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Stonehenge Visitor Centre

If we are to understand the required form and function of the proposed Visitor Centre,
we should begin by understanding the form and function of Stonehenge itself.


A new design has been produced by a firm of architects, and has been submitted for planning permission. Unfortunately, although the design is innovative, it appears to have various flaws, now highlighted by CABE (The Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment), and which echo some of the concerns that I have already expressed to the planning authority.

The CABE review is here:

CABE review

The details of my concerns are expressed in the memo that I submitted to the planning authority. It is available for download here:

Stonehenge Visitor Centre concerns.pdf

In summary, the concerns are:

1. The shape will act as a large wind tunnel, funneling strong gusts of wind and inconveniencing everyone and posing a hazard to the elderly and infirm.

2. The canopy will act as a huge wing. In a strong wind, which occur not infrequently at this exposed site, there will be enormous forces involved. The structure gives the impression of being a flimsy construction.

3. The canopy is supported on a number of skinny vertical posts. There does not appear to be any cross bracing. There needs to be an adequate level of analysis performed, to show that the structure will not oscillate in a high wind. Presumably the vertical posts will be fairly stiff structurally, and so any oscillations would tend to build up, rather than be damped down. If the oscillations are of large magnitude, or are of smaller magnitude but occur frequently, then it may well be that metal fatigue and consequent structural damage can result.

4. The graphic of the design shows a number of what appear to be rectangular holes in the canopy. Stresses will be concentrated at the corners of these holes, and any cracks due to flexing is likely to start from here.

5. Probably the greatest concern is that the proposed design appears to make no reference to the form or function of Stonehenge. Has there been any thought applied to understanding the monument itself? Stonehenge is intimately associated with the sky, and we can feel that connection when viewing the orb of the setting sun through the portals of the stones themselves. This is no accident! The visitor centre should incorporate a planetarium, to enable day-visitors to experience that feeling also, and so leave them with an indellible memory of this remarkable monument. Our ancestors who constructed it were bold and imaginative, and it is a disservice to their memory if we fail to be equally courageous today.


Stonehenge Visitor Centre


Download: Stonehenge Visitor Centre Outline.pdf

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Stonehenge panorama landscape for the Stellarium astronomy application
 
Download and unzip this file:   stonehenge.zip


See the readme file for installation instructions.

You will need the Stellarium application, freely available from:  
www.stellarium.org   

Here is an image that I prepared earlier.  Click on the image for the full resolution version.

Stonehenge screenshot




Woodhenge panorama landscape for the Stellarium astronomy application
 
Download and unzip this file:     woodhenge.zip   

See the readme file for installation instructions.

You will need the Stellarium application, freely available fro
m  www.stellarium.org  

Here is an image that I prepared earlier.  Click on the image for the full resolution version.

Woodhenge panorama





M O N  A L I A S  The Feminine Aspect of Leonardo Da Vinci
 
The following publication is available as a PDF file:

MON_ALIAS_The_Feminine_Aspect_of_Da_Vinci.pdf


Mon Alias


Mona Lisa  -  Mon Alias  -  Amon L'Isa: the sacred union of sun and moon.




Bloodhound Supersonic Car
 
I have a significant concern regarding the stability of the Bloodhound car. For the record, I am placing this email in the public domain. It was sent to the Bloodhound team in October 2010.

email_sent_to_the_Bloodhound_team.pdf











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