Aidies Blog 2010

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01/01/2010  The first day of the new year and a trip up to the Forest was the order of the day.  Looking for some bird shots however I turned out to be the main attraction.  Better luck next time.

06/01/2009  The Official FoSF Group has now been started on Facebook,  it has all the prospects of being a huge success.

We have image galleries on Facebook and if your Browser has COOLIRIS installed ( Free ) you can slosh around the Forest in the most magical picture Gallery imaginable.  Get yourself FireFox and install Cooliris and see what I'm talking about.

10/01/2010  I have just seen what is claimed to be the largest digital image ever created at 26 Giga Pixels ( An ordinary DVD is 4.7GB or 5.5 DVD's worth) Mind Bending,  it took a computer with 16 processors and 26 GB of memory 94 hours to process.

Looking back on my entries it was the second of February before we saw snow last year and I had to get out of bed at 5am to catch it on film,  now just into the new year and salt stocks are so depleted the Government has decided to use ordinary table salt on the roads as an interim measure until fresh stocks arrive from abroad.  Perhaps we could send all our serious criminal offenders down the Siberian salt mines to earn their keep.

14/01/2009  Installed some new ( Old ) software that works alongside Frontpage after the old set was stolen  ( Missing Licence key ),  managed to rescue all the old template folders and finally thought all was well until it came to modifying the " Nav " Bar - disaster,  it all has to be input again, that's a good nights work but at least I managed to upgrade in the process.  When that is complete I can get round to my report and I will start a discussion group on Facebook to cover it so your comments will be not only be welcome but also properly noted.  To find us on Facebook if you are having problems just search for " Friends of Sherwood Forest " or just " Sherwood Forest " in FB's search box.

23/01/2010  Remember the trouble in 2009 when I purchased a new digital camera, well it was from a reputable photographic retailer, I had two and both were rejected due to poor image quality ( Abysmal ) > HERE.  Well I've been back in the Toy Box and I have another one,  far higher resolution and I'm pleased to say that with the kind assistance of Ms Diane Wilson ( Governor ) who loaned additional equipment this camera has passed the Acid test.  Additional parts are now on order from China to take this Camera to the very edge of " Low Light " photography,  that should be more than interesting,  no doubt that will prick the ears of Nick Broomhead, ( Head of Parks Department Nott's C.C. ).

It has been decided to allow membership through FACEBOOK as a non-contributory member, any person wishing to be a contributory member is welcome to join through the website.

A very kind gentleman from Southampton has been supplying us with much needed electronic components for Project Genesis, I would like to thank Bill for his kind attention and very generous terms of business, Cheers Bill.

07/02/2010  I'm holding back on my 2009 report until the end of the month,  I suffered a serious injury at the start of the week and I need a little time to recover, apologies for this, I know there are one or two people who are dying to read it.

08/02/2010  We are approaching the three F's or Final February Flurry yes the final fall of snow is due soon that will signal the end of the winter period,  but not the end of the ice.  America has been hit hard, my sympathies to those who are not enjoying the experience.  This is also the last time to catch Sherwood Forest covered in the white stuff,  late on last year the temperatures were very low but the precipitation was not excessive,  the only real downside to this with regard to the Forest is that the veteran trees have to survive a tremendous weight of snow which can have disastrous consequences.

12/02/2010  Visited Sherwood Forest yesterday,  a fair sprinkling of snow,  had to walk with care due to the iced over paths.  A full day job including Infrared imaging work,  lunch consisted of two superb pasties ( Hot ) from the Lime Tree Kitchen in Edwinstowe ( 2.40  Beat that ).  The Infrared Images are on Facebook, just follow the link above and join the group > it's free.  Yes and the birds and squirrels were fed as well,  a constant source of amusement and a pleasure to feed.

13/02/2010  Plans for the new visitor centre take a huge downturn, facilities for Wedding receptions and conference facilities are not being included.  This is the one are where they have a proven track record of making it pay and being popular,  defies belief.  Chad story Here >

14/02/2010  Just had an email in from a fellow Photographer in Germany, Kodak Infrared Aero has now ceased production,  and the last few rolls of film will soon be gone, this marks the sad end of another era in Infrared film photography,  I hope other manufacturers hold fast and continue production,  perhaps Images created in this medium may be worth serious money > Dream on.

15/02/2010  Into town this afternoon to buy some budgie feed, returned with 5kg of the stuff. Need to find a new name for the latest mix,  the first was called Dinosaur mix, the second was known as Rocket fuel any suggestions for this one like, Who's a pretty boy then.  Seriously providing a wide range feed brings down far more birds etc than you could imagine, including the Squirrels.  Now to sort out the new Photography group.

16/02/2010  A photography group has been started on Facebook for the FoSF >!/pages/Major-Oak-Photography-Group-Nottingham-Derby-Leicester-FoSF/340726319049

Infrared, Panoramic Landscape Photography, Walk n Talk,  equipment hire Nocturnal Photography,  the most exciting New Photography Group on Facebook

19/02/2010  Just back from being on BBC Radio Nottingham, on the early morning show with Andy Whittaker,  just a short mention for Major Oak Day,  need a stiff cup of Tea to settle things down a bit,  Will place a link to the BBC iPlayer when it is available.

Andy Whittaker and Adrian Wilson Radio Nottingham.

I also had the pleasure of meeting the Viking Warrior of Local Radio Frances Finn, just as charming and vivacious as ever.

Here is the link to the iPlayer, you can find the Major Oak Day conversation right at the end.


20/02/2010  Major Oak Day and green frogs make good Robin Hoods >

The Guestbook is back online, your comments would be welcome,  Have a nice day. ( The Gremlins got into the software, sorry for the Glitch all should be well now, apart from me I now have the Flu'.

21/02/2010  Loads of snow this morning, don't forget the snowman competition, ends 28th February send us your pictures, you may win,  sorry no prizes.

23/02/2010  While sorting some admin' work this morning I noticed that the 20th February is also Ansel Adams birthday,  as I am orientated towards Photography perhaps some of our fellow members in the States may have felt slightly miffed,  Ansel will be acknowledged in future in regard to Major Oak Day, apologies if my omission caused any offence, Aidie.

11/03/2010  A spokesman for Natural England has just announced on Radio Nottingham that Polecats have returned to Sherwood Forest, let me know if you see one.

13/03/2010  I'm certain you would all like to join me in sending Best Wishes for a speedy recovery to Doc' ( Dr Naomi Evans ) she injured her back while tending to a patient and has a nasty spinal injury that has laid her low for a couple of days now,  here is to a quick recovery.

18/04/2010  I've been ill now for some time, it all started late last year when I was rushed into Hospital, later I suffered injury due to a Consultant and then on top of that went down with the flu' and had bronchitis that an incompetent GP could not cure, thankfully I'm not pulling out of the worst of this mess and looking forward to next Fridays Walk around the forest with the Photography Group.  I managed to keep most things ticking over while I was ill like the eBay campaign and Facebook but little else apart from sleeping day and night.

Facebook held a big surprise for me last night, as the reigns to the Group " Save Sherwood Forest " were handed over to me,  our membership on FB is now rapidly approaching 900 > WOW. I must say a personal thank you to Hanna for her considerate move in handing the Group over to us,  Thanks Hanna.

The new Group can be found here >!/group.php?gid=8192305118&ref=ts

The new group is exceeding all expectations, we now have a combined membership of 900 plus at 15.30 today and climbing every minute.

23/04/2010  Major Oak Photography walk around Sherwood Forest,  a splendid day despite a lack of numbers, no doubt this will improve later.  A chance to see the Forest where Angels fear to tread.

24/04/2010  I experienced a camera problem during the days walk around Sherwood Forest which was not noticed until I uploaded the images to my computer that night.  All were sadly so far out it was unbelievable and I had no idea as to why.  I took a couple of test shots at home and the flash one was sadly out for no apparent reason.  Being tired I settled down to sleep and just before I drifted off I realised the problem,  the first test shot was OK but it should have had a yellow cast, the second shot was off and should have been OK.  Then it really dawned on me, I was getting to know the camera and before I took ill with Bronchitis over two months ago and adjusting the settings to see what sort of difference it made to the images.  I had set the White Balance for Tungsten and left it there this gave me an excellent first shot but cobbled the second test shot.  I leaped out of bed grabbed the camera and low and behold the White Balance was set to Tungsten,  not saying any more, oooops !  The good news was that having realised the problem I could rescue all the images and return them to normal.

26/04/2010  I did hear on the Grapevine that a local Bobby ( Policeman ) PCSO Andy Crofts had his push bike stolen which is not funny except for the fact that it was stolen from outside the POLICE STATION.  The good news is Andy received a new cycle,  lets hope he has it post coded and does not decide to re-cycle it !

02/05/2010  Towards the end of last month Norton Antivirus started a huge download just when my bandwidth goes up to its limit.  That knocked my access to the internet which I managed to fix more by luck than anything else,  well I've never been a real fan of Norton but I was lumbered with it when I brought the laptop and ended up having it renewed by default, yep > they swiped forty quid out of my bank account before I could stop them.  Well this latest version looks very slick, bit like the Emperors new clothes, not really worth the bother.  There are still features that I consider essential that are not included and features that are new and don't work but the worst NASTY of all is the SUPPORT section, yes if the old organ grinder stabs you in the back ( Laptop ) and causes problems it will cost you $99.99c Dollars to contact Norton,  and they could have been responsible for the cock up, but you still have to pay.  I should have dug my heels in and gone back to TREND MICRO.

08/05/2010  Sherwood Forest hardly gets a mention >

11/05/2010  Please spare a thought for the victims and relatives of the Bradford Football stadium tragedy of 1985.

12/05/2010  The Oaks are now coming out in leaf, a couple of weeks will see the canopy established,  managed to find a small clump of Bluebells.

Oaks in leafMajor Oak 11th May 2010 in leafBluebells Sherwood Forest 11th May 2010 a rare find !

16/05/2010  Registered Five domains for the Photography Club,  I intended to do some Infrared work this morning but conditions were not suitable, perhaps during the week.

24/05/2010  Out in Sherwood Forest during the day, shot some really nice Infrared photos,  really warm but we are not used to it at the moment,  the Canopy is now well established.  Noticed a serious problem for the disabled and elderly re getting on and off buses, actioned this and Nott's CC are going to send out an inspector to report on the problem.  IR images are on Facebook, and no doubt can be found in Facebook's dustbin pages,  they really know how to mess things up,  I don't like putting images on FB but it's the lesser of two evils.

03/06/2010  In Sherwood Forest yesterday, captured some interesting images, including some Infrared.  Busy and difficult to shoot the Major Oak due to visitors,  completed the shooting and moved on before my blood pressure hit new levels.  Some of the images are on the Major Oak page and a few more are on Facebook.

06/06/2010  Back in Sherwood Forest with the camera for some more stunning shots including Infrared,  I will soon have enough images for an exhibition. Had to cancel the Sherwood Forest Ramble on the 8th due to unforeseen circumstances, apologies to everyone concerned,  we will organise this event for later on.

08/06/2010  What was so important about today, well UK Coal had applied for permission to extract coal from under Sherwood Forest, I attended the planning hearing this morning.  I was disgusted at UK Coals Chief Exec' this case centred around the ecology of Sherwood Forest and nothing else,  Mr John Lloyd UK chief Exec' presented Nottinghamshire County Council with an ultimatum > If he did not get his way and permission was not granted then Thoresby Colliery would be closed with a loss of over 400 jobs and 50+million pounds worth of mining equipment would be moved elsewhere.  Both speakers ( Natural England Mr Steve Clifton ) were warned to keep there speech directed at the subject in hand and nothing else.  Lloyd should have been severely censured for his infliction, however this was ignored by the Chairman, had I have chaired that meeting I would have had John Lloyd thrown out by the scruff of his neck and directed that his comments be deleted from the records and failed the planning application,  sadly it was granted.  UK Coal may have won the day but they have not won the war,  the Ancient trees of Sherwood Forest deserve all the protection they can get, and we will do our best to see they get it.

09/06/2010  Link to the Nottingham Evening Post re Mining under Sherwood Forest >

I first heard of this application on Saturday night,  it left little time for anything but never the less I was very grateful for the information I received.  I spoke to a Coal board representative first thing on Monday and did further research as far as possible,  the Planning committee meeting being the following day,  I decided that it would be best if I could take a letter of objection with me to the hearing and drafted one out on the Tuesday morning, this was delivered by hand but sadly to late, but not that late for it to be mentioned in Chambers and noted as a letter of objection,  a cold chill went down my spine as the Clerk announced that a letter of objection had been received from an Organisation the Friends of Sherwood Forest.  The cut off point was Monday at 12.30 for correspondence, ( I will know next time ).  A copy of my letter in PDF format can be found HERE.  My best shot was to try and hang the Coal Board with there own words.

A petition has now been started on Facebook > Stop UK Coal from mining under Sherwood Forest, please give your support by joining this page.

I attended the hearing on Tuesday morning in the Council Chamber,  in a extraordinary tantrum outburst UK Coals Chief Exec' won the day to mine coal from under Sherwood Forest, he presented Nott's County Council with an ultimatum > Give us permission or we will close Thoresby Pit and over 400 jobs will go. Speakers from Natural England ( Mr Steve Clifton ) and UK Coals chief exec' were warned to keep to the main issue regarding the ecology and nothing else during their permitted three minute speech, Jon Lloyd Chief Exec' of UK Coal had his own idea about his presentation, the Chairman failed to reprimand Lloyd for his ultimatum, and that eventually swayed the decision to a unanimous vote.
Lloyd is an experienced businessman and should have known better, but as UK Coal is having a bad time at the moment he is fighting like a Mad Dog to survive.

10/06/2010  The username for the new Facebook page has now been set >

Please give your support,  Thank you, Aidie

14/06/2010  New Infrared images of Sherwood Forest on Facebook,

Best viewed with Cooliris  ................. Please join us on Facebook,  Cheers Adrian

16/06/2010  In Sherwood Forest for most of the day, the Infrared library is expanding.

18/06/2010  Another Glorious day in the Forest, managed to loose the path although I knew where I was, next time I go into the Forest I'm taking a big ball of string and a Compass.  Managed another batch of images including some Standing Oaks I had not seen before,  the Forest is full of surprises.  Talking to a Ranger about mining subsidence and I was told that right where we were standing had subsided recently and needed remedial work,  with the obvious concern for trees.

25/06/2010  Back into Sherwood Forest, but this time with company,  the rest will be revealed later, suffice it to say we had a very good day and have produced some excellent work > MAGIC !

26/06/2010  Slow and trying day in the forest, the sun was playing hide and seek with me so I resorted to some footwork over one or two unexplored paths, and was well rewarded for my efforts,  apart from getting it on camera of course.  Definite signs of fissuring and fallen trees plus one ready to go over and a veteran Oak that had been set on fire.

06/07/2010  Accounts have been set up on the server in the States for the new Photography Club and the Nameservers are swinging over,  full access will be in a week or so, I had a delay which worked to my advantage. Everything is looking better than expected !

15/07/2010  The new Domains for the Photography Club are now established on the Internet,  this usually amounts to a well rehearsed plan taking no more than 24 hours,  seems more like 24 weeks due to server and registrar problems.  The weather forecast for this week was rain and for the first time in history they got it right, might have something to do with St Swithins Day.  The bracken when I last visited the Forest was anything up to 5 feet high, no doubt we will find it 6 feet in places now.

16/07/2010  Sudden Oak Death continues it's rampage in the South of the Country.

25/07/2010  Just received an Email from Dean Bennici, he has an exhibition in London starting on the 6th August,  Dean ( Last of the Mohicans ) is responsible for keeping alive Infrared Colour film photography, but not only that he has shared the very rare supply of film with his fellow Photographers,  very soon Infrared Film will no longer be available,  any images captured on IR will be valuable ! Here is the link to his press release.

27/07/2010  I had reports of vandalism in Sherwood Forest while on my visit yesterday,  please if you are in the area be vigilant and report any suspicious activity to the Police straight away.

12/08/2010  Seems like ages since my last post, have been keeping a close eye on the Robin Hood Festival after last years disgraceful nocturnal episodes and an even more disgraceful reaction by top management.  I am pleased to say there has been a drastic change since last year but still sadly lacking,  they have a long way to go before they can claim any kind of satisfactory standards of safety for the Forest and Visitors.  More Images go onto Facebook, and I am constantly greeted with a warm interaction from Facebookers.  Sun of Genesis has been rolled out, that is a spin off of Project Genesis,  it is performing exactly as expected and producing new Images of the Forest on every visit. New security arrangements are standing up well to the test of time.

02/09/2010  Have been spending a lot of time in Sherwood Forest with the cameras these past few weeks, time well spent judging by the quality of the output.  The Oaks are bearing fruit ( Acorns ) Fungi are starting to appear and it's now taking on the mantle for Autumn.

23/09/2010  We are starting to hear about sick dogs again,  this seems to be a seasonal ? problem.

28/09/2010  Started the day as usual, decided to confirm the location of the Public enquiry re Rainworth Incinerator, only to be told my Butt was on fire. Yes sir it's in the Rainworth Village Hall and starts in 5 mins > and I'm in Nottingham. Well Public enquiries are not the height of excitement so I'm scheduled to speak on the 6th, if you have any magic charms or whatever including Prayers it all helps.

06/10/2010  Busy, Busy, Busy all day,  the Public Enquiry at Rainworth was very well attended last night. Only one person spoke in support of the Incinerator but claimed he knew little about the process.  Well here is what I had to say to the Government Inspector > PDF Format.

There was a broad section of the community present including members of Pain, a Magistrate and even the former MP for Sherwood Mr Paddy Tipping all voicing the same concerns,  However when one considers the opposition that consisted of an Unholy Trinity of Nott's County Council,  U.K. Coal and Veolia ( Also know by several other names ) one could not but feel a sense of urgency and concern.  Issues were raised about subsidence in the area and how the incinerator could become destabilised,  Earlier in the day Veolia let slip about " Reagents " or accelerants that would be used on low grade waste, they however did not know anything more about these " Reagents "  now that is what I call convenient.  No doubt these reagents are some form of flammable by product of a manufacturing process and the manufacturer has a real headache in getting rid of the stuff.  Nott's County Council came in for some serious criticism during the evening, it was cited that during Veolias planning application to NCC one councillor fell asleep and another said she was voting for the project as she has seen a nice Blue one in Sheffield and thought it was rather good but did not understand anything about the process of incineration, well I'm not at all surprised !

News from the Beeb' about the recent spate of Dog deaths, now Blue Green Algae seems to be the main culprit.

08/11/2010  Back into Sherwood Forest over the week end with a new camera > Panasonic Lumix TZ10,  and it's passed the Acid test with flying colours,  a splendid camera that produces some remarkable images.


They shall grow not old,
as we that are left grow old;
age shall not weary them,
nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun
and in the morning,
we will remember them.

14/11/2010  Remberance Sunday,  a quiet day at home with a huge workload.

28/11/2010  Kim investigates the Major Oak,  place your cursor over the image to see what happened.

Kim investigates the Major Oak



I was concerned that the Sherwood Forest Jelly Monster may still be about despite the very cold weather,  I was right,  all it took was one look and Kim was destined to be dinner for the Monster,  however I did manage to persuade the Jelly Monster that he would be better off letting us have Kim back as she was needed for more work in the Forest.  He settled for a job guarding the Oak.   Phew !

The Jelly Monster is due to receive additional help in guarding the Oak next year > but that is a security issue.!

2/12/2010  Just purchased a copy of Adobe Lightroom 3, I must say right from the outset that you might never be disappointed with this offering,  why,  because it can take you anything up to half an hour to open an image up if you are lucky.  However Adobe and it's supporters have sanitised the programme by saying " It has a steep learning curve " or " It takes time to get used to ".  What a load of crap,  this has been devised by a bunch of Nerds who wish to inflict their own sad ideals on how you should edit and store your images.  Just try and open a single image, edit it and save it to a specific folder,  no way, the Adobe Nerds have come up with a new way to make you work even harder, believe it, I've never seen such a dammed fuss and performance as Lightroom 3 creates.   It's NOT NORMAL !  Why did I buy it, well there was one feature advertised that seemed to set it apart so I decided that was for me,  or so I thought.  I now have another problem as every time I insert a card reader Lightroom grabs the contents and loads them into the programme but should you just wish to transfer these files into a fresh folder because it's late at night then it becomes a serious nuisance,  I now have to find out how to disable the bloody thing.  I had it now over a week and the whole process of dealing with images just seems so stupid,  the are no conventional commands like open and save, they opt for Import and Export, and that can mean a whole folder full of images if you're not careful.  As for saving an image, well I've lost more than one or two because Lightroom fails to follow the normal conventions of Image editing and saves the images where you have problems finding them later.  Trouble is I now have a very good system of file storing which is based on commonsense,  and Lightroom 3 goes against the grain of normal rational thinking.  Sorry I'm not prepared to believe this is the Emperors new clothes,  others might but Adobe need a serious rethink before the retail price drops any further.  Version 3 was so unstable that it was a joke, no comment, so you will need to download version 3.2 straight away.  It's your choice.

11/12/2010  Managed a quick visit to the Forest this afternoon, it has suffered from the bad weather but not that badly,  tree surgeons are at work making it safe again.  I would strongly advise visitors at the moment to stick to the main paths, one or two tracks have been closed.

Tree Surgeons at work December 2010

The Major Oak December 2010

13/12/2010  The new visitor centre at Sherwood Forest is to be shelved until 2015 according to Radio Nottingham this morning.  what a mess, time to look for some new leadership right at the top,  it's long overdue.

24/12/2010  Before Christmas slides out from under our feet please take a look at this website,  I would urge you to join the campaign to stop our Forests from being sold off for commercial gain,  that is the beginning of the end.

31/12/2010  The last day of the old year,  I have been delivering letters in Edwinstowe today,  now it's time to relax and reflect on an excellent year where I acquired my first serious digital camera ( Dedicated Film fanatic ) a year where my image library started to expand out of all proportion and new photographic techniques hammered left right and centre.  At the very end of the year an opportunity was given to us for me to display my work on Edwinstowe's Main Street, a gesture we shall always be grateful for,  and the year in which Nott's County Council came clean about the New Visitor Centre,  no it's not going to be built,  the best they can say is 4 to 5 years > that is not only pathetic but also in violation of the Governments Directive that all forests should be brought up to standard by 2010.  On the down side the Major Oak Photography Club was moved on to the back burner,  that is now scheduled to open for 2011,  and that's not eyewash !

I wish you all a Happy and Prosperous New Year.    Regards,   Adrian.

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