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  • The River Colwyn – Simon Whaley
    kitchen for breakfast I nipped out with my camera and tripod It was a crisp clear morning and the sun was burning through the early morning mist nicely At first I spent time taking numerous shots upstream of the river s shallower waters which meant I was looking roughly northwestwards The sun was just over my shoulder illuminating the overhanging copper coloured leaves of the nearby horse chestnut trees I was also aware of a dipper flitting between rocks and spent several minutes trying to capture a good shot of him but failed After about fifteen minutes I turned around to take images downstream which flows southeastwards and wondered whether I d be shooting into the winter sunlight I needn t have worried The sun was high enough to spotlight the gushing water in its close tree lined confines but still low enough to hint at the relief on the ground in the distance around the foot of the beech trees Whilst the trees were losing their leaves there were still sufficient numbers on the branches to offer a colourful autumnal palette enhanced by the sunlight The longer I looked at the scene before me the more I liked the contrast between foreground and background The foreground was neatly agitated by the tumbling waters of the River Colwyn which were more subdued this morning than the previous night and the dark greenness of the moss on the rocks in addition to the leaves at the bottom of the frame However in the background the river s waters were calmer softer and the oranges yellows and browns lightened the scene considerably The bridge here is wide enough to set up a tripod and allow the occasional vehicle to pass by without hinderance some properties use it for access enabling me to set up without worry and experiment with shutter speeds altering the movement impact of the river in the photos Having lived with my Canon 5D Mark II for over four years I ve found the sweetest aperture of my 24 105mm lens is at f 16 making it my preferred aperture I experimented with faster shutter speeds to freeze the water s movements but I felt that destroyed some of the foreground background contrast After another half an hour I explored a little further discovering a small tributary to the Colwyn laden with some of the most densely packed moss and lichen covered rocks and stones I ve ever seen But by 11 o clock my stomach was grumbling for breakfast and satisfied with the shots I d captured I headed back convinced I d now have the self catering kitchen all to myself Distances in miles 13 miles from Caernarfon 72 miles from Chester How to get there In Beddgelert head for the car park off the A4085 Caernarfon Road on right when driving out of Beddgelert From the car park follow the pedestrian path along the main A4085 walking out of Beddgelert for 350 metres then turn left

    Original URL path: http://www.simonwhaley.co.uk/the-river-colwyn/ (2016-02-17)
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  • Highland Ways – Simon Whaley
    1973 and included 65 signposts 12 small footbridges 12 mapboards and 50 stiles Hundreds of individuals were involved in its construction from organisations such as the Forestry Commission the Territorial Army and the British Trust for Conservation Volunteers My first piece of hard work was Conic Hill Although 1 000 feet higher than the path beforehand it is only a hill At the summit an immense vista opens out Loch Lomond Scotland s largest loch covering more than 27 square miles stretches out for more than 23 miles To my left I could just make out the tower blocks of Glasgow in the distance To my right the scenery changes drastically The rugged luring mountains rising from Lomond s waters produce Ben Lomond the most southerly mountain in Scotland higher than 3 000 feet At the northern tip of the loch the valleys become tighter and the mountains higher Most of these imposing mounds of rock scale heights of 2500 to 3500 feet Luckily the West Highland Way negotiates these by meandering through the valleys sharing them with the A82 and the West Highland Railway Line One other natural form kept me company along this section the River Falloch This small river collects all the rainwater as it throws itself off the mountainsides before the river itself cascades over the Falls of Falloch Not only is the scenery stunning but so is the history One such remnant is St Fillan s Chapel and Graveyard A small plaque on the wall narrates how St Fillan an Irish Monk had worked in the area spreading his religious work during the 8th century Looking around I think few would object to making this their final resting place no matter what their religion Rannoch Moor is desolate barren and stretches for 13 miles It s deceptive because the path uses well trodden drovers roads once used by cattle drovers as they moved their stock from farm to farm or farm to market The problem is the weather Forecasting is impossible and pointless This expanse of wilderness has a climate of its own and threw at me diverse conditions including sunshine hailstones high winds rain and clear blue skies all within a days walking The Kingshouse Hotel based where Rannoch Moor meets Glencoe is a magical place with a roaringly fierce log fire to banish any draughts as I entered from outside The following morning walking to the dining room for the Full Scottish Breakfast the fire was still burning but the magic had intensified Outside I discovered a light dusting of snow covering everything After five days walking my body was beginning to feel better for it At this point the path now becomes a high level route climbing the mountains through a section called the Devil s Staircase This is the highest point of the whole path The views along Glen Coe are spectacular and it was good to get short of breath so many times so that I could stop and admire

    Original URL path: http://www.simonwhaley.co.uk/highland-ways/ (2016-02-17)
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  • PLR and Libraries – Letter to The Author – Simon Whaley
    that the rate per loan has increased because fewer books are being borrowed I wonder if this is correct Are fewer books being borrowed or is it that fewer books are being borrowed from local authority libraries At this moment my own local authority is consulting the community about ways in which it can cut the library budget In my home town they either want to cut opening hours by more than 50 or they want to transfer the library to the local school where it would then be run by the Academy School Trust The local authority are selling this option hard with the pitch that the library under the school s control would no longer be subject to local authority funding pressures If I understand the Public Lending Right 1979 Act correctly PLR is only payable on books borrowed from local authority libraries which means as more and more libraries move out of local authority control fewer libraries and therefore fewer books are eligible to be monitored for PLR purposes It would seem such a waste of the efforts of all those writers who fought so hard for the implementation of PLR if we were to see it fall by the wayside as more and more libraries are passed out of local authority control Should we be fighting to stop local authorities handing libraries over to third sector organisations in the first place Or do we accept that funding for libraries has to change fundamentally and therefore begin campaigning for PLR to be extended to this new regime that includes non local authority libraries Yours faithfully Simon Whaley Share this Click to share on Twitter Opens in new window Click to share on Facebook Opens in new window Click to share on Google Opens in new window Click

    Original URL path: http://www.simonwhaley.co.uk/plr-and-libraries-letter-to-the-author/ (2016-02-17)
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  • Take A Walk – Simon Whaley
    A Waste of Time 7 99 Metro Books says Exercise causes the body to produce endorphins and the hormone serotonin Both have been clinically proven to have key roles in helping people with depression People suffering from depression invariably have low levels of serotonin so with the help of regular exercise serotonin levels can be raised to help combat the symptoms of depression without the need for drugs Serotonin is found throughout the body including the blood and the digestive tract But it is also found in our brains where it acts as a neurotransmitter assisting with the transmission of nerve impulses between nerve cells Endorphins have a similar chemical structure to morphine and are the body s own mechanism for relieving pain However they also play a part in the body s attempt to control stress by regulating the contractions in the intestinal wall as well as helping to determine mood Put the two together and it shows how the body produces its own pain killing mood enhancing chemical as well as providing the mechanism for distributing it around the brain There s more good news about how stretching our legs can improve our mood I m no fell runner hardened hiker or long distance walker I set off for about ¾ hour and cover just over two miles To benefit from this natural endorphin release we don t need to be training for the London 2012 Olympics A walk in the park can be just as beneficial Simon Brett also discussed in his article another conundrum are people more disposed to depression inclined to become writers or is it the life of a writer than increases their chances of becoming depressed If it is the latter then a daily walk has the potential to halt this Evidence now suggests that regular exercise has a preventative effect Due to the ease at which many people suffering from depression can get hold of strong brain chemical altering drugs says Graeme Hilditch many people simply rely on them to help them with their symptoms However studies into how regular exercise can help sufferers is growing all the time and its effects cannot be ignored In one study ten regular joggers were compared to ten sedentary men of a similar age Studies showed that the ten sedentary men not only suffered more severely from symptoms of depression but test results showed that they had higher levels of cortisol often called the stress hormone and lower levels of endorphins According to the Mental Health Foundation s 2005 report Up and Running research shows that a supervised programme of exercise can be as effective as antidepressants in treating mild or moderate depression It goes on to say that in view of this there are strong reasons for promoting exercise therapy as a first line treatment for mild or moderate depression Exercise has far fewer negative side effects is a sustainable recovery choice promotes social inclusion and is a popular treatment And this is why

    Original URL path: http://www.simonwhaley.co.uk/take-a-walk/ (2016-02-17)
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  • ‘Selfie’ used in The Independent – Simon Whaley
    Borders The Bluffer s Guide To Hiking 100 Greatest Walks In Britain The Little Book Of Alternative Garden Wisdom The Bluffer s Guide To Banking The Freelance Photographer s Project Book Chapter 18 100 Stories For Queensland Photography Greetings Cards Short Stories Read Short Stories Writing Courses Writers Resources Info for Writers Competition Judging Links Selfie used in The Independent By simonwhaley On 2 June 2014 In NEWS I was a little surprised to discover that a photo I d taken of myself using the camera s self timer option has been bought and used by The Independent newspaper to illustrate a book review about request stop railway station To read the article in full and understand why the picture editor bought this photo visit http www independent co uk travel uk stop the train i want to get off the magic of britains railway request stations 9246846 html Share this Click to share on Twitter Opens in new window Click to share on Facebook Opens in new window Click to share on Google Opens in new window Click to share on LinkedIn Opens in new window Click to share on Pinterest Opens in new window Like this Like Loading The Independent Previous Clee St Margaret Next Bishop s Wood Comments are closed Welcome Click on the photo to find out About Me More links NEWS Free Downloads Mindful Moment Search this site Recent Updates A Positively Productive Review 15 February 2016 Frozen Flow 15 February 2016 Teme Twister 14 February 2016 Slowing Up 13 February 2016 Weaving Water 12 February 2016 Publications Amateur Photographer BBC Countryfile BBC Midlands Today BBC One o clock News Best of British Country Border Life Country Walking Cumbria Daily Telegraph Discover Britain Ezee Writer Freelance Market News Great Walks Australia Holiday Cottages Lakeland Walker

    Original URL path: http://www.simonwhaley.co.uk/selfie-used-in-the-independent/ (2016-02-17)
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  • Age UK – The People’s Friend – Simon Whaley
    The Bluffer s Guide To Hiking 100 Greatest Walks In Britain The Little Book Of Alternative Garden Wisdom The Bluffer s Guide To Banking The Freelance Photographer s Project Book Chapter 18 100 Stories For Queensland Photography Greetings Cards Short Stories Read Short Stories Writing Courses Writers Resources Info for Writers Competition Judging Links Age UK The People s Friend By simonwhaley On 20 March 2015 In NEWS If you can get hold of a copy of The People s Friend dated 21st March 2015 then check out the feature exploring the life of an Age UK charity shop in Newport for which I took the photos In this month s issue shop manager Sharon reveals details of some of the more unusual requests they get from some of their customers Oh the joys of being located near to an agricultural college Share this Click to share on Twitter Opens in new window Click to share on Facebook Opens in new window Click to share on Google Opens in new window Click to share on LinkedIn Opens in new window Click to share on Pinterest Opens in new window Like this Like Loading The People s Friend Previous PLR and Libraries Letter to The Author Next Business of Writing Free Words Comments are closed Welcome Click on the photo to find out About Me More links NEWS Free Downloads Mindful Moment Search this site Recent Updates A Positively Productive Review 15 February 2016 Frozen Flow 15 February 2016 Teme Twister 14 February 2016 Slowing Up 13 February 2016 Weaving Water 12 February 2016 Publications Amateur Photographer BBC Countryfile BBC Midlands Today BBC One o clock News Best of British Country Border Life Country Walking Cumbria Daily Telegraph Discover Britain Ezee Writer Freelance Market News Great Walks Australia Holiday Cottages Lakeland

    Original URL path: http://www.simonwhaley.co.uk/age-uk-the-peoples-friend/ (2016-02-17)
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  • Age UK Magazine Models – Simon Whaley
    taken Mind you I can understand their reticence When you give up your time to volunteer in a charity shop you don t expect to find yourself as a magazine model strutting your stuff in front of over 400 000 readers Age UK feature in The People s Friend magazine But Sharon and her team are always willing to help out and suggest potential photo ideas I last visited them about ten days ago where I met Margaret who is the shop s longest running volunteer She agreed to have her photo taken and hopefully those pictures will be appearing in the next instalment of the series in March 21st March 2015 It was lovely to hear from Sharon how many of the magazine s readers have been enjoying the articles and my photos and sending items to Sharon for her to sell in the shop I saw some lovely handmade greetings cards that had been donated by one reader And Sharon has been busy writing letters back to them all I don t know where she finds the time So next time you pass an Age UK shop why not pop in and have a look Say hello to the staff and volunteers And see if they re following the series of articles in The People s Friend You never know they may be grateful they don t have me turning up on their doorstep every few weeks uttering the photographer s cliche tits and teeth Share this Click to share on Twitter Opens in new window Click to share on Facebook Opens in new window Click to share on Google Opens in new window Click to share on LinkedIn Opens in new window Click to share on Pinterest Opens in new window Like this Like Loading The People

    Original URL path: http://www.simonwhaley.co.uk/age-uk-magazine-models/ (2016-02-17)
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  • Age UK join forces with The People’s Friend – Simon Whaley
    The Bluffer s Guide To Banking The Freelance Photographer s Project Book Chapter 18 100 Stories For Queensland Photography Greetings Cards Short Stories Read Short Stories Writing Courses Writers Resources Info for Writers Competition Judging Links Age UK join forces with The People s Friend By simonwhaley On 30 October 2014 In NEWS I ve just caught up with the issues of The People s Friend that contain the new monthly series of articles from Age UK Whilst Age UK could supply the text The People s Friend needed someone local to the Newport shop that Age UK have selectued to write about I was delighted when The People s Friend invited me to go along and take some photos and they re a great bunch of people at the Newport store They certainly know how to have fun For more information about Age UK visit http www ageuk org uk For more information about The People s Friend visit http www thepeoplesfriend co uk Share this Click to share on Twitter Opens in new window Click to share on Facebook Opens in new window Click to share on Google Opens in new window Click to share on LinkedIn Opens in new window Click to share on Pinterest Opens in new window Like this Like Loading The People s Friend Previous Library Visitors Buy Books Next Spiralling Closer To Heaven Comments are closed Welcome Click on the photo to find out About Me More links NEWS Free Downloads Mindful Moment Search this site Recent Updates A Positively Productive Review 15 February 2016 Frozen Flow 15 February 2016 Teme Twister 14 February 2016 Slowing Up 13 February 2016 Weaving Water 12 February 2016 Publications Amateur Photographer BBC Countryfile BBC Midlands Today BBC One o clock News Best of British Country Border

    Original URL path: http://www.simonwhaley.co.uk/age-uk-join-forces-with-the-peoples-friend/ (2016-02-17)
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web-archive-uk.com, 2017-12-18