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Wahey! I managed to get the time to write this blog on the actual day! Mainly because I’ve not scanned quite as many old slides today and only added forty to this gallery – although there’s another 20 all set up to scan first thing in the morning.

That’s not to say it’s been an unproductive day, nor one without it’s lighter side. Dawn’s decided that when she mentions these blogs they need to talked about in her best Geordie ‘Big Brother’ voiceover which quite amused me ‘cos the connection hadn’t occurred to me. That said, I know who I’d rather be locked in a house with – and it isn’t a bunch of shallow, preening narcissists hoping to win a load of money. Not that I’ve got anything against earning money. I’m sure many of us would care to remember what that’s like right now!

Once I’d managed my quota of pictures and Dee had waded through the work she needed to do we combined our afternoon constitutional with a shopping trip. The weather’s been pretty good in the Pennines since the lockdown, which is rather ironic when you think about think about it but it did make the stroll through the woods and down into Sowerby Bridge easier. It’s not much fun in a howling gale or when the rain’s coming in across the valley horizontally. Plus, nowadays you can’t exactly nip into a nice warm pub for a ‘swifty’ whilst you wait for the rain to pass.

This time the shops we visited had everything we needed bar one thing. Tea. Dee likes Yorkshire tea and we couldn’t get that for love nor money. Both Tesco’s and Lidl were quiet, which was no bad thing. This was the first time I’d used Lidl since the lockdown and social distancing had really kicked in. They’re more relaxed about rules than Tesco and Sainsbury’s. There’s no-one stood outside limiting entry, but to be honest, they didn’t need to as there were so few people and the ones who were had already got the message. The only real difference was that each cashier had a Perspex screen separating them from the customers – but only face to face as their till packing areas are too small to allow real distancing.

The one group that really seem to be really enjoying the lockdown are Sowerby Bridge’s famous free-range geese! They’re strutting around like the own the place and are making themselves more and more at home now that those pesky humans in their motor cars aren’t around to get in their way!

Strolling home uphill with all the shopping was good exercise if a little tedious as it’s nearly all we get to do nowadays, which is why we’re excited about tomorrow. We have a legitimate reason to break out of the valley as we’ll be going to Huddersfield to do Dawn’s parents shopping for them. Funny how these things take on so much more meaning right now, isn’t it? It almost feels like an adventure.

Back home we’ve both knuckled down to a few more hours work, although I’ve been keeping one eye on Facebook, purely to keep an eye on the tiny anti HS2 protests at Crackley wood in Warwickshire, where a half dozen people are holed-up in tree houses, in breach of a High Court injunction. They’re supported by a rag-bag camp of a couple of dozen people on the ground, but it’s all pretty farcical as they haven’t got a chance of stopping HS2. The whole thing is a farce that’s being livestreamed to social media by the protesters, some of whom are coming under the ‘Extinction Rebellion’ banner. Some of the video is excruciating to watch. It’s like watching paint dry as they jerkily livesteam an hour of nothing really happening, then accompany it with a voiceover of someone rambling away or playing Stop Hs2 ‘bullshit bingo’. You can tick off the spin and trite phrases easy as they’re repeated on an endless loop. “Illegal eviction”? Check. “Ecocide”? Yup. “Hs2’s as wide as a motorway”? Got it. “It’s destroying the environment”? Tick. “It’s costing at least £160bn”?, that one too…

But the absolute, weapons-grade hypocrisy of these people is to try and use Covid19 and social distancing against the project workers. Why? Because if it wasn’t for this tiny bunch of self-appointed ‘eco-warriors’ ignoring the lockdown and flouting a High Court injunction in a futile protest, literally dozens of HS2 security workers, High Court Bailiffs and the National Eviction Team that support them (not to mention the police, who’ve got better things to do) could all be at home – or doing something vital out of harms way, rather than nurse-maiding a few people who want to play at ‘swampy’ whilst indulging in their ego-tripping across social media. Someone sending them love-hearts on Facebook is about a useful as Americans sending ‘thoughts and prayers’ to the survivors or families of the dead from the latest mass shooting. Here’s an example of the hypocrisy. This was posted to Facebook by some of the protesters, commending their ‘brave’ demonstrator whilst roundly condemning the Bailiffs, who’re only there because of this clown!


No doubt the eviction of the tree-dwellers will happen in the next few days, not that it’s stopping much work. HS2 have voluntarily closed down some other sides where it’s impossible to keep working within the social-distancing protocols. This is mostly on sites on built-up areas like London where staff have to travel to work by public transport.

The sooner the evictions happen the sooner social media will be spared this crap, self-aggrandizing videos and the bandwidth can be given over to something useful – like people who’re social distancing sharing photos of kittens, or something…

The pair of us are now having a few hours off from social media to spend some time together away from computers. See you on the other side!