Towers, Clock Towers, Water Pumps & Monuments,

This is a collection of different varieties of towers, water pumps & monuments, that I come across.

BT Tower, London

To me the BT Tower will always be the Post Office Tower, mainly because an uncle took myself and my younger brother up in the lift to the top in 1966, just after it opened in October 1965.  This really was quite scary, the lift went from the top to the bottom and then bounced back up two levels and then back down with a thud…….have never felt the same about lifts since.  But I have always thought it was an amazing building, and still is.   There is to me, something very space like about it, like a rocket about to take off. 

I took some photos in 2016 and forgot about them, but while sorting I have just come across them, and thought that I would look a little into the history.  The BT Tower, formerly known as the Post Office Tower, was opened to the public in 1966, despite construction having been completed in July 1964.

The British Telecom Communication Tower in London’s West End was the first purpose-built tower to transmit high frequency radio waves, and it serves as a functional telecommunications centre designed to relay broadcast, Internet and telephone information around the world.

Costing £2 million to construct, the 189m (620ft) cylindrical tall tower is made from 13,000 tonnes of concrete, steel and glass, and at the time of opening was the tallest building in London. It’s shape was designed to reduce wind resistance and gave it stability and style.

Lochgilphead War Memorial & Celtic Cross, Loch Fyne, Scotland

We have passed through Lochgilphead, on Loch Fyne, Scotland, quite a few times and I always wonder about the cross at the end of the road, in the above photo you can see it in the distance.  The celtic cross always looks older to me, but it would seem it was erected in 1921.  Although the celtic cross is not of a great age, its still interesting to learn the history and in May 2016, I managed to take some photos from the car as we were passing by.

Some history………The Lochgilphead war memorial is a square pedestal of unusual design with decorative medallions carved with celtic designs and battle honours on the four faces at the upper corners. The pedestal stands on a low circular stepped base and is surmounted by a rustic celtic cross carved in freestone with boss and wheel-head. The commemoration and names of the WWI dead are listed on a bronze panel set into the face of the pedestal. The commemoration and names of the WWII dead are carried on two smaller bronze panels set into the face of two low stone pillars which flank the pedestal.
The monument stands at the junction at the head of the main street, on the sea front overlooking Loch Fyne.
The monument was erected by Glasgow monumental sculptors Messrs. Scott Rae, the daybook entry reads:
Order No. 5805, Lochgilphead, Grey cross, Erected May 1921.

The Fox Tower, Brough, Cumbria


This building of a tower intrigued me on our travels to Scotland a couple of weeks ago, so I took a couple of photos, so that I could check it out when we got home.  I found out it is ‘The Fox Tower’ which was built as part of a large estate for John Metcalf Carleton in 1775. Mr Carleton was an industrial entrepreneur who lived at Helbeck Hall, a Georgian Gothic style mansion he had built outside Brough, Cumbria. Little is left of his cotton mill and the function of the Tower remains a puzzle, but it was probably built as folly for enjoying the splendid views across the Eden Valley.  I took the photo just as we had passed Brough Castle on the A66, the tower it is on private land, but you can get a good view from the road.  I did have to zoom right in, so the photos are not that clear, but I found the tower interesting. because it reminded me of the shape of tin mines in Cornwall and where some are perched on the edge of cliffs, similar to this tower.


May 2016

Our Lady of the Isles, South Uist, Outer Hebrides, Scotland



Travelling across the Isle of South Uist, Outer Hebrides, you cannot miss the huge statue of ‘Our Lady of the Isles” brilliant white, she seems to sparkle in the sunshine.  The locals would know her as ‘Bana thighearna nan Eilean’.  On our visit of 2014, we heard a lot of gaelic spoken on the islands, and its a very soft accent, really lovely to hear.


Some details of the Madonna and Child……….The Statue of Our Lady of the Isles is 30ft high depiction in granite of the Madonna and Child which was erected on the western slope of Rueval at a height of 170ft above sea level in 1957. It was the work of the sculptor Hew Lorimer and is regarded as one of his finest works. It is 9m (30 feet) in height and carved from granite. Lorimer gave the Madonna the face of a typical island woman and was commissioned by Father John Morrison and paid for by the people of the island.

The statue was commissioned after the Ministry of Defense proposed a missile testing range be constructed. This caused concern it would destroy much of the island’s way of life, culture and language.  But the missile testing was carried out, but it would seem that a lot of the young men who came to island, fell under the spell of the islands, and also the charms of the local young lasses, many staying and are now part of the communities, so in a way the Madonna did as she was asked.

The Sad Tale of Harald’s Tower, Thurso, Scotland


On our way out of Thurso in Caithness, Scotland 2014, I spied a little blip on the landscape, it looks similar to an upside down table or a little fairytale castle, but it is Harald’s Tower.  A name to conjure with….


Some history……..The derelict tower guarding the flanks of Clardon Hill, east of Thurso marks the grave of one of the two adversaries who, in 1196, met in a classic encounter of good against evil.

On one side was the wicked Harold Maddadson, known as ‘Harold the Elder’. The son of the infamous Countess of Athole, by way of his extraordinary cruelty and tyranny, he was a perfect scourge to Caithness. Ranged against him was the local Harald Ungi, ‘Harald the Younger’, grandson of Earl Ronald, one of the founders of Kirkwall Cathedral.  To cut a very long story short, Harald the Young was killed in battle and was buried near to where he fell.  The locals made a shrine of the grave and the shrine became a chapel, but eventually this fell into disrepair. It lay derelict until Sir John Sinclair, at the suggestion of a Rev. Alexander, erected a tower over the site. Sadly this too now lies boarded up and forlorn.


A Monument to Land Raiders


When we did our tour of the Outer Hebrides last year, 2014, I was amazed at the amount of history there was dotted around the Islands.  I suppose you would call this monument on North Uist modern history, it records the memory of the men who took part of a land raid in 1921.


The plaque on this stone commemorates the Paiblesgarry Land Raid of 1921, on the Balranald Estate in North Uist. A group of local men had been promised land if they signed up to fight in the First World War. When the survivors returned and tried to claim the land they were denied. They attempted to take the land and were all sentenced to 60 days imprisonment, although they did not all serve time in prison. Farms were eventually set up on the land as crofting land settlement schemes. The plaque lists the names of 12 participants in the raid.


The Watering Hole

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On a visit to Kent yesterday to see our daughter and grandchildren, we went out to explore and find something to eat.  We stopped at the lovely old town of Faversham and after parking the car, we walked through a market of antique stalls in the town centre and found a quaint tea shop to help ease the hungry pains.  Faversham is full of interest, but we really didn’t have time to spare, we managed a rummage through the stalls and then back in the car to explore some more.

But of course the camera came out while the others were looking around and I found this wonderful water pump.  The photo should have been changed to black and white for my people category, but I love the red of the pump and blue or pale green of the building, so colour it stayed.

March 2015