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National Museum of Scotland reopens after three-year redevelopment

Friday, July 29, 2011

Today sees the reopening of the National Museum of Scotland following a three-year renovation costing £47.4 million (US$ 77.3 million). Edinburgh’s Chambers Street was closed to traffic for the morning, with the 10am reopening by eleven-year-old Bryony Hare, who took her first steps in the museum, and won a competition organised by the local Evening News paper to be a VIP guest at the event. Prior to the opening, Wikinews toured the renovated museum, viewing the new galleries, and some of the 8,000 objects inside.

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Dressed in Victorian attire, Scottish broadcaster Grant Stott acted as master of ceremonies over festivities starting shortly after 9am. The packed street cheered an animatronic Tyrannosaurus Rex created by Millenium FX; onlookers were entertained with a twenty-minute performance by the Mugenkyo Taiko Drummers on the steps of the museum; then, following Bryony Hare knocking three times on the original doors to ask that the museum be opened, the ceremony was heralded with a specially composed fanfare – played on a replica of the museum’s 2,000-year-old carnyx Celtic war-horn. During the fanfare, two abseilers unfurled white pennons down either side of the original entrance.

The completion of the opening to the public was marked with Chinese firecrackers, and fireworks, being set off on the museum roof. As the public crowded into the museum, the Mugenkyo Taiko Drummers resumed their performance; a street theatre group mingled with the large crowd, and the animatronic Tyrannosaurus Rex entertained the thinning crowd of onlookers in the centre of the street.

On Wednesday, the museum welcomed the world’s press for an in depth preview of the new visitor experience. Wikinews was represented by Brian McNeil, who is also Wikimedia UK’s interim liaison with Museum Galleries Scotland.

The new pavement-level Entrance Hall saw journalists mingle with curators. The director, Gordon Rintoul, introduced presentations by Gareth Hoskins and Ralph Applebaum, respective heads of the Architects and Building Design Team; and, the designers responsible for the rejuvenation of the museum.

Describing himself as a “local lad”, Hoskins reminisced about his grandfather regularly bringing him to the museum, and pushing all the buttons on the numerous interactive exhibits throughout the museum. Describing the nearly 150-year-old museum as having become “a little tired”, and a place “only visited on a rainy day”, he commented that many international visitors to Edinburgh did not realise that the building was a public space; explaining the focus was to improve access to the museum – hence the opening of street-level access – and, to “transform the complex”, focus on “opening up the building”, and “creating a number of new spaces […] that would improve facilities and really make this an experience for 21st century museum visitors”.

Hoskins explained that a “rabbit warren” of storage spaces were cleared out to provide street-level access to the museum; the floor in this “crypt-like” space being lowered by 1.5 metres to achieve this goal. Then Hoskins handed over to Applebaum, who expressed his delight to be present at the reopening.

Applebaum commented that one of his first encounters with the museum was seeing “struggling young mothers with two kids in strollers making their way up the steps”, expressing his pleasure at this being made a thing of the past. Applebaum explained that the Victorian age saw the opening of museums for public access, with the National Museum’s earlier incarnation being the “College Museum” – a “first window into this museum’s collection”.

Have you any photos of the museum, or its exhibits?

The museum itself is physically connected to the University of Edinburgh’s old college via a bridge which allowed students to move between the two buildings.

Applebaum explained that the museum will, now redeveloped, be used as a social space, with gatherings held in the Grand Gallery, “turning the museum into a social convening space mixed with knowledge”. Continuing, he praised the collections, saying they are “cultural assets [… Scotland is] turning those into real cultural capital”, and the museum is, and museums in general are, providing a sense of “social pride”.

McNeil joined the yellow group on a guided tour round the museum with one of the staff. Climbing the stairs at the rear of the Entrance Hall, the foot of the Window on the World exhibit, the group gained a first chance to see the restored Grand Gallery. This space is flooded with light from the glass ceiling three floors above, supported by 40 cast-iron columns. As may disappoint some visitors, the fish ponds have been removed; these were not an original feature, but originally installed in the 1960s – supposedly to humidify the museum; and failing in this regard. But, several curators joked that they attracted attention as “the only thing that moved” in the museum.

The museum’s original architect was Captain Francis Fowke, also responsible for the design of London’s Royal Albert Hall; his design for the then-Industrial Museum apparently inspired by Joseph Paxton’s Crystal Palace.

The group moved from the Grand Gallery into the Discoveries Gallery to the south side of the museum. The old red staircase is gone, and the Millennium Clock stands to the right of a newly-installed escalator, giving easier access to the upper galleries than the original staircases at each end of the Grand Gallery. Two glass elevators have also been installed, flanking the opening into the Discoveries Gallery and, providing disabled access from top-to-bottom of the museum.

The National Museum of Scotland’s origins can be traced back to 1780 when the 11th Earl of Buchan, David Stuart Erskine, formed the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland; the Society being tasked with the collection and preservation of archaeological artefacts for Scotland. In 1858, control of this was passed to the government of the day and the National Museum of Antiquities of Scotland came into being. Items in the collection at that time were housed at various locations around the city.

On Wednesday, October 28, 1861, during a royal visit to Edinburgh by Queen Victoria, Prince-Consort Albert laid the foundation-stone for what was then intended to be the Industrial Museum. Nearly five years later, it was the second son of Victoria and Albert, Prince Alfred, the then-Duke of Edinburgh, who opened the building which was then known as the Scottish Museum of Science and Art. A full-page feature, published in the following Monday’s issue of The Scotsman covered the history leading up to the opening of the museum, those who had championed its establishment, the building of the collection which it was to house, and Edinburgh University’s donation of their Natural History collection to augment the exhibits put on public display.

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Selection of views of the Grand Gallery Image: Brian McNeil.

Selection of views of the Grand Gallery Image: Brian McNeil.

Selection of views of the Grand Gallery Image: Brian McNeil.

Closed for a little over three years, today’s reopening of the museum is seen as the “centrepiece” of National Museums Scotland’s fifteen-year plan to dramatically improve accessibility and better present their collections. Sir Andrew Grossard, chair of the Board of Trustees, said: “The reopening of the National Museum of Scotland, on time and within budget is a tremendous achievement […] Our collections tell great stories about the world, how Scots saw that world, and the disproportionate impact they had upon it. The intellectual and collecting impact of the Scottish diaspora has been profound. It is an inspiring story which has captured the imagination of our many supporters who have helped us achieve our aspirations and to whom we are profoundly grateful.

The extensive work, carried out with a view to expand publicly accessible space and display more of the museums collections, carried a £47.4 million pricetag. This was jointly funded with £16 million from the Scottish Government, and £17.8 million from the Heritage Lottery Fund. Further funds towards the work came from private sources and totalled £13.6 million. Subsequent development, as part of the longer-term £70 million “Masterplan”, is expected to be completed by 2020 and see an additional eleven galleries opened.

The funding by the Scottish Government can be seen as a ‘canny‘ investment; a report commissioned by National Museums Scotland, and produced by consultancy firm Biggar Economics, suggest the work carried out could be worth £58.1 million per year, compared with an estimated value to the economy of £48.8 prior to the 2008 closure. Visitor figures are expected to rise by over 20%; use of function facilities are predicted to increase, alongside other increases in local hospitality-sector spending.

Proudly commenting on the Scottish Government’s involvement Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs, described the reopening as, “one of the nation’s cultural highlights of 2011” and says the rejuvenated museum is, “[a] must-see attraction for local and international visitors alike“. Continuing to extol the museum’s virtues, Hyslop states that it “promotes the best of Scotland and our contributions to the world.

So-far, the work carried out is estimated to have increased the public space within the museum complex by 50%. Street-level storage rooms, never before seen by the public, have been transformed into new exhibit space, and pavement-level access to the buildings provided which include a new set of visitor facilities. Architectural firm Gareth Hoskins have retained the original Grand Gallery – now the first floor of the museum – described as a “birdcage” structure and originally inspired by The Crystal Palace built in Hyde Park, London for the 1851 Great Exhibition.

The centrepiece in the Grand Gallery is the “Window on the World” exhibit, which stands around 20 metres tall and is currently one of the largest installations in any UK museum. This showcases numerous items from the museum’s collections, rising through four storeys in the centre of the museum. Alexander Hayward, the museums Keeper of Science and Technology, challenged attending journalists to imagine installing “teapots at thirty feet”.

The redeveloped museum includes the opening of sixteen brand new galleries. Housed within, are over 8,000 objects, only 20% of which have been previously seen.

  • Ground floor
  • First floor
  • Second floor
  • Top floor

The Window on the World rises through the four floors of the museum and contains over 800 objects. This includes a gyrocopter from the 1930s, the world’s largest scrimshaw – made from the jaws of a sperm whale which the University of Edinburgh requested for their collection, a number of Buddha figures, spearheads, antique tools, an old gramophone and record, a selection of old local signage, and a girder from the doomed Tay Bridge.

The arrangement of galleries around the Grand Gallery’s “birdcage” structure is organised into themes across multiple floors. The World Cultures Galleries allow visitors to explore the culture of the entire planet; Living Lands explains the ways in which our natural environment influences the way we live our lives, and the beliefs that grow out of the places we live – from the Arctic cold of North America to Australia’s deserts.

The adjacent Patterns of Life gallery shows objects ranging from the everyday, to the unusual from all over the world. The functions different objects serve at different periods in peoples’ lives are explored, and complement the contents of the Living Lands gallery.

Performance & Lives houses musical instruments from around the world, alongside masks and costumes; both rooted in long-established traditions and rituals, this displayed alongside contemporary items showing the interpretation of tradition by contemporary artists and instrument-creators.

The museum proudly bills the Facing the Sea gallery as the only one in the UK which is specifically based on the cultures of the South Pacific. It explores the rich diversity of the communities in the region, how the sea shapes the islanders’ lives – describing how their lives are shaped as much by the sea as the land.

Both the Facing the Sea and Performance & Lives galleries are on the second floor, next to the new exhibition shop and foyer which leads to one of the new exhibition galleries, expected to house the visiting Amazing Mummies exhibit in February, coming from Leiden in the Netherlands.

The Inspired by Nature, Artistic Legacies, and Traditions in Sculpture galleries take up most of the east side of the upper floor of the museum. The latter of these shows the sculptors from diverse cultures have, through history, explored the possibilities in expressing oneself using metal, wood, or stone. The Inspired by Nature gallery shows how many artists, including contemporary ones, draw their influence from the world around us – often commenting on our own human impact on that natural world.

Contrastingly, the Artistic Legacies gallery compares more traditional art and the work of modern artists. The displayed exhibits attempt to show how people, in creating specific art objects, attempt to illustrate the human spirit, the cultures they are familiar with, and the imaginative input of the objects’ creators.

The easternmost side of the museum, adjacent to Edinburgh University’s Old College, will bring back memories for many regular visitors to the museum; but, with an extensive array of new items. The museum’s dedicated taxidermy staff have produced a wide variety of fresh examples from the natural world.

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At ground level, the Animal World and Wildlife Panorama’s most imposing exhibit is probably the lifesize reproduction of a Tyrannosaurus Rex skeleton. This rubs shoulders with other examples from around the world, including one of a pair of elephants. The on-display elephant could not be removed whilst renovation work was underway, and lurked in a corner of the gallery as work went on around it.

Above, in the Animal Senses gallery, are examples of how we experience the world through our senses, and contrasting examples of wildly differing senses, or extremes of such, present in the natural world. This gallery also has giant screens, suspended in the free space, which show footage ranging from the most tranquil and peaceful life in the sea to the tooth-and-claw bloody savagery of nature.

The Survival gallery gives visitors a look into the ever-ongoing nature of evolution; the causes of some species dying out while others thrive, and the ability of any species to adapt as a method of avoiding extinction.

Earth in Space puts our place in the universe in perspective. Housing Europe’s oldest surviving Astrolabe, dating from the eleventh century, this gallery gives an opportunity to see the technology invented to allow us to look into the big questions about what lies beyond Earth, and probe the origins of the universe and life.

In contrast, the Restless Earth gallery shows examples of the rocks and minerals formed through geological processes here on earth. The continual processes of the planet are explored alongside their impact on human life. An impressive collection of geological specimens are complemented with educational multimedia presentations.

Beyond working on new galleries, and the main redevelopment, the transformation team have revamped galleries that will be familiar to regular past visitors to the museum.

Formerly known as the Ivy Wu Gallery of East Asian Art, the Looking East gallery showcases National Museums Scotland’s extensive collection of Korean, Chinese, and Japanese material. The gallery’s creation was originally sponsored by Sir Gordon Wu, and named after his wife Ivy. It contains items from the last dynasty, the Manchu, and examples of traditional ceramic work. Japan is represented through artefacts from ordinary people’s lives, expositions on the role of the Samurai, and early trade with the West. Korean objects also show the country’s ceramic work, clothing, and traditional accessories used, and worn, by the indigenous people.

The Ancient Egypt gallery has always been a favourite of visitors to the museum. A great many of the exhibits in this space were returned to Scotland from late 19th century excavations; and, are arranged to take visitors through the rituals, and objects associated with, life, death, and the afterlife, as viewed from an Egyptian perspective.

The Art and Industry and European Styles galleries, respectively, show how designs are arrived at and turned into manufactured objects, and the evolution of European style – financed and sponsored by a wide range of artists and patrons. A large number of the objects on display, often purchased or commissioned, by Scots, are now on display for the first time ever.

Shaping our World encourages visitors to take a fresh look at technological objects developed over the last 200 years, many of which are so integrated into our lives that they are taken for granted. Radio, transportation, and modern medicines are covered, with a retrospective on the people who developed many of the items we rely on daily.

What was known as the Museum of Scotland, a modern addition to the classical Victorian-era museum, is now known as the Scottish Galleries following the renovation of the main building.

This dedicated newer wing to the now-integrated National Museum of Scotland covers the history of Scotland from a time before there were people living in the country. The geological timescale is covered in the Beginnings gallery, showing continents arranging themselves into what people today see as familiar outlines on modern-day maps.

Just next door, the history of the earliest occupants of Scotland are on display; hunters and gatherers from around 4,000 B.C give way to farmers in the Early People exhibits.

The Kingdom of the Scots follows Scotland becoming a recognisable nation, and a kingdom ruled over by the Stewart dynasty. Moving closer to modern-times, the Scotland Transformed gallery looks at the country’s history post-union in 1707.

Industry and Empire showcases Scotland’s significant place in the world as a source of heavy engineering work in the form of rail engineering and shipbuilding – key components in the building of the British Empire. Naturally, whisky was another globally-recognised export introduced to the world during empire-building.

Lastly, Scotland: A Changing Nation collects less-tangible items, including personal accounts, from the country’s journey through the 20th century; the social history of Scots, and progress towards being a multicultural nation, is explored through heavy use of multimedia exhibits.

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All You Need To Know About Workers Compensation

All You Need To Know About Workers Compensation

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Alice Shown

Workers’ compensation is an insurance policy that provides compensation benefits to a person who has received an injury while being at his workplace during his working hour. This compensation is generally paid to an injured person to ensure that he does not sue his/her company for the injury.

Worker’s compensation is so called owing to the fact that workers who serve in factories stand at a greater risk of getting injured. Accidents at workplaces, especially those involving forklifts, may lead to grave repercussions like permanent disability to work or even death. The compensation covers medical expenses, doctor’s service charges and other related expenses.

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Rules and regulations differ. Workman’s compensation is an official policy and the people who are in-charge of this compensation are selected by the state government. Some states are dependent on private insurers while some states have the support of statewide workman’s compensation program. The rules vary from one state to the other. That is why it is very important for you to talk to your state insurance officer to know about the specific regulations that prevail in your state.

Workman’s compensation provides protection to a company. Workers’ compensation helps an employee in bearing the medical expenses that he/ she would have to face after getting injured at his/ her workplace. At the same time, the policy also saves the employer from being prosecuted. Workers’ compensation is an insurance venture and is, thus, a benefit to a company, not a burden.

Exemptions are there. The policy doesn’t cover all workers. It depends on the requirements of a specific state. Full-time employees are usually given special preference. There are exceptions in the kinds of expenses that are covered by the policy. In special cases, workers may be provided with wage replacement benefits.

Frauds are there. No denying the fact that there are frauds when it comes to worker’s compensation policy. Some employees make fake claims to take unjustified advantage of the worker’s compensation policy. One must get in touch with the worker’s compensation insurance provider on finding anyone faking a worker’s claim.

Getting hold of a workers’ compensation lawyer can be of great help as a legal representative makes it easy to understand the steps of legal protocols that are required to be followed. Do a little research before employing a workers’ compensation lawyer. Iowa citizens can contact Lawyer & Lawyer Dutton & Drake LLP for getting proficient help in legal matters.

Workers compensation attorney Iowa

– Lawyer Lawyer Dutton & Drake LLP’s team of skilled attorneys handle serious workers’ compensation cases in the Des Moines, central Iowa area, including Polk County.

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ArticleRich.com

Wikinews interviews World Wide Web co-inventor Robert Cailliau

Thursday, August 16, 2007

The name Robert Cailliau may not ring a bell to the general public, but his invention is the reason why you are reading this: Dr. Cailliau together with his colleague Sir Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web, making the internet accessible so it could grow from an academic tool to a mass communication medium. Last January Dr. Cailliau retired from CERN, the European particle physics lab where the WWW emerged.

Wikinews offered the engineer a virtual beer from his native country Belgium, and conducted an e-mail interview with him (which started about three weeks ago) about the history and the future of the web and his life and work.

Wikinews: At the start of this interview, we would like to offer you a fresh pint on a terrace, but since this is an e-mail interview, we will limit ourselves to a virtual beer, which you can enjoy here.

Robert Cailliau: Yes, I myself once (at the 2nd international WWW Conference, Chicago) said that there is no such thing as a virtual beer: people will still want to sit together. Anyway, here we go.

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Edmund White on writing, incest, life and Larry Kramer

Thursday, November 8, 2007

What you are about to read is an American life as lived by renowned author Edmund White. His life has been a crossroads, the fulcrum of high-brow Classicism and low-brow Brett Easton Ellisism. It is not for the faint. He has been the toast of the literary elite in New York, London and Paris, befriending artistic luminaries such as Salman Rushdie and Sir Ian McKellen while writing about a family where he was jealous his sister was having sex with his father as he fought off his mother’s amorous pursuit.

The fact is, Edmund White exists. His life exists. To the casual reader, they may find it disquieting that someone like his father existed in 1950’s America and that White’s work is the progeny of his intimate effort to understand his own experience.

Wikinews reporter David Shankbone understood that an interview with Edmund White, who is professor of creative writing at Princeton University, who wrote the seminal biography of Jean Genet, and who no longer can keep track of how many sex partners he has encountered, meant nothing would be off limits. Nothing was. Late in the interview they were joined by his partner Michael Caroll, who discussed White’s enduring feud with influential writer and activist Larry Kramer.

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Wildlife Reserve Singapore A Place For Wildlife Enthusiasts}

Wildlife Reserve Singapore – A Place for Wildlife Enthusiasts

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Peter Joseph

The Wildlife Reserve Singapore is the company under which esteemed and prized attractions such as Singapore Zoo, Jurong Bird Park and Night Safari. The parks of the Wildlife Reserve Singapore are outstanding attractions for leisure. It offers superb exhibits for both animals as well as birds in the natural surroundings, mainly for the idea of conservation, recreation as well as education.

The concept of open zoo has become colossally famous amongst the enthusiasts of wildlife as well as countries who are looking out for an entirely new outlook of animal preservation. Their popularity can be charted by the fact that in the year 2008 the Jurong Bird Park had serve around 900,000 visitors whereas 1.1 million visitors visited the Night Safari along with Singapore Zoo welcoming approximately 1.6 million visitors. Wildlife Reserve Singapore Parks have done tremendous work in the conservation as well as research fields as they have undertaken various projects centering their focus on species such as orangutan, oriental pied hornbill and pangolin. These projects have been jointly undertaken with several institutions as well as organizations. The parks of Wildlife Reserve Singapore are chosen centers of wildlife rescue by the government authority. The Best Leisure Attraction Experience Award has been conferred to Wildlife reserve Parks for as much as eighteen times at the Singapore Tourism Awards. The accomplishment record of the parks of the Wildlife Reserve Singapore confirms its status as the foremost venues of leisure.The treatment given to the animals at the Singapore Zoological Gardens is extensive and is kept in open landscape areas. The animal as well as the visitors is demarcated separately through dry or the wet moats. Nonetheless, the ferocious animals like jaguars, tigers and leopards are positioned in attractive landscape enclosures made of glass. The Singapore Zoological Gardens which is also known as the Mandai Zoo by the locals of the area occupies a total area of 28 hectares, and opened to the local public on 27 June 1973. The government of the Singapore is to be credited for the Mandai Zoo and it cost approximately 9 million dollars of Singapore. Special horse rides, rides as well as trams are offered by the Singapore Zoo that local public can take benefit of as the charges of the tickets are very low. Apart from this the zoo also renders accessibility for disabled people plus the small babies as it offers additional rides such as strollers as well as wheel chairs. To enthrall the visitors and to sway them, several events of animals take place at the Garden Pavilion, Pavilion-By-the-Lake and Forest Lodge. Apart from this the zoo also makes exquisite arrangements for weddings plus birth day parties to take place. The zoo offers elephant rides, Carousel rides, pony rides and horse carriage rides to the tiny tots who have great fun and enjoy with the animals. Furthermore, the enthusiasts of wildlife can discover ways in which the animals are cared for. To satiate your hunger subsequent to having a gala time with the animals you can come across several places to enjoy tasty and yummy food.

Peter Joseph enjoys to write about travel,aviation and adventures. To know more about

Wildlife Reserves Singapore

, Singapore zoo and Singapore zoo night safari visit

wrs.com.sg

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Wildlife Reserve Singapore – A Place for Wildlife Enthusiasts}

Tennis: Justine Henin defeats Jelena Jankovic to win Rogers Cup

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Justine Henin has defeated Jelena Jankovic 7-6 (3), 7-5 to win the prestigeous Rogers Cup.

Justine, who is ranked world number one, has defeated Jankovic in all of their seven encounters. Jankovic is ranked world number three.

Jankovic had an early 4-1 lead, but Justine first pulled even, then went on to win the first set in a tiebreak. Justine went on to win the second set as well, despite first squandering six match points, thus winning her sixth title in the season leading up to the US Open.

“I think both of us played very well and there (were) a lot of great points,”a defeated Jankovic said. “A high level of tennis, so it was great for fans to see that and I really enjoyed it… But unfortunately at the end … I couldn’t hang in there with her.”

“It was tough at the end of the match,” Henin confided to reporters. She also stated that she had received “intensive” physiotherapy the morning prior to the match and had been unsure whether she could play. There was a lot of suspense and intensity and both of us played our best tennis at the end. We both had a lot of opportunities but fortunately I was able to come through in the end. I am very happy to win” she said, adding I had five matches and won them all in two sets so it has been a great week for me,”.

It is Henin’s first tournament since Wimbledon, where she was knocked out in the semi-finals.

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Cutty Sark blaze treated as ‘suspicious’

Monday, May 21, 2007

The Cutty Sark, one of the most famous historic sailing ships in the world, was seriously damaged by fire in the early hours of Monday morning, May 21, 2007. The 19th century ship, which is in dry dock in Greenwich, London, England, set a speed record during its working days, and has been a popular tourist attraction for many years.

The fire brigade was first called to the blaze on the tea clipper at 4:45 a.m. BST and reported that the flames had been extinguished by 7:00 a.m., but firefighters were still on the scene damping down at 8.30 a.m. The blaze was so intense that eight fire engines and 40 firefighters were sent to put out the fire. No injuries have been reported.

Cutty Sark Trust chief executive Richard Doughty said he was told the blaze was being treated as suspicious. “We’re losing history,” he lamented. “It’s unbelievable.” He went on: “When you lose the original fabric, you lose the touch of the craftsmen; you lose history itself. What is special about Cutty Sark is the timber, the iron frames, that went to the South China Sea. To think that is threatened in any way is unbelievable. It is an unimaginable shock.”

However, Doughty also confirmed that half of the ship’s planking, and all of the masts and rigging had been removed for renovations prior to the fire. The iron framework of the hull has been twisted and buckled.

The Chairman of Cutty Sark Enterprises, Chris Levitt, speaking later at the scene, said: “We had removed 50% of the planking, so 50% of the planking wasn’t on site and that’s safe and secure, and from where I stand there is not a huge amount of damage to the planking that was left on. There are pockets of charred planking and some have gone, but it doesn’t look as bad as first envisaged.”

Cutty Sark Trust curatorial consultant, Dr Eric Kentley was optimistic that the Ship is not completely devastated and can be saved. Speaking about the Cutty Sark, he said: “We will put her back together – but it’s going to take much much longer and a lot more money than we originally thought.”

The historic ship, one of London’s best known tourist attractions, has been in dry-dock in Greenwich since 1954. It is currently undergoing a £25 million renovation scheduled to last until 2009. It was feared that gas canisters used in the reconstruction work might explode in the blaze but the London Fire Brigade later confirmed that none were present, although concerns about the risk of explosion had caused some delay in tackling the fire. It is a Grade I listed monument and is on the Buildings At Risk Register in the UK.

Police believe the fire on board the ship may have begun in suspicious circumstances. They are studying CCTV footage which showed some movement around the ship in the early hours of the morning. They are appealing for witnesses who might have seen anyone near the ship or a silver car that was reported driving away from the scene.

The Cutty Sark was built in 1869 by Scott & Linton, Dumbarton in Scotland and completed by Dennys. It is the world’s last surviving tea clipper. Because the clippers were build of wood, but with a framework made of iron, they marked the transition from wood to iron. The windjammers that emerged some 30 years later were build completely of iron or steel.

The clippers were used in long-distance races between China and England, with large profits for the first ship back with the first tea of the year. The Cutty Sark sailed in the China trade between 1870 and 1877/78. She sailed in the Australian wool trade between 1883 and 1895, during which period she achieved the record breaking voyage under wind power between Australia and England via Cape Horn of 72 days in 1885.

The ship takes its name from a character in Burns‘ poem ‘Tam o’ Shanter.

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Benefits Offered By Quick Duct Cleaning

byadmin

For most homeowners, their HVAC system is an important part of their day to day life and comfort. However, the parts and components that are hidden are often forgotten. This includes the ducts. The fact is, the ducts are a crucial part of a home’s comfort system and if they are dirty, they can present a number of serious and costly problems. This is why it may be time to invest in duct cleaning. Some of the benefits offered by Quick duct cleaning can be found here.

Improvement of Indoor Air Quality

One of the biggest concerns for many homeowners is the quality of the air in their home. If the ducts of the home are dirty and littered with accumulated dust, dirt and debris, then it is going to affect the air quality. In fact, in a typical six-room house, there are up to 40 pounds of dust created each year. If this dust is never cleaned, it continues to accumulate year after year. With the heating and cooling system is essentially the lungs of the structure, it is essential to keep it clean. If the air is dirty, this is what is going through the system and becoming stuck in the ducts. With Quick duct cleaning, all this nasty accumulation of dirt can be removed, improving overall home air quality significantly.

Energy Savings

The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that 25 to 40 percent of the total energy that is used for cooling or heating in a home winds up being wasted. The contaminants in the cooling and heating system result in it having to work harder, which can shorten the entire life of the system. While filters are often used, the system can still get quite dirty just with normal use.

When a home’s HVAC system remains clean, then it will not have to work as hard to stay at the desired temperature. This means that less energy will be used, and it will lead to increased cost-effectiveness. Refrigeration offers more information about keeping a Heating and Cooling system in good, working order. If more information is needed, be sure to call the HVAC specialists here. Doing so will ensure all questions are answered accurately regarding the system.

Eurovision ’73 winner Anne Marie David discusses her four-decade career and the Contest, past and present

Monday, February 16, 2009

In the 1970s, she was one of the most popular female vocalists in France, and became well-known internationally. Anne Marie David, from Arles in the south of France, parlayed her initial success from playing Mary Magdalene in the French production of Jesus Christ Superstar into taking home the “grand prix” at the Eurovision Song Contest in 1973. Her winning song, “Tu te reconnaîtras” (You will recognize yourself), became a Europe-wide hit that spring.

At the height of her popularity, David perfomed world tours, and even lived abroad in Turkey for a time. In 1979, she tried once again to win the Eurovision, and placed a respectable third. Her song “Je suis l’enfant soleil” (I’m a child of the sun) became similarly popular across France and in the Francophone nations.

As time went on, however, her place in the French music scene became less certain. Touring the world had taken a personal toll, and David decided to retire from music completely in 1987. However, with the help of her fan base, she was coaxed out of retirement in 2003 and is returning to a part of her life that she tried to leave, but never left her. Celebrating four decades in the music scene, David is looking forward to adventurous new projects and a newfound zest for life.

Anne Marie David corresponded with Wikinews’ Mike Halterman about her eventful career, her personal anecdotes regarding living abroad, her successes in past Eurovision contests and her grievances with the way the show is produced today. This is the second in a series of interviews with past Eurovision contestants, which will be published sporadically in the lead-up to mid-May’s next contest in Moscow.

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