21-Jan-2007 -- Time for the first visit of the year and it's back to an old favourite, straddling the Prime Meridian. Unknowingly the seeds of this visit were sown about a month before Christmas, let me explain....
A while ago I took part in a talk show on BBC Radio 4 called Excess Baggage and have done a few radio spots for the BBC and a 5 minute video piece for the BBC Satellite Science Channel. About a month before Christmas the BBC called me to ask if I would mind if they passed my name onto a journalist from The Independent. No problem for me.
I expected to get a call from the London office, so I was a bit surprised when I was called from Cairo, it turns out that their resident correspondent has done a few points in Egypt! Small world indeed. I did the interview and was then asked if I would mind a few photo's being taken. Again, no problem.
Christmas comes and goes and I hear nothing, I thought that they had decided not to run the story then on Thursday I got a call from Victoria Lukens, the Independent's picture editor. Could I do a few photo's this weekend. A bit of quick thinking followed and I suggested that rather than do it here at home making an actual visit might be better.
A quick call from Martin Pope (the photographer) and we agreed on 10am to go and visit 52N 00.
Today is bitterly cold with a biting wind, so it's on with the sweatshirt, the Finnish (duck down) body warmer and Canadian outdoor coat (completely wind proof). I gave Martin a GPS and we set off for the point. Follow the normal route in and 15 minutes later we are on the exact spot.
The GPS photo show 0.1s off in each direction but in the 30 minutes we were there I was on the exact spot many times. What is interesting about the photo is that it shows just 9 feet accuracy, a full differential lock. I take the normal shots and then hand over to Martin.
Having done some TV work with the BBC I had an idea of what to expect, I took around a dozen shots, Martin must have taken over a hundred.
By the time we finish I have about two inches of mud on my boots which in all the wet grass is cleaned off by the time we get back to the cars. Martin has to shoot off as he is popping up to Leicester to go and do a shoot with Phil Sharpe and Dawn Thompson this afternoon.