Friday, July 24, 2015

Bartsmarks mystery tour

Last Saturday I joined Nikki Pugh for a mystery tour on our bicycles. We met at Birmingham Open Media (BOM) where we are both inaugral fellows and which hosted my Bioprospecting Birmingham earlier in the year. At the exhibition Nikki spotted that we both had the same old map of Birmingham (printed by Bartholomews)- but hers had some intersting additions - some curious black blobs.
Nikki has contemplated these for some years and so we hatched a plan to make a cycling tour of a few of them (there are 140 of them spread across the city). So on Saturday we met up, along with our trusty steeds, at Kings Norton Junction on the canal and set off to examine the location of 14 of them. Our route was only 15miles or so but it took us most of the day stopping and puzzling at each location, and also enlisting willing passers-by for their views as to the origin of the blobs.

At each location I took a Sphere photo to see if we could document the area and potential spot the similarities. Thats what you can see below once they've been liniarized. All suggestions are welcome! Our passers-by were going for pubs though this didn't pan out as some of the blobs are on Cadbury Quaker land with its ban on pubs and we had the suggestion through Twitter that they could be from water pumps, which are no longer there!
The National Library of Scotland website has access to some great old maps - if you find anything let us know! The order from the top is:
1. Us looking at the map at Kings Norton Junction (there was no blob here but there was for the rest of these locations),
2. Junction of Station Road and Camp Land, Kings Norton
3. Woodland Lane near Pine Walk, Northfield,
4. Junction of Hole Lane and Heath Road, Northfield,
5. Fordhouse Lane near Beilby Road, Stirchley,
6. Junction of Hallam street and Willows Road, Edgbaston,
7. Junction of Mary Street and Edward Road, Edgbaston,
8. Junction of Sir John's ROad and Pershore Road, Selly Park.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Fun on the beach

 On Widemouth beach for our summer hols I made a little sculpture, here it is before and after the waves made their own intervention!

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Little baby ice cream

 For a break at the last conference I went to in Philadelphia a small group of us headed to Little Baby's Ice Cream shop to try out some of their unusual ice cream flavours. We tried one of each between us by having two of their tasting dishes! My favourite was the strawberry pink peppercorn, though the pizza (thats the orange coloured one) was pretty popular with the group too!

Wednesday, June 03, 2015

Monday, May 25, 2015

Viennoisserie at Loaf

I had a fantastic day on Saturday at Loaf in Stirchely learning to make croissant, brioche and cinnamon buns with Tom Baker - yes that really is his name and he certainly lives up to it. The techniques were precise but surprisingly simple - what is required is time and patience. The freezer is now bursting with tasty treats - as we couldn't possible have eaten them all on the day!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Quilting again

This time it's one for our room! Some lovely Lotte Jansdotter material for the backing too.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Bioprospecting Birmingham

This week I have been down at Birmingham Open Media (BOM) running an interactive DIY-Bio session called Bioprospecting Birmingham to see if we can grow some bacteria in the gallery that has been sourced from the buildings and monuments of Birmingham. I made a short video to explain what I was up to!

You can make agar at home too - take a look at Dr Simon Park's Exploring the Invisible website for information and saftey considerations.

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