer linked Fluid Film does to plastics,it will soak in and the gloss will settle down to a more normal matt,the treatment is said to last one and a half years,we will moniter this and report back next year.

This 22 year old winch works fine still but it sure looks as if the top plastic ring has seen better days,its a glass reinforced plastic,the glass can be seen when you look closer.

Its not often we get to try a before and after trial with new poducts but one such test was on some Lewmar STC 43 winches,they will be about 22 years old now,they have done two atlantic crossings and lots of work but still look pretty good,excepting the top plastic jaws that grip the rope,they call it Wave Grip I think? A quick application of Fluid Film sorted that out,check the pictures for yourself.