Showing posts from August, 2020


I went back to the cinema yesterday for the first time since February when I saw 'Parasite' ahead of its Oscar triumph.
My son and I went to the IMAX in Norwich, where Odeon Cinemas had worked out the experience very well. We were shown to our seat which had a bubble of space around it and showed out at the end of the film one row at a time. Once the film was underway and we were in our seats we could remove our masks if we wanted to.
The film that drew us back was the new Christopher Nolan film: TENET.

The film's action takes place in a number of locations including London, Mumbai, Italy, Oslo and Russia.

I discovered that there is a local connection, with wind farm support vessels from Great Yarmouth being used in one of the scenes.

An enjoyable return to the cinema - this was certainly the loudest film I've ever seen, and some great performances and set pieces... and the story kept you thinking and working out what was happening throughout. 

Covid-19 cases on the rise

As we get close to the start of term for English schools, cases are rising to levels not seen since late March. Anyone remember what happened then?

Save the Planet: Drink Beer

The brewery Brew Dog has announced a plan to go not only carbon neutral, but actually carbon negative. They are going to plant thousands of acres of woodlands and take other action to offset their industrial activity in creating many different beers, and also operating a number of premises.

Their plan has been drawn up with the help of Mike Berners Lee, who wrote an excellent book on carbon footprints of items which has just had a 2nd edition published.

Read about it here.

Download the plan as a PDF file via this link (PDF download)

Here's a useful starter image from the company's James Watt's twitter feed - may need to think about what age group you use this with - perhaps the older students given the language, and also the subject matter of beer...


Routes Issue 1: now published

The first issue of Routes Journal has now been published.
This contains a range of articles, research and book reviews contribute by 6th form geographers and undergraduates.
Each article has been peer reviewed by a team of teachers and academics.

The first article features an editorial / introduction by Klaus Dodds.

Congratulations to all of those involved in the production of this new journal.
This would make an excellent project for 6th form students to engage with.
Go here to download the articles.

I particularly enjoyed the piece by Rebecca Dunn from Loreto Grammar School.
Exploring a new exogenous force: Covid-19 and its effects on Didsbury (Manchester, UK)
which I shall add in to my latest version of the New PC Geographies document and the resources I am creating for the GA currently. Also Joel While's piece: A ‘strange combination’: neoliberalism and embodiment in the global food system

There's also a competition for students to enter with book prizes to win. Something to su…

Royal Institution Christmas Lectures

“The scientists and the policymakers who are concerned about climate change are extremely sympathetic to the massive suffering a huge number of people have had through this pandemic. The entire point is that this is what societal change looks like when something changes.”
Helen Czerski
Covid-19 has provided a crucial opportunity to make drastic changes to tackle climate change, experts behind this year’s Royal Institution Christmas lectures have said.

The talks, Planet Earth: A User’s Guide, will take audiences on a deep dive into our planet’s workings, from rock formation and Earth’s ancient climate, to the fundamental role of the oceans and the makeup of the air we breathe.

Each of the three lectures will be presented by a different scientist from a trio of experts: the oceanographer Dr Helen Czerski, environmental scientist Dr Tara Shine and geologist Prof Chris Jackson.

Watch previous lectures here.
Details of the lectures this Christmas are here. In this year’s Christmas Lectures fr…

Twenty Football Towns

‘To me, football is an important expression of a place-related collective identity, which operates as an important antidote to our increasingly atomised society’
Steve Leach

Thanks to David Cooper for the tipoff to this book, which looks very interesting and will be one I invest in at some point.

From the blurb for the book:
The town where we grew up and all the places we've lived are the bedrock of our lives, and memories of seeing the local team play are inextricably intertwined with our sense of place and identity. 
I used the look inside feature on Amazon to read a taster section of the book.
I was interested in Barney Ronay's piece on the power of place, particularly as it related to Anfield, and Liverpool's Premier league winning season that has just ended.

Even the journey there has a distinct tone and texture, something to do with the angles of the place, the topography of a port city, the way the light beyond the houses carries a sense of being at the end of things.…

Play Time

"It directs us to look around at the world we live in (the one we keep building), then at each other, and to see how funny that relationship is and how many brilliant possibilities we still have in a shopping-mall world that perpetually suggests otherwise; to look and see that there are many possibilities and that the play between them, activated by the dance of our gaze, can become a kind of comic ballet, one that we both observe and perform..." Jonathan Rosenbaum
I've been working through the films of Jacques Tati with my son.
He created the character of Mr. Hulot, who reappears in almost all of his films.
PlayTime is an absolute classic, but cost so much that it took all of Tati's money and bankrupted him, costing him his house and control over his other films. When you read the story of its creation you can understand why, with weather destroying part of the set during filming. The set was not the usual.
Tati actually built a small city block just on the edge of P…