Lake Hornborga lies north-east of Gothenburg and on arrival I waste no time in heading to the waterside from my accommodation in the nearby town of Falköping. I notice a few of the birds dotted about the fields as I approach the site but you don’t have to be a birdwatcher to spot this large, long-legged species. Towering up to 1.3 metres, they certainly stand out, with their elongated necks, black and white head stripes, grey plumage and bustle of feathers at the rear. … [Read more...] about The dancing cranes of West Sweden – a bucket list wildlife spectacle
Outsiders, puzzled by the contenders’ misleadingly similar pitches, should remember what a peculiar electorate they are addressing. Belonging to a party is a niche hobby: the tiny electorate of white male shire Brexiteers who chose Boris Johnson were the oddest. But YouGov revealed Labour members’ eccentricities. Asked for their most admired leaders, Corbyn topped the poll at 71%, with Tony Blair, their three times victor, trailing at 37%. When Rebecca Long-Bailey awarded Corbyn 10 out of 10 for leadership, she knew her voters. … [Read more...] about The only way to a Labour victory may be a pact with the Lib Dems
I am expecting a sizeable rebate, but Thames Water just fobs me off. We sold the house in December, so have had to ask the new occupiers to hold off taking over the supply while the company looks into it. We also can’t start an account on our new property. I am hitting a brick wall.AP, Wallingford, Oxfordshire … [Read more...] about Counting the cost of sharing neighbour’s Thames Water meter
For some, the close confinement and constant sound of pressurisation will be a recipe for a panic attack. For me, it is heaven. I am what you might call a claustrophile. I have always loved climbing into cupboards and corners, making dens and closing a door on the world. I fantasise about Japanese capsule hotels. Now, I lie and watch a zip close above me. There is a hissing noise. I adjust my oxygen mask and observe star-headed thumb screws being turned to calibrate the pressure. The gauge crawls upwards, my ears are getting stuffy. I swallow as it hits 4psi, equivalent to a depth of nine feet under water. Gazing at ambient blue through a hatch to the outside world, I imagine I’m much deeper, packed into a nuclear missile on the undercarriage of a submarine. I am in my happy place. … [Read more...] about Hyperbaric chamber therapy: I’m under a lot of pressure – and I love it!
Wood, a diver who was awarded an OBE for services to the environment, led the successful lobbying for no-take zones along with fellow local resident Don MacNeish, who witnessed their transformative effect in New Zealand. Now they are calling for Holyrood and Westminster to sanction more no-take zones around the UK. … [Read more...] about How a no-take zone revived a Scottish fishery devastated by dredgers