Monday 18 February 2013

Winstanley Hall - February 2013

First good weather in ages, so myself and the intrepid explorer Urban Spaceman went for a leisurely drive over to pie eater land, Wigan.

We opted for the long walk round as part of the government's anti obesity campaign, anything else just wasn't cricket.

Built in the 16th century, this Grade II listed building is being left to rot, having been empty since the 1960s - the state of this building is truly shocking.




A rather grand looking building, we navigated the sprawling brambles round to the courtyard.


The courtyards centrepiece being a rather large statue, fenced off to save it from further decline.



Sadly the rest of the place is in a shocking state of repair, considering parts of the building date back to Tudor times.



Internally the floors are going and gone, ceilings are down, fireplaces stolen, acrow props litter the building holding the place together. I'd seen photos from 2011 with wood paneled rooms, sadly now all stripped and gone.




This stone staircase had a bit of a wobble.





Winstanley Hall

We decided to leave before the place fell down around our ears, floors wobbled and cracked beneath our feet, time to leave.


Next stop Chernobyl.....

Saturday 9 February 2013

Bolton from the air, again ! - January 2013

More of  my home town, possibly not of interest for a lot of people, but for the people of Bolton jolly interesting????

Thankfully the town looks rather nice from the plane even on a cold damp Lancashire winters day, a bit of an idle potter around our home town with the aim of snapping some pictures of a few friends houses whilst on our travels to Ince Airfield from Derbyshire.

These are in no particular order, so starting off with Bolton School.

Bolton School

Essa Academy

Essa Academy, Bolton

The gas towers on the outskirts of Bolton, Spa Road.

Spa Road, Bolton

Looking over to Bolton Town Centre.

 Bolton Town Centre

Gilnow Mill, Bolton, like most mills around these days is a Listed Building.

Gilnow Mill, Bolton

Swan Lane Mills

Swan Lane Mills, Bolton

Astley Bridge Bridge Cricket Club with Thornleigh Salesian College in the background
 Astley Bridge Cricket Club, Bolton

The Cotton Works, Astley Bridge, Bolton, previously the working mill Holden Mill, now apartments.

Holden Mill, Bolton - The Cotton Works

Eagley Mills, yet more apartments.

Eagley Mills, Bolton

Over to Harwood, Bolton thru the clouds

 with a shot of Morrisons and Lea Gate and Hough Fold Lane in the background

Lea Gate, Harwood, Bolton

Hardy Mill School with its newly constructed car park, Hardy Mill Road in the background

Hardy Mill CP School, Hardy Mill Road, Harwood

Finally a quick spin over to my parents house, to check out their roof tiles.



Shortly after we got these pictures heavy snow showers moved in, summer can't come soon enough.

Friday 8 February 2013

Duke of Lancaster - media outbreak !!

As a recap on my post of earlier in the week, it would seem the council prepares to stand firm as a media trickle turns to a frenzy.

"Take your stinking paws off me, you damned dirty ape"

The drip, drip of coverage in the local press coverage is now turning to a torrent nationally, first the Daily Mail then the next day another national paper with massive coverage Metro with the upmarket broadsheets
The Guardian  and The Telegraph also featuring the many colours of the Duke of Lancaster.

The story of the Duke of Lancaster now slowly begins to creep across Europe, featuring in the Italian newspaper Repubblica

 The Duke of Lancaster

As interest grows in the Duke of Lancaster only time will tell if Flintshire Country Council will work with DOLAS, DuDug and the owners of the ship to help save the ship, instead to working against them.

 Duke of Lancaster

We now enter interesting times, the world is now watching.....

 The Duke of Lancaster and its artwork can be viewed at Mostyn, North Wales from the Welsh Coast Path, with close car parking at postcode CH8 9DX, it now has a growing list of talented international artists queuing up to exhibit work on the ship, its a trip well worth making.

 Duke of Lancaster

 Duke of Lancaster

Bolton's Giant Mecanno Bridge - update

Following on from my previous blog on Bolton's Giant Mecanno Bridge back in December two things have happened. Firstly construction seems to have ground to a halt due to the weather conditions and secondly I have allowed Bolton Council to use my previous photos in publicity material for the art project.

A old friend, who had put a lot of effort into getting the project off the ground, asked if my photographs could be used and I didn't hesitate.

 Giant Meccano

Public Art Online

Art & Architecture Journal

My kids can't wait for the bridge be finished and now they know what Mecanno actually is !!!

Wednesday 6 February 2013

Duke Of Lancaster - the incoming storm

After years of obstacles put in place by the local Flintshire County Council the power of social media and the power of the internet has brought together a group collective of like minded ship lovers and locals to save the ghost ship of Wales, the TSS Duke of Lancaster.

Duke of Lancaster

Sheer bloody mindedness encouraged by members of Duke of Lancaster Appreciation Society (DOLAS) and the shadowy art group Dudug has finally paid off with the discovery of possible "smoke and mirrors" tactics by the local council.

 Bungle at the Duke of Lancaster

Over a period of 30 years the council stated firmly that access to the Duke of Lancaster was required for emergency vehicles and the only access was via a bridge which happened to only have a 10 tonne weight limit, the bottom line was the bridge was unsuitable for fire engines.

Now after persistent correspondence with the bridge owners, Network Rail, Ashley Gardner has now been able to reveal that the bridge was in fact suitable to for emergency vehicles and vehicles up to 24 tonne.


Flintshire County Council moved fast to deny claims of false obstacles in the local paper Daily Post today.

The ship now has growing interest from around the world from fans of the growing artwork, but other than local media interest and specialist art websites the mainstream media had yet to pick up on the story and amazing artwork of the Duke of Lancaster.

Well that was until the collective threw in a trump card with a photo special in the national newspaper
The Daily Mail on the same day as Flintshire County Councils denials.

 Duke of Lancaster

With new facts uncovered and national mainstream media interest plus a possible national television feature on the cards, the outlook on the ships horizon might just be that little bit brighter.

 Bungle (left) ‘Prophets of Profit’ (right)by Mr Zero and Fatheat at the Duke of Lancaster

The Duke of Lancaster and its artwork can be viewed at Mostyn, North Wales from the Welsh Coast Path, with close car parking at postcode CH8 9DX, it now has a growing list of talented international artists queuing up to exhibit work on the ship, its a trip well worth making.

 Duke of Lancaster

Duke of Lancaster