Prepping for Kelston summit digital supper

Rufus from OpenKnowledge started a series of “digital suppers” and we’re doing one at Kelston. This requires something to sit on and something to eat off so we’re assembling some trestle tables and benches.

2015-10-04 12.17.06The trestles are made by our friend Ed Strutt

2015-10-04 12.58.21The beech came from Abbot’s Copse (see Storm damage – one beech down)

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Unknown c19th landscape artist busted by c21st Matt Prosser

So here’s a thing. Matt Prosser saw the picture below and went to repeat the same view with a contempory photograph. But guess what: there is no vantage point that offers that view. Matt writes:

Your last blog of the early 19th Century view of Bath and the Clump got me thinking so I went along to Prior Park with my son to see if we could find the vantage point.

I’m pretty convinced that the unknown painter set his easel in the grounds of Prior Park, which was laid out in the mid 18th Century.

However, it would appear that he used some artistic license to ‘squeeze’ the clump into his view of Bath as my ‘photographic evidence’ shows.

The perspective of the Abbey, the position of Pultney Bridge and the heights of Lansdown in my photo all correspond well with the painting but the Clump is way off to the left.

I surmise that the clump was too good a feature to leave out of the painting so suitable adjustments were made

And here’s his evidence. Thanks Matt!

20150821-IMG_9283-Pano-1Prior Park Viewpoint (small)

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View of Bath (artist unknown, c 1820) from Jane Austen exhibition

IMG_20150816_150550(rather poor photo by me, with permission. Where’s Matt Prosser when you need him??)

This view of Bath skyline form the south west shows the clump was already prominent in 1820. The print appears in the current Jane Austen exhibition at Victoria Art Gallery. The text the curators chose to acccompany it it from Northanger Abbey:

‘”For six weeks I allow Bath is pleasant enough, but beyond that it is the most tiresome place in the world.”

You would be told so by people of all descriptions, who come regularly every winter, lengthen their six weeks into ten or twelve, and go away at last because they can afford to stay no longer.’

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Picnic and ceilidh at the old barn

20150801-IMG_8322-1 Kelston Picnic


Photo: Matt Prosser

We’ve been working on the old barn for a year to make it secure, give it a floor, loos showers and a food prep space. The idea is you can open up the space for workshop, bunkhouse type use, then close it up again and it’s a shuttered rural barn. We’d like to see it used for schools, NGOs, appropriate small businesses, family and friends.

Today we had a picnic and barn dance in the refurbished space, then watched the sun go down with friends from Bath, Germany and Australia.  We had new ideas for what needs doing and what to use it for; if you’ve got more ideas or needs get in touch.

Next steps: returning to rural feeling after the disruption of the works; sorting out energy so it works off grid with little or no use of the diesel generator.


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Moonrise over Kelston timelapse

Matt Prosser did this fab moonrise timelapse: lovely set to music.


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Plantlife spotter’s sheets for summer

July_spotters_sheet_2015These are handy, from Plantlife. That said, there’s a great deal more than this going on in the Roundhill field.




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Moonshot – it’s another cracker from Matt

20150702-IMG_4496-1 Kelston MoonshotMatt seems not entirely happy with this. He writes:

I had another go at getting a full moon behind the clump yesterday but it turned out to be a bit of deja-vue. My calculations were once again off the mark and I ended up with a near replica of last year’s photo. I will investigate my margins of error and hopefully get it right next time.

Looks brilliant to me. Matt is going pro btw – check out his photography web site.

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