January Blues

January Blues

This is a photo I took last year in Brighton while I had time to kill in the morning before an appointment. I had a wander around the town and especially The Laines before ending up on the pier. I think it was the first time I had been on Brighton Pier when it was absolutely deserted, there wasn’t a tourist in sight. The weather was extremely calm for January and I got this photo of the deserted pier with the calm sea and the Rampion windfarm on the horizon.

A view from January of a calm sea off the Palace Pier in Brighton with the Rampion Windfarm visible in the distance.
Chichester Twitten

Chichester Twitten

This is a photo from last year from what turned out to be the last day before the country locked down under the stay at home orders for the first time during the coronavirus pandemic. I ended up in Chichester as I needed to buy a few bits from shops which aren’t in my local high street and as the weather was so nice I took my camera with me. I haven’t spent much time in Chichester for a good few years and I think it is underrated and overlooked in favour of Brighton and Portsmouth either side. I enjoyed a stroll around the city and took a few photos, this being one of the ones I liked of a Twitten.

A Twitten is a uniquely Sussex word (as I’ve mentioned in a quiz round or two) for the narrow alleys you find between walls or hedges, so this particular Twitten is an excellent example of one. Sussex has a wide variety of local vocabulary to delve into, with any luck I can dig out some photos and use them to explain what they might mean. If you want to have a browse in the meantime then visit Archive.org where they have an archived version of the “Dictionary of the Sussex Dialect” which should give you plenty to browse through.

St Richard’s Walk is a small twitten at the back of Chichester Cathedral which gives leads into the cloisters, the way the flint walls frame the walk to the cathedral is very pleasing in the spring sunshine with blossom on the trees.
Chichester Fingerpost

Chichester Fingerpost

Compared to a lot of people I know I seem to be the odd one out because I enjoy going for a drive and love going down the little countryside roads to discover new places and helpful little shortcuts. This is a photo from one of my cross country drives from Portsmouth back home, this photo was taken outside of Chichester unsurprisingly. I couldn’t help but pull over and stop to take a photo of the signpost, which I felt looked very photogenic in the evening light.

These old signposts are ubiquitous across Sussex and many other counties in the UK and are known as fingerposts due to the signs originally looking like fingers pointing in the direction of the location signed. Over the years they evolved into a simple board without a finger but with a square, triangular or other design on the end of the board. There are many regional variations in colour and design of the pole and they can add a local touch to the roads. The older Fingerposts like this one were made of cast iron and wood, but more modern versions on major roads are simply metal which I feel are a bit sterile and don’t have any local feeling to them.

Thankfully these older versions of the fingerpost are still easily found on the back roads I enjoy driving down and with any luck will be for some time to come thanks to the Department for Transport and English Heritage advocating for older posts to be maintained by the local councils. So hopefully this bit of history should continue to point people in the right direction for the foreseeable future.

On a leafy country lane in West Sussex a black and white fingerpost road sign points to Chichester in one direction and to Fishbourne and East Ashling in another direction.