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Guinevere gets a clean

Suffering satellites! Goonhilly's ARTHUR REBORN for SPAAAACE

Geek's Guide to Britain Big data? Pah. Arthur is big hardware. He weighs in at 1,118 tonnes, has a diameter of 25.9 metres and is 52 years old. From his home, a high plateau on Cornwall’s remote Lizard peninsula – as far south as you can go on the island of Great Britain without falling off – he has played his part in Space Age history, appropriate given he resembles one of its rockets in scale and riveting style.
SA Mathieson, 25 Nov 11:01
turbine

Wind farms make you sick claims blown away again

In certain parts of the world, campaigners against wind farms argue that clusters of giant turbines make nearby residents ill.
Simon Sharwood, 07 Nov 04:56
Sea Harriers

Kingston's aviation empire: From industry firsts to Airfix heroes

Geek's Guide to Britain He learned to fly aged 22, set up his first aircraft factory aged 24 and by 30 his fighters dominated the skies over the Western Front.
Gavin Clarke, 24 Oct 09:03
NPL Large Pressure Tank, photo: Gavin Clarke

Measure for measure: We visit the most applied-physicist-rich building in the UK

Geek's Guide to Britain Shielded by lime trees in a quiet corner of south-west London, a low, modern building constructed of green glass sits on rolling lawns behind a high metal fence.
Gavin Clarke, 12 Jun 09:01
IBM mainframe engineer's portable toolkit

IBM Hursley Park: Where Big Blue buries the past, polishes family jewels

Geek's Guide to Britain Would you like to work in a cross between Downton Abbey and Silicon Valley? For a small selection of IBMers, that’s the only way to describe their working environment, although the place we’re talking about is officially called Hursley Park.
Joe Fay, 10 Apr 09:00
Bletchley Park Manor House, photo: Gavin Clarke

Volunteers slam plans to turn Bletchley Park into 'geeky Disneyland'

Bletchley Park is planning to replace its volunteer tour guides with actors in a bid to turn the historical attraction into a "geeky Disneyland", The Register has learned.
Jasper Hamill, 29 Jan 09:31
de Havilland Sea Vixen

Mosquitoes, Comets and Vampires: The de Havilland Museum

Geek's Guide to Britain Approaching the museum down a bumpy single track road you start wondering if any of this makes any sense. Why is this museum in the middle of nowhere? Why are the opening hours so peculiar? Why are there bits of aircraft lying around? Why does it have two different names?
Ed Moore, 20 Dec 09:01
The tape robot at the National Archive

How the UK's national memory lives in a ROBOT in Kew

Geek's Guide to Britain The UK’s National Archives in Kew have enough gems and hidden secrets to keep Indiana Jones or Robert Langdon in sequels for the next couple of centuries, with everything from the Domesday book to the UK’s official UFO records socked away safely in its sanctum.
Joe Fay, 11 Dec 11:21
The bay

TAT-1: Call the cable guy, all I see is a beautiful beach

Geek's Guide to Britain A cabled telegram first crossed the Atlantic in 1858, but it took almost a century for voice calls to follow, being carried by the TAT-1 Cable which landed at Oban in Scotland, where we went along to see it.
Bill Ray, 14 Oct 09:03
Rebuilt Bombe Bletchley Park, photo copyrighted mubsta.com

Bletchley rebooted: The crypto factory time remembered

Geek's Guide to Britain The Battle of Britain: it was won by the RAF and pilots in Hurricanes and Spitfires assisted by a new-fangled invention called radar that gave the enemy's position away.
Gavin Clarke, 20 Sep 09:04
The Falkirk Wheel

Meet the world's one-of-a-kind ENORMO barge-bowling bridge of Falkirk

Geek's Guide to Britain Proving it's not just the Victorians who can make huge structures in steel, the Falkirk Wheel can lift six canal boats 25 metres in one go, moving them from one waterway to another.
Bill Ray, 27 Aug 09:33
The machine hall

Boffins, Tunnel Tigers and Scotland's world-first power mountain

Geek's Guide to Britain In the middle of a Scottish mountain is a man-made cavern 90 metres high and 36 metres long - tall enough to stuff an entire Cathedral in its belly - which is only accessible through a kilometre-long rock tunnel. This is the home of the Cruachan Power Station.
Bill Ray, 23 Jul 08:03
Hanslope Park

Hanslope Park: Home of Britain’s ‘real-life Q division’

Geek's Guide to Britain Hanslope Park sits just outside the small, quiet North Buckinghamshire village of Hanslope. I grew up there, and the Park and its occupants would always be mentioned by conversing grown-ups in suddenly hushed tones. Who might be listening? Other villagers were quietly pointed out with the words: “You see him? He works at the Park, he does.”
Tony Smith, 05 Jul 09:04
National Lift Tower

Love in an elevator.... testing mast: The National Lift Tower

Geek's Guide to Britain The Tower rises above the flat plain of the Nene valley near Northampton - for centuries home of Britain’s shoe industry, but these days better known as the home town of 11th Doctor Matt Smith, comics auteur Alan Moore and El Reg operations manager Matt Proud - like some kind of latter-day Barad Dûr or Orthanc.
Tony Smith, 04 Jul 10:23
TNMOC

Rise of the machines, south of Milton Keynes

Geek's Guide to Britain It’s the sounds that get you: wheels spinning, processors squeaking, the furious hammering of teleprinters, and some 1980s synth.
Gavin Clarke, 29 Jun 09:07
GCHQ Benhall doughnut aerial view

INSIDE GCHQ: Welcome to Cheltenham's cottage industry

Geek's Guide to Britain For staff at the Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) in Cheltenham, there’s an air of Fight Club about the place. The first rule about GCHQ is you don’t talk about GCHQ.
Bob Dormon, 24 May 07:05

The bunker at the end of the world - in Essex

Geek's Guide to Britain Kelvedon Hatch is a superb example of absurdist geek life. Not only is the site technically very impressive, it is also completely useless and frequently prompts the question “what on earth were they thinking?”... A tour reinforces this view as the experience now is as enjoyably peculiar as the history behind the place.
Ed Moore, 22 May 08:05
top of the bt tower

BT Tower is just a relic? Wrong: It relays 18,000hrs of telly daily

Geek's Guide to Britain The Post Office Tower in London, adorned with microwave dishes and resembling a gigantic Star Trek gadget, symbolised the UK's white heat for technology in the 1960s.
Joe Fay, 21 May 12:24

Reg man bested in geek-to-geek combat - in World War 3 nerve centre

Geek's Guide to Britain During the Cold War, Neatishead in Norfolk was theoretically the worst place in the UK to live: the nearby RAF base would be target Number One if the Russians nuked us.
Dominic Connor, 28 Mar 10:00
Reading tape LEO II computer, photo: Science Museum / SSPL

Blighty's revolutionary Cold War teashop computer - and Nigella Lawson

Geek's Guide to Britain The Victorian offices were bulldozed long ago for a stack of flats and mirrored offices, and there's not a single indication to the significance of this site - or what happened here.
Gavin Clarke, 27 Mar 13:27
 Adastral Park, in Martlesham, Ipswich - the epicentre of BT's research, technology and IT operations.

Inside Adastral: BT's Belgium-sized broadband boffinry base

Geek's Guide to Britain Adastral Park is BT’s global research and development centre, one of the world’s most pioneering centres of technology and telecommunications.
Dave Wilby, 26 Mar 10:28
The Lovell Telescope, credit Mike Peel; Jodrell Bank Centre for Astrophysics, University of Manchester

Reg man goes time travelling at iconic observatory

Geek's Guide to Britain There are two ways to approach Jodrell Bank. From the north you fly through the WAGish end of Cheshire, with towns like Wilmslow and Alderley Edge housing Manchester and Liverpool’s finest and their harems. I prefer coming from the south, under the Twemlow Viaduct, a 105ft high, 500 yard long symphony of red brick, completed in 1842.
Joe Fay, 25 Mar 11:03
A tunnel

Boffin road trip! The Reg presents Geek's Guide to Britain

Geek's Guide to Britain Which country is credited with designing more than half of the world’s most important inventions. Is it Germany, home of the VW? Japan, birthplace of the Walkman? The US, land of NASA and Google? No: Britain.
Gavin Clarke, 21 Mar 12:26