12 foods to avoid to Banish Acid Stomachs and Acid Reflux for Life


These are the foods and drinks you must eliminate in the first phase to create a digestive clean slate:

Fizzy drinks: Even sparkling water — though not acidic, its bubbles can rise from the stomach, carrying acid

Coffee and tea

Citrus fruit: Any with pH 4 or less, including lemon, lime and pineapple

Tomato: This activates and releases pepsin — the enzyme that can eat away and damage throat tissue — but can be neutralised in the second phase

Vinegar: All varieties activate pepsin

Wine: It is very acidic, measuring from pH 2.9 to pH 3.9

Caffeine: Be aware it’s in some painkillers

Chocolate: This contains methylxanthine, which increases stomach acid production and is a carminative

Alcohol: Vodka and tequila are allowed in the next phase

Mint: A powerful carminative, whether as a herb, chewing gum or tea

Raw onion: This is a carminative and also a fructan, which means it causes the intestines to absorb water, causing bloating

Raw garlic: Also a carminative and a fructan. This is off-limits during both phases. Instead, use fennel


During the healing phase, the first 28 days, stick to foods with a pH of 5 or above, such as:

Fish: Salmon, halibut, trout, plaice, sea bass, sole

Poultry: Chicken breast, minced turkey, eggs

Vegetables: Spinach, cos lettuce, rocket, curly kale, bok choy, broccoli, asparagus, celery, cucumbers, courgette, aubergine, potato, sweet potato, carrots (not baby ones), beetroot, chestnut mushrooms, basil, coriander, parsley, rosemary, dried thyme and sage

Raw fruit: Banana, papaya, cantaloupe, honeydew melon, watermelon, lychee and avocado

Dried fruit: Dates, raisins, desiccated coconut

Nuts and seeds: Cashews, pecans, pistachios, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, almonds, pine nuts

Spreads: Fresh, organic peanut and almond butters

Cheese: Parmesan, mozzarella, other hard cheese

Bread and grains: Rolled oats, wholegrain pasta, wholegrain bread, wholegrain wheat flour

Condiments: Celtic salt, olive and coconut oil, soybean concentrate, vanilla extract, pea protein, white miso paste

This is followed by the maintenance phase, where you reintroduce some banned foods back into the diet.

This second phase should last a minimum of two weeks, but you can follow it for life.

More than 4,000 of my patients have tested my plan, and all reported relief from the pain and disruption of acid damage.

As well as losing weight, they had more energy and less inflammation in their throats.

And many (with the exception of those who have Barrett’s oesophagus, where the cells lining the gullet become precancerous) have been able to stop taking medication such as proton pump inhibitors — which reduce the production of stomach acid to treat acid reflux.

Note: if you have symptoms several times a week, or over-the-counter medication isn’t working, see your GP to rule out other causes.

The surprising new food rules to banish acid reflux for good: Cheese and pasta will help, but DON’T touch tomatoes and mint tea

  • Acid reflux affects millions worldwide, but many patients don’t know they have it
  • The most common symptoms are throat complaints such as difficulty swallowing
  • According to this specialist, the best way to defeat it is by changing your diet

By Dr Jonathan Aviv For The Daily Mail

Most people’s image of the typical acid reflux patient is an overweight, middle-aged man who’s overdone it on burgers or pizza and is complaining of heartburn.

But as an ear, nose and throat doctor, I see patients every day who break the stereotypical mould — for acid damage afflicts people of all ages, including the very young.

In fact, more than 7 million Britons suffer from it.

And it doesn’t just manifest itself as heartburn or regurgitation.

These aren’t even the most common symptoms — in my practice, most acid reflux patients are more likely to have throat-related complaints, such as a lump-like sensation that causes difficulty swallowing.

Most acid reflux patients are more likely to have throat-related complaints, such as a lump-like sensation that causes difficulty swallowing

Other common symptoms include a chronic cough (that persists longer than eight weeks), frequent throat-clearing, hoarseness and a sore throat.

Often, someone with these symptoms won’t realise they have reflux because the oesophageal tissues have likely been exposed to acid for so long, they’ve been numbed to its effects.

These ‘silent’ symptoms mean the condition can be overlooked, which has its own risks: a growing number of people are now succumbing to oesophageal cancer — the most extreme manifestation of acid damage.

But why are so many of us plagued by acid reflux in the first place? The answer, I believe, lies in the food and drink we consume every day.

Doctors used to be concerned about only the acid that came up from the stomach into the oesophagus — now we know the problem is also the acid from certain foods on their way down.

These foods cause problems in two ways: they loosen the valve at the bottom of the oesophagus (the lower oesophageal sphincter), allowing the stomach contents and acid to rise up, or they directly irritate the oesophagus.

Eating late at night can cause inflammation or put pressure on the oesophageal valve, as well as lead to bloating and gassiness

Our lifestyles also play a part. Smoking, eating late at night, rushing our food and being overweight can cause inflammation or put pressure on the oesophageal valve (rushing our meals and eating late can lead to bloating and gassiness).

Stress is also implicated, as it triggers the release of hormones that can increase production of gastric acid.

Based on my 27 years’ experience treating patients with acid reflux, I’ve devised a plan to tackle this growing problem, which I set out in my new book, The Acid Watcher Diet.

This plan has two stages: a 28-day ‘healing’ phase, where you avoid foods that trigger acid damage, such as citrus fruits, tomatoes, coffee, peppers, seed oils, chocolate and processed food generally, and choose instead those rich in compounds that help repair the damage, some of which are listed in the box below.


Before I set out the plan in more detail, let me explain why dietary acid is so damaging.

The key lies in pepsin, an enzyme that’s meant to help break down food in the stomach.

Though this is a controversial new area, I am convinced pepsin presents a very real, lurking danger.

In the stomach, pepsin is inactive until woken up by acidic foods.

Illustration of a healthy stomach. In the stomach, pepsin, an enzyme that’s meant to help break down food, is inactive until woken up by acidic foods

But once mixed into gastric acid, it can surge up into the oesophagus, chest, vocal cords and throat, where pepsin molecules can attach to pepsin receptors. This is when the real trouble begins.

Once pepsin is planted in your oesophagus, it is activated each time you eat or drink something acidic.

As you may recall from your school chemistry lessons, the pH scale runs from 1 to 14 — anything below pH 7 is considered acidic; everything above that is alkaline.

Pepsin becomes most active in an environment with a pH level between 1 and 4.

If there are no food proteins for it to break down (as there are in the stomach), the activated pepsin will eat away at the throat and oesophagus, causing problems from inflammation and heartburn to Barrett’s oesophagus — and possibly oesophageal cancer.

What’s especially worrying is that once pepsin gets into your gullet, it floats through the airways and can end up anywhere, including your lungs, where it can cause inflammation and conditions such as asthma and bronchitis.

Pepsin receptors have been found in the sinuses and middle ears in people with acid reflux.

The concern is that, if activated repeatedly, pepsin can spark inflammation throughout the body.

A key feature of the Acid Watcher diet is that it keeps pepsin in your stomach, where it belongs, and prevents the activation of it outside the stomach.


The secret is not letting calories, carbohydrates or fat dictate whether a food is ‘good’ or ‘bad’: make choices based on a food’s acidity or pH value.

A general rule is that the more processed a food, the more acidic it is, due to the chemicals used to preserve it.

Dietary acid is found in carbonated drinks (sweetened, fizzy drinks can have a pH of 2.5), commercially produced fruit juices and in products containing high-fructose corn syrup (a sweetener made using sulphuric acid), such as biscuits, cakes and ice cream.

A general rule is that the more processed a food, the more acidic it is, due to the chemicals used to preserve it

It’s even in canned soups and vegetables — especially if they’ve been pickled or fermented. If the label includes citric or ascorbic acid, this suggests the product is acidic.

And there are other foods you may be more surprised to learn are bad for an Acid Watcher — take the Mediterranean-style diet, for example.


To work out if you have reflux, answer this question: within the last month, how did the following problems affect you? (Rate each from 0, no problem, to 5, severe):

  • Hoarseness or voice problem
  • Clearing your throat
  • Excess throat mucus or post-nasal drip
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Coughing after you eat or are lying down
  • Difficulty breathing or choking episodes
  • Troublesome or annoying cough
  • Sensation of something sticking in throat or lump in throat
  • Heartburn, chest pain or indigestion

A total score of greater than 13 strongly suggests you could have acid reflux

It protects against inflammation, cardiovascular disease, obesity and insulin-resistance — a precursor to type 2 diabetes — but some of its staples are high-acid foods that must be avoided.

These include wine, tomatoes, vinegar, lemon, onion and garlic (the latter two play a role in bloating, indigestion and heart-burn by putting pressure on the oesophageal valve).

Of these, wine is the most detrimental — not only is it highly acidic, but all alcohol is a carminative, which means it loosens the oesophageal valve.

Other carminatives include chocolate, caffeine, fresh and dried mint and peppermint tea, so these should be avoided.

However, some components of the Mediterranean diet are good for you, and the high-fibre content is important because it sweeps waste from your stomach, aiding healthy digestion and protecting your oesophagus.


The first phase of the diet — the 28-day healing phase — is based on eight principles that will help you eliminate or reduce inflammation and tissue damage.

The first phase of the diet — the 28-day healing phase — is based on eight principles that will help you eliminate or reduce inflammation and tissue damage

These are:

  1. Eliminate acid triggers.
  2. Rein in your reflux-generating habits — quit smoking completely and cut out processed food.
  3. Avoid fried food — it loosens the oesophageal valve.
  4. Eat three meals, and two mini-meals, at regular intervals between 7am and 7.30pm. This ensures you don’t overeat and allows the stomach three hours to digest before lying down, avoiding night-time reflux.
  5. Practise the rule of five: you can eat foods with a pH value of 5 and higher, while pH 4 foods can be introduced in the maintenance phase. These foods will help heal the damage to your oesophagus by keeping pepsin in check.
  6. Introduce more fibre into your diet — it keeps your digestion healthy, reducing reflux.

Eat a daily minimum of 450g of vegetables above pH 5 (for example, five medium-sized carrots) — half of which should be raw — and a daily minimum of 225g raw fruit (a handful of cubed cantaloupe with a banana).

One meal a day should be vegetarian to maximise fibre intake.

  1. Drink only water.
  2. Avoid seed oils. These — rapeseed, sunflower, sesame oils — have a borderline pH, but are essentially acidic because their extraction process involves chemicals. Instead, use extra virgin olive oil.

Other borderline foods are peppers, berries and honey, as these stimulate pepsin production.

(However, berries are permitted in both phases of the diet if you balance them with an acid neutraliser, such as almond milk, in a smoothie for example. Similarly, honey can be eaten if combined with a nut butter.)

Spices such as chilli are also not recommended during the healing phase, as they can loosen the oesophageal valve.


Regular exercise helps to accelerate weight loss, reducing pressure on the oesophageal valve.

Gentle yoga can be beneficial because its emphasis on deep-breathing can help reduce stress hormones that increase acid production (but be careful with the ‘downward dog’ pose, where the head is positioned below the waist, as this may trigger symptoms).

Reflux-safe exercises include cycling on a stationary bike (or one that doesn’t require you to crouch) and light weight training.

Heavy weight-lifting, sit-ups and crunches, excessive jumping, competitive cycling and advanced yoga should all be avoided, as these can encourage gastric acid to flow upwards


After 28 days, you should notice your reflux is much improved.

Next is the maintenance phase, where you can introduce foods with a pH of 4 or above — including red, yellow or green bell peppers, some varieties of apples and soft cheeses including feta and cottage cheese.

This phase should last for two weeks, after which you can eat normally again.

If your symptoms return, or to protect yourself long-term, you can choose to stick to this stage for life.erstanding gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (or GORD)


2017 Coughing Virus

After getting this virus at the beginning of December and then again in January along with our Queen , I did some research on it.

As Dr Claire Gerada, a former head of the Royal College of General Practitioners, explains, doctors are currently seeing ‘a lot of people with a virus more severe than a normal cold, almost a type of bronchitis’.

One of the key characteristics of the infection is that it appears to cause a hacking cough.

You would  probably be exhausted from coughing,’ says Dr Gerada.

A cold and cough normally last from seven to ten days .it is infectious from a few days before symptoms appear until they have all gone).

But Dr Gerada suggests this season’s cold is taking up to three weeks to clear.

Although it is too early to say for sure, experts suspect the bug that’s causing problems is an adenovirus — typically, colds are caused by the more common rhinovirus. (Out of more than 200 strains, rhinovirus accounts for 35 per cent of cases.)
A meritus professor Oxford of virology at Queen Mary University of London, who has just recovered from the infection himself, says it is ‘highly likely’ the adenovirus is to blame for the outbreak.

‘If there was a Richter scale for common cold viruses, adenovirus would be right at the top in terms of its impact,’ he says, pointing out that adenovirus is a complex virus with 30 genes, compared to just nine genes in rhinovirus, that is capable of causing infections from hepatitis to cystitis.

‘Importantly, rhinovirus only thrives in cool temperatures, so stays put in the nose and throat, which are around 33c.

Adenovirus can survive at 37c — internal body temperature — so can push down into the lungs, causing a chesty cough,’ he explains.
Adenovirus is non-discriminate and attacks all age groups. ‘

However, older people —  can struggle more to overcome it, as their immune systems are less effective and they are more easily tired by constant coughing, he adds.


But coughing is no bad thing. The cough reflex is essential to clear lungs of debris and foreign bodies.

The cough happens when tiny nerve cells in the lining of the respiratory tract — known as pulmonary irritant receptors — become sensitised by chemical or mechanical stimulation.

In other words, if you have a cold or swallow something the wrong way.

These receptor cells send messages via the vagus nerve in the chest and up into the brain.

The brain then sends commands to the diaphragm and the muscles between the ribs to contract, causing the explosive cough.

‘Unfortunately, a hacking cough can remain long after other symptoms have eased,’ explains Professor Ron Eccles, director of the Common Cold Centre at Cardiff University.

People with asthma or pre-existing pulmonary disease are even more susceptible.

Cold air can cause a coughing fit if someone has been laid up with adenovirus — .

Cold air can irritate the lung lining and make coughing worse, which may be her reason for not going outside,’ explains Professor Ian Watson, a GP in Oldham, who has seen a sharp rise in the number of patients with symptoms more severe than a normal cold.

‘If you can give your lungs a rest, you may find the coughing will stop on its own.’
Other ways to rest the lungs include staying out of areas where there is high air pollution.

Dry air can also be irritating, so bowls of water or damp towels placed on a radiator can be a good alternative to electric humidifiers.

He is also sceptical about claims on the NHS Choices website that honey and lemon is a cheap and effective way to treat short-term coughing.

‘There is no firm evidence that this has any effect — although it doesn’t do any harm.’

So there isn’t much you can do except nurse a cold and alleviate the symptoms. Some preliminary research has looked into the effectiveness of antivirals, but no drugs have yet been licensed to treat the common cold.
Once a cold virus has established itself in the nose, it may travel to the lungs and damage cells there. This makes it easier for bacteria to follow on

And antibiotics won’t work ‘as it is caused by a virus, not bacteria,’ says Professor Oxford.

A small percentage of people will go on to develop a more serious secondary bacterial infection in the lungs.

Doctors will listen to the chest and look for crackling sounds that suggest infection has taken hold.

Professor Watson advises that it is very difficult for a layperson to tell the difference between a bacterial and viral infection.

‘Some people think that greenish sputum is a sign of a bacterial infection, but this can occur in viral colds, too, and is really just a sign the immune system is working.’

He says that length of time symptoms last can signify a bacterial infection, as well as a persistent fever that doesn’t drop below 38c.

Professor Watson advises people to go and see a doctor if their symptoms last longer than ten days, or if they are finding it more difficult to breathe.


While rest is essential to help the body recover, people with heavy colds should try to stay mobile as much as possible. ‘Bedbound people are more likely to develop chest infections, and staying active increases airflow in the lungs,’ says Professor Watson.

‘In my opinion, it is always best to get up and about as soon as possible, both for your physical and psychological well-being.

‘People who feel better get better sooner.’

Of course, prevention is better than cure.

The common cold is the most common infectious disease in humans and is spread through droplets in the air, close contact with infected people and even transfer from doorknobs and other household objects.

Symptoms start less than two days after exposure and can include coughing, a sore throat, runny nose, sneezing and a headache.

‘The key is to practise good hygiene — wash your hands before eating or touching your face, get plenty of sleep and eat healthily,’ says Professor Oxford.


Arlesey County Primary formerly Arlesey Siding School

The information in this blogg has come from the Records Office at County Hall ,Bedford in 1975 , and  Maureen Howell an ex Arlesey Teacher.

I believe this school and the Station were called Arlesey Siding because they donated free bricks for the buildings if they were called after the Brickyard.Later when the brickyard had a change of name and owners they both changed their names.Arlesey Siding station to Three Counties station.When the wooden W.I. was burnt down they definitely this time supplied the bricks for free.I have read that.


In 1870 the Forster Elementary Education Act was passed, and  newly-formed school boards were elected to make attendance at school compulsory for children between the ages of five and thirteen. Forster’s Act had two main aims ‘ to cover the country with good schools and to get the parents to send their children to these schools.


To comply with the Education Act of 1870, elections were held in the small Bedfordshire village of Arlesey to appoint a School Board. The candidates for the election were moderately well-off by current standards and included the vicar of the parish.

The first meeting of the Board was held on June 24th 1874 and a clerk was appointed at a salary of £40 per year. The Board discussed the purchase of land in the village and an advertisement was placed in a national magazine, ‘The Builder’, for architects to submit plans for the new school, which was to accommodate three hundred children.


By March, 1875 tenders had been received from builders ranging from £4,937 to £1,925 The lowest was too low; the builder withdrew his tender as he had forgotten to include the cost of the ironwork! (The only iron railings i can remember were the ones outside the school gates which stopped children from running straight across the road.)The second lowest tender was approved at £2,185 and  a loan of £3,036  was made to the board for building and land.

arlesey primary school houses

TEACHER HOUSING Mr Curran lived in this house , but moved up to Etonbury School we that opened in 1954.

The school, school house and outbuildings were built on land of one acre and sixteen poles in extent, purchased for £325 and situated in the village High Street next to the Three Tunns.

Arlesey primary school outing to st albans 1961

A TEMPORARY CLASSROOM i was taught for 2 years in here. 1960-62 Miss Aaron and Mr Barratt.In this photo is Miss Philips and Mr Barratt.The year above me.Moira (Geekie) Houghton .The clever children my age were moved up to the next class.I can see Ingrid Vinns , Brenda Rumbold , Roger Wiltshire ,and Gillian Steptoe.Sorry if I have failed to recognise anyone.

Arlesey Primary-School 1977

Carol Lombari was expecting our son Paul in 1977.The school was demolished soon after , hence me taking the photo.

back of old school


Although it was a nice new school , it wasn’t a pleasant experience.They had next to no heating ,equipment or books .The first headmaster of the school was paid a salary of £85 per annum and the use of the school house and free coal. The Board expected the services of his wife to be provided without salary.

The new school opened on September 4th 1876.Approximately one hundred boys, sixty girls and sixty three infants attended during the first few days. The register would have recorded higher figures on the roll but attendances during the first few years seldom rose above eighty per cent.



The School Board exercised their powers requiring all children over 5 and under twelve years old to attend school unless the child has passed the third standard. In that case the child was exempt from attending school.


This was built in 1861 and was run by the Church of England.Not all the children of the village were to attend the new school. The distribution was decided as follows: “Girls and Infants north of St. Peter’s School (Old Church School taken over by the Board in 1875).,would go to this old school and  All boys, no matter where they lived and girls and infants south of St Peters School were to go to the new school.

Arlesey sportsday 1962

Mr A.J.Appleby was the headmaster of the Junior school when I went there 1958-62.Mrs Edgell the vicar’s wife was presenting Kaye Johnson and Me the Sports Day Cup.

Arlesey reverend bevan open air service 1935 king georgre v silver jubilee

Reverend Bevan holding an outdoor service on King George V ‘s Silver Jubilee Day.Oh yeah the iron railing they were talking about.

The school, typical of the age and area, was built of white and red brick and slate.  It was comprised of three classrooms, two of which were 40′ x 20′ and the third, 60’x 20’


There were two earth playgrounds, one at the front of the building for the boys and one at the rear for the girls and infants. In the corner of each playground was a row of lavatories hidden behind a corrugated iron screen.

That were usual for a country village. They were the bucket-type lavatories, with a plank of wood with a hole in it on top for the seat. The buckets were emptied by the night soil collector who came with his horse and cart every night. It would appear that these were still in use until the 1920’s .

Just four weeks after the opening of the new school, the headmaster was rebuked by the Board for ordering books to the value of £20.4.7 (£20.23) without permission.  The initial order list, which included 36 bibles, 1 gross copy books, 1,000 slate Pencils, 1 gallon Ink and 50 Royal Readers.


Within four years a teacher was informing the Board of over-crowding and that with over one hundred children in one room, another must be built. It was  resolved by turning  the Infants lobby, which was unused, into another class room for the boys.

This seems to have relieved the pressure on the space for a time.  Nine years later estimates were approved to build a new classroom to accommodate sixty girls. Further building took place and the school was closed for nine days as work on two new classrooms was begun on March 9th 1895.


In the early days of the school there were numerous complaints of dirty rooms and Mr. H was appointed to sweep out the rooms daily, for which he was paid two shillings a week. It was not until the end of each term that the rooms were washed and cleaned thoroughly.


The school was originally lit by oil lamps and in 1905 gas lighting was installed was after a tender for £18 was accepted by the County Council. The installation of a mains water supply was also undertaken  in 1906. The Gas lighting was replaced by electricity in 1933.


Heating of the classroom was not adequate. On e coal fire at the end of each room barely took the chill from the air. One teacher reports that the children were brought to the fire in groups to give them a little relief from the cold. Eight inches of snow and a severe shortage of coal resulted in the closing of the school for short periods from February to May 1919.  When opened, attendances were recorded of one hundred and ten children out of two hundred and fifty on the register. Owing to the low temperature in the classrooms (38 ̊ F. to 44 ̊ F.), when the children did attend, the normal timetable “was not adhered to and lessons requiring movement was the order of the day. In 1930 the heating of the school was modernised and central heating was installed. The mud playgrounds were tarmaced in 1910.


So the board got them a gramophone. There was no piano until.1923 when the school raised £23 by having a concert and were able to buy one themselves.


A layout of the school , notice all the temporary class rooms.I believe that is why a new school was built.There were more temporary class rooms than brick ones.


Sending your children to school wasn’t actually free. It cost  the parents 2p per child per week to attend school.If it wasn’t paid the children were sent home.This was half the running costs.The rest of the money was obtained by a government grant.

Canteen built wasn’t until 1948 when school dinners were introduced to make sure all children had at least one hot meal a day.It was said you needed to be fed to be able to learn properly.











Some Photos of Olympic team GB Heroes 2016

adam peaty

Adam Peaty 50 metres breaststroke

bradley wiggins

Bradley Wiggins

bryony page

Trampoline gold medalist

charlotee dujardin

chris mears jack laughter



First Womens Hammer medal (bronze)

jade jones

Taekwondo gold

jade jones1

Welsh taekwondo gold and world champion

jessica ennis

Jessica Ennis pentathlete silver medal

katherine grainger


ladies rowing


ladies team pursuit

most decorated olympian Laura Trott

laura trott

Laura’s gold medalist partner Jason Kenny

laura trott1mark cavendish

Mark Cavendish’s first olympic medal

max whitlock

Max Whitlock

max whitlock1mo farrah

Mo Farrah double double olympian 5,000 and 10,000 metres

rebecca james and katy marchant

Rebecca James

show jumpingwomen's hockey team

Glorious Womens Hockey team

Paragliding in Bulgaria 2016

I have always fancied doing this .After my great nephew did it , I was determined to give it go even on my own with strangers cos none of the others wanted to do it after Jack and his dad Martin had done it the day before.Oh yeah the wife was still ill in bed with sunstroke and didn’t want me hanging around her all day.There was a doctor and family from Birmingham we had made friends with and he offered to see her.Very good of him , but Carol was recovering by the second day.

The first lot of pictures, and the coming back on the banana boat were taken by my niece Caron , Jack’s mum , the up in the air ones were taken by the paragliding crew.I told Caron I was going to do it and she said they would come and watch like I had the day before.Jack was determined to go up again and said he would pay with his own money.60 Levs it was less than £30.We paid our money and put the life jackets on.We had to take off our water sports shoes , we had bought for swimming in the sea.(I thought were perfect even light than plimsolls.)

We were taken out to the large speed boat on a motorised dinghy.This broken down about half way out and the driver had to walkie talkie the the speed boat crew to come and pick us up.There were five Chinese looking people already on board.We drove off and two of the crew went aft and were sorting the parachute into the correct location.When both sides were right part of it was lifted onto this high hook (i guess when it picked up speed the parachute would catch the wind).We were put in harnesses , ready to go up first.

They told us to go aft and clipped us on to the bottom of the parachute.Soon as the open up the throttle we soared up into the air like a large bird.It wasn’t cold and it wasn’t windy.I held on tight with each hand but Jack wasn’t holding on at all , and waving both hands.They let out the full 150 metres of rope and our views were spectacular.



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Photographing the Flying Scotsman Flying through Arlesey

Brief History of Flying Scotsman (skip to My Story heading to miss this bit out)


The Nation’s Favourite Locomotive. Flying Scotsman was originally built in Doncaster for the London and North Eastern Railway (LNER), emerging from the works on 24 February 1923 and initially numbered 1472. It was designed by Sir Nigel Gresley as part of the A1 class – the most powerful locomotives used by the railway.

When the Northumberland miners were on strike in 1926 , the union told the members to stop the wheels of industry.6 members got the wrong end of the stick , and removed a train rail track hoping to derail a coal train.They got the Flying Scotsman , and derailed it doing a lot of damage. They were caught and jailed for 7 years.The Union washed their hands of them and were then hated by the miners.Interesting little story.


I added this bit just to have a go at the TORIES lol The Tour of American 

When Flying Scotsman was due to be scrapped Pegler stepped in and bought it outright, with the political support of Prime Minister Harold Wilson. He spent large amounts of money over the next few years having the locomotive restored at Doncaster Works as closely as possible to its LNER condition: the smoke deflectors were removed; the double chimney was replaced by a single chimney; and the tender was replaced by one of the corridor type with which the locomotive had run between 1928 and 1936. It was also repainted in LNER livery. Pegler then persuaded the British Railways Board to let him run enthusiasts’ specials; it was at the time the only steam locomotive running on mainline British Railways. It worked a number of rail tours, including a non-stop London–Edinburgh run in 1968, the year steam traction officially ended on BR. In the meantime, watering facilities for steam locomotives were disappearing, so in September 1966 Pegler purchased a second corridor tender which was adapted as an auxiliary water tank; retaining its through gangway, this was coupled behind the normal tender.


Pegler had a contract permitting him to run his locomotive on BR until 1972. Following overhaul in the winter of 1968–69 Harold Wilson’s government agreed to support Pegler running the locomotive in the United States and Canada to support British exports. To comply with local railway regulations it was fitted with: a cowcatcher, bell, buckeye couplings, American-style whistle, air brakes, and high-intensity headlamp. Starting in Boston, Massachusetts, the tour ran into immediate problems, with some states increasing costs by requiring diesel-headed-haulage through them, seeing the locomotive as a fire-hazard. However, the train ran from Boston to New York,Washington and Dallas in 1969; from Texas to Wisconsin and finishing in Montreal in 1970; and from Toronto to San Francisco in 1971 — a total of 15,400 miles (24,800 km).Government financial support for the tour was withdrawn by Prime Minister Edward Heath‘s Conservative government in 1970, but Pegler decided to return for the 1970 season. By the end of that season’s tour, the money had run out and Pegler was £132,000 in debt, with the locomotive in storage at the US Army Sharpe Depot to keep it away from unpaid creditors. Pegler worked his passage home from San Francisco to England on a P&O cruise ship in 1971, giving lectures about trains and travel; he was declared bankrupt in the High Court in 1972.

Original Spec

Traction 29,385  llbf    or    13,329 kgf   or     130.7kN       i believe now  42,000 llbf

4-6-2     config

97 Tons    weight

class      3

height    13 ft

length     70ft

The change in class designation to A3 reflected the fitting to the same chassis of a higher pressure boiler with a greater superheating surface and a small reduction in cylinder diameter, leading to an increase in locomotive weight. Eventually all of the A1 locomotives were rebuilt, most to A3 specifications, but no. 4470 was completely rebuilt as Class A1/1.. Flying Scotsman.       It is the sole survivor of the class. The train was retired in 1963 after covering 2.5 million miles.

Facing an uncertain future owing to the cost of restoration and refurbishment necessary to meet the stringent engineering standards required for main line operation, salvation came in 1996 when Dr Tony Marchington, already well known in the vintage movement, bought the locomotive, and had it restored over three years to running condition at a cost of            £ 1 million, a restoration which is still recognised as the most extensive in the locomotive’s history.

With Flying Scotsman’s regular use both on the VSOE Pullman and with other events on the main line, in 2002, Marchington proposed a business plan, which included the construction of a “Flying Scotsman Village” in Edinburgh, to create revenue from associated branding. After floating on OFEX as Flying Scotsman plc in the same year, in 2003 Edinburgh City Council turned down the village plans, and in September 2003 Marchington was declared bankrupt. At the company’s AGM in October 2003, CEO Peter Butler announced losses of £474,619, and with a £1.5 million overdraft at Barclays Bank and stated that the company only had enough cash to trade until April 2004. The company’s shares were suspended from OFEX on 3 November 2003 after it had failed to declare interim results.

With the locomotive effectively placed up for sale, after a national campaign it was bought in April 2004 by the National Railway Museum inYork, and it is now part of the museum’s National Collection. After 12 months of interim running repairs, it ran for a while to raise funds for its 10-year restoration.


My Story

Pete Waterman once had a 50% share of it in 1995 when William McAlpine owned it

The smoke deflectors were fitted because when the double chimney was fitted the steam was blocking the drivers view.

The trip from Kings Cross to York was either made with a V.I.P. ticket or a £440 outlay.Michael Portillo got his V.I.P. ticket he has a Great Train Journeys series on T.V. now.

It was a beautiful sunny day so I was really up for seeing the flying Scotsman come through .It should have been Tuesday but apparently the engine needed fixing . I walked down to the station with the wife on Wednesday afternoon 14.45.Arrived about 15.00 and there were already a lot of people there.I wanted to go right to the front of Platform 1 , but the wife didn’t so you know who won. We stood about 10 yards in front of the foot bridge.This was just a train movement run. The train was on time but was travelling so fast I only got one shot off.Even this wasn’t easy because there were so many people there and they all stood right forward as it approached.It was first train to hit 100 mph on this line in 1934.

It has done tours of duty in USA but the company went bankrupt ,William McAlpine rescued it from the US. It then went to Australia and this time it did ok.(Lots of steam loving Brits out there).It was then brought back.York Steam Museum bought it in 2004 and its going to be a working exhibit, after it very long restoration (12 years).I believe yesterdays inaugural run was the most successful ever for a steam train ,there were crowds all along its line from Kings Cross to York.Videos were all over the television and 3 helicopters were following it overhead. Marvelous making you proud to be British.At one time we were World leaders in Trains.

DSCN0501 (2)

The proper train trip was coming tomorrow at 08.30 so I had a chance to redeem myself. I have also have been given a bit of advice , set the camera to video and stand on the opposite platform the train is passing , right at the back.This obviously gives you more time and distance to see it as it comes along.

There was a very sharp frost and I got there 08.15. Both sides of Arlesey station were packed like it was Kings Cross.I changed the batteries in my camera and when i switched it on it said batteries exhausted. NOT TO GOOD AT THIS MILARKY EH?

I quickly put the half empty batteries back in and now knew i had to switch camera on at the last moment.Fortunately with freezing hands I managed to get the video.I thought i could then take snapshots off the video. But of course the train was doing 75 mph and video is 30 frames a second so the shutter speed is  1/30 sec far too slow. As the train gets closer to me this becomes more apparent.Here we are anyway.


I notice John Saunders (County Councilor) my old Etonbury School juniors team mate was standing near me.

flying a1

flying a2

Flying a3

flying a4

flying a5

Flying F

A better shot taken by Eileen Chapman down the Rally. Next time I will set my Nikon to rapid fire , and see if that is any more successful.Any advice would be most welcome.

Contrived Act in my opinion

DOZENS of steam train anoraks have disrupted the inaugural run of Flying Scotsman after its decade-long, £4.2m refit by standing on the track to take photographs.I want call them steam enthusiasts because they wouldn’t have done this

Passengers said the famous locomotive came to a “shuddering stop” near St Neots, Cambridgeshire, and Virgin Trains East Coast warned that other services were being delayed by up to 15 minutes due to photographers on the track.

Videoing a steam training starting and stopping is a thousand times better sound and vision  than just taking brief shots as it flashes by at 75 mph.



this is just to show how big the double chimney is.I guy bought it off British rail for £7.00 and it was in his garden for 28 years before The Flying Scotsman restorers asked to borrow it.The Doctor owner of the train really wanted a top of the range steam train , the the 7 streamlined ones like the Mallard weren’t for sale.So when it was rebuilt it had the cylinders etc made bigger so it was much more powerful than when it was first built and more powerful than the streamlined trains.Hence why it is so damn FAST! LOL




Bury Meadow Arlesey Stripped Naked

Bury Meadow has been fenced off for development and every tree shrub or clump of  grass removed. Isn't January the wrong time of year to do this?
Some wildlife are hibernating .I understand a Flailing machine was used as well.
So the only things left living here are insects .All the wildlife  has been       EVICTED and anti-wildlife fencing put up to stop any coming back . I'm told the only protected species living there were lizards.So much  Arlesey History has       happened there.

bury Meadow11
Bury meadow1
Aerial Photos courtesy Steve Maddox the second one has the houses with the        underpinned foundations due to subsidence
Bury Meadow Fenced off

anti-animal fencing

The above photos with anti-animal fences courtesy Margaret Lambert


The clearing machine and Wheatley builders van is was all done in less than one week.


Thomson Ecological Contractors
So Bury Meadow was regularly used for Arlesey functions. The owner of The Bury    Mansion H.Goodwin allowed the Bury Common to be used for Arlesey Functions before London Brick Company bought it and they continued this tradition. Fairfield       Hospital were also former owners and used it for staff accomodation with resident stewards.
the bury1 Arlesey Football team  played there when the football team started drinking more pints in the True Briton , than in the Lamb Inn.The Lamb Inn who owned Lamb Meadow football , and cricket pitch.
bobby moore and pele
Arlesey Colts Bury Meadow

Bottom picture the owner of the Bury top left H Goodwin and his son sitting in    Arlesey strip front left also named H.Goodwin  1935

London Brick Bowling Club had an immaculate bowling green there.
LBC bowling club
London Brick Arlesey Works Bowling Club badge courtesy Richard Knight.
A recreational ground for children of the village was built next door to St Peters Hall on Bury Meadow.This probably staying in use until the new Village Hall and  playing field was built in 1972.I know this date as we were the first people to   hire the Hall for my sister Maria's wedding. The bury meadow recreational park got into a bad state of repair. I guess because there was a new one the and the      council didn't want to maintain both of them.
 A lovely thatched house for the maintenance foreman of London Brick Company was  built in 1909 on Bury Meadow.
Bedford House chase hillJean Pillar lived there.They moved to Arlesey from Surrey in 1956 when he dad was promoted to Maintenance foreman.Jean and her older sister Wendy and younger       brother Peter lived happily in it until 1968 when they had to move out due to     subsidence.Her mum and dad and siblings loved that house.Jean her mum Vera and    brother Peter only live a very short walk from the old Bedford House.Jean said    they were told Goodwins lived in the house before them.I know Goodwins lived in   Bury Mansion because I have put a photo of father and son on in the Corinthians   football photo.
London Brick did offer them Bedford House for £4000 but the price of the          under-pinning of the foundations pushed it out of their price range.Do you know   why this house fell down , CAUSE THE PILLARS MOVED OUT.

Seriously it was demolished.Imagine how much it would be worth now? Why didn't    London Brick have the foundations under-pinned then sell it.Loads of old Arlesey  house were demolished rather than be repaired CRAWLEY TERRACE for example near    NIGHTING gale terrace.I had Allen family ancestors living there.
They built those houses on the front of Bury Meadow, and guess what they subsided and the foundations had to be under-pinned. 
Bury Meadow was used for village fetes, and for a First World War March for Peace with a fete after (Band of Hope Parade), and a  church service.
church service Bedford House 1916 Service for Peace
1950 Arlesey Fete  above and below.

1950 Maypole dance
Headquarters for the Home Guard (Bury Lodge) I remember just fields being between Bury Lodge and St Peters Church until The Rally was built in the Late 1950's.I    remember because my Late uncle George Allen and family were allocated one of these concrete houses.
bury lodge
Allegedly there is a tunnel that runs underground to Arlesey Church .Is there     anywhere in Arlesey that has more history on it.Possibly a lot more that i don't  know about.The beauty contest needs to be confirmed cos it could have been at Dr Davis' fete at Chase House.
beauty contest
The Band of Hope parade 1915 marched to Bury Meadow before having a Fete.


Bedford House 1909.There was a dated plaque on it Jean Pillar told me.
Bedford house 3