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Gibraltar

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by Robert Bovington

Casemates Square © Robert Bovington
Gibraltar is a British overseas territory occupying a narrow peninsula overlooking the Strait of Gibraltar. ‘The Rock’ is just that – a colossal chunk of ancient limestone that was thrust up from the seabed millions of years ago to form what is now the highly visible Rock of Gibraltar.Its history is inextricably linked to its strategic position. Its first important military encounter was in AD 711 when Tarik-ibn-Zeyed led a huge Moorish army that was to conquer most of the Iberian Peninsula. Moors and Christians fought many battles here during the 14th and 15th centuries and the Spanish Christians finally succeeded in dispatching the Arabs back to Africa in 1462. British forces took the Rock in 1704 during the War of the Spanish Succession and British sovereignty over Gibraltar was subsequently recognised by the 1713 Treaty of Utrecht.

Gibraltar attractions include the Upper Rock Nature Reserve. Some 500 species of small flowering plants grow there as does wild olive and pine. As far as fauna is concerned, there are rabbits, foxes and monkeys! Yes, monkeys inhabit the Rock – the Barbary apes are the only wild monkeys in Europe. Other attractions include St Michael’s Cave, the Moorish Castle and the Great Siege Tunnels.

 Down in the town centre, Main Street is unmistakably British with Marks and Spencer, BhS, pubs and bright red post boxes. Nearby Casemates Square, however, has a more continental air with many open-air cafes.

Contrary to popular belief the majority of Gibraltarians are not of English or Spanish ancestry – Genoese, Maltese, and Portuguese formed the majority of the population when the Rock was ceded to Great Britain.

English is the official language, which is used for government and business purposes but many Gibraltarians speak Llanito, a mixture of English and Andalucian Spanish.

Robert Bovington

23 Nov 2011

other blogs by Robert Bovington:

“Photographs of Spain”
“Spanish Impressions”
“postcards from Spain”
“you couldn’t make it up!”
“a grumpy old man in Spain”
“Spanish Expressions”
“Spanish Art”
“Books About Spain”

Brighton & Hove in photographs

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Brighton Wheel
Brighton Royal Pavilion
Hove seafront

for more photos of Brighton and Hove – click on link below…

 

Brighton & Hove – Robert Bovington – Picasa Web Albums:

‘via Blog this’

Colyton – a pretty town in East Devon

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Colyton is a charming little town that nestles in the Axe Valley in East Devonshire. The beautifully preserved stone and thatched buildings line the tiny streets that form a circular pattern surrounding the impressive St Andrew’s Church. 





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The church has an unusual octagonal tower which was installed in the 15th century when Colyton was a rich wool town. The ‘Lantern’ Tower was used as a beacon for ships on the once navigable River Axe, to the east. 

On the outskirts of the town is the babbling River Coly.


Also on the edge of the town is the Seaton to Colyton tramway station.


For more photographs of Colyton click this link.

other blogs by Robert Bovington:

“Photographs of Spain”
“Spanish Impressions”
“postcards from Spain”
“you couldn’t make it up!”
“a grumpy old man in Spain”
“Spanish Expressions”
“Spanish Art”
“Books About Spain”

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Panoramio

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For those of you who are interested, I have added commentaries to some of my photographs in Panoramio (example below)…

http://www.panoramio.com/user/2391258

Robert Bovington’s conversations

Robert Bovington said: 

The Corral del Carbón is one of the few examples of public buildings dating from the Moorish period to have survived to the current day. It was erected at the beginning of the 14th century, under the rule of the Nasrid dynasty, and it was part of the original structure of the moorish medina. It was originally a corn exchange and as an inn for visiting traders and merchants. After The Reconquest, it was used by coal merchants and its name changed to the Corral de Carbón. Later, in the 16th century, it was used as an open-air comedy theatre. Today, it still serves as a place of entertainment – occasionally theatre and flamenco concerts are held in the courtyard. It also houses the Provincial Delegation of Culture of the Junta de Andalucía and the Orquesta Ciudad de Granada.

Alpine Holiday 1971

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In 1971, I went on a coach trip around the Alps. Only a few of my old photographs remain so I have taken the liberty of using some from Panoramio.

 I thoroughly enjoyed the trip despite flight problems that were exacerbated by the holiday company not being able to contact me of the change of schedule. I had travelled from Brighton to London Victoria early and left my suitcase at ‘left luggage’ in order to spend a few hours sightseeing. Later, having retrieved my suitcase, I made my way to Victoria Coach Station and boarded the coach that was to transport me to Luton Airport. A short while later, I wondered why the road signs were indicating such places as Canterbury, Folkestone and Dover. I was a bit reserved in those days so I didn’t want to ask other passengers why we were travelling in the direction of Kent. I did wonder if the travel company had arranged for our coach trip to start from Calais or Ostend instead of Basle. Eventually we did arrive at an airport – Manston Airport in Kent!

 “Oh! There you are, Mr Bovington! We have been trying to contact you all day!”

 It transpired that I wasn’t the only passenger booked on the Luton to Basle flight that couldn’t be contacted and so we passengers who had arrived at Manston had to wait a further passage of time for the others who had made their way to directly to Luton to be ferried to the Kent airport.

 Eventually, we took off and a several hours later we were on our coach travelling from Basle to Vipiteno in Italy. It was a pleasant drive through delightful scenery and I am sure that I wasn’t the only one who was a tad tired when we arrived in the Italian town some 36 hours after I had left Brighton.

 Here is a photographic account of some of the places I visited:


Vipiteno, Italy photo joeri Goossens http://www.panoramio.com/user/5073534

I spent 3 nights in Vipiteno. Whilst there, I went on an excursion to Riva del Garda. The coach trip was exhilarating and I did nervously wonder how the driver could get such a large bus around some of the hairpin bends! I think the Dolomites are the most spectacular of the Alpine mountain ranges.


Dolomites photo Marco Vanzo http://www.panoramio.com/user/6033

Riva del Garda is located at the north-western corner of Lake Garda. It is an extremely attractive town located in the northern Italian province of Trentino.


Riva del Garda photo rivaarryroby http://www.panoramio.com/user/5647830

The next place I stayed was in Zirl, a small town near Innsbruck, Austria.

the hotel  in Zirl

Another excursion to Obergurgl, Austria…

on the way to the cable car
an old postcard of Obergurgl

At an elevation of 1,930 m (6,330 ft), Obergurgl is the highest parish in Austria. I travelled even higher – I took the cable car to the mountain-top! – and had a snowball fight with a young lady. At the time, I thought it was weird going from bright sunlight to snow!

I also spent one night in the Black Forest, and one night in Vaduz in Leichtenstein…

an old postcard of Vaduz castle

I also spent a number of days in Switzerland and visited the Rhine Falls, Berne and Luzern…

Rhine Falls
The Rhine nr Shaffhausen
Berne

Luzern was a very attractive town…

Whilst in Luzern, I took a boat trip…

Lake Luzern photo Jeff7500 http://www.panoramio.com/user/826806

other blogs by Robert Bovington:

“Photographs of Spain”
“Spanish Impressions”
“postcards from Spain”
“you couldn’t make it up!”
“a grumpy old man in Spain”
“Spanish Expressions”
“Spanish Art”
“Books About Spain”

Icons of England

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to see more photographic icons of England click on link below…

http://pinterest.com/robertbovington/icons-of-england/

other blogs by Robert Bovington:

“Photographs of Spain”
“Spanish Impressions”
“postcards from Spain”
“you couldn’t make it up!”
“a grumpy old man in Spain”
“Spanish Expressions”
“Spanish Art”
“Books About Spain”

Beautiful England

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pictures of England…

to see more – http://pinterest.com/robertbovington/beautiful-england/

other blogs by Robert Bovington:

“Photographs of Spain”
“Spanish Impressions”
“postcards from Spain”
“you couldn’t make it up!”
“a grumpy old man in Spain”
“Spanish Expressions”
“Spanish Art”
“Books About Spain”

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