Sunday, 8 October 2017

Island Story

Writer J D Taylor spent four months on a bike a few years ago, travelling around Britain and seeing it in a way that many other travel writers have failed to do. The value of cycling is that you see the world at a slower pace, and are actually in the environments you are travelling through.
The author has created a very useful blog to follow the journey, and includes a whole range of additional resources and ideas that underpin the journey including some additional writing.

You can follow the journey with images and text from each stage of the journey.
The book is fantastic to, and I've just been reading it.
A part of this journey was a search for the UK's identity as the Brexit vote approached.


This is excellent for older students exploring such ideas as Changing Places, and also the GCSE unit on UK in the 21st Century.

There is a New Statesmen article here by the author, which identifies some of the themes in the book, which is certainly political in its nature.
I was also interested to read on the blog about his next book, helped by a grant he has been awarded, which will also explore the idea of place:

Titled Where Are We Going?, the next book takes the form of eleven narratives about a specific place and the people I meet, through which I document the effects of forces shaping British politics, from health and social care to deindustrialisation, the ‘gig economy’, farming and rural poverty, to immigration, class, identity and housing. I’ve begun preparing the book this year...

Augmented Reality in OS Maps app

More available here

Saturday, 7 October 2017

Allemansrätten

This is a beautiful film by Al Humphreys who has produced a range of videos and books related to the theme of exploration.

It explores the idea of access to land, which in some Scandinavian countries is a 'right' open to all men (and women). They have free access to land and can camp or walk across it.

“Don’t disturb – Don’t destroy" is the mantra here.

In the UK, there was recently an expansion of the right of access to include CROW land (Countryside Right of Way)

Allemansrätten from Alastair Humphreys on Vimeo.

Allemansrätten is the right, in much of Scandinavia, for every man and woman to roam the countryside.
But with rights must come responsibilities too.
Should there be an expansion of this type of rights in the UK?

I met Al quite a few years ago now, when he was keynoting the SAGT conference that I was also speaking at, up in Glasgow.

I took advantage of this some years ago, when camping in Norway for several weeks and travelling up the coast with a friend.
In Finland, which I've also visited they have a similar right.

The worry would be that people might be happy to accept their right, but not their responsibilities?

Thought for the Day

The landscape is "as precious as any of our great ­cathedrals and we erode it at our peril"
Prince Charles

Sand dunes... how are they made?

Friday, 6 October 2017

Soils and natural Catchment management

Thanks to Ben King for the lead to this book which has been published online. When I used to teach the Soils and Hydrology Unit of the old Cambridge 'A' level back in the day this would have been perfect. This sort of complexity has been lost from many modern specifications, but for those who want to see why soil matters, this is a good read.
It explores the role of natural flood management, and the importance of the topsoil and good soil health in maintaining a healthy drainage. Great for higher level students in particular.

Click here to read online.
It's produced by the East Devon Catchment Partnership

Saturday, 2 September 2017

SAGT Conference 2017



The booking form and programme for the 2017 SAGT Conference has now gone live.
I've been a regular attendee at this conference since 2005, but have missed the last few as I have been elsewhere... This year, I will be in Madrid, so unable to attend. I'm hoping to be back next year.



As you can see, there's a keynote by Tom Heap, and various workshops, all for a good price, and with free minibus pick-up from Stirling train station, which is a great help. There will also be 'hot spots' where teachers share practice. Plenty of landscape based inspiration in the programme.
A great day of learning and inspiration for all.

Search this blog to see previous SAGT sessions inspired by Robert MacFarlane.

Book tickets now via Eventbrite.

Follow SAGT on Twitter @SAGTeach

Earlier that month there is also the ESRI Scottish user conference in Perth.