Belper

Love of the Common People…

Social networking is both a useful tool and an invasive curse.  It has allowed us to advertise what we do and where we are, but also invite the world into our homes and create a world of voyeurism and mental stress.  Last year I noticed an invitation on the web to a reunion party from my comprehensive school.  It was over 30 years since the class of 1985 had walked away from Belper High School and made their way in the world.  I didn’t think long before pressing accept.  I thought it would be good to catch up with old friends and talk over old times.  It was to be held in January, in a local pub, so I could wander down on foot, enjoy a few drinks and wander back home.  It seemed perfect…

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The Duke of Edinburgh Award – Diamonds, Diving and Derbyshire…

stella-divers

My first connection with the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme was in the early 1990’s, when I was a young engineer at East Midlands Electricity.  They were a major sponsor back then and had purchased a number large of box trailers, filled with expedition equipment.  I ferried them around schools, helped set up a DofE group at the office and volunteered where I could.  Those days seem long gone as corporate takeovers scrapped sponsorship and abandoned the award.Read More »The Duke of Edinburgh Award – Diamonds, Diving and Derbyshire…

Forcing Your Hand…

Frostbitten Hands

The phrase ‘The day we stop learning is the day we die’, may be old, but it’s true. I thought after 17 years I had learned all there was to know about my frostbite injuries, but I was wrong. Though the amputations were very visible, regular treatment kept my skin grafts in good condition, and all was well with the world. The last few months however, have taught me a hard lesson in reality.

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George Lowe CNZM OBE – The last of ’53…

George-Lowe-B+W

It is with great sadness that the news of Georges death was announced.  My thoughts go to his wife Mary and to all the family.  The last of the John Hunt 1953 expedition has gone and with him a great mountaineering dynasty is over. I met George many times as we only lived a few miles apart in Derbyshire, and what I remember about him is a tall, quiet, unassuming gentleman, who never boasted about his adventures, but gladly shared them…

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A Royal night to remember…

I still feel a bit shell-shocked from last nights reception as I write this blog, but I’ll do my best…

I often come home from an expedition and find the doormat covered in post.  Many of the letters are full of sales pamphlets, offers and bills, but one postmarked Buckingham Palace caught my eye.  I carefully opened the envelope to find a wonderful invitation to the Palace to commemerate Robert Falcon Scott’s fateful South Pole journey in 1911 – 1912.