The Solent? Non-Britons may wonder what or where that might be. A marine area brimming with flat fish floundering about perhaps – or a lonely island lost somewhere in the limitless ocean? Whereas the former’s majority are commonly frequenting the chilly waters of the North Sea around the bend, the latter is a pretty close guess, at least when it comes to the „island“ part. Solving the geographical riddle: the Solent is a strait (about 20 x 4 miles) running between the mainland of England and the Isle of Wight. It not only serves as a shipping route for commercial and military vessels, but also poses as a welcome playground for a multitude of watersports. Southampton, the largest port, surely rings a bell in many a mind as being the last British pier for RMS Titanic to call at before commencing her unfortunate voyage across the Atlantic. Another popular harbour lying by Solent shores is Portsmouth, from where before-mentioned enigmatic islands are best reached: the Solent Forts, a group of sturdy man-made islands built in the late 19th century to ward off sea-born attack. The three Forts – Spitbank, No Man’s Land and Horse Sand – were decommissioned after WW II, lay dormant for a number of years, put up for sale in the 1960s seeing changing ownership. Today, the Solent Forts offer luxurious accommodation incorporated in extraordinary venues and are owned and managed by the AmaZing Venues company.
Posts about World Heritage
Preservation and Technology
A guest post by Brian Yin
Throughout China, with the massive increase in tourist traffic both international and domestic, there are artifacts and sacred sites that are being damaged, often irreparably so by the sheer numbers of visitors. There is always a balancing act between access and preservation: If access is too limited, sites lose their draw card, but if it is too open, then there will be a finite lifespan to them. The Terracotta Warriors in X’ian are an example of how this problem was approached decades ago – when China was just opening up. When the excavated warriors were exposed to the environment, the paint rapidly deteriorated, leaving the clay soldiers “plain earth” as we see them today. The response was to re-bury the majority of the army, to preserve it for future generations.
A guest post by Paul Selis
Situated in the heart of the Mediterranean, the three main islands Malta, Gozo and Comino are small, beautiful and unique. With a fascinating 7,000 years of history and pre-historic temples older than the Pyramids, the Islands are bursting with culture, friendly locals, sunshine and ongoing events. With its thriving economy, continuous business development and considered to be a very safe destination, Malta has become an important hub for various trades, professions, services, vocations, research and education in the Mediterranean, making it an optimal choice to hold international meetings.
When South Bridge was built around the end of the 18th century, it was not solely constructed in order to connect the Old Town of an expanding community with its Southside, but designated to become the city’s very first purpose-built shopping street. Underneath, embedded in the viaduct’s 19 arches, lie a series of chambers known as The Edinburgh Vaults. Back then, they mainly served as a practical storage area for the shops above.
Imagine, you were a citizen of a usually quaint pretty small town situated close to the Polish border and, all of a sudden, George Clooney crossed your path! Or one of the ‘Inglorious Basterds’. Or perhaps you would happen to bump into Bill Murray right in front of ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’. Theoretically, you could. Practically, although the mentioned protagonists were physically present, you would probably have had to be satisfied with a clandestine glimpse of the desired human objects (one of which was voted „sexiest man alive“ not too long ago) from afar. With film sets meticulously cordoned off and actors well protected against curious intruders at all times, one does not just walk into stars of such calibre at random! Not even in the narrow alleys of remote Goerlitz. Unless, of course, one becomes an extra in one of the productions – allowed to play an (in?)significant role within the twinkling orbit of much-admired international celebrities.