Tag Archives: geology

Living a dream …

For those of you who read and support a bit of an update. GOB is now 61 days, on the 12 March my first journal will be full. I attended Teachmeet Poole last week (Thursday 23 Feb) and as a presenter received a nice notebook which I shall use to continue the GOB journey.

Those who know my background and change in circumstance might well challenge, why is Andy at a teachmeet? It’s a fair question. I had looked up to see if Jenna Lucas’ TMBournemouth would be on and found details of the event in Poole on Differentiation. I immediately thought what about a piece on Solo Taxonomy, whose enthusiasm has not left me. I offered my services and settled to participate in the break marketplace and fill any other gaps that arose. I ended up in a mock classroom in the corner of the school theatre presenting to the entire teachmeet. Not what I had expected but I just got on with it. I loved talking about Solo. As I finished I made the point, from the chap in shorts and polo shirt, that this was my first time in a school building since November when I had a nervous breakdown and left teaching. It was a great evening to see the enthusiasm of young staff. There was repetition of many familiar ideas I have seen previously but I was left to wonder how long they would stay in teaching and knew it was unlikely to be as long as I had managed and that still upsets me.

Anyway apart from that I have been sketching with other artists for PAW (Purbeck Arts Week) at The Etches Collection – fossils of Kimmeridge. I liked the setting, found the number of experienced artists quite intimidating tbh. However it was a link back to degree days with Jo Angseesing my palaeontology lecturer. In fact my eyes were drawn a lot to the architecture after the urban sketching trips I have attended with both London and Cambridge groups previously. I have taken some photos to allow follow up on this.

Yesterday, March 2nd, I had a conversation with a mental health professional about a local programme Steps to Wellbeing, and after being very open and honest about what the last six months have been like – a range of triggers, it was felt and I agree that I am doing all that I can to recover and don’t need additional input outside what I am doing already for myself which overall is working. Yes there are slips and dips but that is the nature of depression and anxiety. In fact after the phone talk I went out on an standee walk from the house along the SW Coast path. T-shirt, shorts, walking boots and a sweatshirt for when I stopped plus camera. In the end I walked about 8 miles, took over 200 pictures (the advantage of digital) many of landscape and waves, enjoyed fresh air and sunshine, got muddy but felt great.

Today the weather is back to cloud, wind, rain and more time indoors I suspect.

A rambling post, not pre planned as usual but flowing from my thoughts. I live in a wonderful place, I have an active lifestyle. I share delights of hares, deer, numerous birds with most of my family. I live a sort of semi-retired status and it suits me.

Our friend Morris the Mad March hare who may mean we have ravaged lavender bushes, but it’s a price worth paying.


Visiting #home ctd.

When I last posted I was looking over Minnis Bay, Birchington, looking west towards Reculver. The aim was to drive along as much of the coast as possible, stopping to take images of the variations in the Thanet coastline and it’s protection against the sea. Nostalgic memories abounded too of trips to different bays in my youth, whether running or cycling in most cases.


Looking east towards Margate showing how the chalk is now visible.

This is a #skitch annotated image of a sea defence which a local householder originally built to defend his property when I was at school back in the late 1970s. An early brick based defence was eroded behind undoing its effectiveness. The concrete defence is more solid than I remember in the past. The solid base sea wall is one that is familiar along stretches of the chalk in many parts of Thanet from Birchington to Ramsgate.

The top of the cliffs has seen some older residences that I remember have been replaced with large New England style clad properties. The Royal Sea Bathing Hospital at the border of Westbrook and Margate is now residential. Along the seafront at Margate’s Golden Sands there is much evidence of urban decay and new defences run from the harbour which also houses the Turner Contemporary.





On past Cliftonville and Palm Bay, a favourite cliff top location for kiting in the past and memories of being pulled this way and that. The pitch and putt course has gone and in the distance the sewage works has been expanded. Built to blend in as the building mirrors the colouring of the cliffs.


On through the linking housing area to Botany Bay, Kingsgate – used in adverts for BP? And athletes running along the beach. A brief stop and walk down to the beach – makes me realise why am I just rushing rather than enjoying the beach.




Then on inland to approach Kingsgate Bay and the arch which, it was feared might collapse last winter. Double yellow lines stop me from parking up.

Onwards to Joss Bay which in my youth had no sea defences. Then they created a dune to the north side of the beach, then a sea wall that also protects the cliff top properties. I first came here on primary school day trips when I lived in Chatham, Kent in the early 1970s.
There are some paddle boarders out in the bay enjoying the calm conditions.




Finally into the edge of Broadstairs and Stone Bay, looking north back towards Joss Bay and an unprotected area of cliff.


If I had continued the cliffs maintain this height and even rise to Ramsgate then descend to the bay at Pegwell Bay, south of Ransgate close to Richborough castle and the other end of the Wantsum channel mentioned at the start.

I hope you have learnt a bit about the coastal features from this post.