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Sunday, 5 November 2017

Two Trips - addendum

Below are three maps to support my reply to RR's comments on the previous post: Two Trips:

The location of my car on Google Maps


Car was parked at southern end of the green route opposite Middle Low Wood


RR intimated that Ordnance Survey had blanked Sellafield, but here it is in great detail on the OS 1:25000 map


11 comments:

gimmer said...

funnily enough, I once considered buying Middle Low Wood Farm and its rolling acres but demurred and bought a house in the Chilterns instead - the rest is known - I would have come to your aid, if events had been different, of course . . .

I think it was the gods that got you - not done to park on immaculate greensward with a light two wheel drive car - oh Yeti, woulds't thou were living at this hour, Conrad and Pete hath need of thee . . .

and one last thing - I don't understand why you could not simply have told them it was on the gated road from A to B and you can't miss us when you drive up it - between the two gates (I hope they are still there - keeps the fences away). I have never been tempted away from the AA - and have various other 'free' rescue plans courtesy of various banks and insurance companies but never think of using them . . .

Sir Hugh said...

Gimmer - we can all be wise after the event. As I indicated I was up against a guy on the phone who was even having difficulty in finding where Witherslack was, and his whole response spoke of uncertainty and lack of comprehension, but we got there in the end.

I have used Green Flag for years because it is connected with the Caravan Club (now The Caravan and Motor Home Club) and majors on rescuing your caravan as well as car. I have had several occasions to use them, once when I had a puncture on the caravan, and they have always been very efficient, but as in all things "the chain's weakest link..."

I also have rescue facilities via Kia with the new car, but elected to also keep live with Green Flag. In any case all these rescue organisations usually only send out a local recovery garage - they rarely have their own vehicles, so you would probably be serviced by the same whichever organisation you were with.

Roderick Robinson said...

I'll let Gimmer speak for me. Being able to tell the rescue guy that you're surrounded by deciduous trees and that there's a church without a spire nearby seems to be gilding the lily. Also, would there be a sign that proclaimed Middle Low Wood? Fine for someone who's going for a walk, less so for someone who could be driving a tow-truck. All he needs is: going north on Church Road from Witherslack. Let a search facility attuned to words (which most of us can handle) as opposed to numerals (which carry no intrinsic recognisability) do the rest. And I repeat: are you sure OS systems for phones and/or computers come free? That's most unlike the OS.

As to Sellafield I can see in my mind's eye the three stages of the plant's increasing invisibility on a printed page. The trouble is: when? I've trawled Google assiduously but cannot find the source. I get the feeling it must have been pre-Internet. I was surprised to find that - these days - there is all that detail. Who on earth would you say it benefits? But by now you may say I'm appearing to support the reduction of detail. It isn't that. Like the now forgotten journalist I was amused by the attempts by some unknown authority to "hide" something that was basically unhideable.

One side-effect of this situation is that I've read much more about Sellafield's "controversial" nature than I previously knew. I am not reassured. The aim here and elsewhere has always been to devise a foolproof systems while simultaneously ignoring the fact that it would be run by humans who, alas, are capable of acting like fools.

gimmer said...

Sellafield is not the only place to have been 'redacted': you will recall that we once went to a (military establishment) on the (deleted) coast of a (northern uk nation) to beautify their new stone but could only find it because there was a twin such edifice next door, for civilian use, where we also toiled.
Try looking for the UKAWE 'somewhere in (a home county) not far from Lxxxxn (relatively speaking)' - nix. And despite the fact that it covers several square miles of prime estate.
And where, you might well ask in vain, are RAF Leuchars (closed now, I'm told) and other secret sites. Not on my maps.

I'm told this was done to confuse the Russians etc. - not by their not knowing already exactly where these places were for the bombers, but by making it impossible for locals to tell the tank drivers how to get there after they had landed and become confused by the winding lanes and contradictory road signs (still at it - driving north up the A1 last night, some long way north of Peterborough I was momentarily disconcerted to see a road sign directing voyagers, amongst directions to several interestingly named hamlets, to go 'left to Hitchin and London' - I could have sworn I'd passed them hours before !)

Roderick Robinson said...

Gimmer: Thanks for employing "redacted", and I appreciate the all-important quotes. When the word first emerged I thought it was a joke (though not for the unfortunates who were being shuttled hither and thither). Decided to ignore it on the likelihood of its transience. A great mistake. Its usage has subsequently grown and it is now used in all sorts of more remote applications. I feel left behind.

Its taint of spuriousness (I should qualify that: military spuriousness is better) is perfect for alluding to these vain, almost pathetic, attempts by committees to render artefacts invisible. As the French would say Je te tire mon chapeau. always assuming we have assumed that state of grace whereby we may tutoyer each other.

Sir Hugh said...

RR and gimmer - All the places you refer are now shown on the OS maps in detail. As I have replied to Ruth on the previous post here it would be desirable for organisations such as bed and breakfast and hotels to use OS grid references in addition to Google Maps or whatever else. I have spent ages, firstly on the Internet prior to booking, to locate the exact position of these places on the map, and later finding them on the ground. If you are walking you need to know precisely in relation to your walking route.

If you refer to Ruth's comments you will see that she identifies free OS mapping available on the Internet.

Copy of ruth's comment and my reply:


FROM RUTH -I’m guessing many services use postcodes instead of grid references because that is what satnavs use. Agree, grid references are far more precise, especially in rural areas where a single post code may cover a large geographical area. If you want to use free OS maps on a smartphone, there are a number of apps you can use, but you can also get free access via Bing Maps. http://www.bing.com/mapsRuth

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FROM ME - Thanks for that. I thought that was the case with free OS maps but since I bought the whole of Great Britain, 1:50000 and 1:25000 years ago from Memory Map I've never bothered to investigate. The Memory Map package does have many other attributes for route plotting etc. There is mo reason why organisations which have visiting clients shouldn't use OS Grid alongside Google Maps or Post codes or whatever. OS Grid is the only one that caters for someone who is walking, or cycling. I have walked much extra distance at the end of a long day trying to track down the exact location of a b and b or campsite. Both the Caravan Club and the Camping and Caravan club now use OS grid - I would like to think that I had some influence on that having written to them both about it before they took it up.

bowlandclimber.com said...

It would not be beyond the wit of Google to overlay their maps with grid lines at a certain scale. Though there is probably no commercial or financial incentive for them to do so.
Conrad if you have had success your caravan clubs why don't you to influence Google!

Roderick Robinson said...

I'll take Ruth's word for it but the OS website seems to suggest that the freebie may lack certain features. See below:

Turn your mobile or tablet into a GPS with the free OS Maps app. Includes route planning and recording features with routes automatically synchronised between desktop and app.

Upgrade to OS Maps Premium (7 days free trial, 12 months auto renewal £19.99, 12 months standard £25.99) to unlock offline maps, AR and advanced GPX features


As to the Bing offer, the map shown looks remarkably like GoogleMaps - not a deciduous tree in sight. I did point out, by the way, that OS may be fine for walkers but unnecessarily detailed for drivers. Perhaps even dangerous: checking out deciduous trees from the steering wheel a car driver might well discover he'd run into one.

You said you had difficulty communicating Witherslack to the Green Flag man. How confident would you have been that he'd have taken in two sets of numbers based on degrees/minutes/seconds or, more likely, a notional division of the square kilometre. He could easily have been as stupid as I am with figures. When conveying my phone number over the phone I split it into pairs as the French do (ie, 27-33-29) since I find this the easiest way of envisaging the sequence. If someone confirms it by splitting it into trios (ie, 273-329) I come all over confused. I'd have to say that GoogleMaps is better for stupid people, and thus the larger part of the population. Many of them Daily Mail readers.

No need to respond to this. Or only if you're keen to say something positive about the DM.

Sir Hugh said...

BC - That thought had also occurred to me, but I have a sort of love/hate relationship with Google who want to take universal control of everything. It would be a bit like advising the Germans how to win the war. It seems that I have, as I do so often, got something out of proportion here, so I shall just continue to paddle on in my own little world.

gimmer said...

Once again, may I 'camp on your lawn' and address the matter of the curious word "redacted' : if I recall correctly, it 'emerged' from the swamp (or quicksands) of military euphemisms about the same time as 'extraordinary rendition' first dismayed the linguists as well as the lawyers: one has to suppose it was supposed to sound like an innocent simple almost apologetic mistake implying that the (deleted) words or phrases were not really being censored but had merely accidentally slipped behind the curtain or perhaps even a accidental key stroke - and then again, not really deleted , merely covered with an accidentally opaque ink blob. How such blithe insouciance has bloomed into wholesale obliteration and obfuscation: no 'freedom of information' disclosure is complete without emasculation of the vital bits - and, as if driven by the same forces that Newton codified, spawned the flood of leaks of unexpurgated 'secret' files on everything from national security to global finance and bedroom (and elsewhere's) romps!
One wonders if there is an operation deep in the heart of the 'MIC' which researches (using secret psychological warfare techniques), develops and then launches such words and techniques on the world, deliberately to distort language and pervert meaning and, by confusing and desensitising, renders opposition hopeless and surrender inevitable.
At least they are on our side ! Whose ? Indeed.

Roderick Robinson said...

Gimmer: I'd forgotten the origin was, as you say, rendition. The military linguistics process reaches its peak in "collateral damage", which may euphemise "blowing our own blokes to bits by accident, more likely by carelessness."