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Everything posted by JonM

  1. I think the glaciers have receded quite a distance since we were there - and got a good bit more dangerous.
  2. I first met my wife in NZ. She offered me a lift to the Fox & Franz Josef Glaciers, where we went up to the glacier face. So I took a ride in a stranger's car immediately followed by a dangerous walk under falling rocks and ice. Over 130 000 doing parkrun last Saturday. How long will those new year's resolutions last?
  3. The Lancashire & Cheshire Unions both suspended all cups and other competitions in the 1880s, so the clubs which wanted competitions formed their West Lancashire & Border Towns Union, which also played inter-county fixtures. In the first year, Warrington beat Runcorn at Widnes in the semi-final in front of a crowd estimated as larger than the FA Cup final which was played on the same day. They then ran a league competiton until 1895. The Northern Union clubs (Saints, Wigan, Widnes, Warrington, Runcorn etc.) continued to play a SW Lancs & Border Towns competition for some years after the split.
  4. The ISS is only about 250 miles up, so there are plenty of places in the oceans where that would be true (if the ISS happened to be overhead.) Point Nemo is the location of R'lyeh, Cthulhu's home on earth, in H P Lovecraft's stories.
  5. Cheshire played Lancashire & Yorkshire in the NU county championship from 1895-1904, Cumberland from 1898 & Durham & Northumberland from 1903 but I haven't seen any evidence of them playing a county game against Westmorland. Westmorland had a county Northern Union based in Windermere, with teams in Kendal etc. and did play at least one county fixture, against Lancashire at Salford in 1898, but I don't think entered the county championship.
  6. Have you seen this film (Runcorn v St. Helens from 1901)? http://player.bfi.org.uk/film/watch-runcorn-v-st-helens-1901-1901/ If he was a breakway original, is it possible that he is the J Jolley who played in the Lancs v Yorkshire match in 1893, which is the subject of a famous painting that is hanging in Twickenham? (the lancashire player who is between the posts) http://www.englandrugby.com/twickenham/world-rugby-museum/rugby-history/the-ghost-in-the-painting/
  7. Do you know owt about designing silicon chips? We can work round the hours...
  8. I'm sat in an office full of them. They're a lot easier on the eye than the engineers I normally work with. We've got to somehow hire 1000 people this year, with foreigners not wanting to come here any more, I don't think we'll get anywhere close. Funny listening to them going through their scripts on the phone again and again.
  9. The owners of West Ham FC got a good bit more than £390m spent on their gaffe by the taxpayer and pay sod all rent. At least the royal family don't make their income off pornography. I thought the point about Buckingham Palace was that the queen goes there for meetings, she spends most of her nights elsewhere. It's a government building. The amount being spent will be dwarfed by the cost of doing up Westminster, presumably.
  10. Definitely take the course. Apart from the fine, there's also the effect on your insurance to worry about. The 32 will be after they've deducted 10% and whatever error margin they allow (3mph?) They'll have evidence that you were doing 37 or so if they've put 32 on the ticket.
  11. Obviously it was my fault, according to my wife. In fairness, as I've spent 20 years designing silicon chips that mostly go into phones, she may have a point for once.
  12. Took me nearly 4 hours to get home instead of the expected 55 mins, but that was because my youngest son got separated from us at one of the stop/go boards, didn't have a working phone and couldn't remember what tube station to go to. He couldn't use a phonebox either because he doesn't know any phone numbers because they're stored in his phone. And guess what, he doesn't know how to walk anywhere, because he needs his phone to give him directions. Teenagers!
  13. Looks like a defibrillator came in handy at another Yorkshire parkrun last weekend. http://www.yorkshireeveningpost.co.uk/news/calls-for-more-defibrillators-after-pudsey-pacer-collapses-at-leeds-parkrun-1-8151861
  14. Very sad news. He was a member of Doncaster AC in his sixties. His wife was there with him, sounds like even prompt help from fellow runners and the ambulance service was unable to help. At Cambridge, we have several GPs & paramedics who regularly run and parkrunners helped to raise the funds to provide the country park with a defib. Only helps with one class of problems, of course.
  15. I really enjoy the volunteering aspect of parkrun - met a lot of nice people doing it. We had 532 at Cambridge last week, which feels like a bit more than the course can comfortably accomodate. The car park fees from parkrunners are the park's biggest source of income and they spent some of that money upgrading to gravel paths over the summer, but no way to make them wider. Lots of parkruns had Olympic visitors last week, because of the ITV IamteamGB thing.
  16. Plenty of people walk parkrun, if that's something you fancy. I'd probably find it a bit irritating being lapped every week, even with the number of fit women running past...
  17. The Welsh word "gwenynen" can be translated in English as either bee or wasp.
  18. Many of the people in the office work on a product unofficially called AXI 5. I can see 3 cars out of the window right now that have AX 15 on the plate.
  19. Nice bit of marketing from Benfica. https://www.youtube.com/embed/jAF2hZxdFRE
  20. As an aside, I was wondering why sports governing bodies are mostly companies rather than charities - and it seems like sport was not considered a charitable thing until a change in the law a few years ago. Today, the law explicitly says that the promotion of any particular sport, for its own sake, is not a charitable purpose. However, community amateur sporting clubs are now allowed to become a charity, where their aim is to promote "community participation in healthy recreation by providing facilities for playing particular sports." So are organisations which exist specifically to promote sport for young people. So, the RFL can't be a charity, but a suitably constituted community RL club could be. It's not clear to me which side of the line parkrun would fall on. If their aim is to organise a series of free, timed, weekly 5km runs, that's not a charitable purpose. If their aim is to improve public health by encouraging mass participation in running, that might be allowed.
  21. Exactly. parkrun is insured through UK Athletics, hence the rules about unaccompanied children, it being a run rather than a race, first finisher rather than a winner and so forth. I did a parkrun on Forestry commission land a couple of weeks ago, with rabbit holes all over the course. Our local parkrun is a sea of mud at the moment without a concrete path in sight and we had someone with a broken elbow from slipping on ice a while back, so the prospect of someone suing for a cracked pavement seems remote. You've voluntarily signed up to do it and have had multiple warnings about conditions underfoot before running and the volunteer organisers have highlighted the need for care before every race. Local councils don't get sued for football injuries unless someone can prove negligence. I just don't see it as a big worry in the UK (although I imagine it's one of the things that has held it back in the US, where it hasn't taken off anything like as quickly as in Europe, Australia etc.) On the "no publicity is bad publicity" front, nearly 15 000 people signed up for parkrun in the UK this week.
  22. Regular private eye readers will know that charities also appear to be able to put out any old tut, with the regulator seemingly showing little interest in auditing (or being charitable, not being given the resources to properly regulate.) I'd think the key organisational challenge for something like parkrun would be staying out of trouble from ambulance chasing lawyers - with the number of people running each week, it's inevitable that there will be injuries, heart attacks, child protection scares etc etc. so having limited liability for employees & volunteers is going to be paramount. UK athletics enforced quite a few changes in the way they operate so that children could continue running - it's a run, not a race and there are first finishers rather than winners, because of insurance concerns over under-16s running at the same time as adults. Struggle to see how there could be much financially dodgy happening with parkrun, even without looking at accounts. The only people putting money in regularly are sponsors and it's pretty obvious where the outgoings are.
  23. My point was more GingerJon's throwaway about "don't get me started on national trust". I thought the comparatively large amount of people they were able to devote to parkrun in comparison with how many employees parkrun has was noteworthy. Their argument is that it's self-sustaining financially due to the increase in visitor numbers & membership at those properties and that's why they're expanding the number.
  24. Interesting to compare the people & money the National Trust is able to commit to parkrun events compared with the number of full-time employees that parkrun UK itself has.
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