Monday, 14 April 2014

The 2009 Spen Valley Summer Solstice, Now with Video

Although I posted this when I first started Blogging I now have a video.

The 2009 celebration was held at Brenk House Farm, Coxwold by kind permission of Mr and Mrs Burn. Situated on the south west corner of the North York Moors National Park just one mile from the beautiful village of Coxwold. As with many working farms we expected to see cattle, sheep, and tractors depending on the season. But most likely we met Muffin, the Old English sheepdog
As with last year the fun began with Fairground type games such as tests of strength in Nail Hammering, agility in Pea in a Bottle and Splat the Rat. Quizzes and a giant Buzzer game. We were also kindly loaned by our hosts, Gill and Keith their “Labyrinth” game. Although now a days played in fun most of these games have their origin in the day-to-day lives of our ancient descendants.
Though out the evening music was provided by John Clarke

After the revellers had eaten their supper most changed into costume for the next part of the evening. The Bonfire Ceremony, which started with Ian reading the Prayer for the Benediction of the Midsummer Bonfire. Then the Master of Ceremonies (me) gave Instructions and then the Head “Lady of the flowers” lead The Casting of the flowers. The “Wizard of Spen” (Richard) then lit the fire, once again held in a Fire-Pit. Then the rain came down and it was touch and go to if the Torch Light Parade could continue, but in the end it did go ahead.

The Parade was led by the Wizard and MC around the farm and camping field, and blessed the field and crops and the caravans,

The Burning of the Wicker man was
meant to single the end of the evening but most people had had enough of the now quiet heavy rain and this was cancelled, returning instead to the dry barn to dance the night away till eleven o clock.

Friday, 4 April 2014

Rawdon Crematorium

Ahead of Wednesday`s formal visit I decided to go and have a look around the grounds today.
Formal rose and flower beds
The main area is formal with trees and rose beds in the short cut lawn. There are lots of benches with memorial plaques on. To the sides are areas left wilder.

A nice Cedar Tree
Rawdon is on the outskirts of Leeds and the Crematorium is sited on one of the busiest roads going onto the city but despite that there is a lovely air of peace in the grounds.

The Gate Lodge
The Gate Lodge

A stone Gate post
Something interesting from the past?

Monday, 31 March 2014

Homebase online survey

Thought some of you will find this funny
I have just done an online survey for Homebase this was my answer to part of it.

It Says:-

You told us you were Satisfied with your experience at this Homebase store. Please tell us why you were not Highly Satisfied with your recent visit to Homebase. Be as specific as you like.

I replied:-

I`m Goth…………….I don`t go that high!!!

Monday, 17 March 2014

It Should Not Happen to a Gardener, But It Does

At work this afternoon I was happily cutting a lawn and hardly heard a rumbling noise then an alarm sounding. Then I noticed a Fire engine stop outside with its blue lights on. At that the Lady of the House came out and asked if I was “soon leaving” I said “No are we on fire?” She replied “The electric as gone off!” The trouble was that the house has electric gates and they were closed with me inside! I claimed over the railings and asked the workmen who had now arrived want had happened? It turned out the noise had been a sub-station blowing up! And it was going to be a long time before they could hope to have the power back on.
It shouldn't happen to a Gardener, the gates
A few telephone calls to the client and it was decided that I should remove the electric powered control aim from the gate post so we could pull the gates open.

It shouldn't happen to a Gardener, the gates, after 

Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Leeds Steampunk Market at Armley Mills

  So Sunday and day three of what turned out to be one of my best weekends in a very long time. Armley Mills is known now-a- days as Leeds Industrial Museum, and is well worth a visit any day featuring machinery and scenes from our industrial heritage.

The Leeds-Liverpool Canal at Armley Mills.
It made a truly impressive backdrop for the Steampunk Market.
Armley Mills Leeds

Although I do not pretend to understand the Steampunk thing, [I refer to it as a thing, unlike Goth which is referred to as a Culture or Sub-culture.] I do like to look around the stalls every so often
The stalls ranged from selling posters and clothes to one telling about the dangers of Ray Guns !?!? And all done in the best possible taste

Leeds Steampunk Market, Pic from Beverley Thornton
One of the things (Sorry that word again) that I do like is the amount of Tea that seems to be drunk at these events I also like and use the phrase when asked “One Milk, One Sugar” please

Me in Armley Mills.
So quite a weekend indeed!

Tuesday, 4 March 2014

Rhombus + Last July

So following on from last night in Bradford it was Leeds’s turn to keep me entertained tonight with my monthly visit to Flock. I arrived bang on 7:30 but our room was not open yet, so I braved the massed students in the downstairs bar and got a pint of Hobgoblin. I joined a group of Goths at a table waiting to be able to move upstairs. Once in our room the atmosphere was more to our liking and pretty soon the first band was taking to the stage.

Last July
I had not seen Last July before; they are a UK based Dark Romantic band, featuring ex-members of Rome Burns and All Living Fear. Some question their Gothness but I have seen a lot less “Goth” bands here! Anyway they were brilliant and I am now a fan. In to the Void was a song that I practically liked and I could remember the name of 2 days later.

A quick turn round on stage and it was the turn of Rhombus, well known to many not just around their native Yorkshire but have a worldwide following after their tour last year. I`d last seen them in December but this is a better venue with a much better sound. I love; 4472 about (Or not) the Flying Scotchman Steam engine, Here Be Dragons, Lightning Strikes Twice, Open the Sky, Anywhere and my personal favourites are Into the Rain and What You Wanted. Or basically I love them.

After the bands comes the club night and Paul and Howard started off with a few songs that I liked but did not know, this gave me the chance to say a quick “Hello” to Olivia and  Valerian from Bad Pollyanna who had come for a night out before their biggest gig to date at Liverpool O2 on Wednesday. I wish I could make that one, but such is the life of an Eldergoth. Back to the records, and Paul played 5 I love in a row! Transmission (Joy Division) Public Image (PIL) Song About You (The Last Cry) Walk Away (Sisters) and No Rest (New Model Army) Wow I remembered!! Sadly the clock had moved around to my home time

4472 Flying Scotchman
Two brilliant nights out in quick succession and still a treat to come on Sunday


Saturday, 1 March 2014

Alice Moving Under Skies + Dawn of Elysium + The Lost Souls

A rare Friday night out for me I went into Bradford to The Black Swan for this rather fine line up of Goth bands. The Black Swan is a pub not a club in the downtown part of the city mostly surrounded by industry or, what`s left of it in Bradford and as such there is sadly a lack of locals. There was no door charge which made this a great value night! I also kept my alcohol intake to a minimum due to driving.
The Black Swan, Bradford, their pic.
 I arrived before sound checks were done and so could watch them as well. Patrick and Ade from the Lost Souls were already at the bar (No surprise there) and another friend some joined us.
The Lost Souls
I have posted links to The lost Souls before but will say again They are a really good band, mixing the sounds of Goth and Punk Rock from the `80s maybe a bit like the Rezillos I like them and not just because they make me so welcome.
Dawn of Elysium
Next up were Dawn of Elysium, local to Bradford, although Emma also plays Bass for Leeds band Quasimodo. The more times I see them the more I like them! This was about the fourth time and I think they are great. One song stud out as my favourite but in the light of day I can`t remember the name! Sorry!
Alice Moving Under Skies
Alice Moving Under Skies, again I`ve seen them before but this sadly would be the last time as this was their final gig. Why? I don`t know, pity because once again I think they are (were) a good band. Mark from Dawn of Elysium said “See their final show here first, last) and someone shouted “And Always” If they wanted to out with a bang they did. A great way to round off the night and their time together.

All I had to do then was get The Lost Souls home, been the only one sober and with a car. Oh I forgot to tell them it`s like a van and someone has to sit on my rakes in the back!! Hooowww
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