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magicaltrevor (UK)

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LUXURY WILD BIRD FEEDING STATION BIRD FEEDER TABLE SEED TRAY NEW
LUXURY WILD BIRD FEEDING STATION BIRD FEEDER TABLE SEED TRAY NEW

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent value for money feeding station, 28 Jun 2013
I would highly recommend this bird feeding station as it is excellent value for money, very sturdy and aesthetically pleasing, with a deep bronze finish. It offers more hooks for hanging feeders than many others I have seen online for a similar price, with 4 for the top of the feeder, plus an additional hanging bracket which you can add if you want. The feeder arrived within 3 days and was very simple to put together. I would advise putting the bottom pole at least halfway into the ground, as this feeder is fairly tall and can sway a bit in the wind or when heavier birds land on it if not securely anchored. Birds seem to really like it and started using it almost immediately, with the bigger ones like doves and blackbirds using the feeding tray whilst sparrows, finches, blue tits and starlings use the hanging feeders. Unfortunately the squirrels are also quite keen on it, so I would advise not putting it too near fences.

Definitely worth the money for the enjoyment of watching the many birds that visit it throughout the day. Especially fun to see the adult birds teaching the chicks to use the feeders.


Shackleton's Boat Journey
Shackleton's Boat Journey
by Frank Worsley
Edition: Paperback
Price: 5.59

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Front cover image sums up heroic endeavour, 11 Feb 2012
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This book is perfect for anyone wanting to read in more detail about the incredible boat journey that Frank Worsley and five other men took from Elephant Island to South Georgia in the James Caird. Worsley's narrative fleshes out Shackleton's formal account of the Endurance expedition and gives a fascinating insight into the experiences of this group of survivors. Format-wise, the book is a retrospective account of the journey, interspersed with entries from Worsley's log written at the time.

Worsley includes a detailed explanation of how he navigated during the South Atlantic crossing, along with the challenges of navigation in partially unchartered waters. He also gives an insight into the pressure he was under at this time, knowing that the entire party's lives depended on his accurate navigation. His description of conditions aboard the boat are wince-inducing and it's staggering that any of them survived that journey, let alone the crossing of South Georgia's mountain ranges.

Worsley also sheds light on the care Shackleton took of his men, describing him as "fussy" and "almost womanlike" in his attentions to everyone's health. He recalls how Shackleton gave his last pair of dry socks to one of the men, regularly stayed awake so others could sleep longer and made everyone stop for a drink of hot milk if he thought one of the men was struggling.

There is a very good selection of glossy photographs in this book. Many are fairly famous but there are several that I had never seen before, including some of the sea camps and the whaling station at Grytviken. I would advise reading Shackleton's `South' before reading this, as his full account of the expedition puts Worsley's account of the latter half into context. After reading this book you will never again feel justified in complaining about being cold!


Sherlock Holmes - Complete Collection [DVD]
Sherlock Holmes - Complete Collection [DVD]
Dvd ~ Jeremy Brett
Price: 26.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Jeremy Brett and Edward Hardwicke's definitive Holmes and Watson, 30 Jan 2012
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Jeremy Brett perfectly captures the quick intelligence, taciturn nature, fastidiousness and humour of Holmes as described in Arthur Conan Doyle's stories. It is as if Holmes has sprung from the page in a flurry of words and appeared on the screen. For me he is the definitive Sherlock Holmes, and Edward Hardwicke the perfect John Watson. Unlike David Burke, who played Watson in the first series and portrayed him as a blundering buffoon, Hardwicke credits Watson with the intelligence he indubitably has as a doctor. He is shown to be Holmes' equal and someone whose opinion is important and often useful in solving cases. I have never seen a better portrayal of Watson and cannot imagine anyone else playing him.

The series is aesthetically beautiful and the sets and locations are utterly believable. The series has the genuine appearance of being in the 19th century, which can be difficult to achieve on television. The accurate clothing and period buildings help bring the stories to life. The earlier series' are the best, with Brett in his prime and the better short stories being told. As the series' progress some of the weaker stories make for less satisfactory episodes, and Brett's visibly ailing health less pleasant viewing, but overall the standard is very high. The feature length adaptation of The Hound of the Baskervilles, in particular, is excellent and easily the best version I have seen.

This series is the perfect antidote to the awful film version currently out staring Robert Downey Jr and Jude Law. This is the perfect series for anyone who wants an introduction to Sherlock Holmes. If you have read the books then this series realises Conan Doyle's vision perfectly and I would highly recommend this boxset. If nothing else, buy it for the intro and end credit music, it is fantastic and will make you play air violin.


It's Not Me, It's You!
It's Not Me, It's You!
by Jon Richardson
Edition: Paperback

5.0 out of 5 stars Everything in its right place., 30 Jan 2012
This review is from: It's Not Me, It's You! (Paperback)
My favourite line in this book is one where Jon writes that he has found the shower gel brand he will use for the rest of his life. If that is a sentence you identify with, then this is the book for you.

The honesty of Jon's writing is what makes this book such an enjoyable read. It's always interesting to get an insight into the inner-workings of another person's mind, and if you are even mildly misanthropic you will find yourself laughing at and identifying with many things in this book. This is not a comedy book, rather a book written by a comedian and the humour comes from Jon's personality and events in his life. Don't be expecting a written version of his stand up. Individual stories from his life are interwoven with his struggle to decide whether he should let Gemma, a woman working at the carvery where he eats alone every Sunday, into his life after she gives him her phone number. I won't spoil the ending but, suffice to say, the book ends on a suitably Jon Richardson-esque note.

This book is a must read for people interested in Jon Richardson, the human condition and the feeling you get when your cutlery is in its correct place in the drawer.


The Heart of the Great Alone: Scott, Shackleton and Antarctic Photography
The Heart of the Great Alone: Scott, Shackleton and Antarctic Photography
by David Hempleman-Adams
Edition: Hardcover

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The closest you will get to being there, 30 Jan 2012
I found this book after seeing The Heart Of The Great Alone exhibition currently on at the Queen's Gallery in London. This book is ideal either if you have seen the exhibition and would like your own copy of the photographs or if you can't make it to the exhibition. The photographs in this book are excellent quality and vary in size, with the most dramatic being enlarged to show more detail. The images are stunning and if you have read the accounts of Captain Scott's Discovery or Shackleton's Endurance expeditions they really bring the descriptions to life. Members of both expeditions described seeing icebergs as large as cathedrals and castles, which I often found hard to imagine, but they are shown in many of these photographs; often with a member of the expedition stood next to them to give some idea of scale.

There is a comprehensive introduction to Antarctic exploration and journeys made before the famous Scott and Shackleton expeditions. The account of the ill-fated Franklin expedition is very interesting. There are short paragraphs of information explaining the background of most of the photographs and a section at the end about the method of photography used at the time. The weighty equipment and long development processes just makes it all the more remarkable that these images exist.

I would recommend this for anyone who is interested in the heroic age of polar exploration or just photography in general. Given the conditions they worked under I think Frank Hurley and Herbert Ponting did an excellent job of documenting one of the most endlessly intriguing regions in the world.


South: The Endurance Expedition
South: The Endurance Expedition
by Ernest Shackleton
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Astonishing tale of courage and survival, 26 Jan 2012
This book is one of the most fascinating and inspiring tales of human endeavour and resilience I have ever read. Shackleton's understated writing style at times downplays the dangers his party faced and you have to remind yourself that these men had no means of rescue, no contact with the outside world and no idea if they would make it out alive should anything go wrong. Polar exploration in the early 20th century was extremely dangerous and makes the accounts of those who went, despite the risks, all the more remarkable.

The book is made up of Shackleton's own description of the journey plus the diaries of other members of the expedition, which makes for a well-rounded account. Of all the astonishing tales in the book the one that emphasized, for me, the courage of these men and the desperation of their situation was Shackleton's description of the voyage to South Georgia in the James Caird, a small open boat, during a raging storm. He writes about looking up and seeing what he thought was clear sky showing through the clouds, before realising it was actually the breaker of an enormous wave. The account of Frank Wild leading the men on Elephant Island and keeping them motivated while Shackleton went for help is also particularly interesting and inspiring.

If I had one criticism it would be that there aren't enough photos included in the book. I have subsequently found a book called The Heart Of The Great Alone that is full of photos from different Antarctic expeditions, including the Endurance mission. It is well worth a look to get a proper idea of what the landscapes Shackleton describes actually looked like and the camps, both at sea and on Elephant Island.

This book is a must read for anyone with even a vague interest in Shackleton or polar exploration; and also for those who enjoy extremely frequent updates on the direction of the wind. I don't recall there being a single page when I was unsure which direction the wind was blowing in.


Teachers: Series 1 (Box Set) [DVD]
Teachers: Series 1 (Box Set) [DVD]
Dvd ~ Andrew Lincoln
Price: 8.88

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Boy With The Arab Strap, 30 Sep 2009
A randomly appearing donkey, vicious bullies in the background of scenes, letters being stolen from the school name sign regularly and the day of the week appearing in a novel way or place at the start of an episode are just a few of the highlights of Teachers. With the original cast, this is the best of all 4 series - in no small part due to Andrew Lincoln. His portrayal of Simon Casey, a quixotic English teacher with a penchant for surreal daydreams, is brilliant, and compliments Kurt and Brian's immature banter perfectly. The pub scenes after the teachers have had a day at school are a definite highlight of the show. This series is highly recommended for people who like teachers, donkeys and people smoking in toilets.

Plus the theme tune, and entire soundtrack actually, rocks.


Peter Cook - The Rise And Rise Of Michael Rimmer [2006] [DVD]
Peter Cook - The Rise And Rise Of Michael Rimmer [2006] [DVD]
Dvd ~ Peter Cook
Offered by Not2day Media
Price: 3.50

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars In the loop, 27 Jun 2009
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This is a brilliant, sharp, witty British satirical film that deserves to be far more famous than it is. It takes a well educated stab at the corrupt political system and pokes fun at the stereotypical upper class twit MP who is dictated to, unwittingly, by a master of spin; played by Peter Cook. People often criticize Peter's acting abilities but I think his style fitted his role as Michael Rimmer in this film perfectly. He is utterly believable. I think John Cleese's talents are slightly wasted though, as he is such a great comic actor and did not feature in the film as much as I expected. In the current political climate this film, despite its age, is more relevant than ever before.

For fans of Peter Cook, The Thick Of It and Yes Minister.


Crap at the Environment
Crap at the Environment
by Mark Watson
Edition: Paperback

5.0 out of 5 stars Making the world a little bit better one step at a time, 27 Jun 2009
One of the other reviewers on this site criticizes Mark Watson for not going deep enough into environmental issues in this book. This is to make the fundamental mistake of ignoring the title of the book and, furthermore, Mark Watson's main objective in writing it. The whole idea was to start from a point of general ignorance about green issues, but with a nagging conscience, and to investigate them so as to become more informed. Armed with this information Mark could then make changes to his lifestyle and encourage other people to do the same; which is exactly what he did when he set up CATE. (Crap At The Environment, for those not up with their acronyms)

In the book Mark explains how he created and ran CATE, the successes and failures of the network of ambitious eco-friendly bloggers, taking workshops on climate change run by Al Gore and, eventually, being trained to run his own seminars about environmental issues. It's a fascinating journey to read about with his brand of humour providing laughs throughout. Anyone who was involved in CATE from the start will enjoy reading back through the tasks and anyone new to Mark Watson's efforts to save the planet will finish the book knowing a bit more about climate change than before; or at least armed with enough information to try and make their own attempts to save the planet.


The Pythons' Autobiography By The Pythons (Monty Python)
The Pythons' Autobiography By The Pythons (Monty Python)
by Michael Palin
Edition: Hardcover

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Unputdownable and unpickupable!, 27 Jun 2009
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The first thing I should warn potential buyers about is the size and weight of this book if you buy the hardcover edition. I did not realise that something weighing marginally less than a slab of marble would eventually be trying to make its way through my letterbox. The hardcover edition of this book is for only the sturdiest of bookshelves and the beefiest of arms. In short; it is not a tome to be read in the bath.

However, once you have decided whether or not obscenely large books are for you, I would definitely recommend this one. It is one of the more interesting books about the Pythons because it is actually written by them; hence the title. All of the Python's, bar Graham as he is conveniently dead, have written a few pages about their childhood and first forays into comedy, culminating in the formation of Monty Python. I found it incredibly fascinating to learn about the different backgrounds they each came from and the circumstances which eventually brought them all together.

In between the mini autobiographies are lusciously printed photographs spanning their entire career; taken on their film sets and various live performances among other locations. They really help to bring alive the Python's descriptions of their experiences of making their TV show and subsequent films and live tours. This book is perfect for the fair weather and the hardcore Monty Python fans alike.


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