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Wigan Pier

Apparently George Orwell said in his famous book that nobody knew where Wigan Pier actually is/was (but they seem to have found it since.)

We thought we’d missed it but on the way out of Wigan we saw a sign for Wigan Pier and stopped for a look.

It’s a pretty nondescript ex-industrial canal area.

Someone had opened a bar/restaurant by the pier and called it the Orwell. We would have had lunch there but the premises have closed down.

The Orwell (as was) – by Wigan Pier:-

Wigan, The Orwell

The Orwell and Wigan Pier:-

The Orwell and Wigan Pier

The reverse angle from the other end of the building shows the “pier” to be merely a canalside jetty:-

Wigan Pier

There’s still some life on the canal. We saw these two boats and people pottering about on them:-

Canal Boats at Wigan

Art Deco in Wigan

We made one of our trips down south in August and had a look at Wigan as our nearly daughter-in-law (the wedding will be in July) had had to break a train journey there and said she found it nice. It is.


Wigan Art Deco 1

Marks & Spencer’s (stitch of two photos):-

Wigan Art Deco 4


Wigan Art Deco 5

Wigan Art Deco 6

A former cinema now a nightclub called Pure:-

Wigan Art Deco 7

Pure’s side alley:-

Wigan Art Deco 8

A newsagent’s (good stained glass windows):-

Wigan Art Deco 9

A clock tower, from a distance:-

Wigan Art Deco 10

Wigan War Memorial

The Wigan War Memorial was designed by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott, R.A. and opened in November 1925.

An elegant hexagonal construction it is situated in the grounds of Wigan Parish Church near the town centre and Wigan Wallgate Station.

Wigan War Memorial

Wigan War Memorial Reverse View

Lewis Grassic Gibbon Centre

The Lewis Grassic Gibbon Centre, dedicated to the memory and dissemination of the works of J Leslie Mitchell – better known as Lewis Grassic Gibbon – lies in the Mearns village of Arbuthnott.

Lewis Grassic Gibbon Centre

We took the good lady’s blog friend Peggy there when she was over from the States. It contains items from Gibbon’s life and memorabilia of the times he lived in.

I picked up several informative brochures, including one with pictures of the covers of the first editions of his books. The one for Stained Radiance might have caused some raised eyebrows when it was published in 1930.

We had a delightful lunch in the café at the front of the Centre before heading off to the churchyard where there is a memorial to Gibbon beside one to members of his family.

Lewis Grassic Gibbon's Memorial, Arbuthnott

The Falkirk Wheel

The same day we went to The Kelpies (see the two posts immediately previous to this) we also visited the Falkirk Wheel which is a rotating boat lift linking the Forth and Clyde Canal with the Union Canal, built using Millenium Fund money. (See Wikipedia’s article here.)

Boat coming down:-

Falkirk Wheel 1

Falkirk Wheel  2

Falkirk Wheel 3

Boat leaving lift:-

Falkirk Wheel  4

Other boat ascending:-

Falkirk Wheel 5

At the quayside were these maquettes of The Kelpies:-

Mini Kelpies at Falkirk Wheel

Two (very short) videos of the Wheel in motion:-

The Kelpies

I had seen the Kelpies before, from the M9, and also in the distance from the Falkirk Stadium but hadn’t actually visited them till we took the good lady’s US blog friend Peggy there in May.

They were designed by sculptor Andy Scott and stand in an area called The Helix, by the Forth and Clyde Canal and the River Carron.

The Kelpies have become quite a tourist attraction. When we went there the visitor centre hadn’t yet opened but they were still well worth a look.

This is the view from the path leading to them from the overflow car park:-

The Kelpies

Close up they are stunning:-

The Kelpies Close


Kelpies 3

The Kelpies and Shadows

Kelpies Rear

The Kelpies: Head

Pitlochry War Memorial

This is in the form of a Celtic Cross and stands in a small gardened area just off the main street.

Pitlochry War Memorial

Reverse view looking on to Main Street:-

Pitlochry War Memorial Reverse View

The Names on the Memorial include a staff nurse, only given as Staff Nurse Macbeth:-

Pitlochry War Memorial Names

A new addition to the small memorial garden, to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Great War, is a pair of memorial benches of which I photographed one. Both benches have inlays of soldiers, barbed wire and stylised poppies.

Pitlochry War Memorial Bench

Pitlochry, Pitlochry Dam, Loch Faskally, River Tummel

The River Tummel is dammed where it passes Pitlochry in the county of Perth and Kinross and the site houses a hydro-electric power station. The dam created the man-made reservoir Loch Faskally and the buildings are in the deco style.

Pitlochry Dam as seen from access road from the town centre:-

Pitlochry Dam

Loch Faskally from Pitlochry Dam (looking north-west):-

Loch Faskally from Pitlochry Dam

River Tummel (looking south-east from Pitlochry Dam.) Pitlochry Festival Theatre visible to the right:-

View South from Pitlochry Dam

Cartouche and window of building at Pitlochry Dam:-

Pitlochry Dam Cartouche

There is a fish ladder up the west side of the dam to allow salmon access up to their spawning grounds. When I was last there you could see the fish directly (if one was in the particular step with the window.) Now it seems to be a closed-circuit TV system. The photo below is of the upper platfrom: the fish ladder is to the right here:-

Pitlochry Dam Upper Pathway

Pitlochry Dam buildings from east side. Part of the fish ladder to the right:-

Pitlochry Dam Buildings

Pitlochry Dam Generator Building from south:-

Pitlochry Dam Generator Building

Pitlochry Dam + Generator Building:-

Pitlochry Dam + Generator Building

Pitlochry Dam Building from South:-

Pitlochry Dam Building from South

Pitlochry Dam window and cartouche from west side of the river bank:-

Pitlochry Dam Window and Cartouche

This Pitlochry shop has an Art Deco roof-line; good “stepping”:-

Pitlochry Art Deco Shop Roof-line

Neptune’s Staircase

Neptune’s Staircase is a series of canal locks at Banavie near Fort William at the Loch Linnhe end of the Caledonian Canal which raise the canal to a level 20 metres higher.

Bottom Lock:-

Bottom of Neptune's Staircase

Canalside path and second lock:-

Neptune's Staircase 6

Third lock – full and overflowing:-

Neptune's Staircase 7

Top of Neptune’s Staircase:-

Top of Neptune's Staircase

Opposite angle of top of Neptune’s Staircase:-

Neptune's Staircase 4

Second top lock:-

Neptune's Staircase 3

Third top lock:-

Neptune's Staircase 2

Urquhart Castle on Loch Ness

The castle stands broodingly on a promontory above Loch Ness just south of Drumnadrochit.

You can see a cruise boat on the loch in this one:-

Urquhart Castle on Loch Ness


Urquhart Castle on Loch Ness

From the National Trust of Scotland car park:-

Urquhart Castle on Loch Ness

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