Calshot Spit

tower.jpgToday we decided to go around Southampton Water and get views opposite our usual spot at Titchfield Haven. Calshot Spit is about a mile long it is a sand and shingle bank at the seaward end of Southampton Water. It has a lot of historical interest. There is Calshot Castle built by Henry VIII and now open to the public by English Heritage, The former RAF seaplane base is now a Council Activities Centre, the Schneider Trophy seaplanes were a familiar sight in the skies above Southampton Water in the 1920s and early 1930s when the machines were based at Calshot. Calshot Tower is owned by the port it was built in 1973 as part of the Southampton radar chain. It served as a Coastguard lookout from 1974 until the 1990s. The tower opened as a  National Coastwatch Institution lookout in 2010. The NCI is a voluntary charitable organisation set up in 1994 to restore a visual watch along UK coast after many small Coastguard stations closed.




Shipping comes close to the shoreline at Calshot making it an ideal spot for ship watching.



Fawley Power station featured in the latest Star War film ” Solo A Star Wars Story” is close to Calshot Spit. Followers of my blog may recognise the power station which often appears in the background on my pictures.

And what a lovely sunny day it was despite a not so good weather forecast!





Steamed up.


Today was an open day at the old waterworks at Twyford near Winchester and they were running the steam engine which powered pumps. The Edwardian pumping station contains a unique selection of buildings and machinery, the site was given the status of a Scheduled Ancient Monument in 1973.


There is a little industrial narrow gauge railway on the site which was used to move coal and chalk around the site.



The site is unique in having both water extraction and a complete water softening treatment plant. Only coal needed to be brought to Twyford. Chalk was used to soften the water which was quarried on site. The lime kilns burn the chalk converting it to the lime needed for the softening plant which is complete and in part still workable. In most of Hampshire, our water is very hard and needs to be softened to reduce scaling. The steam engine pumped water up to the surface from deep boreholes in the chalk. (Steam power was replaced with Diesel engines before conversion to electricity.)

3 brick Lime Kilms are an interesting feature of the complex.









He was not there for me today, church closed.


St Eilian’s Church is in the village of Llaneilian in the North East of Anglesey, Llaneilian . The church looks a gem It is a superb example of a late medieval parish church having a whitewashed tower and said to have 15th century rood screen, a 17th century altar and 17th century paintings but what a shame the church was closed today so I had to make do with an outside visit.





A Marked land.



Around the farm where we are staying the history dates back 1000’s of year’s man has made his mark on the land. As I walk around I hope the only mark I make on this land is what I record. However I drive a car and live in a world were the marks of everyday life is often a blight on the environment.


location Plas Lligwy Moelfre, Isle of Anglesey- open all year just a short walk from the road and signposts from Moeflfre roundabout.

hut house.jpg



Soldier’s Point Hotel


Built in 1848, Soldier’s Point Hotel was formerly the residence of a Government engineer Charles Rigby who built the harbour breakwater at Holyhead. He was also an Anglesey magistrate and commanded the 2nd Anglesey Artillery Volunteers.


It is an example of an early Victorian castellated building, and has two stories, and had barred windows and curtain wall towers.



The hotel closed in the 1960’s. Many plans for redevelopment have been put forward but the future of the site has been put at even more risk following a catastrophic  fire in 2012.