Welcome to my blog, Whats this about then?

This is a place where I will be posting all sorts of things not just things relating to Derby and Derbyshire. On here you will find details of any videos I’ve made of things in Derby and also Time-lapse, stop motion animation, Tutorials etc. If I find some useful software for PC or iPhone then I will feature it here.I’m sure that there will be something of interest to someone on my many posts.Please leave comments on any posts if you like them.
Don’t forget if you are new to my blog and would like to read through the previous posts then see the Blog Archive section on the left side of this page.
Also there is a Search box at the top left of the page if you are looking for something but cant remember where it was. I am a trustee member of "Friends of Friar Gate bridge", aiming to get this bridge restored.

Tuesday 29 November 2011

Review of Friday nights gig in Derby - The Smyths and RE: Order (The Smiths and New Order tribute bands)

On Friday 25th Nov 2011, The Smyths and Re:Order performed at the Darwin Suite (Derby Assembly Rooms). I my review I have Photographs, videos, Gig Dates, Set lists....

This was sold out and I can see why, The last time The Smyths performed in Derby was at the Flowerpot Pub where it also sold out. I have never seen a tribute band before so was not quite sure what to expect and here we have two tribute bands together! I managed to get a great position right at the front so had a perfect view of the performance by both bands. Were you there right at the front too? Did you enjoy the gig as much as me?

Re: Order were on first performing lots of well known New Order tracks.
Peter Hook (Jim) had the distinctive very low slung bass guitar.

Here is the Set list for Derby's gig on Friday 25th November 2011 by Re:Order
Thieves like us
Vanishing point
The village
Bizarre love triangle
Leave me alone
Way of life
Blue Monday
Perfect kiss
True faith
Love will tear us apart

Unfortunately their drum machine stopped part way through playing Blue Monday. I enjoyed the performance but personally think they were completely overshadowed by The Smyths.

The Smyths
Next up was The Smyths.

If you are a fan of The Smiths then I can highly recommend you go and see The Smyths, you will not be disappointed.
The Smiths broke up in 1987 and have never reformed, I did not get into them until it was too late so being given the second chance to see them is great.
I was completely blown away by not only their note-for-note performance, but also Graham Sampson's portrayal of Morrissey, he had got all the little quirks and mannerisms of the original artist so right.
I knew most of the songs very well so was able to sing along, Not something I would normally do but was enjoying this gig so much you just had to.
Every track was delivered with such perfection, you wanted it to go on for hours, but alas it had to end after 28 songs. At the end of the gig Morrissey oh I mean Graham climbed down off the stage and shook the hands of everyone at the front of the gig including me. You keep forgetting its not Morrissey.

I would go out of my way to go and see The Smyths again as they are so amazing. If you live in Derby then you will only have to wait until May neext year when they play The Flowepot yet again. I don't know if I can wait that long!

The only down side during the show was some idiot threw something at Graham, he was OK with it but did disappear off stage for a few minutes. The item in question actually landed right in front of me between the stage and the audience barriers, it was a "Happy 40th birthday" badge about 8" across. The crowd shouted "out out out", you know who you are !

At the end of the gig I got a Set List (see below). Apparently after the gig had finished someone fell off the balcony in The Darwin Suite!, The Paramedics were going up the stairs on the way out onto Derby Market Place. Not sure how that happened. Apparently hes going to be in hospital for some time.

Photograph of Graham Sampson as Morrissey:
The Smyths
Photograph by colour blind bob.

There is a set of photographs of both RE:Order and The Smyths taken at this Derby gig by Graham :
Smyths and Re:Order Photos at Derby.

Here is the Set list for Derby's gig on Friday 25th November 2011 by The Smyths:

The boy with the thorn in his side
Half a person
Stop me if you think you've heard this one before
Heaven Knows
Handsome devil
Still ill
This charming man
Pretty girls make graves
Reel around the fountain
What difference does it make?
Miserable lie
This night has opened my eyes
Hand in glove
These things take time
You've got everything now
Some girls are bigger than others
Shoplifters of the world
Girlfriend in a coma
Everyday is like Sunday
How soon is now
Meat is murder
---- oncore ---
First of the gang
There is a light that never goes out
Bigmouth strikes again

The tickets for The Smyths and RE: Order gig in Derby:

The Smyths Set List as used by Morrissey aka Graham Sampson at the Derby gig :

The Smyths will be performing yet again at Derby's Flowerpot in 2012 on Friday May 4th (note the year is wrong on this flyer !) :

If your not in Derby then there are plenty of opportunities to see The Smyths elsewhere as you can see.

List of upcoming gigs for The Smyths 2012:
Friday December 16th 2011 - New Cross, South London, The Venue
Saturday December 17th 2011 - Kilburn, The Good Ship
Saturday January 7th 2012 - London, Feeling Gloomy (Islington Academy)
Tuesday January 10th 2012 -  Club Babylon in Istanbul, Turkey
Saturday January 28th 2012 - Darlington, The Forum
Saturday Februray 18th 2012 - St Albans, The Horn Reborn
Friday February 24th 2012 - Wakefield The Black Flag
Saturday February 25th 2012 - Manchester The Ritz
Friday March 9th 2012 - Portsmouth The Wedgewood Rooms
Thursday March 22td 2012 - Putney, The Half Moon
Saturday April 14th 2012 - Blackburn King George's Hall
Friday April 20th 2012 - Sheffield O2 Academy
Saturday April 21st 2012 - Liverpool O2 Academy
Friday May 4th 2012 - Derby, The Flowerpot
Friday May 11th 2012 - Newcastle O2 Academy
Saturday May 12th 2012 – Glasgow O2 ABC
Saturday May 21st 2012 - Liverpool O2 Academy
Friday June 1st 2012 - Bristol O2 Academy
Saturday June 2nd 2012 - Oxford O2 Academy
Friday June 8th 2012 - Birmingham O2 Academy 3
Saturday September 15th 2012 - Nottingham, Rescue Rooms
September 2012 - Leeds The Brudenell Social Club
Saturday November 3rd 2012 - Cardiff, Clwb Ifor Bach
November 17th 2012 - Derby, Assembly Rooms

Videos of The Smyths:
Interview with Graham Sampson by Paul Morley at Derby's Flowerpot!

The Smyths perform at Feeling Gloomy (The O2 Academy in Islington, London):

Hope you enjoyed my review.

Did you know that The Smiths actually performed at Derby Assembly Rooms back in December 1983?
There are over 30 videos on YouTube of this gig from 28 years ago.

Here is a 37 minute clip of the 83 gig by The Smiths.

Whistle Test on the Road video clip at Derby Assembly Rooms.

The Smiths Room in Salford Lads Club, Manchester.
If your a fan of The Smiths then I'm sure you will have been to the Salford Lads Club in Manchester where there is a dedicated "Smiths room".
Google Streetview of The Salford Lads Club.

We visited there a few times and on the last visit in 2006 a really nice guy called Leslie took the time to show us around the entire club including the Smiths Room. In 2007 Leslie was on Channel 4's Secret Millionaire when Chek Whyte gave some money and help towards restoring the building.
You can still watch this episode on the 4od website. Fast forward to 19mins 32secs (you have to endure 3 short adverts first !)

My Photographs in The Smiths Room, Click to view large versions.
Salford lads club, ManchesterThe Smiths Room at Salford lads club, ManchesterThe Smiths Room at Salford lads club, ManchesterThe Smiths Room at Salford lads club, Manchester

There is more information about The Smiths Room here.

More information :
The Smyths website :

The Smyths on Facebook.

The re:order website :

Re:Order on Facebook.

If you are a Smiths fan go and see them now, go on what you waiting for!!

P.S. You will soon be able to see Graham on this years Christmas edition of Come Dine With Me !
The 2011 Christmas Special Come Dine With Me will be aired on Friday 23rd December, keep an eye out for their performance as guests on this show.


Thursday 24 November 2011

Plasma Ball, Sound Activated 8" lightning globe from Maplin Electronics. Great Christmas gift

You must have seen one of these before, if not where have you been hiding? Its an 8" Plasma Globe, this model is sound activated so it will pulse in time to your music. Its a great unsual gift for someone that has everything. I got this model from Maplin Electronics in Derby. The Derby branch of Maplins can be seen in my 360 view of East Street, its next to TK Maxx.

You can also get Plasma Balls from other shops such as Amazon. Rather bizarrely you can even get a 4 port USB hub based around a Plasma Ball !

I have made a HD video of this plasma ball in action so you can see what it does. As you can see if you leave it alone then about 50 strands of blue mini lightening reach out from the centre ball to the outer ball.
They move around randomly often splitting part way and turning pink when they reach the glass.
If you put your finger near the glass then an extra bright lightening arc connects from the centre ball to your finger tip and follows it around as you move. It does not hurt when you do this, just a slight tingle sometimes.

My video of this Plasma Ball in action:

Or click the link to view : Video of Plasma Ball from Maplin Electronics.

If you put a fluorescent tube near it then it lights it up!
I found that if you place a cap of tinfoil on the top then it concentrates the voltage of  multiple lightening strands, if you put your finger near the tinfoil then you get quite a spark and YES is does hurt. In fact it leaves a black burn mark on your finger tip !

I also took some photographs of the Plasma Ball:
Plasma Ball 4

Plasma Ball 6

If you want to see some real big lightening then see these photos

Derby Teslathon 2004.

Derby Teslathon 2005.

Hope you found this review of interest.

Wednesday 16 November 2011

The new Derby Casino Genting Club at Riverlights, Morledge, Derby Bus Station opens on 19.11.11

Derby's new casino opens at 9:30pm on Saturday November 19th 2011.or 19.11.11 as it says on their adverts.

My dedicated guide to it is here....
Derby Genting Club Casino, Derby Riverlights.

I'm sure if you live in Derby then you will definitely have seen the adverts for the new Casino that is opening in Derby. These adverts are everywhere even on buses. If you've managed to miss it well here is one such advert for it.

I have created a dedicated guide to this Casino here :
Derby Genting Club Casino, Derby Riverlights.
I have provided all sorts of information for people wanting to visit here such as opening times, very accurate mapping for smart phones and even a virtual reality 360 degree photograph showing the location of the Casino entrance.

The casino opens to VIP's on Thursday 17th and to the general public on the 19th.

The Overtones
The singing decorators who hit the big time with their doo-wop style will officially open Derby's newest venue. The Overtones, a five-part vocal harmony group who have had a meteoric rise in the last 12 months, will be the star attractions at the Genting Club, Derby's new casino and entertainment venue.

The club opens on Thursday at 9:30 BUT only to VIP members, the rest of you will have to wait until Saturday. On Thursday Suzanne Shaw and Maria Fowler (The Only Way Is Essex) will be there.

If you think I've missed anything please drop me a line.

Facebook page for this Casino.


Tuesday 8 November 2011

New music videos by White Town from the album Monopole - Missing Her Again, Till I Die and Invisible Elastic .

Do you remember the band "White Town" from 1997, most famous locally for the worldwide hit "Your Woman". The video featured local Derby footage. Well 14 years later and a new album has just come out and there are several new music videos, again featuring local scenes.

The new album by White Town is called Monopole .


These are my personal favorite tracks from it...

White Town - Till I Die

Did you spot Iron Gate, Cathedral Green and Derby Quad?

White Town - Missing Her Again:

Did you spot Elvaston Castle Old English garden and Swanwick junction at Butterley?

White Town - Invisible Elastic:

Did you spot the Cathedral Green Swingbridge

Hope you enjoyed these new tracks.

Thursday 3 November 2011

HTC Wildfire - Location to copy MS Office files so you can view them on the phone.

Do you own a HTC Wildfire and want to know where to copy Microsoft Office Files onto the phone in order to view them on the phone? Here is the answer.

This works for ms Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files. Even tried it with .xlsx files and the HTC has no problems showing the file.

1) Connect your HTC Wildfire phone to your PC via your HTC Micro USB Data Cable.
2) Use Windows Explorer to view the files.
3) Go to the office files that you want to transfer, highlight them and copy them to the clipboard.
4) Go to the SD card of the HTC and look for a folder in the root called Download
5) Paste your files into this folder.
6) Disconnect the USB device (left click on the little icon on right of status bar and select Disconnect)
7) On the HTC goto Apps - Office and after a few seconds of the black screen it should list your files that you copied over.
8) Tap one of the files and it will open. When opening office docs it seems to show a black screen with a green loading bar at the bottom of the screen.

I have only tried this out on the HTC Wildfire phone but I dare say it will be the same on the other HTC phones such as HTC Explorer, HTC Sensation, HTC Desire etc.

Hope this helps. Post a comment if your found it of use.
One thing through how do you select tabs on a Excel spreadsheet?


Wednesday 2 November 2011

2011 Markeaton Bonfire and Fireworks, Saturday 5th November from 5.45pm.

Its that time of year again when our annual free Bonfire and Fireworks event takes place at Markeaton Park, Derby.
There will be a Funfair on Markeaton Park from 2pm to 9pm

Stage entertainment from 4.45pm

Bonfire lit at 5.45pm

Fireworks at 6pm

Map for Markeaton Park Bonfire and Fireworks:

View 2011 Markeaton Park Bonfire and fireworks Display in a larger map

Access to Markeaton Park for the Bonfire and Fireworks is restricted for safety reasons.
The main entrance to the park, off the A38, will be open for pedestrians. There will be no pedestrian access through the Mundy Play Centre, or across any of the three bridges into the park.

The main entrance to the Mundy Play Centre will also be closed, and the Mundy Play Centre car park will close at 2.30pm. Anyone who parks in this car park to use the park during the day should ensure that their vehicle is moved by 2.30pm. Markeaton Lane is closed to all vehicles between 3pm and 9pm, to allow safe access for pedestrians. The Police will control the road closure.

Pedestrians coming from The University of Derby car park will be directed across the pedestrian crossing on Kedleston Road and will access the park from Queensway next to the footbridge over the A38. Pedestrians coming along Kedleston Road from the city centre will also be directed via Queensway. Pedestrians from the Quarndon/Allestree areas will be directed down Markeaton Lane into the rear entrance to the park.

If you don't want to get caught up in all the mud, crowds and traffic but want to see the fireworks then I suggest going on the roof car park at Park Farm, Allestree. Don't tell everyone though !

The weather is looking like it may be dry for this year.


Tuesday 1 November 2011

The 2011 Derby's Christmas Lights Switch on by Gareth Gates and Joe McElderry, Saturday 19th November 2011. Derby Ice Rink and Victorian Christmas Market.

Gareth Gates will turn on Derby Christmas Lights on Saturday 19th 2011 on Derby Market Place. While Joe McElderry and Dale Diva will be switching on Westfield Derby Christmas lights.

Remember - That's two seperate Christmas switch-ons for Derby.

Joe McElderry inside Westfield Derby at 4pm and then
Gareth Gates on Derby Market Place at 6pm.

If you are a new visitor to Derby then see my smartphone drop pin links below.

This is the  very same night that the New Derby casino near the bus station opens.

The show will begin at 3.30pm, on stage in the Market Place, on Saturday, November 19th.
Join a festive parade from Sitwell Street (just off Babington Lane) at 4.15pm or head down to the Market Place and enjoy a variety of entertainment, including DaleDiva, Trinity Band, pantomime stars Linda Robson and Mike McClean, Santa and headline act, Gareth Gates, leading up to the big switch-on event at 6pm.

This year the Derby Xmas light switch on will be done by non other than Gareth Gates !!!
The Pop Idol runner-up will join Birds Of A Feather star Linda Robson for the Derby switch-on, the show is hosted by Captial FM presenters Dino and Pete.

Map location for Derby's Christmas Lights Switch-on 2011:

View Derby Christmas Lights Switch on 2011. in a larger map

Smartphone mapping pins for smartphone owners:
If you are a new visitor to Derby then you will find my smartphone naviagation pins of use. Simply view this blog on your smartphone and follow my instruction below.

Gareth Gates on Derby Market Place.  <-- Tap this link for accurate location.

Joe McElderry in Derby Westfield.  <-- Tap this link for an accurate location.

When you tap one of the links above, it will launch your mapping application and place a "push pin" onto the map with the exact location of the switch on.
You can then use this marker to get walking directions from where you have parked.

For example on an iPhone you tap the "Directions" button at the bottom and this will pre-fill in the start location with your current location and the end location with the switch on location.

So all you need to do is just tap the "Route" button at the bottom then tap the walking icon and it will show you walking route. If you tap the bottom left icon 3 times then this will turn on follow mode, Centre mode and direction mode. What this means is that a blue flashing dot which represents you will stay in the centre of the screen and orientated in the direction that you travel in.

If you tap the middle button at the top, this will even show you which bus number and when the next bus to Derby from your nearest location.
My push pins are far more accuare than any other map as its not based on the postcode which most maps are. My map is based on local knowlege of the locations.

If you are looking for somewhere to park in Derby for these two switch-ons then best to get here early as this is going to be popular. This site shows all the local car parks

The Derby Victorian Christmas Market
A couple of weeks after the xmas lights are switched on, a Victorian Christmas fair will be held in Derby Market Place. About 30 huts will be in the Cornmarket from December 1st to 24th and will open from 9am to 5pm, except on late-night shopping days, when it will stay open until 7pm.

Useful Links :

Westfield Derby Store Guide Leaflet.

Derby Ice Rink
This year there will be an Ice Rink on Derby Market Place from December 1st until January 8th.
It will be open for skating every day except Christmas Day. This year it will be a real ice rink with proper ice rather than fake ice.

Westfield Derby:
2009 X Factor winner Joe McElderry and DaleDiva will be switching on Westfield Derby Christmas lights from 2pm onwards. He will be turning the lights on at 4pm.

On Saturday 12th November Santa will be opening his brand new Wish Kingdom Grotto with some very special friends including Rastamouse and Sam and Mark.

Derby's Westfield awaits Joe McElderry to turn on this years Christmas lights.
Rastamouse is in da house meeting families and children throughout the day. See the CBeebies favourite for free, make sure you don’t miss out and pick up a free wrist band from Westfield Derby Concierge on the day from 9am.
Plus a free super-glittery craft workshop where kids can make their own tree decorations. All hosted by TV and Gem 106 boys Sam and Mark!

Joe McElderry Poster in Derby Westfield :

Joe McElderry

Belper's Christmas lights will be turned on : Friday November 25th.
This is also the night that the Scouts ping pong ball race will take place on King Street at 7pm.

Long Eaton :
Long Eaton's Christmas lights will be switched on by the Mayor on Friday 2nd December at 7.00pm.

The Bakewell Christmas Lights Switch on takes place at 4pm on Saturday 26th Nov 2011.

The Ilkeston Christmas Lights switch on will take place on Friday 25th November 2011, The lights will be switched on by the Mayor of Erewash at 7pm.

Ashbourne's Christmas lights will be switched on Friday 18th November at 6.30pm, in the Market Place.

Swadlincote's Christmas lights switch on will take place on Friday, November 25.
Seven-year-olds Jack Benton and Phoebe Johnson, both pupils at the town's Belmont Primary School, won a competition organised by South Derbyshire District Council.
An array of entertainment will be taking place as part of the celebrations from 11am.
It will include special performances from schools, dancers, cheerleaders, singers and a Santa stilt-walker.
Rides and stalls will be set up along Swadlincote's High Street.

Burton-on-Trent xmas lights
Burton's Christmas lights switch on will be done by Chesney Hawkes on Sunday 20th November 20 at 5pm. This will take place at Burton Market Place and will be followed by a Spectacular Fireworks show !
If your too young to know who Chesney Hawkes is well his song "The one and only" was heard as the ring tone in the 2011 film Source Code

Video of Chesney Hawkes: