Robert Hampton

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31st December 2010

Twenty Ten – again. Again

July brought big changes to the newspaper industry, as The Times started charging for access to its web site. This was supposed to ensure a steady income stream for the newspaper, putting it on a secure financial footing for the future. However, it also resulted in the Times being completely removed from the online chatter of the blogosphere, as its news coverage and columnists were no longer accessible to the internet hoi-polloi. Still, I’m sure this decision made sense to someone somewhere.

The Supreme Court ruled that gay people facing persecution are entitled to claim asylum in the UK. I welcomed the decision, although my blog post is curiously vague about precisely why I welcomed it. Hmm…

In other gay-related news, I reviewed, with sadness, a booklet from the US Military discussing its anti-gay don’t ask, don’t tell policy.

Elsewhere, health and safety went mad as one person suggested banning rugby scrums. I felt uncomfortable on a train full of Orange Lodge marchers and I defended the traditional sitcom from an onslaught of criticism from trendy TV reviewers.

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27th August 2010

The Devil’s Dyke is in the Detail

Later on Friday afternoon Mark and I headed out to the Devil’s Dyke. This deep valley, just a short drive away from Brighton, promised stunning views and — more importantly — a pub offering excellent food and drink.

The weather wasn’t too splendid and I stupidly forgot my camera so had to make do with the lousy quality of my mobile phone. But hopefully these pictures will give you some idea of the breathtaking views available:

Devil's Dyke 1 Devil's Dyke 2 Devil's Dyke 3

(I highly recommend the Harveys bitter, by the way)

On the way back we stopped off in the village of Clayton to marvel at Clayton Tunnel. Originally constructed during the building of the line in 1841, it comes from an age when railways still had something to prove to the world, and hence this ostentatious structure was built at the portal.

Clayton Tunnel portal

My picture doesn’t really do it justice, but I hope you get some idea of the impressiveness of the structure. It’s a shame it only gets seen properly by train drivers and the occasional people like us, who stop to peer over the nearby road bridge.

We rounded off the evening by watching Hot Fuzz on DVD. (SWAN!)