UK space programme suffers serious setback
High-altitude cheese missing over southern England
The UK's space programme suffered a serious setback yesterday when its most ambitious project since Beagle 2 ended in the loss of a 300g lump of Somerset farmhouse cheddar somewhere over the south of England.
According to news reports, the West Country Cheesemakers space cheese was hitched to a weather balloon and launched from Pewsey, Wiltshire, at 4am.
The plan was for the payload to ascend to the edge of space, where the weather balloon would burst. The cheddar would then float to Earth beneath a parachute, recording its trip on a digital camera and indicating its position to mission control via GPS.
Sadly, having reached an altitude of 18.6 miles, the cheese went off radar. West Country Cheesemakers' Dom Lane explained: "We've been tracking the trajectory and the current prediction is that it could land anywhere from here in Wiltshire to Hemel Hempstead.
"The GPS isn't coming through on the web so we might need help to find it because we're not sure where it is at the moment."
The loss of the cheese is a major blow to the UK's extraterrestrial ambitions, since the project cost £1,000, or around 95 per cent of Britain's space budget for the next five years.
The BBC has footage of the high-tech space cheese launch vehicle here. ®
This cheese is 'high'
err... it isn't even Friday guys, we need to break out of this mold !!
Wensleydale I can get
Here in Sonoma, I can get Wenselydale (Whole Foods Market, on 2nd St West at Napa Street) ... true, it's Wallace & Gromit branded, and it's about US$40/kilo ... but it's close to what I remember from my childhood in the Dales. Goes great with my Gravenstein apples (now in season), my homemade bread, and a nice sov blanc or IPA ... But what I have been craving for several months is a real farmhouse Red Leicester. I don't know why, I just want some.
Can someone point the British Space Program at the Sonoma Valley & change cheeses?
Isn't that what you find between astronauts toes after the ISS plumbing craps out again and they can't shower?
They should have had Clarkson, Hammond and May do it. At least that way they'd have ended up with pre-spread spreadable cheese when it failed.