I’d heard about a paper bridge being built in Grisedale as part of the Lakes Ignite Culture festival, so thought I would check it out. You can read the news release about it here.

Patterdale

Patterdale cricket ground

I had parked in Patterdale overnight so that I got an early start and got up at 6 am after yesterday’s experience and the sky was already bright but no sun, but it looked promising so I set off the 2-3 miles up Grisedale to where the bridge has been built.

I love Grisedale, it’s my favourite route to Helvellyn as there’s no through road so only foot traffic apart from the odd farm vehicle.

Grisedale

Grisedale

The walk was very pleasant as the sun came out a few minutes after leaving the van and with a strong breeze it made for lovely walking conditions. Jack of course was more interested in the sheep than anything else but he stayed close to the track.

You can see in the photo that the weather over Helvellyn was still dark and brooding, in fact several times I felt spots of rain falling but the sun from behind me kept the clouds at bay.

The Paper Bridge at the foot of Helvellyn

The Paper Bridge at the foot of Helvellyn

This is a longish view as I approached the bridge to give you an overview of it’s geographic location. Some people have loudly criticised the fact that it is 3 miles along the valley but the whole purpose of the bridge is to tease people into exploring places they haven’t been before. From Patterdale there is road for a mile or so and then a very good track the rest of the way to the bridge so it’s not like it’s hard going. The views are tremendous and who knows, it might encourage people to come out more and enjoy the lakes.

The Paper bridge

The Paper bridge

1 other person passed me on the way there and from a distance I saw him clambering about the bridge. It stands out a mile with it being bright red but the last hundred yards to it are sodden ground so by the time we got there Jack was muddy up to his belly. What a sight.

Yes, that bridge is made up of 4 tons of paper, the sheets compressed and shaped into an arch. Clever engineering for paper but for at least 1,000 years this is how bridges and other structures were made: no nails, no glue, no mortar, not even dovetail joints.

The Paper Bridge

The Paper Bridge

I took a closer shot here so that you can see the individual sheets of paper  even from about 60 feet. I’m not sure I’d call it art, but it certainly is an attraction.

I chose the right time of day too. Friends who took photos later on have crowds of people in which shows that as an attraction it has worked.

 

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What a run around. The one armed instructor who owns the car that ran into me didn’t answer my calls or respond to voice mail at all. I knew he wanted to settle cash and after taking the van into Camper NE they confirmed the repairs would indeed be around the £3,500 mark.  Although that’s a lot of money I still wanted to give him the opportunity to pay it if he wanted to but he still wasn’t answering my calls.
I phoned his company who he had not informed of the crash and when I called them again later he had clearly lied to them saying he had spoken  to me and arranged something about insurance, which he had not.
I felt like I was dropping him in it but what could I do?
I’m sure not giving insurance details is a criminal offence so I checked with the police who confirmed that was the case then left one more voice mail for him informing him that if he did not contact me I would report him and the police would visit.
Minutes later he rang…LOL

So, the upshot of the conversation was that he’d already informed his insurance company but not bothered to let me know and he then said “Our business is over now so I don’t want you ringing me anymore.” WTF?? I reminded him that I’d delayed my own calls to insurance and tried hard to contact him to do him a favour!
The moral of the story is, never do a favour for a one armed driving instructor!

Anyway, all is in order now and Camper NE say it  may be weeks before they get the parts they need as at 11 years old my van is ‘obsolete’ lol Once they get the parts it will take a whole week to repair so I’ll be lodging with someone for that period.
I hope it all goes smoothly.

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Well what an interesting day. It started out pretty normal really, having a cuppa with my niece then starting work at 4 pm. At 5:21 pm though it all changed when a learner driver crashed into me!

Broken computer

Broken computer

There I was working away on the computer and minding my own business when there was an almighty bang, and the computer lifted in the air, dropped down onto the keyboard then fell onto the floor. Bye bye computer! You can see from this shot the keyboard missing a key, the legs were also broken off the back. The computer screen is totally shattered. It’s an all in one computer, not just a monitor.

I had been aware of the learner reverse parking around me for some time. It’s common practise on Team Valley trading estate for learners to practise all their manoeuvres and I’m fairly used to it however this one was distracting and I’ve no idea why. When I felt the bang I knew instantly what it was.

Broken bumper

Broken bumper

I thought initially her foot had slipped off the clutch, however I found out later that the car was an automatic so how she managed to ram me so hard when the instructor had dual controls I’ll never know.

You can see the broken light cluster here, and the red marks on the bumper denote where I had repaired the fibreglass last year. It’s split now everywhere where I repaired it and many other places too.

Broken van 2

Broken van 2

The metal strip above the bumper denotes where the floor is and that whole section is bowed inwards. If you look in this photo you can see that the compression of the bumper had also pushed in the wood structure behind it and folded and creased the aluminium skin. It’s not apparent but it’s also dislodged the gas locker. It’s the same on the other side, so that whole skirt and wheel arch assembly needs to be renewed on both sides.

There’s also a weather baffle that was ripped off and some other bits and pieces. I reckon it’s going to cost about £3,500 to repair.

When I went outside the learner didn’t seem that upset really, and the instructor who got out of the car was about 8 feet tall and only had one arm. He kept looking at the damage ans asking “What do you want to do?” I said “Well as you’re asking so much what is it you want me to do?” He clearly wanted to settle cash but when I said I guessed it would cost about £3500 in repairs he changed his mind and said he would ring me later with insurance details that he could not remember. Hmmm.

Anyway so I told him if he rang the next day I’d let him know an estimate of repair costs as I was headed up to a place that repaired campers then he could make his decision. He seemed happy with that and shook my hand with his left hand (the only one he had) and off they went.

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I mentioned some time ago that the Keswick football club was letting people park in their car park and charging £3 per full day by using an honesty box. Given the sheer greed of the local council’s parking fees I think this was a massive step forward and I use and pay for the parking there regularly, partly as it’s cheap, and partly as I want to let the footie club know that I support their decision, and of course any money can go to helping them out.
It’s not just Allerdale council, all of the lakes has disgusting parking charges now and I really hope more and more places like the football club offer their parking cheaply.

Another one to do so is Fitz Park Trust. Their car park is in fact adjacent to the footie clubs car park, accessed off Crosthwaite road. The same deal is to be had, £3 per day although you can pay for an hour and 2 hours as well. They have a proper pay and display machine there and apparently all money goes to the Fitz Park Trust to help look after Fitz park. Now, whether the council has set up this trust as a back door way of raising money for parks I have no idea, but the deal is good so what the heck.

Finally, the Pencil Museum has also opened it’s car park up to anyone for a fee of £4 daily. If you visit the museum and take your parking stub you can get £1.50 off the entry too.
There’s a large space of clean and flat waste ground next to the tarmacked bays and motorhomes tend to park there. Again for all day parking this is not a bad deal however like the other car parks mentioned, there is no overnight parking allowed.

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New solar panel

As the solar panels I fitted last August have proven so reliable I’ve decided to order another one. My controller can handle about handle 390 watts which in all likelihood is more than I will get from my 4 x 100 …

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Trojan and other batteries

As many of you will know I’ve had countless problems over the years with leisure batteries, mostly related to the fact I was ignorant of battery technology and use in the early days. I bought 4 x 120 ahr lead …

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Alternator repair

Coming back form the lakes I noticed the battery warning light flickering on the binnacle. I stopped and checked and the alternator was only putting out 11.72 volts grr. Luckily the battery was fully charged so I quickly diverted the …

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Keswick visit

I was out last night with some work colleagues so I decided to head to the lakes today. The weather was appalling with loads of snow and freezing wind. Nevertheless Jack and me got out for a nice walk around …

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Dabs drops me in it now!

Jeez…hard on the heels of the Western Digital drive saga, Dabs have now dropped me in it with the two drives I ordered from them! They were sent to Inverness Post Office, but the post office ‘lost’ them so they …

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Tubular ching ching?

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Forget tubular bells, lets hear it for Tubular ‘ching ching’. That’s the sound the till makes when the hardware store in Keswick racks up an incredible £5 for 1 metre of this piece of clear plastic tubing. I actually drew …

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Keswick

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My friends are up in the north for a funeral, so we decided to meet up and spend the day in Keswick as I was over here anyway. Although it was cold the sun was out and we enjoyed  walk …

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Post office woes

The Post Office in Inverness luckily does Poste Restante so I’ve had a few items delivered there. The last things to be collected were the two new portable drives I am going to use as replacement for the exiting backup …

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The mouse bites back

Exciting times! I bought a computer almost a year ago from PC Specialist and it’s been faulty in several ways since a month or two after I got it. At the moment I have been over 3 months without a …

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Sly, deceitful. Yes, Western Digital.

http://community.wd.com/t5/image/serverpage/image-id/25185iBE2A07FC7AC1DB21/image-dimensions/64x36?v=mpbl-1

I bought my new 3 tb hard drive, I would dearly have liked Seagate but Western Digital was the only one around at the time. However after buying it with 7200 rpm on the side I was curious as to …

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Ohhhh Driver heaven!

I can’t quite believe it but…I’ve fixed my computer! I’ve been trying to fix the driver problem on my computer for almost a week now. I’ve failed at every attempt although I’m not entirely sure why as it’s a pretty …

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My life

It’s 02:37 in the morning. I’ve been up doing stuff and watching Wild with Reece Witherspoon, and messing on Facebook, and I let the dog out for a quick wee. I’m in a lay-by right next to Loch Ness. It’s …

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Movie night

Been working all day trying to get this computer sorted but nothing I do can fix it yet. Not known anything like this in my 35 years of messing with computers. So I’m settling down with a movie called Wild …

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The Nutcracker Suite

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I was walking the dog along the river bank in Inverness this afternoon when I passed a large building which turned out to be the Eden Court centre which houses amongst other things a theatre.  There were adverts for the …

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Water carry on…

The main fresh water inlet on my van is a hole in the side of the wall with a lockable cap. It goes in about 2 inches, then a hose much like a hoover hose turns 90 degrees and goes …

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Mountain bike and his coat of ‘no’ colours

Something else that suffered in the storm was the cover on my mountain bike. It was a Halfords one for £20 and by far the best bike cover I could wish for. However there was no way it could withstand …

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Damned leak

The rain has been almost non stop here for nearly 2 weeks now. And I went into the wardrobe for something and there it was, a leak. Really bad too. So bad that my brand new, never used Canon printer …

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Pets at home without their food!

I have to LOL at this. I’m running out of food for Jack and he does like the James Wellbeloved turkey and rice, so I log on to Pets at Home in the small hours to make sure there is …

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Weather or not

The weather is still awful and the power is still out on the whole of Skye and an awful lot of the mainland too.  There’s absolutely no value sitting there as I’m wasting time doing bugger all, so off I …

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Lights out on Skye

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The promised weather has arrived on the Isle of Skye. The rain wasn’t really bad, but the wind is pretty wild, and the lightning was amazing. However one of the lightning shows was actually a sub station going out or …

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Neist Point

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I got here ok, I actually came to Malasaig which is across the bay from Neist Point. But you get a lovely view looking across at the spit of land with the lighthouse on that juts out into the sea …

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Skye is awesome

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After Christmas I decided to just keep on going. So I travelled over to Falkirk to see the Kelpies which you can see here. They’re the most amazing thing, costing £7 million to build and standing 60 metres tall. I got …

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Merry Christmas!!!

It’s Christmas morning, and this is my 8th Christmas in the van now. I decided to leave Bamburgh and come north and I am now sitting in view of the Forth bridge in Fife. I hope this weekend to get …

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Solar panels are ‘wow’

I installed my solar panels 17 weeks ago today. 3 x 100 watt Biard panels on the roof. Normally I’d recharge batteries with the gennie once every 3 days and it costs a tenner in petrol for the gennie each …

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All cabled up

Well I got booked in at G C Autos at Gateshead and he replaced all the cables and checked the braking system out all for £94. I’m chuffed to bits now as they actually work and it proves how bad …

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More brakes…

I was very pleased with the job done on my brakes when I came back from Italy, although I have since then found some vented discs, which I intend to buy and fit. However I did ask that the brake …

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