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Monday 17 October 2016

Assheton, Derby, Delacy, Lumb and llewellyn

Assheton and the village of Downham
Derby, as in Lord Derby
Delacy as in the Lords of the Manor of the Honor of Clitheroe

Three 'houses' named after various Lords and the other two, 
Lumb and Llewellyn past headmistresses. 

The Assheton family have controlled the villages of Downham and Twiston since 1558.
Visitors to the picturesque village of Downham will look in vain for telephone poles and lines. Yes, the village was connected to the telephone system; but the then Lord Assheton did not want the landscape marred. Similarly, there are no TV aerials, satellite dishes, road markings, nor indeed a village name post. A village stuck to all intents and purposes in the 1950s. The Manor house, is home to the Assheton family and the village dwellings are all rented from the Asshetons. 

Derby - Lord Derby

The Stanleys were Earls of Derby
They had connection with Clitheroe and with William Shakespeare.
'Prescott Playhouse' was the only purpose built theatre in England apart from Shakespeare's 'Globe'.

De Lacy sometimes written Delacy
De Lacy Street leads off Castle View, Clitheroe and was originally a steep, cobbled street of terraced houses, with one gas lamp half-way up on the side with most houses.
The De Lacy family were Lords of the Manor of the Honor of Clitheroe.

Miss Lumb former headmistress



Last Saturday, I found myself catching the 8.10 train to Manchester. Ahead of me lay several hours in the Mary Seacole building of Salford Uni. 

First, I needed to go to Manchester Oxford Road station to get a connecting train to Salford. I chose to travel from Hough Green Station, because it has only 2 platforms - up to Manchester and down to Liverpool. Similarly, Oxford Rd. has 5 platforms with no. 5 being a terminus and the line to Liverpool. When suffering from anxiety, the fewer decisions, the easier it becomes to travel.

Travel by car was a no-no as it would mean rush hour traffic. Queues to get to Manchester begin miles away e.g. junction 10 Winwick on the M62. You start queuing west of Warrington to get to Manchester. Previously, I've looked across from the train to see the queues.

I detrained at Oxford Rd. and the 'fun' began. Cutting a long story short, I struggled up 20+ stairs and down another 20+ stairs platform 5 to platform 1. Up 20+ stairs and down 20+ stairs platform 2 to platform 5, before finding a member of staff to make my inquiry. Finally up 20+ stairs and down 20+ stairs back to platform 2 for 'my' train. 

A couple of stops later, Salford Crescent station. At least there was a large hording that said. 'SALFORD UNIVERSITY' but nothing about the various buildings. Fortunately another person was heading to the same venue and eventually 3 of us made our way to the right building.

Next trial was to find the right room. Using the lift to the first floor and then the trek around that circular floor began. Good thing I'd built in leeway time to my planning. Half an hour and numerous wrong rooms later I found 'my' room. Another lady had similar difficulty and arrives after me.

What I could not understand was none of the tutors nor the caretaking staff made any effort to label the rooms. 

Anxiety took over and led to tears of frustration.

If anyone is wondering about the image - Hayfield - some of the tutorial stuff was taken from biased accounts of events in 1932.

Saturday 15 October 2016

The more qualified the tutor, the more impractical the person

At present I'm a student with the Open University. Over the decades they have built up a good reputation. Sadly the 'organisation' is now an omnishambles (what a lovely word). An alternative would be the American expression fubar which involves swear words. Suffice it to say, the OU has become effed-up beyond all recognition.

For many years I've been interested in accessibility of educational materials. Even in the 1970s we learnt how to make displays of educational materials. They had to be eye-catching yet legible and clear to read. Jump forward to now and to my mind the same should apply to on-line materials which in truth are easier to construct and to produce.

Imagine the frustration when having succeeded in joining an on-line tutorial it descends in to death by PowerPoint. I complained as the slides were difficult to read. Then, today the same tutor chose

Adding insult to injury, the screen was crammed with small print in black / navy-blue.

Then there were info sheets taken from a book as in clipped using the original tiny font.  Typically, I'd spent time yesterday making properly accessible copies for myself. It grieved me to see others struggling with the tutor's version.

Monday 10 October 2016

Confusion...delving into the past

In conversation the other day himself & I were wondering about life a few hundred years ago and the far S.W. of Cornwall in particular.

Although it's now several years since we went there, one particular friend keeps us informed of the day-to-day goings on in and around St. Just (the one near Penzance). The area might be familiar to viewers of Poldark whichever series. Series one in particular was filmed partly around Botallack and Boscaswell (Pendeen).

One of the charming things about Cornwall is place names - Tre, Pol & Pen.

'By Tre, Pol and Pen shall ye know Cornishmen'. Indeed it takes quite a while to get to grips with some of the pronunciations. Men are often addressed as 'pard' and women of whatever age 'maid'.

Looking into family history for our Cornish friend, one soon finds that the biggest on-line archive well-known for wanting £££s has a cavalier attitude to spelling.
Not only spelling but also geography. It's most annoying when they lump together - Dorset, Devon, Cornwall and the Scilly Isles.

Cornish place names not only frequently begin with Tre, Pol or Pen but they are often named after Saints. St. Piran patron saint of Cornwall is remembered in place names. In Cornish he's known as St. Peran, Sen Peran.
Perranporth - St. Piran's port.
Perranarworthal - what a lovely place name!

What a taradiddle

is a highly implausible story; often told as an excuse...

There are so many, it's difficult to choose. Media reports no matter where they stem from, all now seem fatuous  Whether it's across the pond, or across the Channel nothing rings true. In fact I'm tempted to abide by Simon and Garfunkel's motto - I get all the news I want in the weather reports.

The more I hear, read or watch of the on-going circus across the pond; the less I understand. Social media is cram-jam full of media reports, and last night's 'debate' was followed blow by blow on one of our premier broadcasting networks. From time to time I've heard snippets of interviews. Various folk attempting plausible deniability in all shapes and forms. One poor deluded soul opined that by voting for a billionaire, some of that largess would come their way. Crass, insensitive and frankly obnoxious views / opinions broadcast by a billionaire are swept under the political carpet. Similar words expressed over here would doubtless be seized on avidly by the Crown Prosecution Service.

Having had a look see, I'm wiser in some of the differences in 'freedom of speech'.
Our neighbours across the pond have a different idea to those in good old Blighty.

In the UK originally, as in the Magna Carta of 1215 - the freedom of expression was permitted as long as the law did not prevent it.

Then there's the aftermath from the 3rd week in June. 
Speculation is rife verbal and investment-wise. It is selling newspapers, providing fillings for column centimetres. Social media is awash with 'impassioned' verbiage. Carping and criticising, bemoaning and making spurious allegations turning individuals and groups of people against each other. 
The bitter irony being that the individual whose much vaunted 'promises' at party conferences and scribed in his manifesto started the rot. He preened, strutted and pontificated on and from the political stage...before lighting his promised touchpaper. Only to slink off and wash his hands of the consequences. Now society is riven; the media are fuelling dissent and fanning the flames of confrontation.