My friend Lisa texted me to see if I wanted to pop down and take a photo or two of the event she was taking part in: Santa SUP. SUP Bristol organise stand-up paddleboarding on the floating harbour, and their annual Santas-on-paddlboards event is quite the sight.
On the way there, I grabbed a historical photo I'd been wanting to recreate for a while of the shiny and new Cumberland Basin flyovers back in 1965, because I reckoned I could fit finding the same viewpoint into my outbound journey. Also, after having only used it on a wander for the very first time yesterday, I managed two crossings in the cross-harbour ferry today to get to the best locations for snapping the paddleboarders...
So, then, this wander is mostly a bunch of photos of paddleboarding Santas. Tis the season... Enjoy!
On to more seasonal things. Here's Lisa, paddle at the ready.
26 Oct 2020
A dash around the harbourside to see if I can get to Mokoko and back in my lunch hour.
This was my first wander and I was still getting the hang of the technology. I managed to record only part of the way back on my GPS, by the looks of it, so I've had to bodge things a bit to pick up the photos, which is why there are photos in places the track doesn't reach!
I also need to fix a few technical things including managing my photo timezones more carefully. This wander was the day after the clocks went back for winter, and I think my camera may still have been in BST, which may not have helped me tie things up. Need to do a bit of research into how my cameras, Lightroom and the code I'm writing on this website handle BST and GMT, but at least I have until the last Sunday in March before things get urgent, I think...
I'm not sure about publishing this one. I wouldn't normally snap a photo of a single stranger in an only-semi-public place like a cafe. On the other hand, I thought it was an interesting document of the way people are coping with Covid and I quite like it as photo, which tipped the balance into publication.
14 Nov 2020
A long ramble, starting with trying to find the Hot Well of Hotwells and leading up the side of the Avon Gorge to the Downs and then through Clifton for coffee.
This collection was on display as part of an auction being held by a jeweller's on Princess Victoria Street.
05 Dec 2020
Back to Cliftonwood for a wander that included some of the belle views of Bellevue Crescent and other bits of the easternmost part. Highlights included watching someone bump-starting an elderly Nissan Micra in the narrow confines of Bellevue Crescent.
13 Dec 2020
A long walk around Cliftonwood and Clifton with my friend Lisa, taking in some of the 12 Days of Christmas display at Queens Parade, picking up a take-away coffee from Pinkmans of Park Street, and poking our heads up against the glass of SS Peter and Paul Catholic Cathedral.
24 Jan 2021
I started this wander with my "support bubble" Sarah and Vik, after Sarah texted me to say "SNOW!" We parted ways on the towpath and I headed up into the bit of Leigh Woods that's not actually the woods—the village-like part in between Leigh Woods and Ashton Court, where I'd noticed on a map a church I'd not seen before. I found St Mary the Virgin and quite a few other things I'd never experienced, despite having walked nearby them many, many times over many years, including a castellated Victorian water tower that's been turned into a house...
When someone responds to, "may I take a photo?" with a leap into an action shot. Nice.
...for a close-up. Personally I had enough problems getting back up from the lower bank the last time, and it wasn't icy then...
02 Feb 2021
I needed to get away from my desk at lunchtime, and I saw a little segment of path in Greville Smyth Park that needed knocking off my "to walk down" list, so that gave me a target. Sadly Hopper Coffee's little Piaggio Ape wasn't there to sell me a coffee. I hope Rich is all right, not seen him so far this year.
Anyway, a fairly uneventful walk. They're putting new boundary fencing up around Hotwell Primary School (I wandered down Albermarle Row to see what the pneumatic drilling was about), the house on Granby Hill that's been covered in scaffolding and swaddled in protective sheeting has finally been revealed in its cleaned and refurbished form, and they were doing something to the flyover that leads up from the end of the Portway/Hotwell Road to the Plimsoll Bridge. Nothing much else to report.
Easy to miss in the previous photo. I didn't have a camera with a zoom lens today. The Fujifilm X100T is a fantastic camera for many purposes, but zooming in on distant details is not one of them.
I'm glad my friend Lisa joined me today; she drove in from Shirehampton and told me that the Portway was looking rather lovely, so we set off that way. She's also braver than I am when it comes to doing urbex stuff, so this was just the opportunity to take a peek into the Portnalls Number One Railway Tunnel/Bridge Road Deep Valley Shelter whose entrance I'd found on a previous wander.
It was definitely dark and spooky and impressively big, with a side tunnel that Lisa explored that leads to a little door I don't think I've previously noticed on the side of the Portway. I didn't get many photos—even my astoundingly powerful little torch (£) didn't do much to light things up, and you're not going to get much joy hand-holding a camera in that darkness—but I did shoot a little video, which I might edit and add later.
After plumbing the bowels of the earth, we went up Bridge Valley Path to Clifton, explored some bits around the College and Pembroke Road, then came home via Foliage Cafe for coffee. Nice.
Lisa led the way. She's got Urbex experience. And I'm a scaredy-cat.
12 Mar 2021
I was browsing some historical photos the other day, and came across "Rear of Unspecified House" in the Bristol Archives' John Trelawny Ross collection, and immediately recognised it as being the back of 1 Albermarle Row, just around the corner from me. I've not had much time to research the history of this odd little addition to Albermarle Row, or what happened to 1-4 Cumberland Place, number 4 of which used to be attached to the side of 1 Albermarle Row, but it was interesting to look at old maps for a few minutes and work out what used to be where.
That all connects with the little local bit of land at Granby Green, too, as it used to be numbers 1-3 Cumberland Place. There was something of a planning battle over Granby Green, and I've included an old edition of Hotwells & Cliftonwood News that I found online, a copy of which would have been popped through my letterbox at the time.
I was also inspired by some old pictures of Hotwell Road to try to put a few more people in my pictures, though I set my pre-focus a couple of extra metres out from normal to make sure I didn't get too close to anyone!