Home Accessibility Courses Twitter The Mouth Facebook Resources Site Map About Us Contact
For 2023 - we are now fully retired from IT training.
We have made many, many friends over 25 years of teaching about Python, Tcl, Perl, PHP, Lua, Java, C and C++ - and MySQL, Linux and Solaris/SunOS too. Our training notes are now very much out of date, but due to upward compatability most of our examples remain operational and even relevant ad you are welcome to make us if them "as seen" and at your own risk.

Lisa and I (Graham) now live in what was our training centre in Melksham - happy to meet with former delegates here - but do check ahead before coming round. We are far from inactive - rather, enjoying the times that we are retired but still healthy enough in mind and body to be active!

I am also active in many other area and still look after a lot of web sites - you can find an index ((here))
Low carbon and other environmental lessons for the Melksham Campus?

Yesterday, I visited the Centre for Alternative Technology in midWales. It was supposed to be a holiday trip, but I found myself looking at various buildings, techniques and features and wondering if and how they might apply to Melksham (and to the Campus in particular), and also what lesson could be learned about what NOT to do.

The Centre for Alternative Technology (CAT) is approached by what is said to be the world's steepest Cliff Lift - operated by water balance as you might expect in a "green environment". But there's more to it than that. Most water balance cliff lifts control their speed by friction braking, loosing energy to heat. In the case of the CAT system, that energy is recycled by a different braking system, and is then used to pump at least some of the water back up the hill to the upper holding pond. As it is, each opertion requires several hundred gallons of water to flow into a tank in the car that's starting at the top, so that it becomes heavier than the car that starts at the bottom, and as the two are roped onto the same drum at the top station, the heavy one descends pulling the lighter one up. When the descending car gets to the bottom, the water is released.

So - we have a system that's purely using the kinetic (?) energy stored in the water at the top on the hill, and has been put there by the Welsh rain (fortunatly holding off this week) from which it is refilled, without any "Cardon footprint" in operation. Yet even so, measures are having to be taken to conserve the other resources it uses.

Speaking with the gentleman operating the system at the top, we were told of no fewer than five braking systems, and of emergency evacuation systems if the cars get stuck halfway. A rare occurrence indeed and, we were informed, almost inevitably caused by one of the braking systems cutting in when it shouldn't. And I noted that there's quite a complex signalling and control system and lots of rules and regs being discreetly watched for and enforced, as us Joe Publics used the lift. And staff too - at top and bottom stations.

The picture shows the cliff lift worn, rustic. Grass growing between the tracks. And it gives the place a charm; it's like that all through CAT, with many of the features sprouting growth and looking well weathered and worn. Fair enough - some state "design life 15 years" and have been there for about that period, so you wouldn't expect to find them looking day-one smart, but at the same time I'm not sure about the "hippie" look and whether it's the look and feel we want to create in Melksham.

"Out of order" said a number of exhibits; disappointing, and I wondered if there's a reliability issue with some of the green agenda stuff - or is it that CAT is pushing the technology to the extreme, experimenting, and so must expect failures as well as successes as part of its ongoing operation and learning. Certainly the history of electircity supply has been through a number of stages, each seemingly lasting just a handful of years according to the displays.

So - summarising some of those lessons.

* Need to conserve resourses, not just the carbon footprint
* Need for health and safety, but taking care not to compromise the usability
* Does greener / more environmentally friendly mean more maintainince and staff?
* Leading edge rather than bleeding edge
* Does the environmental approach lead to a scruffy appearance?

But there are other lessons too - that a bright, welcoming, almost spectacular result can be simply achieved. Some pictures, painting 1000 words each!

(written 2012-05-23, updated 2012-06-02)

Associated topics are indexed as below, or enter http://melksh.am/nnnn for individual articles
Z405 - Melksham Campus
  [3193] Melksham Campus - what, why, questions, concerns and how you can input - (2011-03-04)
  [3214] Melksham Campus - any last minute inputs from Melksham businesses? - (2011-03-26)
  [3224] Melksham Campus - a win / win opportunity, but a severely lacking decision process - (2011-03-31)
  [3225] Campus - answer to business questions - (2011-04-01)
  [3246] Melksham - the way forward. 26th April, Well House Manor - (2011-04-13)
  [3277] Between a rock and a hard place. - (2011-05-04)
  [3279] Letter to The Editor - (2011-05-06)
  [3325] The Olympic Torch, and Melksham House - (2011-06-14)
  [3481] Some thoughts in answer to some Melksham Campus questions - (2011-10-14)
  [3500] Campus Shadow - a great responsibility - (2011-10-30)
  [3503] Melksham House - a community facility - (2011-10-31)
  [3518] Melksham House / Melksham Campus - Seniors Input Sought - (2011-11-12)
  [3520] Quintessentially English - scenes from our Wiltshire town - (2011-11-14)
  [3735] A walk around Melksham this morning. Can you place all of these? - (2012-05-17)
  [3736] Abstraction - (2012-05-19)
  [3748] Not everyone has a computer - 9 more ways to learn about the Melksham Campus - (2012-06-03)
  [3812] The Melksham News - July 2012 - Part 1, Campus and Chamber of Commerce - (2012-07-22)
  [3888] What a difference a year made - Melksham Campus - (2012-10-12)
  [3901] How much parking should there be at Melksham Campus? - (2012-10-21)
  [4048] Art, Catering, Transport - Melksham Campus Elements - reaching local experts - (2013-03-19)
  [4103] Questions from children about Melksham Campus - (2013-05-26)
  [4311] Melksham Campus - how is it going - October 2014 - (2014-10-06)
  [4399] The Campus in Melksham - name, logo, and livery choice - (2015-01-18)
  [4418] Melksham Community Campus - which of these potential signs do you like? - (2015-02-07)
  [4423] Campus - about the logos / way marks you have been choosing from - (2015-02-11)

Back to
Looking and Learning - even on Holiday
Previous and next
Horse's mouth home
Forward to
Dysenni Valley, and nearby
Some other Articles
Legal change - You need to obtain user consent if you use cookies on your website
Short Web Addresses for Melksham
Sunday - no longer a day of rest
Dysenni Valley, and nearby
Low carbon and other environmental lessons for the Melksham Campus?
Looking and Learning - even on Holiday
Go green - business seminar in Melksham
Adoptive homes sought for abandoned babies
Postcards from Barmouth
4759 posts, page by page
Link to page ... 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51, 52, 53, 54, 55, 56, 57, 58, 59, 60, 61, 62, 63, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 80, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86, 87, 88, 89, 90, 91, 92, 93, 94, 95, 96 at 50 posts per page

This is a page archived from The Horse's Mouth at http://www.wellho.net/horse/ - the diary and writings of Graham Ellis. Every attempt was made to provide current information at the time the page was written, but things do move forward in our business - new software releases, price changes, new techniques. Please check back via our main site for current courses, prices, versions, etc - any mention of a price in "The Horse's Mouth" cannot be taken as an offer to supply at that price.

Link to Ezine home page (for reading).
Link to Blogging home page (to add comments).

You can Add a comment or ranking to this page

© WELL HOUSE CONSULTANTS LTD., 2023: 48 Spa Road • Melksham, Wiltshire • United Kingdom • SN12 7NY
PH: 01144 1225 708225 • EMAIL: info@wellho.net • WEB: http://www.wellho.net • SKYPE: wellho

PAGE: http://www.wellho.net/mouth/3741_Low ... mpus-.html • PAGE BUILT: Sun Oct 11 16:07:41 2020 • BUILD SYSTEM: JelliaJamb