HMS Defender at Glasgow, Scotland
Today, I took the opportunity to visit HMS Defender, a brand new Type 45 Destroyer which was accepted into the British Fleet in March and should be ready for regular duties by Easter 2014, after completing sea trials.
The vessel has a special connection with Glasgow because it was built on the Clyde, close to where it is moored.
Opportunity to tour the vessel arose due to the vessel paying a brief, goodwill visit to Glasgow during which the ship’s company attended a reception in Glasgow City Chambers to honour the ship’s association with the city.
Here is summary information concerning the vessel:
- Type 45 Anti-Air Warfare Destroyer.
- 7500 tonnes.
- 191 crew.
- Sea Viper Anti Air Missile System
- 1 X 4.5 inch Medium Calibre Gun
- 2X 30 mm Automated Guns.
- 2 X Phalanx 1B Close in Weapon.
- Merlin or Lynx helicopters.
- Propulsion: 2 X Rolls-Royce WR 21 20 MW Gas Turbines. 2 X 2MW diesels.
HMS Defender emblem
Clydebank through a gunsight
Bridge, HMS Defender
View towards Clydebank from HMS Defender
Tower, HMS Defender
View of Glasgow from HMS Defender
Control Room on HMS Defender
Sick Bay, HMS Defender
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George Stephenson’s Birthplace, Wylam, England
This evening, I am focusing on George Stephenson (1781-1848) who was one of the principal figures in the engineering sector during the Industrial Revolution in England.
Key facts and information:
- Born into a poor, coal mining family who occupied just one room of the above house which is located about nine miles west of Newcastle-upon-Tyne.
- His parents were illiterate. George did not commence his education until age 17. He paid for lessons from earnings as an engineman at a coal mine.
- Worked as a brakeman, controlling colliery winding gear.
- Became expert in steam-driven machinery.
- Invented a miner’s safety lamp.
- Designed his first steam locomotive in 1814, for use at Killingworth Colliery.
- Improved design of cast iron rails to carry steam locomotives.
- Was involved in the design of the Stockton to Darlington Railway which opened in 1825 with wagons pulled by his engine, Locomotion.
- Built first public, inter-city railway to use steam locomotives. This was the Liverpool and Manchester which opened in 1830 using Stephenson designed the ‘Rocket’ locomotive.
- Stephenson’s rail gauge of 4 ft 1/2 inches became the industry standard, worldwide.
- Became first President of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, in 1847.
- Died age 67 from pleurisy.
- Son, Robert was born 1803. He worked closely with his father on railways and was a noted bridge builder.
The above birthplace is operated by the National Trust and is open to the public.
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Sherlock Holmes Statue, Picardy Place, Edinburgh
This evening, I am focusing on Edinburgh’s connection with the famous fictional detective, Sherlock Holmes via his creator Sir Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle ( 1859-1930).
Within a very compact area of Edinburgh can be found:
- The Conan Doyle Pub at 71-73 York Place.
- Picardy Place, opposite the pub, where Conan Doyle was born in 1859.
- St. Mary’s Cathedral ( R.C.) where Conan Doyle was baptised.
- A statue of Sherlock Holmes, in Picardy Place.
There is another Edinburgh dimension to the Holmes character in form of Joseph Bell ( 1837-1911) who was a lecturer at Edinburgh University’s Medical School at time Conan Doyle was a student there. Bell was a pioneer in forensic science and proved a key influence on the creation of the famous detective.
All the key sites listed above can be accessed on foot from central Edinburgh.
St. Mary’s R.C.Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland
Picardy Place, Edinburgh, Scotland
Sign at Conan Doyle Pub, Edinburgh, Scotland
Conan Doyle Pub, York Place, Edinburgh, Scotland
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