Saturday, 23 May 2015

Richard Reburied: With Dignity and Honour

This March, I returned to my hometown of Leicester, to celebrate the long-awaited reinterment of King Richard III - the last Plantagenet more recently dubbed "The King in the Carpark". I've been following and reporting on the story since 2012, when archaeologists discovered Richard's remains in a council car park in the city centre. 

As a history geek, with scoliosis, from Leicester, it's been my perfect story - and what a story it's been! I have to admit that I've obsessed over it all a fair bit over the past 3 years... It's not everyday that the mortal remains of a lost monarch are discovered and identified. 

As a self-confessed Ricardian fed up with his scoliosis being used to portray him as an evil "hunchback" (a phrase found incredibly offensive by scoliosis sufferers), it's also been amazing to see this image challenged and dispelled. 

Studying in Leeds meant mainly producing TV and radio items on the Yorkshire claim to the remains. But I'm a Leicester girl at heart, so was thrilled when the decision was finally made to reinter his remains in the Cathedral here, just meters from the spot where he was originally buried. 

Whilst the reinterment ceremony itself was watched from my work desk in Manchester, I made it home for the two consecutive weekends either side. This meant that I got to see both the city centre cortège bringing him to his final resting place, along with the 'Leicester Glows' celebration event the following week. 

I also went to a brilliant talk by the woman behind his discovery, Phillipa Langley, at The Guildhall.  Originally brought to Richard's story via a screenplay she was writing, she was the driving force behind the 'Looking for Richard Project'. And rather excitingly, it sounds as though that original screenplay may be materialising in film-form in the near future. Until then, Richard's reinterment has already put Leicester firmly on the world map - quite rightly so! 

Sunday 22nd March 2015 - The King Returns

The King is carried into his final resting place
Watching the media frenzy unfold

Friday 27th March 2015 - Leicester Glows

Fireworks shot precariously into the cathedral's bell tower

Over 8,000 of these candles lined the streets and squares around the cathedral - pretty spectacular

(Photographs all my own) 

Friday, 30 January 2015

Glastonbury 2014: A Photographic Flashback

A collection of photographs from my third visit to Worthy Farm - another glorious weekend of top-notch performances and embracing my inner hippy. Fingers crossed I'll find myself back there this year...

The view across the site to the majestic Glastonbury Tor

Enjoying a break between storms

Sunshine filtering through the storm clouds before Paolo Nutini's set

Not a bad view to wake up to! Concert in bed anyone?

Exploring the Greenfields
Someone's pet sheep enjoying a great view of The Pixies!

Pre-Kasabian preparations in the 'Lestah' camp!

Waiting for the Kasabian to take to the stage, for their fantastic Sunday night headline slot

The calm after the storm - Monday morning dawns over the previous night's wreckage

Friday, 12 September 2014

Cornwall: Empty beaches, addictive sunsets and monster jellyfish

Earlier this summer, I took a trip back to Cornwall with my family, for the first time since 2007.  We used to holiday there all the time as children, so it was nice to return and rediscover all the gorgeous spots that my sister and I had grown up with. 

Timing the trip in with the Summer Solstice meant a seemingly infinite amount of sunlight, and a spell of good weather helped make for some stunning days and even more beautiful sunsets...  

Sunset over Trevone Bay
Cliff-top walks to watch the sun dip below the horizon

Photo courtesy of my Mum - getting Dad and I to stare at the horizon ended up working pretty well!

Pink fingers in the sky reflected in the rock pools

Thanks to Mum again for this one - sat on the beach enjoying the last of the day's sunshine

Cuppa, sunset... perfection

Credit goes to Dad for this one - on our afternoon exploring Bedruthan Steps

Me making friends at Perranporth

Trying to look all contemplative at Harlyn (credit: Matt Mears)

Fistral beach looking lonely - a perfect reason to visit out of season

Thursday, 11 September 2014

Mojácar Pueblo: A village with a view

In May, I hopped on a flight to Spain, for a last-minute girly getaway with my mum. We stayed in Mojácar Playa, on the Costa Almeria - part of the Andalusian coast.  Quite rightly so, the majority of our time there was spent lazing by the pool, enjoying some much needed Vitamin D. But we wanted to get out and explore the local area as well...

Enjoying the May sunshine!

Whilst there, we took a couple of trips up to the nearby village, the enigmatic Mojácar Pueblo. The white-washed town is nestled in the Sierra Cabrera foothills... so getting there involves a fairly long and windy bus journey!

Largely abandoned in the early 20th century, following the closure of the local mines, the town was repopulated by a community of artists and bohemians during the 1960s. The result is a strange mixture - locals desperate for business and foreign settlers living out hippy fantasies. Tourists such as ourselves were met with enthusiastic hospitality, and some jaw-dropping views... 

The nearby plains are littered with mounds resembling anthills

The Indalo man is the offical regional symbol - a lucky charm for many

The town is a winding maze of cobbled lanes and courtyards

Enjoying a massive glass of Sangria!

Sunset across a pretty spectacular view

Saturday, 7 June 2014

Radio Documentary: The Future of Naturism in Britain

British Naturism celebrates its 50th anniversary this year, but with rapidly declining membership, the organisation’s future is in doubt. Will they be around in another 50 years? As their youth branch, the Young British Naturists, champions a fresh, laid-back approach to social nudity, Rosanna Pound-Woods investigates whether organised naturist clubs will survive in the decades to come...

Produced as my final year project for BA (Hons) Broadcast Journalism at the University of Leeds.

Music copyright Heidi Browne - 

Thursday, 1 May 2014

Venice: In which we walk a lot and try to drink coffee like locals

It's been almost a month since my Jailbreak adventure, in which my housemate Gio and I attempted to get as far away from Leeds as possible, in 36 hours, without spending a penny on transport. I'm happy to say that we did very well... making it all the way to Genova in Italy!

Following this we decided to spend a couple of days exploring Venice (relatively nearby after a scenic 4 hour train journey), before flying back home. Unfortunately university work has taken precedence in the time since, so I've only just got round to writing a quick post about the city.

Having never visited before I'd been assured that Venice is a very unique location. Arriving to glorious sunshine we were immediately greeted by the view of what can only be described as water-roads, with water buses and taxis chugging along the many canals that criss-cross through the city.

Piazzo San Marco from above
We decided to walk across the city to track down our chosen hostel, situated near to Piazzo San Marco. Whilst this was a fantastic way to get a feel for the narrow, winding streets of the city, if I ever visit again then I think that taking the water bus along the grand canal would make for the more impressive initial impression. We left the city this way a couple of days later and it gives a really unusual perspective.

Celebratory ice-cream
With the Bridge of Sighs
Settled nicely into our hostel, the comfortable, affordable and well located Ca'Sa Linger, we ventured back out into the city to explore. Whilst enjoying a celebratory ice-cream next to the Grand Canal, it felt very surreal that we'd made it all this way from Leeds in only a couple of days. Being pooed on by a pigeon somewhat ruined this reflective mood, but hey, I'm told it's good luck?

Sunset on the Grand Canal
Shoppers on the Rialto Bridge
The next day we enjoyed a full afternoon of exploring the city, walking all over the place, getting lost a good few times, and getting a real feel for the atmosphere. Aside from being filled with slightly too many tourists, Venice has a relaxed, laid-back feel to it. It was lovely to take moments just to sit and people watch for a bit, and with so much going on in some of the busier areas, it's a great place to do this. Piazzo San Marco was a particularly bustling spot, and I'm told that whilst it can feel almost too full in summer, April is a great time of year to experience it.  The same can be said for the canals, which aren't meant to smell brilliant in the summer months! Quite glad I missed that then.

At 40 euros a gondola ride was off the cards
I made a new friend
Later that afternoon we took a trip up the Companile di San Marco,  the bell tower looking out across the city. As a UNESCO World Heritage site, Venice has no tall buildings to speak of, except for this iconic structure that stands at almost 100 metres tall. Well worth the 8 euro admission price for the stunning views across the city and lagoon.

The bell tower!
View from the top
That evening we decided to tick off a typical Italian experience, post-dinner. The previous night we'd been horrified to discover the cheeky cover-charge added to bills by restaurants, simply for the pleasure of sitting down with your food. Since, we'd witnessed a lot of people in coffee bars and cafés grabbing their drinks and snacks stood up at the bars and counters. So as a bit of a treat we headed to a cosy little bar called Osteria da Bacco S.N.C., where we purchased two café lattes and accompanying snacks, to enjoy stood at the bar. My snack was possibly the most sublime treat to be found on this planet... a pastry filled entirely with cream. Such a wondrous concept!

An early night followed after a stroll along the canal, quite possibly to exercise off said cream pastry.

I resisted the urge to Instagram this
The following morning we left Venice, enjoying the early morning light and the sights and sounds of a city waking up and beginning its day. Quite a beautiful end to a lovely couple of days. Venice, you've got my vote... I'll be back.

Rialto Bridge