Aerial laser maps reveal WWI Battle of the Somme secrets

Bluesky_Mametz+Wood+LiDAR_montag

An aerial survey using aircraft mounted lasers has revealed previously undiscovered evidence that might potentially help to dispute accusations of a lack of determination by Welsh soldiers during the first Battle of the Somme in the Great War of 1914-1918. Aerial mapping company Bluesky flew an area of northern France called Mametz Wood, capturing accurate 3D measurements of the terrain and ground cover.

In the years since 1916, there has been uncertainty as to why Mametz Wood proved so hard for the Welsh Soldiers to clear; there were even accusations of a ‘distinct lack of push’. As part of a BBC TV documentary which explored the history of Welsh soldiers on the Somme through the eyes of rugby player Gareth Thomas, the evidence revealed by the data was used to evaluate the topography of landscape and help the archaeological team focus their efforts on the ground.

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Using specialist software, the Bluesky LiDAR data was stripped of tree cover and other features to reveal the bare earth surface. The resulting ‘moonlike’ image clearly showed two crater-like features with rectangular sides, so, not shell holes, which were not on any other map. To the east of these anomalies was another, more subtle feature, also not depicted on war time maps or in reconnaissance information.

“The data allowed the experts to read the landscape from the air, seeing through the trees and vegetation,” commented the programme’s producer, Louise Bray of Bearhug TV. “This revealed a number of clues in a never before seen landscape. It was hoped that these discoveries might give a better understanding of the difficulties faced by the soldiers on the ground.”

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Clips from the programme ‘Wales at the Somme: Gareth Thomas and the Battle of Mametz Wood’ is available to view for a limited time only on the BBC iPlayer.

Midlands Radio Station Sudden Close

Oak 107 FM

A radio station broadcasting to West Leicestershire and Nuneaton closed suddenly and without warning immediately after their 6pm news bulletin on Thursday 28th July.  You can here the final 3 minutes of the broadcast here.

The closure of Oak 107 was posted on the station’s Facebook page by breakfast co-host Mark Rowley who made up Mark and Twiggy from the breakfast show.

The station was sold last year to ATR Media as a merger of both Oak FM and Fosseway.

Presenter Mark Rowley said in an emotion post of Facebook:

Breakfast co-host Mark Rowley

Oak FM was sold by Quidem 12 months ago to ATR Media for an undisclosed sum. It was made up of two previous stations – Fosseway Radio and the original Oak FM. It relaunched in 2014 after a weekend of playing Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody non-stop.

Debut Album Released By Sir. O

Sir. O release of a new single, ‘Lost’
Sir. O

London-based alternative Rock/Pop singer-songwriter Sir. O marks his debut LP release, ‘Forever + a Day’, alongside the release of a new single, ‘Lost’, taken from the album.

‘Lost’ is an alternative rock duet, performed alongside singer-songwriter Lir Shilton, who is also Sir. O’s other half.

As hinted in the track’s title, the song is about getting lost in the world, a well-known feeling we all share.The melancholic lyrics come across in perfect harmony with the vocals and peaks with the powerful line “On the outside I’m alive, on the inside I’m dead”.

 

Key 103 Competition inbreach of OFcom rules

Key 103 Manchester

Manchester radio station Key 103 fell foul of the regulator recently after complaints about their ‘Heartless Hotline’ competition.

The breakfast show competition involved a member of the public making a case as to why they should receive a particular prize that they have chosen. The station telephone lines were then opened for 30 seconds, and any listener who wished could phone in and steal the prize for themselves.  If no listener calls in, the person who requested the prize and gave their reason- gets it.

Ofcom received a complaint from a listener who described the treatment of the competition entrant on 27 April as “disgusting”. Separately we received two complaints about the 29 April competition from listeners who considered the competition had not been conducted fairly.

 

The competition went as follows:

The Heartless Hotline competition was introduced by the breakfast show presenters, Mike Toolan (“MT”) and Brooke Vincent (“BV”).

MT: Today’s person facing the Heartless Hotline is Sarah from Eccles. Sarah?
Sarah: Hello.
BV: Hi. You alright?
Sarah: I’m alright. A bit nervous.
MT: You’ve contacted us to try and win your dream prize. Tell everybody what it is.
Sarah: It’s £2,000 to cover divorce costs including a court order

MT: …Tell us the story. You were married – when did it all go wrong?
Sarah: It was just over two years ago and I discovered my husband was cheating on me with somebody he worked with. A couple of weeks after that literally, my dad died unexpectedly. It has been an awful – I can’t tell you what it’s been like the last two years [voice breaks]…sorry I’m a bit upset.
BV: Oh, don’t be upset.
Sarah: [voice wavering] I don’t have any luxuries. I have enough to cover the bills but really if I could get divorced I could also get a court order that would mean that my children’s father would have to help with the housing costs ‘cos I just don’t think, of moving house right now, they could cope with it. It’s just been heart-breaking.
MT: So your ex-husband, well I guess he’s still your husband at the minute until you can get divorced. He’s not helping you pay the bills? Sarah: He’s given me a little bit of basic maintenance but it’s not enough to be able to keep us in the house where we live.
BV: Is that for the kids as well? It’s for everything?
Sarah: Yeah. [voice wavering] You know, for me to lose my support network and for them to lose their friends and possibly have to move schools. I just don’t think they could cope with it.
MT: So you want a sort of court order that will allow you stay in the house
you are in.
Sarah: Yeah, you can obtain a court order which means that he would have to help with housing costs – he would have to contribute a little bit more in order to keep a roof over our heads.
MT: He should be doing it anyway.
BV: He’s in our ‘Bad Dads’ Club’.
MT: […] So you’re paying all the bills. You want to stay in the family home.
You need £2,000.

Sarah: I do work, I work in healthcare. I help look after children and adults with additional needs. It’s not that I don’t work but I just need a little bit more help in order to cover the mortgage…and that would do it really. I have been to see a couple of solicitors so I know what’s involved and I know the exact cost and that [the £2,000 prize] would cover the
paperwork for the divorce and the solicitor’s fees.
MT: So you need £2,000?
Sarah: Yes.

MT: We’ve got it for you.
Sarah: Right [nervous laughter].
MT: I’ve been through a divorce myself, I know exactly what you’re going through and it’s just horrible.
Sarah: It’s awful.
MT: Okay. 30 seconds. We’re going to open up the Heartless Hotline on Key 103. Really good luck Sarah in Eccles. Let’s hope no one calls. Let’s hope people allow you to take this £2,000.
Sarah: Please Manchester. I need this more than anything.
MT: How old are your children?
Sarah: Nine and seven now.
MT: Nine and seven. Aww. Are they okay?
Sarah: They’re okay. They’ve took it hard but they’re okay.
MT: Okay. 30 seconds. [Telephone number given]. It’s up to you if you want to call and steal this cash. It’s on your conscience. The Key 103 Heartless Hotline is now open.

[A ticking clock was heard, followed two seconds later by the sound of a phone
ringing.]

MT: We’ve got a call in already.
Sarah: Oh no.
MT: Hello? Key 103’s Heartless Hotline. Who’s this?
Caller: Hiya. It’s Leigh.
MT: Leigh? Why are you calling us?
Leigh: I want to steal the money.
BV: [gasp] Do you Leigh?
Sarah: Oh no.
Leigh: [laughing]
BV: What you want to steal it for, what do you want?
Leigh: Well I would like a holiday.
BV: But Leigh!
Sarah: This is my children’s future!
Leigh: I know but I’ve got children of my own and I could do with a holiday for us.
Sarah: You could do with a holiday? I could do with keeping a roof over my children’s heads. How could you?
Leigh: Sorry?
Sarah: [Sounding close to tears] I want to keep a roof over my children’s heads and you just want a holiday? Are you serious?
Leigh: I am serious. I’m sorry about this, but yes.
Sarah: You’re not sorry. How could you?
Leigh: Well that’s the name of the game!
BV: I don’t know what to say.
MT: […] Leigh, do you not think this is a bit out of order? Do you not think she’s been through enough and she deserves a chance to fight for the right to keep her kids in the same house?
Leigh: Well…yes, we’ve all got a story to tell and I just need the money myself so I just thought I would ring up.
MT: Okay.
Leigh: Sorry, I didn’t know her situation.
Sarah: Just for a holiday.
Leigh: I just want a holiday. Long overdue.
MT: Alright. Leigh, you’ve won your holiday.
Leigh: Oh thank you! [laughing].
MT: Okay. Bye.
Leigh: Thanks a lot. Bye bye!

MT: Sarah. I don’t know what to say.
Sarah: Okay well, she won it fair enough I suppose.
MT: Stay on the line, we’ll have a chat in a minute.

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After a music track was played the presenters discussed what had happened and
read out messages from listeners. These included:

MT: Sarah Elliot has texted… ‘Words fail me. What a cow!’
BV: I’ve got some on Twitter…we’ve got Jamie who’s put “nearly in tears at Key 103 Heartless Hotline”. I’ve got Tracy Elliot who’s put “what a vindictive, disgusting woman. Sickening”. Nicholas put “to be fair with this Heartless Hotline, you can’t blame people who are stealing. It’s the name of the game” and that’s true but – it’s just hard as these are people’s lives that we are trying to also help but other people are stealing from, so it’s not good.

MT: Someone’s put “you need to stop this evil game now. I’m at the point where I’m going to be switching stations”.
BV: I think the thing is, it also depends what the person is asking for because someone could ask for a car and it’d not be that bad. It’s just like, you know, they’ve stole a car, but when it’s that raw and personal, as a divorce, and someone comes on and tells a story, and someone just goes “yeah”. That’s a bit harsh.

The presenters also spoke to a number of callers over the course of the subsequent 30 minutes. The majority expressed their anger with Leigh for stealing the money, although some defended her actions. By way of example, callers’ comments included:

“I am absolutely disgusted with that woman from Wythenshawe that’s just stolen
that prize…words fail me”.

“That was bang out of order…”.

“…we’ve all been through issues and we don’t know what’s gone on in this girl’s
[Leigh’s] life to make her want a holiday. She could have been through anything
and there’s nothing like a holiday to make you feel better and I think we’re all
judging here without knowing what she’s been through…”.

One listener also offered to donate £100 towards Sarah’s cause which one of the
presenters agreed to match.

Ofcom found that Key 103 were in breach of their Rules 2.3 and 2.13 and said “In our opinion, the Licensee should have been more aware before transmission of the potential for offence arising from including Sarah as a contestant in this competition on 27 April 2016”.

Monday Matters Trident Vote & Mandela Day 18 July 2016

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Nelson Mandela – released in 19901after 27 years in captivity

 

Monday Matters with Jason McCrossan as broadcast on 106.SFM.

On the show tonight:

It’s International Mandela day – after 9pm Jason speaks to a biographer of Nelson Mandela – Martin Meredith – about the Mandela’s early life, later life and struggles which saw him go from spending 26 years in a prison cell to becoming the first black President of South Africa.

The Prime Minister says she would be prepared to authorise a nuclear strike.  Theresa May’s made her first Commons speech since entering Number 10, during a debate about renewing the UK’s nuclear deterrent – we’ll discuss the pro’s and con’s with Green Party MP Caroline Lucas and former First Sea Lord and former Security Minister, Lord West.

Our featured artist tonight is Don Henley who is 69 on Friday. The drummer, singer, composer, and co-founder of The Eagles who has also pursued a successful solo career, releasing hits like The Boys of Summer.

Also we have The World Tonight; Not In The News and the latest music news and releases.

 

Saturday Breakfast Art In The Park & Newington Festival 16 July 201

Saturday Breakfast with Jason McCrossan running order
Saturday Breakfast with Jason McCrossan running order

On Breakfast this morning with Jason: Jan has your travel; Calum the sport.

Between 7am & 8am
NEWSQUIZ? What’s The Story? Jason plays a clip from the news – but can you work out the story?

In TRANQUIL TIME our poem is How Pleasant to Know Mr Lear by Edward Lear.

Between 8am & 9am

Katy Perry has released her first new single in 3 years – we play it around 08:10
Also this hour we play Treasure Hunt: We’ll send Jan up in the SFM Helicopter with Jock McSporran – but can you guess where she is?

A report out this morning from the AA says on average seven children need rescuing from locked cars every day Jason talks to Edmund King from the AA.

Between 9am & 10am
Pick of the number one Pops, playing songs that were number one on this day from; 1970; 1980; 1990; 2000.

It’s Milton Creek – Art In The Park – we cross live to the event with Colin Jones & Pete Flynn and also today is the Newington Village Festival: Sue Flipping will join Jason on the phone.

Monday Matters Tony Blair & the Chilcot Report 11 July 2016

Tony Blair gave a 2 hour press conference to defend his actions
Tony Blair gave a 2 hour press conference to defend his actions

On Monday Matters with Jason McCrossan this week.

After 8pm Jason discusses a research out today which suggests nine in ten people think that drink or drug drivers who kill someone should be charged with manslaughter. Jason speaks to Gary Rae from the campaign charity BRAKE about these findings.

The Pet Shop Boys are our featured group. Neil Tennant celebrated his birthday yesterday. He was 62.

Also celebrating her birthday is the Award-winning singer-songwriter Suzanne Vega. After 9pm Jason will play 4 songs from her live album – In Concert (Live at the Coach House, San Juan Capistano) 1993.

The Chilcot report was published last week Jason speaks to Professor Ruth Blakeley from the University of Kent. We also discuss a project Professor Blakeley is running in conjunction with Westminster University called The Rendition Project – which looks at the CIA’s rendition, detention and interrogation (RDI) programme.

News, views and interviews

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