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Your Twenty Four No.10 : Alex Blayac

Our latest Your Twenty Four comes from Alex Blayac who documented her travel from Gosport on to the island and in to Southsea. Alex has been living in Southsea for 5 years now and is still inspired constantly on her travels around town. A point well made that’s proven in her own personal view.

“I had a go at my 24 last weekend. I started from the Gosport Ferry because I used to take it everyday to go to work when I first arrived, so it made sense for me to start from there. Then I took a walk in Old Portsmouth. I poped in to the square tower where there was a craft fair and I had a lovely vintage tea and bought the most springy cupcake. I carried on along the seafront up to South Parade pier, there is always something new to shoot – ice cream van, fishermen, graffiti, etc. I headed into Southsea through the common, walked past the skatepark from where I could hear lots of music and happy people. I arrived to albert road, starving, so I went Sakura, my favourite. After a great meal I walked up Albert road and finally headed back home where I enjoyed a cup of chicory looking out of the window and feeling happy after such a nice day in such a nice place. It was a bit of a challenge for me as I’m not usually so productive in such a short time, but hey! here it is! enjoy.”

You can see more of Alex’s photos over at her Flickr. She’s got some great photos. I’m loving Beast. Thanks for sharing. Click the Read More link at the bottom to see the full Your 24 from Alex Blayac, and don’t forget to add your comments too. You can see all the past Y24 posts HERE.

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Your Twenty Four No.09 : Brad Goddard

Brad Goddard recently started a photography course and got in contact with some photos taken on a quick walk around Southsea last Friday, with some well spotted observations on some of the city’s landmarks small and big. Things have been a bit quiet on Your24 submissions over the winter months, no doubt due to the cold weather and early evenings, so a big thanks to Brad for our first Your24 in 2011. If you want to submit your Your24 simply take 24 photos in 24 hours within Portsmouth and get in contact. We post up Your24 submissions on Fridays and are looking forward to more rolling in, get snapping and get involved!

Below are a few photos, to see all of them click on ‘Read full article…’.










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Your24 – Submissions Wanted

We are after submissions for Your24 articles so if you want to document your day in Southsea and Portsmouth with up to 24 photos, either digital or film, get in contact with us. Your24 articles normally go up on Fridays so if you want to contribute one for next week maybe capture your weekend’s activities (fireworks, Art on the Pier, etc)?

Check out all the past Your Twenty Four posts HERE. Get in contact with us at contact@strong-island.co.uk if you want to be involved with Your Twenty Four.

Your Twenty Four No.08 : Derek Thomas

Today’s Your Twenty Four contributor is local enthusiastic photographer Derek Thomas who documented the 5th September:

“Since meeting my wife in the Wedgewood Rooms a few years ago a lot has changed and our weekends now revolve around family fun with the children as opposed to late nights and nursing hangovers.
Every morning I wake up a bit grumpy and this was a late one for us. After taking toddler to the shops for a paper we loaded up the buggy with both children and headed out for the day. We decided to head towards the beach. One of our neighbours clearly did not have much washing to do. We ended up meeting friends at the 10th hole and had tea, teacakes and a good old natter, but it was not long till the children wanted to get to the beach to play.
We then decide to pop to the Royal Marines Museum for lunch and a run around the grounds. Then we took a strole along the seafront to walk off lunch and watch all that was going on. I like the way the boarding to where 5th Avenue once stood is decorated but today was the first time I noticed the flowers at the base of the lamppost and I have never seen the shark before either. When we got onto Albert Road our baby woke up so we needed to stop somewhere to feed him so we went to Casa de Castro, the new Coffee and Cake shop which after one visit is now one of my favorite places on Albert Road. All the cakes are homemade and very tasty.
We then went home to cook, garden and put the little people to bed. My wife then presented me with a T-shirt as a present for no real reason, which was nice! Just leaving time to get the cat in and put our feet up before the end of the day”.

The first of the 24 photos are below, click on the ‘continue reading’ link below these photos to see them all.

Check out all the past Your Twenty Four posts HERE. We are still looking for more contributors, get in contact with us at contact@strong-island.co.uk if you want to be involved with Your Twenty Four.








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Your Twenty Four No.07 : Charlie Thompson

Today’s Your Twenty Four contributor is local musician, DJ and familiar friendly face around Southsea, Charlie Thompson. The photos document Charlie’s 4th of September:

“Pretty standard Southsea Saturday, wake up early with hangover, embark on a 42 mile cycle run up towards the Goodwood area with Somerstown Velo Club (top boys), followed by medicinal pints in Russell’s, home for shower and dinner, then out again round the corner at the Belle Isle. Ended up at a friend’s flat celebrating her birthday. Photos taken on iphone, no tricks, no fuss.”

The first of the 24 photos are below, click on the Read More link below these photos to see them all.

Check out all the past Your Twenty Four posts HERE. We are still looking for more contributors, get in contact with us at contact@strong-island.co.uk if you want to be involved with Your Twenty Four.








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Your Twenty Four No.06 : Rusty Sherriff

Today’s Your Twenty Four contributor is local artist, DJ and photographer Rusty Sheriff, the 24 hours in question contained his and his girlfriend’s fifth anniversary and the Pompey Beer Festival.

Check out all the past Your Twenty Four posts HERE. We are still looking for more contributors, get in contact with us at contact@strong-island.co.uk if you want to be involved with Your Twenty Four.

Check the first of the 24 photos below, the rest can be seen on Rusty’s Flickr HERE with descriptions of what was going on:

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Your Twenty Four No.05 : Irma Rose Pettitt

Today’s Your Twenty Four contributor is Irma Rose Pettitt who took the photos on Sunday 11th July, which was her 22nd Birthday:

I started my day waking up with a massive birthday hangover! However it was a beautiful day so I wasn’t going to let my hangover head stand in the way. I decided to pick up my iPhone and with my current favourite App – Cross Process, document my 22nd birthday for Strong Island’s Y24. After my usual coffee and crumpets failed to shift my hangover, it was to The Tenth Hole Tea Room with my Grandma for a proper breakfast and some sea air. Job done! After this I sat in my garden, in the sun with my cat Flounder who is the most chilled out cat I have ever met. After a visit from friends Sophie and Roya to discuss the pros and cons of starting the night before with cocktails in the Atrium, I decided to go for a bike ride along the seafront. I reached Eastney beach to find the beginning of the new cycle way along the seafront to South Parade Pier. I hadn’t seen this before and it was brilliant. I was able to appreciate the view whilst riding and take some photos without having to worry about cars right behind me. I reached Castle Fields where some of my friends were having a BBQ and listening to samba music drifting over from the Bandstand. Beer and birthday cake all round! Couldn’t stay long as I had a date with my Mum for some presents from my family. Best birthday present is pictured – Hand made coffee mugs by artists David Pantling from Brighton and my own Cafeteria for Uni! Finally the perfect finish to my birthday, dinner at Rosie’s with friends and family. Mussels and wine in the garden, chatting until the sun went down. Thank you all for a wonderful day!

Check out all the past Your Twenty Four posts HERE. We are still looking for more contributors, get in contact with us at contact@strong-island.co.uk if you want to be involved with Your Twenty Four.

(Remember to click ‘Read More…’ under the photos to see the rest)







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Your Twenty Four No.04 : George Crick

This week’s Your Twenty Four contributor is local designer and artist George Crick who took his 24 photos over the 24 hours where the Glass House Gallery pop-up shop opened with the 20:10 Exhibition. The exhibition featured work from George, an exhibit by Disposable Perspectives plus bikes and other goodness.

Below are a few of the photos, see all 24 over on George’s Flickr.

We are still looking for more contributors, get in contact with us at contact@strong-island.co.uk if you want to be involved with Your Twenty Four.






Your Twenty Four No.03 : Louise Bush

Louise sent over her 24 photos shot in 24 hours, you can also see higher resolution versions over on Louise’s Flickr. Get in contact if you want to submit yours. Check out all the other Your Twenty Four posts HERE.

(Remember to click ‘Continue reading’ under the photos to see the rest)







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Your Twenty Four No.02 : Tristan Savage

Continuing the Your Twenty Four series my day started with streams of beautiful sunlight coming in through the dining room window. The perfect morning to accompany my regular 8 mile commute to work through Southsea and out along the Eastern Road. A relatively relaxed day at work was nicely broken up with a ride to The Royal Oak pub on Langstone Harbour and then a short jaunt back in to Southsea to the Portsmouth Fish Market and Eastney Marina. After finishing work I went straight to the Art & Design Degree Show at The Eldon Building. I was a bit pushed for time so I only got to hang out at my old course Communication Design and meet friends/tutors new and old, as well as sink a few beers of course. Congratulations to Mikey, Brendon, Jenna & all the graduates. A lot of goodbyes later I stopped home briefly to pick up Liz and head on down to The Belle Isle for their opening party. Huge thanks to all the guys and gals involved. We’ll be doing a little feature on The Belle Isle soon. After last orders we got dropped of on Albert Road and took advantage of another hours bar time at LJR before heading home. Phew… check the full 24 Photo Edit HERE and the full 24 Hour Edit HERE.






We are looking for contributions for future Y24 posts so if you are up for documenting your day please get in contact.

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Portsmouth on Film – Episode 3

The next episode of Jonathan & Matthew Ring’s vintage family footage ‘Portsmouth on Film’ went up recently. This episode is of a round Portsmouth car journey back in 1998.

Dockyards

The dockyards, taken on 18th July 1914. The dockyards and harbour are quiet as almost all the ships are anchored at Spithead ready for the Royal review by King George V.

Dockyard
(Click to see larger image)

Southsea Show 1970

Image: eBay

Local Photographer – Harvey Mills

Okay, so it’s not quite on the Island, but hey, when the content is this good we can forget about the extra few miles. Harvey Mills shoots Murray Cross chomping the Langstone 13 set on the Havant roundabout with ease. Perfect timing and composition from Harvey.

Check out Harvey’s webiste www.harveymills.com and also his Flickr. Below are photos of Charles and Southsesa’s buttery own Bored teamrider Adam Keys.

Portsmouth at Night

Claire Sambrook from the http://www.flickr.com/groups/portsmouth_creative_movement/ sent me a link to a Flickr group called Portsmouth at Night, and let me say this, their photos are amazing. Lots of playing with lights, angles and exposures make for some fantastic photography.

Check out all the PAN photography on their Flickr.

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Local Photographer – Matt Shaw

Louise from the Girls Who Ride crew gave us the heads up on the amazing photos of local photographer Matt Shaw, including some great images on Portsmouth, some in HDR too. Be sure to take your time going through Matt’s Flickr and here are a few to wet your appetite:

Local Photographer – Eamon Lane

A recent arrival to Portsmouth, Eamon Lane has been out and about the city recently shooting photos on the street and at local events such as Love Your Bike. Below are a few examples of Eamon’s photography, visit I Love Slugs to see more.






The Langstone Ark Project

The Langstone Ark is a project being run by Langstone Harbour’s Environment Officer Louise MacCallum that went live on-line in August. The project aims to create a digital collection of all the animals and plants associated with Langstone Harbour, by asking harbour users, visitors, and anyone else with an interest in the harbour to send digital photographs of wildlife taken on the water, or around the shoreline.

So far, over 150 photographs have been contributed to the project, and nearly 100 species are now represented. There are literally 1000’s of species of animal and plant to be found around the harbour however, so there are plenty of gaps in the project left to fill!

Autumn is a great time of year to see wildlife around Langstone Harbour, with thousands of migratory birds beginning to arrive and beautiful fungi springing up on many of the wildlife reserves dotted around the shoreline.

For more information about the project visit the Langstone Harbour Board’s brand new website at www.langstoneharbour.org.uk and send photographic contributions to ark@langstoneharbour.org.uk

Below are just a few of the contributors photographs so far, and you can see all of them over at the gallery HERE.

Kestrel by B.D. McGregor

Little Tern by Mark Milum

Grey Seal by Nick Lyon

When The Tour Came To Portsmouth – A Conversation With John Bagnall – Part 1/2

With the 101st edition of the Tour de France due to begin on Saturday and a summer of sport well underway, I believe the time is right to delve into the past and look to when the world’s greatest cycling race crossed the channel to our shores. On the 7th of July 1994 Hampshire was gripped with cycling fever; a 187km long 5th stage was about to begin and end in Portsmouth. Half a billion eyes around the world were glued to television sets as the peloton, which included cycling legends Marco Pantani, Miguel Indurain, Chris Boardman and a young Texan called Lance Armstrong, powered past HMS Victory in the Historic Dockyard. For a day, Portsmouth played host to one of the most prestigious sporting events on the calendar. So how did this extraordinary day come about? In a two part post, I catch up with Southsea resident and ex-council employee John Bagnall, a key player in bringing the event to the city.

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Hi John, thank you for taking time out to speak to us. First of all can you tell us what you were doing during the lead up to 1994?

I was the Marketing Communications Manager at Portsmouth City Council, it was looking after press and media relations.

And I believe that this whole venture arose from a discussion over a pub lunch, is that right?

My colleague David Knight, head of leisure for the city council said to me “What can we do that will really put Portsmouth on the map and be a counter point to the D-day commemorations? What is international, bright, young and youth orientated?”

So when you say the commemorations? This was the 50th D-day celebrations? Quite a big deal.

Yes, it was the 50th anniversary of D-day. So for a week at the start of June, Portsmouth became centre to the world in terms of commemorating the liberation, or the beginnings of the liberation of Europe. Clinton and the Queens were here, many world leaders came to Portsmouth and stood in a special bandstand built on Southsea Common. There was a huge international flypast, I think a couple of hundred planes came over Portsmouth; Spitfires, Lancaster Bombers, Flying Fortresses, it really was the world solemnly marking D-day and the beginning of the end of World War Two.

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OK, so press-wise, a pretty good window of opportunity here. What was discussed over lunch?

As I said to David over that pub lunch “Hey, why don’t we bid to get the Tour De France to England?” I’d never really thought at that moment there was a realistic prospect of getting them here, I just thought the council would probably laugh it out of court anyway. Even if we did get as far as sending an invitation to them they would just turn round and say “I’m sorry, why would we come to England? You have no history or heritage of cycling”.

So to add a little context, I believe The Tour had come to England once before? In 1974?

Yes, the time before they raced on the newly completed, but not yet opened, Plympton By-pass near Plymouth. It was just coned off at each end and they went up the dual carriage way for X number of laps. And that was it. I think a few hardcore cycling clubs came to see some of the riders of that time, but there was no broadcast coverage and precious little coverage in the newspapers. By all accounts it was very dull and very boring. The Tour didn’t like it because of the amount of time it took to get the riders there and then take them back again.

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I see, so it seems like The Tour organisers weren’t exactly scrambling to recreate another UK leg?

No, the tour had no thoughts of coming to England ever again after the Plymouth stage. So during that pub lunch the idea really was to “fly a kite”, let’s do something a bit crazy. My argument to David was; they will probably say no even if they bother to reply, but I can still get some publicity out of that. Perhaps a little story into the cycling friendly The Guardian about how a town in Portsmouth bids to get France’s biggest sport event there (wry laugh)… So David and I went to talk to a guy called Richard Tryst who was the chief executive of the council. Richard was quite a frightening man with a hawkish and cynical sharp manner, but he didn’t suffer fools gladly. He liked boldness and directness. We went to see him and basically said “it’s crazy but we think this is a good thing to do, it ticks all the boxes of what the council are looking at”. He sorted of nodded and said “well yes, there are a lot of other questions to answer as well, but we’ll keep this alive”.

Richard bought in the then leader of the conservative council, a guy called Ian Gibson, who like all local politicians that get to be leaders of the council, was a very upfront, bold and visionary guy. And he got really excited about it as well. So on the 18th of December 1990 I drafted a letter to Henry LeBlanc who was the president of Amaury Sports Organisation, which was the company that controls the Tour De France. And about two weeks later they came back basically saying; “Subject to commercial confidence we are interested, and we are very grateful for your support”. They went on to explain that the Tour at that time was losing direction as the Tour De France; it had this great tradition attached to it but it wasn’t going anywhere with it. What they were trying to do was to introduce a policy that they called “mondialisation”. The organisers wanted to take it global and they were actively looking for other European countries that they could go to. They even discussed the possibility of, and this was back when people were excited by Concorde, to go across the Atlantic and even starting it in America or Canada. So to have an approach from an English city saying “what can we do to help?” was brilliant to them.

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Could you perhaps detail some of the ins and outs of trying to organise an event of this scale whilst remaining compliant with the confidentiality agreement? Seems impossible to me.

We had to sign legally binding documents with them not to divulge the fact that they might be coming here, and from there it became a planning operation. The organisers want to be able to book up every hotel going within, in some cases, 50 to 60 miles of a particular stage town. And at a competitive rate too. If it was common knowledge that the Tour was coming to Portsmouth every hotel in Hampshire, Sussex and Dorset would be ratcheting up their prices. Not only that but we had to make sure that the public knew where to be and what they were going to see. We took care of safety and we made sure there were no embarrassing blockages such as level crossing gates being down. It was a massive planning operation that went into incredible detail; and day after day more and more levels of detail were added.

One of the first things that came up was that the Tour uses a massive bandwidth of transmission frequencies. Back then, before radios were used with the riders, the teams still had their private frequencies so that the Director Sportif could talk to the team cars and any other helpers he needed to contact. The race officials too needed an overall race frequency that everybody could listen to, as did the aid operations, the radio operations, the feeding operations, the signing operations and for the clearing up of the signing operations. The list just went on and one. Hundreds of frequencies and sod’s law would have it that was the most of them were in the band of frequencies used in the UK for hospital radio paging systems. There was no way that we could bring the Tour through with hospitals being disrupted and lives being put at risk because of radio interference.

Immediately we set up a meeting with a government agency called the Radio Communications Agency. This was a formal meeting with about 30 of their wise men. We bought over the communications manager of the Tour and a specialist from France Telecoms. During the meeting’s presentation you could see various people around the table shaking their heads; “impossible”, “far too hard”. But a couple of the right senior people listened intently, and one of them I think the deputy chief executive said “well look, I have no idea how were are going to do this because it will be a massive problem, but leave that to us, if we can’t solve it we shouldn’t be doing our job, we think we can do it.” Suddenly the head shakers were agreeing. We got their commitment. From then on the RCA also undertook all that was necessary to make sure that the hospitals, for those two days, would be working from a different wavelength and there would be no clash.

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Another major issue was that the overall physical envelope of the Tour is massively more than just the peloton. You have the advanced publicity caravan, you have the people who would have gone over two or three days prior: putting up signage, checking access to the routes, checking where they can take off vehicles that might break down. All the kind of technical aspects. They are physically working several days, and perhaps hundreds of miles distance, from where the Tour is at that particular point. It is all part of the live event. Then you have the security operation that physically surrounds the tour: the motorbike marshals that escort the official’s cars, that monitors the press and first aid cars. They have their own radio frequencies and take up physical space on the roads. Amongst those you have the camera bikes that are filming the close-up of the derailleurs and the break-aways. They are beaming a signal up to a helicopter above and there will be four to five other helicopters covering the breakaways and the peloton. Each group of cyclists needing their own cameras.

For two days they would have to touched on Gatwick’s airspace and the approach path for Heathrow. I remember being in the office when Alan Rushton called Directory Enquiries (this was pre internet days) to get the number for the Civil Aviation Authority. He phoned up the switchboard and asked to speak to whichever department was responsible for closing the airspace above British airports. You could sense the stunned silence on the other end of the phone. Thankfully the CAA came back very quickly with a can do attitude. The only stipulation being that any emergency aircraft landings would have to take priority, but otherwise they would work with the French air traffic specialists to bring the Tour through safely.

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Be sure to check in on Wednesday, when we bring you the second part of our interview with John. We will touch on what else was required to bring the race here and what cycling legacy (if at all) the Tour left, not just in Portsmouth, but for the UK.

Guildhall After WWII

On 10th January 1941 during a heavy bombing attack on Portsmouth the Guildhall was hit by several incendiary bombs which heavily damaged the structure and the resulting fires quickly spread throughout the whole building, turning it in to just a shell. It took almost 15 years to rebuild the Guildhall in to what we have today, which was officially reopened by the Queen on the 8th June 1959. This photo from Stan Webb from a collection of photos collected by Portsmouth College shows how totally destroyed the building was, leaving just some of the frontage and most of the tower.

Guildhall

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