1911 Waterbird replica flies for first time

After an epic battle to realise their dream,  Lincolnshire Skunk Works craftsmen and the Waterbird Trust have finally had the gratification of seeing their hand built replica sea-plane take to the skies for the first time.  Though only a short hop, the aircraft gracefully took off, landed and made small adjustments in the skies. This hop was the first of hopefully more air tests necessary to satisfy aviation authorities of its airworthiness – which has proved quite a challenge for this design breaking pre-WW1 aircraft, some of whose struts are made of bamboo.

The star of this restoration story, Gerry Cooper, is a successful engineer and pilot who has thousands of hours as a crop spraying pilot, aerial survey pilot and vintage aircraft ace.  Along with his team of woodworkers and aircraft engineers they’ve spent thousands of man hours perfectly replicating this early twentieth century aeroplane while also incorporating painstaking and necessary design alterations that allow it to be flown as a UK certified aircraft by the CAA.

Watch this space as we plan to launch a Web TV series documenting the full story of this phenomenal build, a story we hope to see culminate with the Waterbird replica flying from Lake Windermere where the namesake aircraft was designed, built and flew over 100 years ago.

To find out more about Waterbird Trust and the original aircraft’s history in the Lake District please visit http://www.waterbird.org.uk/.

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Hull City of Culture events September 2017

Simon has been visiting Hull to record two of it’s showcase events during their City of Culture year. The first was for Open Bridges, featuring the world premiere of BAFTA award winning composer John Stead’s especially commissioned acousmatic music composition ‘Moments in Time’.  He spent his day filming at Hull’s North Bridge, built in the 1930s, with Michael Billington of ITV Yorkshire.  The piece was broadcast on the 22nd September, and you can find out more from the ITV Yorkshire blog, or from Hull 2017 website.

Open Bridges: the autumnal equinox when day and night are equal, will be split in two for the first time in the city’s history denying movement across the river east or west, creating a symbolic wall to be reunited when the first bridge re-opens to road traffic. This can only happen in Hull as no other city has so many opening bridges over such a short distance of navigable river. A river journey by three historic vessels will take place and as the river journey ends the music begins. Hull 2017

The next week he was back in Hull for the opening of the Turner Prize at Ferens Art Gallery. The Turner Prize is one of the world’s most renowned prizes awarded by the Tate to an artist who’s work in the previous year has been deemed ‘outstanding’.  The exhibition of the four finalists art is open until the 7th January 2018 with the winner being announced in December. Details of the four entrants from Hull2017 website :

The four shortlisted artists for Turner Prize 2017 are Hurvin Anderson, Andrea Büttner, Lubaina Himid and Rosalind Nashashibi.

Hurvin Anderson’s paintings distil a sense of place. Encompassing both portraiture and landscape, his work shifts between the representation of a place and the reality of it.

Andrea Büttner works across print, installation and painting. Her multifaceted works explore poverty and value, and the ways that we communicate these ideas to each other.

Lubaina Himid’s work uses colourful, decorative motifs, referencing the political power of graphic language. Her artworks confront the sense of invisibility felt by people of the African diaspora.

Rosalind Nashashibi uses time in film to build a steady, often repetitive picture of everyday life, combining moments of movement and stillness.

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Astronaut Tim Peake in Bradford for launch

Make sure you watch ITV Yorkshire tonight to see Tim Peake unveiling a new exhibition featuring his Soyuz Module TMA-19M spacecraft at the National Science and Media Museum in Bradford. We had the pleasure of filming him for ITV Calendar along with reporter Lisa Adlam.  If you can’t watch it live then visit the ITV Yorkshire blog to catch up.

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Simon had the pleasure of travelling to Manchester Opera House to film the launch of the new musical ‘The Band’ based on the lives and career of local band Take That.  There was a surprise for the audience though, when Gary Barlow, Mark Owen and Howard Donald appeared on stage to participate in the launch.

The material was recorded with ITV’s Matt Price for shared content and was broadcast across several regional news programmes.  A few more photographs from the evening:

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Greenham Common – 100 Years of War and Peace

Primetime cameras have been to Greenham Common, site of the famous Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp to provide live camera coverage of a theatrical performance for the Greenham Common Trust and Rosa Productions. The show took place on the original former RAF and USAAF airbase runway and attracted thousands of people interested in the local history.

From the Greenham Trust website: “Paola Dionisotti (RSC, National Theatre, Game of Thrones) led the volunteer and professional performers in an unique dramatic event involving music, mass choirs, dance, live painting, banner processions and re-enactors. The stories told covered the history of the last 100 years at Greenham, including the American arrival in WW2, the Uganda Asians flight from Idi Amin’s Uganda and their arrival at the Greenham airbase and of course the Cold War and peace protests that brought Greenham to international attention.”

There are events ongoing throughout September and October so please visit the Greenham Trust website to find out more.

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Danny and Nicky Cowley, Manager and Assistant Manager of Lincoln City FC have joined hundreds of University of Lincoln students at their graduation today. Former Essex P.E. teachers, the pair quit their jobs to guide Lincoln City FC to the National League title and became the first non-league team to reach the quarter-finals of the FA Cup for over 100 years. Since this remarkable event the club have been enjoying record attendances at home with increased tick sales.

They received the Chancellor’s Medal from the University of Lincoln in recognition of this amazing success, and for their contribution to the city of Lincoln.

In a Lincolnite interview, Danny said: “Myself and Nicky are very privileged to receive the Chancellor’s Medal. Since we’ve arrived at the club it’s been a pleasure to work closely with the University of Lincoln’s lecturers and students.”

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