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Illuminating Hadrian's Wall

aftertherain 13 4.2k 2 United Kingdom
28 Jan 2010 12:27PM
On the 13th of March 2010 there will be a line of light following the line of Hadrian's Wall from Wallsend to Solway.
500 gas burners will be lit at 6 second intervals starting at Wallsend.
Illuminating the Wall
They will probably burn for 45 minutes.
There will be three viewing points, Birdoswald, Steel Rigg and Housesteads ( disability parking at Brocolitia) and tickets will be allocated for parking.
It is the intention of the organizers to lock all other car parking areas and block layby's
They are worried about Health and Safety!
At Newcastle and Carlisle there will be various events happening on the night and that's where they want people to go.
I know it's going to be popular with photographers ( B&B's are already booked up) and I wanted to give a heads up that you have to plan in advance where you need to be and how you're going to get there.
I think it's going to be chaos but what do I know.
All details including how to apply for the free tickets is on the website.

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Blenkinsopp 12 320 4 England
15 Feb 2010 7:55AM

Quote:I think it's going to be chaos but what do I know.

Probably an awful lot.
I know of at least one disgruntled although usually very accomodating farmer who hasn't even been contacted about the event and now says he won't give permission for organisers' vehicles to be driven up to the wall. (He has heard from another farmer that vehicle access to the wall is required) If people haven't the courtesy to ask then can you blame him?
aftertherain 13 4.2k 2 United Kingdom
15 Feb 2010 2:49PM
I heard that as well - it seems they sent an email to everyone.
I guess that's why the farmers know nothing about it.
Blenkinsopp 12 320 4 England
14 Mar 2010 9:30PM
What a frustrating disappointment!

Set up and sat watching the chaos around. Cars unable to pass each other on the narrow roads. Cars parked just anywhere - on private fields, blocking roads, blocking gateways. People milling everywhere on their way to the Wall, - climbing stone walls/fences and allowing their dogs to chase stock.

When the illumination arrived the lights were few and far between and looked to be about 2 candle power. They were supposed to travel from east to west but appeared and disappeared in a random fashion.

I am guessing that if you were one of the "chosen few" invited to a tiny section of wall things looked good but for the masses things were pathetic. I was also disgusted by the organisation of the event in general and the fact that inconsiderate hordes were allowed to run riot through farmer's fields during lambing time.

aftertherain 13 4.2k 2 United Kingdom
15 Mar 2010 12:59PM
I posted on my blog that it was a grave disappointment.
The section at Steel Rigg where the VIP's were had 17 beacons visible on photo's - meaning they were a lot closer together than 250metres. I was at Cawfields and on a section 3 times the length of the one at Steel Rigg there were 6 lights until the one on the highest point at Winshields Crag went out after 5 minutes.
Between the milecastle at Cawfields and Cockmount Hill no beacons were lit at all, not even the flares for the helicopter fly over.
The line of light ended up being all the car head/tail lights.
No doubt the VIP's enjoyed it but for the rest of us it was a huge flop.
Blenkinsopp 12 320 4 England
15 Mar 2010 7:00PM
Did you see it on tele? - the "VIP Patch" shot from every angle and approached from every direction but nothing from anywhere else.

We parked at Ann's door at Walltown and sat sheltered in the hollow behind the top tree on the Arthur's Well mound. There was a beacon lit near us about half an hour before there was any light at Cawfields and there was one near "Danny's tree". If that spacing was 250metres I reckon it makes the Wall about 71/2 miles long!Wink We could see the pathetic display east of us but spent the time car and people watching before getting bored and going home.
aftertherain 13 4.2k 2 United Kingdom
15 Mar 2010 8:01PM
Comments on my blog show we're not the only ones who thought it was a dog's breakfast.
I wondered if Mr Woodman had refused them permission to have lights on his land because there was a big empty space without even flares for the flypast.
Of course all those extra beacons on Steel Rigg had to come from somewhere.
Not only that HWH Ltd, made Housesteads close their car park all day on Saturday, National Trust had intended to open until 2pm guessing correctly that there'd be a lot of visitors around. HWH said once people were parked they wouldn't be able to get them to leave and ticket holders must come first. So the main tourist spot on the Wall was closed on the busiest Saturday ever - go figure.
Blenkinsopp 12 320 4 England
15 Mar 2010 8:16PM
The two Williams (Stewart & Woodman) didn't co-operate because of the way they were treated
aftertherain 13 4.2k 2 United Kingdom
15 Mar 2010 9:49PM
Yeah - I spent an hour with Willie S last week - I can still see the steam coming out of his ears.
Blenkinsopp 12 320 4 England
15 Mar 2010 10:13PM

Quote:"I can still see the steam coming out of his ears"

Very politely and delicately put. - We would get thrown off the site if we quoted him!
andytvcams 15 10.4k 1 United Kingdom
15 Mar 2010 10:35PM
I saw the footage shot from the helicopter.
And it was dire.
aftertherain 13 4.2k 2 United Kingdom
16 Mar 2010 2:04PM
Well where I was Andy the helicopter was going round in circles waiting for flares that were never lit.

The farmers who work this land, the majority getting nothing at all from tourism weren't officially notified of this event until 2 weeks ago. This is their busiest time of the year, lambing and the organizers wanted them to drop everything to cart equipment around for them. You can imagine the response.
f8 14 9.2k 22 England
16 Mar 2010 5:42PM
I too thought it a none starter when I heard of it, I saw a few seconds on the tele' and that was it......what a damp squib, waste of time and resources. Echoes of the ill fated Millennium.
aftertherain 13 4.2k 2 United Kingdom
16 Mar 2010 7:46PM
The businesses are ecstatic one small local pub sold 200 meals on Saturday and all the B&B's were fully booked at a time of the year that's normally quiet.
They're clamouring for it to be repeated next year.
It was a complete farce.
andytvcams 15 10.4k 1 United Kingdom
16 Mar 2010 9:54PM
I don't see them getting repeat business next year.

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