Wednesday, 4 December 2013
If the embedded video above doesn't work, click on this link instead.
There's been much comment this week on the viability of Amazon using drones for delivery purposes. However, even if their trials prove successful and are approved by the authorities, it'll still be many years before we see them.
In complete contrast I had the privilege of seeing the results of a drone in action at the GMG Awards last week. It introduces the romantic gardens at the fairytale Château du Rivau* in the Loire region of France.
Sit back and enjoy both a birds-eye and visitor level view of this garden; it gives such a different perspective on the provision of garden information. Later on at the Awards, Dr Hessayon** spoke about the need for conventional garden media to become more inventive; to be something which can't be found via Google. I think the bar has just been set particularly high for those writing about or photographing gardens.
My thanks to garden owner and designer Patricia Laigneau for letting me use this video. She simply showed me this on her iPad last week and I was blown away by what I saw. What a wonderful way to introduce me to her chateau and garden.
Drones are relatively inexpensive and used for a wide variety of interesting applications such as aerial surveys of archaeological sites and historic monuments. I sense there's a great business opportunity here, not only for garden owners, but also for garden and landscape designers to add this perspective to their design portfolios. Also, the RHS have already made 360 degree views available for the show gardens at Chelsea, how about using this for the entire show?
* = Click on the EN in the top right hand corner if you need an English translation
** = yes, THE Dr Hessayon :)
Monday, 2 December 2013
I've missed my last two choir sessions, so tonight I'll be singing Christmas carols for the first time this year. I particularly look forward to these, because they were the first thing I tackled when I joined up 6 years ago. They also mark my transition from "Bah humbug Christmas always starts too early" to "Awwww, peace and goodwill, everyone" ;)
To help celebrate the season we're embarking on our traditional tour of local hostelries in Corsham and Bradford on Avon (BOA) this week, starting with the Christmas lights switch on in Corsham. Here are the details:
- Friday 6th Dec, 6.20pm singing outside the Town Hall in Corsham
- Sunday 8th Dec, 3pm carols in Dandy Lion BOA
- Monday 9th Dec, 7.30 - 8.30pm in Pound Arts Centre, then to the Flemish Weaver pub for singing, beer & mince pies!
- Sunday 15th Dec, 3pm carols in George BOA
- Monday 16th Dec, 7.30 - 9.30pm singing, mulled cider & mince pies in the Pound Arts Centre (to be pre-ordered).
- Sunday 22nd Dec, 3pm carols in Canal Tavern BOA
If you're in the area, come along and join the fun! Here's our set list - note that the familiar ones won't sound familiar as our choir master loves finding the more obscure versions.
- Hark the Herald Angels Sing
- Malpas Wassail
- While Shepherds Watched *
- Ding Dong Merrily on High
- I Hear Along Our Street (The Dunster Carol)
- Awake & Join the Cheerful Choir (Britford) - a local Wiltshire carol
- We might also do The Holly & The Ivy as a quick warm-up (it's v easy) and Hail Smiling Morn (only two parts and you'll be carried along with it).
* = for those of you familiar with I'm Sorry I haven't a Clue, this is our version of "one song to the tune of another". NB If you take the link and don't want the sound, the off button is in the top right hand corner.
Sunday, 1 December 2013
Friday, 29 November 2013
|Our GQT panel: Matthew Biggs, Christine Walkden and Matthew Wilson|
A couple of Monday's ago, I had the hottest ticket in the county when Gardeners' Question Time came to record at the Wiltshire Music Centre in Bradford on Avon. A quick exchange of tweets a couple of months ago meant I was there in the super company of Cally and Sara (of #britishflowers fame), thanks to Cally securing the tickets for us.
We met up beforehand at a local farm shop for coffee and cake to keep us going - doors opened at 5.30pm and recording finished just after 8.30. We puzzled over our individual questions, before gaining all round approval of their worthiness then agreeing that all of them were far too long and we stood no chance of posing them to the panel. Thus we took our seats at the top of the auditorium safe in the knowledge we could sit back, relax and enjoy the show.
How wrong we were.
Eric Robson called out my name, followed swiftly by Sara's, so we had to make our way down to the front row to sit ready to pose our questions. For me this came with the added benefit of a peck on both cheeks from Matthew Wilson! *blushes in front of around 300 people*
The panel don't know the questions beforehand, which means there's a frantic scribbling of notes whilst they're asked. I was really pleased to see this was the case as I had quite an argument with F up at the allotment a few months ago, who swore blind the panel had plenty of time to think of their answers.
Today my question will be broadcast to the nation, so I thought I'd give you a sneak preview of the subject. I'm hoping most of the answers remain in the final edit as I had no means of noting all of the advice given at the time.
Broadcast times are today (Friday 29th November) at 3pm pm on Radio 4, with a shorter repeat on Sunday afternoon at 2pm. I'll put a link into the iPlayer version when it goes up (and here it is - my question is about 7 minutes in).
You may also like
My account of what happened after I asked a question when the show came to Chippenham a few years ago.