I took a walk (without my camera) at lunchtime today. As I reached Nothumberland Street, I noticed a new big crane towering over the shops. I realised that this could only mean one thing – something interesting is finally happening at the Haymarket Metro Station redevelopment project. The current building, which dates back to the opening of the Metro system in about 1980, is being replaced by something bigger, shinier and more commercial. Until recently, no progress has been visible from the street, but now that’s all changed! There’s a very big mobile crane in place, and some steel framework has been built. Interestingly, they seem to be building the new structure around the old one. I hope they remember to take it down eventually…
So this means I have another target for my regular Newcastle walks, and I’ll be heading back with my camera as soon as I can. Quite possibly this weekend.
Here are some more pictures from the early stages of construction of the new Newcastle City Library. In this set, you can see the first section of steelwork, the tower crane, and a general view of the site. There are also some shadows and reflections to add a bit of variety.
And here we are with more pictures from the backlog. My lunchtime walk on 23 November last year included a look at Nothumbria University’s new footbridge, which joins its original campus to the fancy expensive new one, which was built (I think) on the site of a former multi-screen cinema.
While there was an existing footbridge, which you can see in one of the pictures, it wasn’t in the best location, was narrow (as footbridges often are) and could only be accessed by stairs or a fairly steep ramp. The new one is nicely placed, much wider, and it’s a really cool design, too. There are some wideangle shots of it from various angles in the album.
 Which used to have the more awkward name of the University of Northumbria in Newcastle. Before that, it was Newcastle Polytechnic. Rumours that there was a plan to give it a different name until somebody noticed the initials might have been a bit rude are generally filed under “urban legend”.
What’s this? Can it be? Yes, it’s a quite substantial drop in my weight today, for no readily apparent reason.
I followed through with my plan to be consistent this week, and got the bus both ways.
Reports of this are spreading all over the internet like, err, ants, so I thought I might as well join in. Hordes of an unusual kind of ant, known as “crazy” because they’re a bit odd, and “Rasberry”, not because of a typo, but because of the name of the man who encountered them, are swarming (or whatever it is ants do) around Houston, Texas.
This wouldn’t normally be all that newsworthy outside Texas, but these ants are different: they’ve developed a taste for electronic equipment…
All together now:
And I for one, welcome our new insect overlords….
I have to blame Michèle for this. Creatively misheard lyrics to O Fortuna from Orff’s Carmina Burana, which you’ll have heard even if you didn’t know that’s what it was.
 Hi Michèle
Fans of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy will know that Vogon poetry is the third worse in the galaxy. I have far too much consideration for my readers’ sanity to quote any here, but believe me, it’s bad. One of the contenders for “even worse than that” is the notorious William McGonagall, a 19th century Scottish “poet” renowned for such excruciating masterpieces as the one about the Tay Bridge disaster which includes the words seared into the brains of anyone unfortunate enough to have read them:
So the train mov’d slowly along the Bridge of Tay,
Until it was about midway,
Then the central girders with a crash gave way,
And down went the train and passengers into the Tay
Oh, sorry. I’m sure you’ll forget, given enough time and alcohol.
Anyway, it seems that some of McGonagall’s original poems are being auctioned, or “going under the hammer” as journalists like to say. I’d suggest that going under a large block of concrete would be a better fate for them…