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  1. HOW I FAKED BRITAIN'S FLYING SAUCER ‘SIGHTING’ Roger Hooton shudders at the terrible trick he played on his fellow Britons…. 'Oh my Gawd! I knew the joke had gone so terribly wrong. ‘Twenty-nine years ago, my friend, Gordon Faulkner, and I, built a toy flying-saucer, photographed it, and handed the picture over to the editor of the Warminster Journal, circulation at the time: 2,000 a week. With a Letter to the Editor saying Faulkner had seen a UFO in Warminster. ‘The only problem was the joke went too far. And it caught the imagination of millions of people, starting a UFO stampede to Warminster, before Gordon and I could admit what we'd done and stop it. ‘A freelance journalist had seen the joke letter and photo on the editor's desk, "borrowed" them and then took off by train to London and sold the picture to a national newspaper. It was splashed all over the centre pages of the Daily Mirror with a front-page headline saying a 'Thing' had been sighted. 'The Thing' was in fact made from a sawn cotton-reel, a black button and a silver-foil milk bottle top, bent and painted black. Gordon and I had photographed it being dropped, taking the film to the local chemist to be processed.’ Within 24 hours of the Mirror hitting the streets sleepy Warminster was being overrun by reporters and photographers with interviews of its citizens splashed around the world. ‘It started the whole UFO-sighting industry in Britain, the UFO experts now admit. And it was all our fault... ‘This is actually how it happened. And it's the first time I've told the real story…’ Warminster, Wilts., in 1965, had 14 pubs and a population of 10,200. There was a lot of noise about as the defence departments experimented with their 'flying bedsteads', vertical take-off jets. Salisbury plains were the scene of gliders and weird-shaped objects being towed behind aircraft. And small rocket firing outside the town added to the racket. Otherwise it was a sleepy little village. It wasn't far from the mysterious Stonehenge circle of stones; it wasn't far from the famous Westbury horse, carved into a chalk hill. And it is at the crossing point of the mysterious Ley lines that some people claim have an earth 'power' going back thousands of years. So it was at the right place for something odd to occur. ‘I was a printer, aged 23, working on an old Wharfedale press that printed the Journal. It took two full days to clank out the weekly 2,000 copies, and at the time there was a tradition among the staff to insert a "joke" letter now and again to the editor. The paper was really a village notice-board. ‘One night Gordon and I were having a pint with several other staff members of the Journal in the Weymouth Arms, and someone started talking about flying saucers. That was it! That would be our next joke Letter to the Editor, Charlie Mills. Ideas were awash in the hazy atmosphere of the pub on how a flying saucer photograph could be faked. We chatted about boy scout hats, saucers, plates, the bedroom urinal pot..Gordon and I were both keen photographers and so we took on the challenge. ‘One of the chaps in the pub was a reporter called Arthur Shuttlewood, a tall, thin man not unlike the classic Sherlock Holmes. Arthur could ferret a story out of a stone; but in his freelance capacity had never managed to find a big enough story for the national newspapers. But his time was approaching. ‘Arthur had a son working as a compositor for the Warminster Journal and it was he who told him that another joke letter was on its way to Charlie Mills, the editor. ‘In the meantime, Gordon and I were experimenting with my Praktica single-lens reflex camera on a tripod. We reckoned we needed a small image, nothing in the foreground or background to indicate distance. And of course nothing that would indicate size. It also had to be a 'lucky' photo, taken on a film already half-used. ‘We took many experimental shots and developed them in our own homes. But for one reason or another they weren't right. We'd suspended the 1-ins. wide 'UFO' on black cotton, but that also showed up. It took two weeks for perfection. We photographed ‘The Thing’ as we dropped it. ‘And at the same time that we were experimenting, we were steadily building up the joke. Other "sightings" had to be reported first, so gossip was spread about people seeing weird lights in the sky at night. There was a mysterious "discovery" - after someone had seen flashing lights - of a line of rats all found dead and facing the same direction, with scorch marks on the ground. The rats looked like they had been subject to intense heat. ‘On a quiet Sunday afternoon in Cradle Hill, a lonely cow field, Gordon took several shots with the Praktica, and then, while I dropped ‘The Thing’ in front of him, the historic shot. Next day he took the film into the chemist to be developed. Neither Gordon nor I, made any comment to anybody about our "sighting". ‘On Thursday, 9 September, 1965, the editor's office at the Warminster Journal was open, but the editor was not there. Arthur Shuttlewood happened to be passing. There, on Charlie Mills' desk, was the UFO photograph and the negative. Staff in the shop noticed him go in and walk out. ‘Several people on Warminster station saw Arthur on the station, waiting for the London-bound train, and passed the time of day with him. He did not tell them why he was going up to London. ‘At the Daily Mirror office he was vetted by senior staff, and he remained in the building all night until the first edition was printed. Next day all hell broke loose in Warminster. The Mirror had a scoop picture of an historic event. On the front page and all over the middle pages they called it ‘The Thing’. And they called Arthur Shuttlewood 'the Editor of the Warminster Journal,' doubling its circulation to 4,000. ‘Reporters and photographers from other papers rushed down. And hard on their heels were UFO "experts" and eventually "government investigators". ‘Arthur was interviewed by press and radio and instantly became the town's leading UFO expert. Gordon and I stayed out of the limelight. I shot off to London on my motor-bike to stay with my parents. ‘Three days after the national publication of the picture an angry Charlie Mills, owner/editor of the Journal, was heard in his office having a heated interview with Arthur. Charlie also refused interviews. ‘I became so scared of being found out I gave notice and moved back to Harlesden, in London. Gordon Faulkner had already completed his papers to migrate to Australia. He told Shuttlewood to keep the negative as he wanted nothing more to do with it. ‘Letters poured into the Warminster Journal from around the world. Now there were other "sightings" of UFOs in the village and stories of people being taken away by them. Psychic News moved in and did a special edition. ‘Shops and hotels began to do a roaring trade with the tourists. An industry was spawned. ‘One of the world's foremost UFO authorities, Mr. John Spencer, years later listed the sighting in his respected UFO Encyclopaedia that has recorded most world sightings and interviews with people claiming to have been abducted: "In 1965 Gordon Faulkner photographed a banded, disc-shaped UFO over Warminster which was highly publicised in tabloid newspapers such as the Daily Mirror. Immediately there were rashes of photographs of similar objects making headlines in newspapers. "All came from Warminster, which instantly became one of the most famous UFOcals in the world. For around a decade it was to remain the British Centre of UFOlogy. Largely due to the diligent efforts of the local devotee, Arthur Shuttlewood, Warminster was a collection of UFO cases." Mr. Spencer went on to hint that there might well have been abductions of Warminster citizens into flying saucers, but they were "passed over" through lack of investigation into particular cases. ‘And Mr. Spencer, who is also Investigative Secretary for British UFO Research, said the other day: "That photograph really did focus everybody's attention on Warminster. It kicked off the entire Warminster thing." ‘In March, 1992, I decided to confess all. I, too, had migrated to Australia and on a trip back to England I contacted Mr. Spencer. ‘He and his wife came down to see me and put me through a three-hour grilling. Two years later, having returned to Australia, I went public with my confession. Mr. Spencer said: "He actually felt terribly guilty about it. He wanted to put the record straight. I think he was glad to get it off his chest. He was almost worrying that he had committed some offence." ‘He added: "He and Mr. Faulkner had lined up dead rats in a field and set alight to them, saying a flying saucer had just taken off and the rats had been burned. The sighting’ was at the time a very important one. It brought Arthur Shuttlewood, the freelance journalist, to the fore. He became a guru on UFOs and wrote several books, even leading expeditions over the hills looking for space-ships. "I am not a believer in space-ships and little green men. But Warminster was a window-area for UFO sightings in Britain; there were lots of glowing lights and objects in the sky. "We had cases where there were elements of abductions having taken place. People were reporting missing time and there were "entity" sightings. At the time it wasn't acceptable to talk about aliens. It is now acceptable; and it is quite possible that a lot of stuff that wasn't investigated then would be investigated today." Said Roger: ‘I’m still terribly embarrassed.’
  2. http://www.tiptoptens.com/2011/02/16/top-10-most-richest-countries-in-the-world-2011/ So can anyone explain to a thick person like me why we are in the poo :eek:
  3. come on! I thought I'd jump on the bandwagon, let's hear some nice stuff about blighty! I'll start.........but i'm doing it in reverse order (that's confidence for yer) 100. the Cotswolds
  4. whoiam

    The Olympic Thread

    Seeing that the Olympics is coming up and that there are many off topic references to the Olympics on other threads -- Lets discuss the Olympics! Do you care about the Olympics at all? If you're an Oz living in Britain whom would you support? And if you are a pom in Oz whom would you support? Which is your favourite sport?
  5. This article made me smile: http://www.perthnow.com.au/fed-up-with-britain-and-heading-down-under/story-fn6mhct1-1226330320345
  6. Leeannetricia

    Uk food not available in oz

    Hey, moving to Canberra in a month! Much excited Anyway was thinking are there any uk food we don't get in Oz that I can bring with me Or are there any foods/snacks that are really expensive! Lol Was going to bring my friend over some wee Scottish treats as she moved over in November Any help much appreciated Cheers now Leeanne 1month away from The big move
  7. The Pom Queen

    Britain Facing Double Dip Recession

    Britain should brace itself for a devastating financial crisis, the governor of the Bank of England warned last night. Sir Mervyn King told MPs there was no doubt the banking system was ‘less safe’ than three months ago and might not be strong enough to withstand a eurozone meltdown. He spoke out amid fresh warnings that the UK is set to plunge into a double dip recession. The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development said the economy will shrink in the final three months of this year and the first three months of next. The bleak warnings were a blow for George Osborne on the eve of today’s crucial autumn statement. The Chancellor will be hit by another dire growth warning today when the independent Office of Budget Responsibility issues its prediction for economic performance. The OBR will reveal that borrowing has to rise and that Mr Osborne’s plans to eradicate the deficit by 2015 will be blown off course. The Chancellor plans to recast his goal as something to be achieved after five years – giving him until 2016-17 instead. The one glimmer of light is that the record low interest payments the government is making on its debt mean Mr Osborne will have to find £22billion less over the next three years. The Paris-based OECD think-tank warned of a ‘deep depression’ in Europe and beyond if the single currency debt crisis spirals out of control. It said the break-up of the euro was a ‘devastating outcome’ that would trigger ‘massive wealth destruction, bankruptcies and a collapse in confidence’.
  8. Interesting article in The Australian full of quality ammunition with which to gloat from down under! The British (with Gordon Brown chief among them) were unable to distinguish between drinking champagne because you are rich and thinking you are rich because you drink champagne. Britain is bankrupt and will possibly become a failed state into the bargain. Expect to see the queues lengthening outside Australia House again!
  9. We are always hearing terrible stories of small businesses failing to survive, I read this & thought I'd share this amazing little tale of success. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/retailandconsumer/8868803/Britains-oldest-family-business-opened-when-Henry-VIII-ruled.html [url=http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/retailandconsumer/8868803/Britains-oldest-family-business-opened-when-Henry-VIII-ruled.html][/url]
  10. Hi all I'm a producer with BBC Breakfast TV - and we're looking at covering the story about record numbers of people moving back to Britain on tomorrow's programme. (Wednesday) I'm looking for someone/a family who've recently returned to the UK to come on the Breakfast sofa. If you can help, do give me a call or email and I can provide more detail Cheers, Sarah sarah.stewart@bbc.co.uk 0208 624 9700
  11. Cerberus1

    Best football kits in Britain

    A new book has just been published celebrating the worst football kits of all time. Britain is well represented in the book, with some of the entries below (In no particular order). Birmingham city were resplendent in this magnificent entry, whilst playing away games in the 1970's. Sheffield Wednesday fans were the lucky ones who got to adorn themselves with these fine garments on away trips in the 86-87 season. The tops are held in such high regard, that you will have to part with over £100 of your hard earner pounds to purchase one nowadays If you were a Fashionista in Clydebank in 1991-1992, then chances are that you would be sporting this fabulous garment. Staying in Scotland, Dundee were dazzling in this strip which they wore for a 1953 tour of South Africa. The media dubbed them 'The Tartan Troopers from Tayside' Peterborough United players didn't have any trouble picking their team-mates out during the 93-94 season whilst sporting this dazzling strip. Hull City sought to terrorise opposition defenders by dressing as tigers in the 92-93 season. The success of this operation is open to debate, as Hull finished the season 1 place above relegation with a win ratio of 28% and averaging 1 goal per game. Arsenal adopted the 'Bruised Banana' strip in 1991 Cardiff City were dressed to impress with this stunning yellow and mauve ensemble which they wore when playing away from home. Who can forget this gorgegous garb? For those with short memories, Harrow wore the fetching outfits for the (18)70-71 season. If you were in Wales in 1994 and were a fan of the national football team and abstract art, then chances are you'd be proudly walking the streets of Aberystwyth in this apparel. David Seaman’s wore the “refresher outfit” at euro 96 This patriotic delight was believed to have been worn by Chesterfield Town during the 1892-3 season
  12. The Pom Queen

    Britain's Cheapest House

    Earlier this year the cheapest house in Britain was on Pritchard Street, Burnley Lancashire. Which sold for 10,000 gbp Now there is one for sale in Maerdy, Wales for 7,000 gbp Would you buy a house in such run down areas?
  13. BRITAIN may not boast the best weather but that doesn't stop us indulging in alfresco love-making, an exclusive Sun sex survey reveals. Just over half of the 2,124 people questioned said they'd romped in the great outdoors. The survey reveals that raunchy Brits are also a fan of sex toys — with 43 per cent admitting to using them — while 40 per cent owned up to getting jiggy in a public place. A third of those quizzed said they had watched porn with their lover, while 18 per cent of ladies and nine per cent of blokes confessed to dressing up in a fantasy costume to please their partner. But while we might be having adventurous sex, we're not having it very often. When asked how many times they would get busy in the bedroom each month, nearly one third claimed NOT AT ALL. 48% of men had never looked at porn online. 8% admitted looking regularly. The rest of the survey can be found here http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/features/3817615/Its-great-outdoors.html
  14. Immigrant gangs causing mayhem with no respect for law and order. The police unable to keep control. No go areas in the city. Out of control young people with no respect for authority. Judges urged to give harsher and harsher sentences to 'send out a message'. Communities fighting against each other due to minor differences in colour of clothing, or hairstyles... For London in 2011, read Manchester in 1870 http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2011/aug/21/manchesters-original-gangsters
  15. Guest

    Lazy Britain!

    87 per cent of the 400,000 newly created jobs have gone to immigrants — as Britons fail to chase work. Personally I don't think we can blame those migrants taking the jobs, the blame should lie with this underlying lazy attitude that is taking hold in the UK, we take more holidays, work less hours and expect a gold plated pension at the end of our working life. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/immigration/8585750/Frank-Field-Migrants-take-nine-out-of-10-jobs.html
  16. Guest

    Britain's got talent??

    Hi all, just a light thread to see what you all think about this UK tv prog.,?? as think everyone needs a little cheering up love these two acts, tell me what you think?? Two young guys with great singing voices
  17. Guest

    Pride of Britain

    If this doesn't put a lump in ya throats nothing will. Pride of Britain: Inspiring winners from this year's awards - mirror.co.uk
  18. Should Britain be spending so much on "International Development" when they are slashing public sector jobs at home? International Development - DfID Spending 'A Catalogue of Waste,' Paper Says
  19. Not me:skeptical: Maybe that was the problem:wideeyed:
  20. Nzogbia

    Britain - head shaving. Why?

    I remember years back my mate came back to the UK from living abroad and commented about how 'edgy' the UK had become. He also said he was shocked by the number of blokes with bald/shaven heads, rendering whole swathes of Britain like a 'chemotherapy recovery ward' (his words). I guess you don't notice it as much until you go away and come back. Recently I recorded a few of the Foxtel footy matches, and, just as an experiment (I was bored), I decided to do a 'shave yer heed sampling'. The results were astounding. I freezeframed whenever they panned the camera on to the crowd and in many of the shots 9 out of every 10 blokes had no hair! Honest, I'm not making it up. Now then, I can't believe we've got that big a problem with baldness in the UK, so what is it? Why do fellas shave their hair off, even when they aren't going bald? Is it coz they actually just want to look like Phil/Grant Mitchell? Is it because they think the "you know when you've been Tangoed' birds will find them irresistible (that's a possibility). Anyway, it's just nuts, isn't it? Isn't it?
  21. :realmad::cry: aarrrrggggggggggggggghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh sorry peeps but at the moment i dont whether to scream or cry what i really think i need to do is write a letter to MrCameron and MrClegg explaining my disgust at one of their departments. My son who in his teenage wisdom decided in febuary he wanted to live with his father, after i incurred a large costly lawyers bill we decided to allow him to live with his dad as forcing him home could do more harm than good. Anyhow we hardly see or hear from my son (i have made several attempts to keep contact going) but he just thinks his dad is the be all and end all just now. SO to put you in the pic his father doesnt work, never has claims benefits and has no reason not to work, he was actually caught last year commiting housing benefit fraud! he has never paid me a penny not a single pence in child support, never paid to get his sons hair cut nada nowt! i went to csa about 4 years ago and they told me as he doesnt work he doesnt have to pay! Then this is the bit that has sent me over the edge, last week i get a phone call from CSA telling his father has made a claim against me for CSA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! as i am now the "absent" parent i MUST pay CSA because i stupidly work. So i apparently have to pay 15% of my weekly wage to him which equates to about £175 p/m. It then gets better they say they cant help with my previous claim as he has never worked so is not due me any money? Ans as of april 2010 the gov changed it that now receiving CSA will not affect his benefits! he is about £350 a month better off with my son being there. I am so angry right now i cant put it into words. This country is great for benefiting the people who should not and down treading the people who should. i am clearly a total idiot for working paying my taxes, owning my own home and being a law abiding citizen i should be a dole bludging waste of space as then i would get everything handed to me on a plate, its times like these i am ashamed of this country and its policies and proceedures and i can not wait until the day i leave it. kelly
  22. Australian Needs US and European Migrants Put out the welcome mat, our country needs these people. MILLIONS of skilled workers are without jobs in the US and Europe, but their loss could be our gain. THE economic crisis engulfing Europe and the US presents the federal government with an opportunity to bolster Australia’s over-stretched skilled workforce. Yet populist policy is driving against it by triggering a poll-driven cut in the migrant intake. As the Australian economy surges towards full employment, Canberra is failing to seize the moment and attract exceptionally qualified people from troubled Western economies suffering double-digit unemployment. Immigration Minister Chris Bowen tells Focus the government “does not target workers from specific countries”, which doesn’t sound like good policy… …..Recent trends in immigration show Australia’s intake of permanent settlers is moving away from taking migrants from English-speaking countries and that the intake from advanced economies such as the US and western Europe remains abysmally low, despite the desire of many of their citizens to emigrate. Immigrants from Britain and NZ, traditionally Australia’s biggest countries of origin for immigrants, were eclipsed by China and India in the six months to December last year. In the previous 12 months Britain had been well ahead of China, but it is now ranked second, followed by India.
  23. Nzogbia

    Britain Bashing

    Does anyone else detect somekind of strange ongoing agenda in the Australian media (or is it just me)? When I first arrived on these shores (years ago) I used to simply smile and shrug at the Britain bashing, but recently I have found it increasingly irritating. The gentlemen and women of Australia's fourth estate seem to take no greater delight than when they are doing Britain down and re-inforcing a ludicrous sterotype of Britions everywhere. According to the Age and the Australian we are variously pampered, arrogant, over privileged, soft handed imperialists who can still be found on croquet greens all over the world, dishing out orders to haplessly dominated colonials (usually whilst being fanned with an ostrich feather and sippingm on a G & T). Apparently, all British people who fought in either world wars were edcucated at Eton and Sandhurst and bore handlebar moustaches and anyone who did not fight worked in the Civil service and wore a bowler hat and a pinstripe suit. None experienced hardship or deprivation or worked in factories, or shipyards or down coal mines. Oh no, we are all emotionally cold, foppish members of the upper classes. To be honest I doubt many Australian journalists have ever made it north of the Severn/Wash line (where most British people actually live) to experience what Britain is really like. No, no, no - London only, the Home counties and the obligatory day trip to Bath. The misrepresentation of Britain is wilful and I'm surprised there isn't more of a backlash. What's more, Pommie bashing is really nothing more than an exercise in self loathing - since the people they continuously paint black are no doubt relatives of most modern Australians. Could you imagine the outcry from Greek or Italian Australians if the national press started bashing their mother countries? Wouldn't happen, of course. British Australians are a much softer, passive target - as silent majority. But then there is no such thing as a "British Australian" as we fully assimilate and become just 'Australians'. Strange that. My own take on the whole thing is that Australia is still NOT comfortable in its national skin and has to keep poking a stick at its big brother (uk) and cosying up to its new best friend (the states) to achieve some sort of self-affirmation. Sorry for the rant - but it's really starting to get on my nerves.
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