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  • A glimpse at Baker Street station’s sealed off exit – IanVisits
    noisesome tunnel Part of the reason for the lack of tunnel use is probably down to a simple distaste for tunnels but also certainly for visitors leaving the station that the tunnel is not particularly obvious In fact for the northern side it s pretty well hidden from view in a cluster of small shops There were plans back in 2008 to do away with that cluster of shops and build a much more obvious entrance which was tied to plans to improve platform access to the Met Circle line platforms below Those plans were put on hold Now a local business action group and TfL is proposing a smaller scale project that will initially see the tunnel closed overnight to dissuade night time dwellers and eventually a bit of a refurb However what lies down here also is a long since closed off entrance to the tube station itself sealed off behind a metal barrier yet just about visible if you stand on the nearby steps and on tip toes If you do peer over the top then you ll see a tube tiled corridor leads off with two sets of stairs easily seen heading down and an another corridor at the end According to the planning documents the two staircases lead down to the Circle line platforms with the corridor running under the street to a set of stairs on the opposite platform Although I haven t been able to find out when the entrance closed it seems likely that it would have been at least when ticket barriers were introduced as otherwise people have an easy way to bypass them So there you are a little sealed off bit of tube tunnel that is just about visible if only you had known about it And now you

    Original URL path: http://www.ianvisits.co.uk/blog/2014/09/24/a-glimpse-at-baker-street-stations-sealed-off-exit/ (2016-02-16)
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  • Free tours of a Royal Navy frigate – IanVisits
    2016 Jun 2016 Jul 2016 Aug 2016 Sep 2016 Oct 2016 Nov 2016 Dec 2016 Jan 2017 Feb 2017 Mar S M T W T F S 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 15 More Blogs Brixton Blog Cabbie Blog Christopher Fowler City Metric Diamond Geezer Edith s Streets Greenwich Industrial History London Reconnections London Street Views Londonist Reddit Spitalfields Life The Ladies who Bus Wanstead Meteo West Hampstead Life HMS Westminster a Duke class frigate is in London at the moment based in Docklands and this Saturday the general public will be able to go on board for a look around The ship visit will be strictly for ticket holders only and due to space restrictions inside the visit will consist of an upper deck tour and bridge tour only with opportunities to see equipment used by the ship and meet members of the ships company The visit which is usually a free wander around typically lasts a little over an hour Photography is permitted onboard in certain areas Your onboard hosts will advise when photos

    Original URL path: http://www.ianvisits.co.uk/blog/2014/09/23/free-tours-of-a-royal-navy-frigate/ (2016-02-16)
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  • Brunels’s original rail infrastructure excavated near Paddington – IanVisits
    S 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 15 More Blogs Brixton Blog Cabbie Blog Christopher Fowler City Metric Diamond Geezer Edith s Streets Greenwich Industrial History London Reconnections London Street Views Londonist Reddit Spitalfields Life The Ladies who Bus Wanstead Meteo West Hampstead Life Remains of structures built by Isambard Kingdom Brunel for his Great Western Railway have been unearthed near Paddington in west London Newly excavated by Crossrail findings include foundations of a 200 metre long engine shed a workshop and train turntables The structures were used for Brunel s famous broad gauge railway which first ran steam trains through the area in 1838 The Crossrail archaeology team is documenting the remains using laser scans creating 3D models of the buildings which date from the 1850s and were levelled in 1906 to make way for a goods storage yard It s expected that these records will help historians understand the early development of railways in the UK The remains were found on a construction site known as Paddington New Yard to the east of Westbourne Park Tube station From 2018 the area will accommodate Crossrail tracks turn back sidings an elevated bus deck and cement factory which had to be temporarily relocated to accommodate the building of Crossrail The engine shed shows evidence of the change from 7 foot wide broad gauge train tracks used by Brunel s Great Western Railway to the standard gauge tracks prescribed in an Act of Parliament in 1846 and widely implemented by the 1860s Brunel initially resisted this change in the so called Gauge Wars To date Crossrail s archaeology programme has discovered over 10 000 items spanning 55 million

    Original URL path: http://www.ianvisits.co.uk/blog/2014/09/23/brunelss-original-rail-infrastructure-excavated-near-paddington/ (2016-02-16)
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  • New tunnel opens at King’s Cross station – IanVisits
    built The exterior of the building is lined with cast iron columns but only hint at the tube entrance which is actually around the corner Less to hide it than probably to stop people walking straight out and onto what will eventually be a road again The entrance though is a fairly mundane affair with just the basics necessary to indicate that this is indeed a tube station entrance It s down below that the wonder begins A new 90 metre long tunnel that also curves ever so slightly so that it is just possible to avoid seeing the exit at the far end as you enter and are presented with a curving wall of shifting colours The design of the tunnel is broken into four sections the canopy the fin section the floor and the integrated lightwall which has been designed by Speirs Major with technical delivery by The Light Lab The flooring echoes the metal cladding above with ceramic tiles spread across the floor in a large triangular pattern that almost appear like shadows on the ground The lighting effect is in constant flux with bands of colour moving wave like along the entire wall or sometimes the whole thing turns into a barcode of monochrome lines It s a quite delightful effect During my visit on a Sunday afternoon barely a handful of people used the tunnel although that is likely to change as more of the offices open up to office workers If you want to enjoy the tunnel in peace and tranquility now is the time to visit After all there can t be many railway stations to have an entrance that looks like it came off the set of a sci fi movie As an aside the tunnel is now part of the tube station but owned by the office estate as indicated by a small sign by the station end noting that you are entering the King s Cross estate Facebook 255 Google 2 Linkedin 0 Reddit 0 Twitter 111 111 368 kings cross 8 thoughts on New tunnel opens at King s Cross station Greg says September 23 2014 at 9 07 am At least a six foot tall security guard didn t want to rip the camera off your hand as they tend to do in public looking private areas Reply LadyBracknell says September 23 2014 at 3 11 pm Don t like it The curve means you cannot see who might be coming the other way and the ever changing lights might not be good for epileptics Reply Jackie Shirley says September 23 2014 at 8 59 pm I love it but wish they could have installed escalators that moved on demand like in European countries considering hardly anyone s using them at the moment Reply D O P says September 24 2014 at 9 49 am Very cool tunnel was wondering what it was for on my way to the train this summer Loved the work http instagram com

    Original URL path: http://www.ianvisits.co.uk/blog/2014/09/22/new-tunnel-opens-at-kings-cross-station/ (2016-02-16)
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  • Museum Meals – The British Library – IanVisits
    that sense it is a museum a museum of the printed word Once early museums might have been opened to the public but only after vetting for suitability and the British Library still vets visitors to its great reading room to ensure they are indeed there to study Yet unlike most museums here visitors are not required to walk around galleries looking at artifacts but sit at desks as staff collect the heritage from storage and deliver it to the requester Then the public are able to not just look at the artifact but open the covers and manhandle the pages themselves So in a way the British Library is a museum but also a very odd one As much as visitors absorb knowledge from the books for their brain their stomachs also need nourishing so there is a small cafe in the public area that is open to anyone who wants to visit Despite the photo attached the space is quite dark almost gloomy if it wasn t also in a space with a massively high ceiling Yet it is lit by dozens of tiny lights for the visitors bring their own lamps with them The lamp of Apple the bulb of Windows all illuminating the faces of silent eaters in a space that could almost pass for a library itself if not for the cake and coffee s being consumed at tables The selection of cakes looked as cakes should look perfectly decorated little jewels hinting of delightful pleasures When cake is mundane and consumed regularly it is mere clothing for the stomach but when a small jewel is presented it adds luster to the day A reasonable coffee if served in a paper cup that seemed to have almost mythical powers of transferring heat from the coffee to the hand holding it The surface of the sun is cooler than the gas surrounding it I think I ve found its caffeine equivalent The cake was delightful if being served on a paper plate did somewhat dent the presentation and the coffee was acceptable It s a good spot to stop for a snack if in a area and unlike many libraries open on a Sunday Cost 5 80 for cake and coffee Stars 3 out of 5 Date 21st September 2014 Summary A slightly unusual place to eat if waiting for a train from the nearby stations and after something less high street and served in hushed surroundings The British Library Facebook 7 Google 2 Linkedin 0 Reddit 0 Twitter 8 8 17 british library 6 thoughts on Museum Meals The British Library Flora The Accidental Londoner says September 22 2014 at 12 46 pm I spent most of my Masters degree camped out in the coffee shop at the British Library there were enough books around to be inspiring but enough cake around to make the weekend work sessions bearable Have you tried the larger restaurant on the first floor Reply Debbie says September 22 2014

    Original URL path: http://www.ianvisits.co.uk/blog/2014/09/22/museum-meals-the-british-library/ (2016-02-16)
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  • Photos from the roof of Victoria Station – IanVisits
    half had their tatty roof replaced a decade back and the other half will probably get the same treatment in about five years time At that time there may be funding and planning permitted a much wider revamp of the entire concourse to clear up the central area and make it more of a single station than two separate buildings Although plans are in early stages I d expect Network Rail s favourite trick to be deployed a mezzanine floor around the edges and the centre cleared out Or maybe they ll plot something new for a change Wrapped around the front of one half of the station is the ubiquitious hotel although if you look carefully the modernish bit in the corner is the consequence of a bomb from WW2 and is still known as the bomb gap Bombs did a fair bit of damage to the railway station with a plane also crashing onto the front where the buses wait today Plans by Time Team to dig there for the remains of the plane being thwarted by the railway pointing out that there is a basement at that location so no point digging Actually that is one aspect that marks Victoria out as different from other stations a lack of basements Many of the stations were built on viaducts so have vast underground spaces for storage and access Victoria is build on top of an old canal and dock and also on sandy gravel soil that makes basements quite difficult to construct The expansion of the underground station nearby being massively affected by the difficult soil conditions they are working with Up on the roof though climbing up a steep set of steps with only half the width of normal steps proved a mild challenge especially as the structure swayed as people climbed upwards But up here at last you can see the huge expanse of steel and glass that was restored to its original Victorian splendour The use of more modern materials does mean that it is somewhat lighter than before which is an asset as it turned out that the entire roof rests on the gutters Replacing the old gutters therefore meaning that the rest of the roof had to be disconnected and then supported on extra scaffolding during the restoration Up here though it was more a case of admiring the views the regular linearity of the roof line and generally peering at things that are rarely peered at from this angle The tour guides were however very keen to show off something that isn t on the roof but down the backside of Platform 1 their waste recycling plant They aim to recycle over 80 something percent of their station waste including what comes from the shops and cafes and there is a bit of a competition between the London terminus stations as to which is doing best At the moment Victoria is winning although they almost lost when their own head office put

    Original URL path: http://www.ianvisits.co.uk/blog/2014/09/21/photos-from-the-roof-of-victoria-station/ (2016-02-16)
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  • Inside the RNLI station on the Thames – IanVisits
    Thames was a wise one for the Tower station has since it opened consistently been the busiest station out of the RNLI s entire network of 237 lifeboat stations Yet while you might think that their main job is rescuing people on boats that forms just a tiny fraction of their work With nearly 500 rescues last year much of their work is a marine ambulance offering assistance to the ill or injured on other boats or dragging people out of the river In fact about half their work is pulling people out of the river people who through depression see the river as a terminal solution or through drunkeness see it as a challenge Another unique aspect of the Thames Pier is that the lifeboat can be deployed within 90 seconds as compared to the 10 minutes at coastal bases That is due to the decision to have volunteers not so much working locally and running to the station but having them on site for 12 hour shifts assisted by full time paid staff Ten staff to 50 volunteers As the Thames is very cold the average 10 minute launch would spend most of its time pulling dead bodies out of the river 90 seconds really is essential to get people out before their body shuts down from hypothermia in the river The average cost of a rescue incidentally comes in a just over 1 000 when you take the half million pound operating costs and divide by rescues under taken And those rescues are provided by what is just about the fastest boat on the river even faster than the police boats What makes the boat so fast is an absence of propellers Unlike out at sea where the propellers could be turned off for a short while when close to a person in the sea the fast currents of the Thames called for an alternative jet power The boat sucks water in from underneath the boat and squirts it out the back Not just fast but the lack of propellers makes the boats a lot safer when rescuing people in the Thames The RNLI have two of these sorts of boats the first being essentially a prototype but they now have a more souped up version to play with They still want a spare although at around 400 000 each a generous benefactor is needed Although allowed on to the station for a look around the one place that was absolutely off limits were the boats themselves With just 90 seconds to launch after a shout is announced having gawping visitors on the boats would have been a very bad thing What else was on offer though was a look at the changing room with its wall lined with dry suits boots and clothing It s here that another difference from the coastal patrols became apparent no wellies Unlike the coastal teams who work normal jobs then rush to the station if a rescue is needed here

    Original URL path: http://www.ianvisits.co.uk/blog/2014/09/19/inside-the-rnli-station-on-the-thames/ (2016-02-16)
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  • Modern shabtis in ancient settings – for one day only – IanVisits
    2016 May 2016 Jun 2016 Jul 2016 Aug 2016 Sep 2016 Oct 2016 Nov 2016 Dec 2016 Jan 2017 Feb 2017 Mar S M T W T F S 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 15 More Blogs Brixton Blog Cabbie Blog Christopher Fowler City Metric Diamond Geezer Edith s Streets Greenwich Industrial History London Reconnections London Street Views Londonist Reddit Spitalfields Life The Ladies who Bus Wanstead Meteo West Hampstead Life Dotted around a museum filled with ancient Egyptian relics can be found a very modern take on an ancient religious art form Ancient Egyptian shabtis were figures placed in tombs to work for the deceased in the afterlife but the Nu shabtis assert their freedom taking their own choices for life The exhibition by artist archaeologist Zahed Taj Eddin of Egyptian Faience is of around 80 examples of modern shabtis some shopping some protesting some simply enjoying themselves It s a rare sight to see what is a form of modern art that is also almost exactly identical to the ancient form as well and

    Original URL path: http://www.ianvisits.co.uk/blog/2014/09/19/modern-shabtis-in-ancient-settings-for-one-day-only/ (2016-02-16)
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web-archive-uk.com, 2016-10-25