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weblog archives
eXTReMe Tracker
Tuesday, May 18, 2004
The great Atlantic Restaurant at the 1938 Glasgow Empire Exhibition, via I Like. Closer to home, as the new Wembley Stadium is slowly lifted out of the debris of the old, we give you this page on the British Empire Exhibition of 1924-5, back in the days the sun always shone, etc. etc. Most of the exhibition has long since crumbled away, but the Palace of Industry survives, looking rather decrepit, next to Owen William's majestic Empire Pool, nowadays better known as Wembley Arena (although the pool is still there, beneath the floor). Some ticket stubs from Empire days: Hawkwind, The Grateful Dead, Frank Zappa.

Wembley was also where the daleks began their ill-fated invasion of earth (mostly flat, no staircases). After the war, the nascent BBC television services used the Palaces of Industry and Arts as a base for the earliest outside broadcasts, for example during the 1948 Olympics at the nearby Stadium and pool:

In those days, viewers only totalled about 24,000 Londoners. For that memorable match, I had less to do that usual as "No. 2" on "R.A.C.K.S.", because, at about 8.30pm, the sun went down behind the stadium seats and things were pretty dim. Only our veteran Emitron could resolve the ball above the "noise", and distinguish the players striped shirts, one side and dark grey the other.

Related. the story of the first outside broadcast, at the 1929 Derby. Staying with water and times past, aqua nostalgia at Lost Lidos. More seaside imagery at The Coastview project, a coastal management page that has some fascinating aerial photography.

Our paltry linguistic skills fail us, but there's a deluge of visual delights at Samlaren, including beautiful toy Porsche 356s, quirky record players (the appropriately-named Radiola 007, for example), a huge gallery of cover art from Astrid Lindgren's Pippi Longstocking (did you know you can even visit Astrid Lindgren's World, three hours and 300km south-west of Stockholm? Thanks to Mr Aitch and Peter for correcting my geography. Peter points out that Stockholmers have Junibacken, 'an Astrid Lindgren-themed (and endorsed) "activity and cultural centre"' instead), wrecked cars (a perennial things favourite), early mobile phones, hat pins, very retro mopeds, advertising, a police spec Porsche 911, valves (my uncle, who died in 1990, would have loved the internet so much), and much, much more. A veritable treasure trove.

A classier kind of Lido on display at this Australian Vintage Poster site. The seaside always fares well in this era. Related, the History of Advertising Trust Archive, via Russell Davies. See Paddington Station in 1874 - if you think we're blitzed by signs, symbols, exhortations and slogans today, this image shows how we've got it easy. (Things move fast, backwards and forwards: 'My son will look at me in complete bemusement when I talk about dialling up.')

Elsewhere. Music recommendation, the modest (and almost un-Google-able) ee / some scanned stamps / Russian stamps / even bigger stamps / from this story on our crowded skies: 'At any daytime moment, there are 3,500 aircraft in the skies over Europe, carrying some 400,000 people.' That's the entire population of Shropshire, suspended above the earth / the gamebike - we've been after something like this for a while...