Return to the Water

Post Reply
no1traumanurse
Posts: 36
Joined: Sun Dec 06, 2009 9:13 pm
Location: Scunthorpe

Re: Return to the Water

Post by no1traumanurse » Sun Mar 04, 2018 10:20 am

Let me see if I have got this straight.
You have beavered away for the best part of 2 decades to restore Bluebird K7.
Battled bureaucracy that wouldn’t give you so much as a sniff of coin of the realm to help out.
Got bye-laws changed the best part of 10 years ago to enable you test Bluebird at speeds up to roughly 100mph. If I read the laws correctly, that means as many development runs as you deem fit and 12 fullish tilt runs.
Got the Ruskin museum extended to house Bluebird, albeit with the museum doors welded shut and access via tunnel only for those who live in Cumbria and can provide DNA and family trees that prove they worthy of a ticket.

Now the unforeseen part.
You actually have got to the point where the Bluebird is within a gnats whisker of being ready to get wet. Well done, wasn’t supposed to happen.
You want her to be seen on the water by as many people as possible, especially those of school age who might actually learn a smidge of history.
You require a training period to learn how to run Bluebird safely, perfectly reasonable. Except the bye-law change didn’t take into account that you might need to learn what you were doing before hitting the pedal and getting up to 100mph.

The bit causing panic.
Coniston despite its picturesque setting and forever emotive connection to Donald Campbell, is the worst place to hold a big event.
This will be the reason for collective panic at the LDNPA.
Parking for what? 15 cars on a good day?
Access from 2 directions, one on a road barely big enough for squashed rabbits and the other via the bottleneck of Ambleside. Let’s face it, sun shines, schools closed, all adds up to a nightmare in that part of the world.
Obviously I have no idea of the contingency plans that will have been worked out between you in the intervening years, but I can guess it amounts to the LDNPA wanting the kudos without lifting a finger. Oh, and here is the bill for the help we didn’t provide.

Do all of us that have followed the story from the beginning want to see Bluebird running on Coniston Water? Absolutely, it’s the right thing to do.
Will it happen now? In my mind I see water from Scotland dripping on the floor of the Ruskin after you prove, successfully, that Bluebird is back to her former best.

rich1608
Posts: 36
Joined: Fri Jun 10, 2016 7:38 pm
Location: Tunbridge Wells

Re: Return to the Water

Post by rich1608 » Sun Mar 04, 2018 11:28 am

Quite simply, if the LDNPA and Coniston don't get their act together and welcome Bluebird with open arms they will be the laughing stock of the whole planet if the proving trials take place elsewhere. They will have egg on their face for many years to come for throwing away the opportunity of the century. And let's not forget that Bluebird took two of her WWSRs in different continents so if the trials don't take place on Coniston then that's fine by me!

Terminator
Posts: 701
Joined: Thu Sep 24, 2009 11:19 pm

Re: Return to the Water

Post by Terminator » Sun Mar 04, 2018 1:02 pm

Only one thing missing from the above is during the many meetings with the Heritagr events group that Malcolm and myself attended. Out came the shocking fee of £345 per half day or £690 per full day for two of their officials or observers to Sit on their collective behinds!!!! Grandstand seats whilst charging The Bluebird Project made up of volunteers this insane amoount!!! Not even a discount for the full day :roll: not one penny will be paid as we stated at the last but one meeting.

Novie
"Never ride faster than your Angel can fly"

User avatar
Renegadenemo
Posts: 4685
Joined: Mon Dec 01, 2008 12:29 pm
Location: N E England
Contact:

Re: Return to the Water

Post by Renegadenemo » Sun Mar 04, 2018 2:45 pm

I reckon the best plan here is to go to Bute then start planning the proving trial for the following August - we'll need 12 months to properly finish the boat up to display standard anyway - and see whether the LDNPA / Coniston are on track to host it. They have plenty of time between now and our crew training to get organised.
If they still don't want it by then we'll throw it out there for a new partner. As there's nothing we can do at the BBP and it's all in the hands of others we can move on with a clear conscience and without blame.

If they do get their act together we'll put on an amazing show for them on Coniston.
I'm only a plumber from Cannock...

"As to reward, my profession is its own reward;" Sherlock Holmes.

I have wrought my simple plan
If I give one hour of joy
To the boy who’s half a man,
Or the man who’s half a boy.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

Malcolm Ops
Posts: 102
Joined: Mon Jul 10, 2017 4:09 pm

Re: Return to the Water

Post by Malcolm Ops » Sun Mar 04, 2018 8:04 pm

An observer of the postings from the LDNPA and the responses from the BBP on social media described to me "how reasonable the LDNPA had been in their statement".

I found this a little hard to believe so I looked again at what had been said and saw that I had not clearly rebutted the second sentence of the statement from the LDNPA. A statement which has been published widely, word for word, in the mainstream press, including the BBC.

“We are disappointed that the Bluebird K7 team have chosen to undergo proving trials in Scotland and not on Coniston Water. This was unexpected news to us given we were still in conversation with the Bluebird K7 project ......."

Many on the BBP including myself have covered the difference between crew training and any Proving Trial. What I missed and what my speed friend pointed out to me as being very reasonable, was the "... given we (LDNPA) were still in conversation with the Bluebird K7 project ....".

Reasonable perhaps but of course not accurate!

Novie and I were the two representatives of the BBP who have met LDNPA officers frequently, not just because we sat on the village Event Working Group (EWG) whose last meeting was held on the 7th February. On the 8th February I concluded a few tasks that the EWG meeting members had asked me to do, including drawing up the composite 31 organisations and businesses long consultee list. Later that same evening I set down my reasons to the Chair of the group why I would not be attending any further EWG meetings. [Without any change from the LDNPA on the timing of the Proving Trial any presence of the BBP on the EWG would not be of any use]. Contact with the LDNPA came to an effective end on February 9th, conversation was at an end.

The BBP press release and press call were two weeks after this date and the LDNPA statement was itself made long after the date of the BBP press announcement (27th February). The Bluebird Project was not 'still in conversation with the LDNPA' from the 9th February and this lasted until our Project Leader received a telephone call last week in an attempt to resolve the date 'problem'.

I hope to sleep better after writing this down. Thanks if you took the time to read it. Malcolm
Malcolm Ops

Derby, England

Stuart Baker
Posts: 108
Joined: Thu Dec 10, 2009 11:56 pm

Re: Return to the Water

Post by Stuart Baker » Sun Mar 04, 2018 9:47 pm

Having just read all of this I think that the problem is that someone misheard you guys. You said you wanted to talk to the principals and they heard that you wanted to talk to the principles...

Either way, as ever, my best wishes for wherever you take Bluebird to the water. Your story is inspirational and needs to be told to as wide an audience as possible.

S

User avatar
Renegadenemo
Posts: 4685
Joined: Mon Dec 01, 2008 12:29 pm
Location: N E England
Contact:

Re: Return to the Water

Post by Renegadenemo » Sun Mar 04, 2018 10:30 pm

Either way, as ever, my best wishes for wherever you take Bluebird to the water. Your story is inspirational and needs to be told to as wide an audience as possible.
Thanks Stuart, kind words and good to know you're still looking in on us. For those who don't know, Stuart and his team were instrumental in making our engine run using many original components a complete success.
The BBP press release and press call were two weeks after this date and the LDNPA statement was itself made long after the date of the BBP press announcement (27th February). The Bluebird Project was not 'still in conversation with the LDNPA' from the 9th February and this lasted until our Project Leader received a telephone call last week in an attempt to resolve the date 'problem'.
That was no attempt to resolve the date problem. It was a panicked bleat about how we absolutely must make an application to run K7 - not a chance. I said we'd speak again once they'd sorted the timing issue and written to us to that effect. Mr Bureaucrat then told me in warning tones there's rules that we 'ignore at our peril' (all I could do to keep from bursting out laughing at that) and that as a member of the business community I must understand this because I know I have have to pay my VAT. Oh, puh-lease...

Well, Mr Jobsworth, if you're reading this... do your due diligence on me and you'll find that I enjoy a spot of peril whilst I'll bet a fiver you've never been self-employed.

We are, apparently, no different to someone who may, for instance, want to hold a synchronised swimming tournament in Wastwater. That's as may be on paper but I doubt very much that ballsing up a synchronised swimming tournament would get you the sack.

This is different, I tried to explain. Nothing like anything that's gone before or likely will again. A mind-blowing piece of history, an opportunity as wide as it's long and deserving of special consideration, a veritable feast of possibilities...

But rules are rules... How do people live like that? Perhaps, you know how you can get a guide dog for the blind, maybe you can nowadays get a thinking dog for the stupid and we should have a whip-round to get them one.

And from another source, not Mr. Jobsworth at the Lackadaisical Display of Not Producing Anything this time. I was told that a potential showstopper was traffic management and closing a single road meant a bureaucratical excursion to the terrifying heights of County Council level - eek! And that they wouldn't touch it without a feasibility study that would cost £3K that isn't to be had.

Now then, we've been quietly taking your donated money and flogging you DVDs for ten years and chucking every penny we could save into a pot while we work and travel as volunteers. What this means is that when we had to sign a cheque last week for our accommodation on Bute, a handful of modest apartments, the cash was at hand, so why couldn't our wannabe partners afford their feasibility study?

The excuse was that nothing could be done because we'd never given them a 'when'.

Now, as I've said already - I care not how hopeless or disorganised anyone wants to be just so long as they don't attempt to shift any hint of blame to our side of the table because we are neither hopeless nor disorganised and have done everything expected of us.

I'd wager that the County Council has absolutely no idea when they'll next be washed out and have half of their roads and bridges carried away by flash floods - but I bet they have a plan.

No excuses, please.
I'm only a plumber from Cannock...

"As to reward, my profession is its own reward;" Sherlock Holmes.

I have wrought my simple plan
If I give one hour of joy
To the boy who’s half a man,
Or the man who’s half a boy.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

User avatar
Mike Bull
Posts: 4607
Joined: Mon Dec 01, 2008 1:57 pm

Re: Return to the Water

Post by Mike Bull » Mon Mar 05, 2018 9:19 am

One could argue that it's an almost arrogant stance to take- 'We have Donald Campbell's Bluebird; you there, stand aside, we're coming through!' but for heaven's sake, can you blame us? They can have a huge homecoming event that will fill the nation's if not the world's media, showcasing this amazing, truly unique, unstoppable historic craft in all it's fire and glory, set against the beauty of Coniston itself and the Lakes generally, and yet we get some desk bound lichen-counter insisting that we fill in form 57b in triplicate like everybody else, so they can have a ponder and a consider, charge us for the privilege, and then expect us to do all the actual work anyway?!

**** off!

Other people were of course involved but Scotland is happening essentially because one man had the power to simply say 'Yes'. No wibble, no BS, no blaming anyone except themselves, no outright lies; just simply 'yes'.

So LDNPA, how hard can it be?

Meanwhile of course the 'leaders' of Stoneybridge bumble about in their own little world, fretting about over grown bushes and too much dog muck outside No.42, unable or unwilling to see much further. Or if they CAN see it, well, maybe they can have a meeting about having a meeting about it, and get a grant for something, and then maybe get someone else to actually do something...or not. Etc. It's parochial in the extreme and it's reactive, not proactive; in fact largely, its simply inactive.

Then you have the element that 'sits on its behind in the comfort of an armchair' and moans about us; moans about how long the job has taken, moans that we must be on the make somehow, etc. People there want to see their rooms full and their bars busy and sell their souvenir tat with Bluebird on but THEY WON'T DO A SINGLE BLOODY THING TO HELP, US OR THEMSELVES!!!

Of course Bluebird should take a homecoming, victory trot up and down that lake; I completely agree with the sentiment and moral rightness of that, but as was suggested above, I (personal opinion, to be clear) also think that Coniston is just too small to cope- in every sense.

So we'll crack on as we always do, session after session after session, while other people have lives, see family, sit on their behinds in that proverbial or literal armchair, etc. We'll get the thing to Scotland, hopefully have a good crew training exercise and see how she goes, and the rest can either get their act together and give us a call, or shut the hell up and leave us to it while we go elsewhere.

Coniston/LDNPA- do you want this, or don't you?
'I am not what is called a "civilized man", Professor. I have done with society for reasons that seem good to me.'

ace_chris
Posts: 386
Joined: Mon Dec 01, 2008 2:31 pm

Re: Return to the Water

Post by ace_chris » Mon Mar 05, 2018 12:11 pm

In terms of the logisitics/disruption to Coniston, they managed alright when it was Donald Campbells funeral back in 2001, and many local land owners and farmers benefited from a bit of extra cash in hand for "car-parking". Not forgetting the Hotels, B&B's, Restaurants etc etc who benefited. Surely the powers that be can at least use this as a starting point in terms of making some forecasts for anticipated visitor numbers.

Jump forward to 2018 our hospitality industry is rapidly going to the dogs so surely anything to inject some much needed cash into this area of the local economy should be welcome.

If Cant'iston STILL will not budge is there an option for Ullswater as that was technically where K7 was launched? Or do the LooNy Party (sorry LDNP) have first dibs on refusal there too?

Regards

Chris

User avatar
Richie
Posts: 1172
Joined: Mon Mar 07, 2011 3:12 pm

Re: Return to the Water

Post by Richie » Mon Mar 05, 2018 1:06 pm

I have contacts at Ullswater yacht club, they have a fantastic slip way, full facilities and rescue ribs etc etc, plus it’s a stones throw from numerous camping sites.
Clarence come out ov zat tank at vonz !

Post Reply