Tag Archives: Middlesbrough

King Crab – normally found in Arctic waters – found on Redcar beach

King Crab on Redcar beach
King Crab on Redcar beach

He’s spent his working life beneath the sea but even oceanographer David McCreadie was baffled by a rare visitor to Redcar.

For the formidable-looking red crustacean found by David’s fiancee Diane Weinoski looks for all the world like a King Crab – and they hardly ever stray from considerably icier waters.

Members of the lithododid family, king crabs are large, tasty and usually found in seas MUCH colder than Redcar’s.

And despite having worked and played in oceans across the world since the mid-1960s, David has never heard of one being found this far south.

 

His suspicion that the six-legged visitor was a king crab species has now been confirmed by David’s friend and world crab expert Dr Norman Sloan, of the remote Queen Charlotte Islands in British Columbia, Canada. Dr Sloan, who used to work in the Natural History Museum, is now contacting an expert on British crustaceans to discuss it further.

Davidsaid:

“I have dived as an amateur and professional since 1966 and never seen one anywhere near here before.

“I have heard that king crabs have migrated under the Arctic ice cap and been found in Norway, but this is so far south.”

In a lifetime devoted to marine matters, after studying oceanography and marine biology in Bangor, North Wales, in 1966, David stayed to do research before starting a successful oyster hatchery, mussel business and lobster tanks.

Since then, he’s started a smokery which supplies the Royal Family, worked as a senior offshore inspection rep in Abu Dhabi and is currently senior lecturer at the TWI Techonology Centre on Riverside Park, Middlesbrough.

In other words, when it comes to life under the sea, he knows what he’s talking about.

 

David said:

“I know my crustaceans and when I saw this one, I knew it was special.

“I know king crabs are common in the Arctic, especially around Alaska, and they have turned up in Norway recently, but how on earth this one has got so far south, I have no idea. To my knowledge, this is the first one.

“It could only come from very cold, deep water but we don’t have very cold deep water in the North Sea.

“Perhaps it was on its summer holidays!”

Sadly, the king crab’s Redcar vacation didn’t last long.

It was alive when Diane first came across it last Friday, but a subsequent return to the beach found it dead on the sands.

Source –  Middlesbrough Evening Gazette, 24 Feb 2015

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Aliens in the home! UFOs sighted across the North East England are revealed

We are not alone in the North if the Ministry of Defence’s records of UFO sightings in the last decade or so is to be believed.

Scores of worried people have filed reports after fearing strange lights in the sky were evidence of little green men – with one person even claiming they’d seen an alien in their home.

Twenty six reports have been made of extra-terrestrial encounters since the year 2000, with fast moving, flashing lights the most common complaint.

These include someone in Carlisle who said “a UFO was seen and there was an alien in the witness’s house,” and in August 2004 at Greenside, near Ryton, Gateshead a report that cryptically says that the report is “only alien sightings above the house.”

Other “sightings” include “a three dimensional diamond shaped object, approx. size of a large helicopter,” at Wolsingham, Northumberland in 2005, and someone that called 999 after seeing an “orange ball shape going across the sky on a flight path” in November 2009.

In May 2003 someone reported a “black orb with five or six tassles underneath it” in Gateshead.

While someone else in Hetton-le-Hole was disturbed by “many lights seen up in the sky” in August 2006.

Some people were sure they had seen a UFO. One person reported “a black triangular UFO” that had three lights on Halloween in 2006.

Somebody else was concerned by “two bright orangey/red lights moving towards Durham Tees Valley Airport.” These lights “flew steady, level and straight”.

One of the more detailed accounts says “a silver pyramid that was rotating at a low speed and off centre” hovered over Sunderland in 2006.

Across the UK there were 1999 UFO sightings looked into by the Ministry of Defence between 2000 and November 2009, when the MoD stopped counting.

Nine people specifically mention aliens or something alien about their UFO sighting.

Elsewhere in the UK someone in Bristol reported that “a big alien craft” landed on their house in 2008. It then apparently flew off towards the city.

In April 2005 someone in Basildon said they saw a spaceship with grey aliens sitting on top of it above a bungalow.

Elsewhere in the North in 2001 brightly lit cone shaped objects were seen hovering and speeding along above Berwick, while in Darlington there were reports of “large number of lights flashing and moving around.”

A witness said: “There was white light – like a broad band and then tight! They made a circular sweep.”

While in Hartlepool in February 2009, someone reported that they “saw four spaceships that flew over the house into the sky.”

They had a bright light that faded and was then gone,” he said. “They returned to the same spot they had come from.”

And even Middlesbrough has got in on the act, when in September 2008, a “large, silent craft” was said to have “had bright green lights and a blue light that was moving quickly through the trees.”

Source –  Newcastle Evening Chronicle,  11 Oct 2014

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Teeside Airport – UK’s least used railway station

Just eight people used Teesside Airport railway station in a year – helping it keep its title as the UK’s least used.

The single-figure total for the 12 months to March 2013 has emerged in new Government passenger figures.

And the dismal performance was even worse than the previous year, when only 14 passengers used the airport link.

The station has just two Northern Rail services on each Sunday – the minimum required by law to avoid formal closure.

So remote and underused is the platform that even the Durham Tees Valley Airport (DTVA) website ignores the station less than a mile from the terminal and claims that: “Darlington Train Station is the nearest train station to Durham Tees Valley Airport, located just 7 miles away.”

The Peel Group, which owns the majority of DTVA shares said it would “welcome” improvements to the station.

Peel Group’s strategic planning director, Peter Nears, said: “It has been recognised for a long time that, while the rail line is in close proximity to the airport, the current halt is not suitable and we are aware that there are proposals to include a new station as part of plans to improve local rail services.

“Implementing improvements is, of course, a matter for Network Rail and the local transport bodies and we would very much welcome early progress.”

The low usage, revealed by Office of Rail Regulation, comes after the airport was hit by falling passenger numbers.

Just 161,092 people passed through the terminal in 2013 compared with 900,000 at its peak in 2006. But it since suffered the loss of various flights, including its London link.

A Northern Rail spokeswoman said: “The service which calls at Teesside Airport station is one which is specified in our franchise agreement.

“The line between Darlington and Middlesbrough has attracted a growing number of passengers over recent years. However Teesside Airport station on the route, has not enjoyed the same success.

“We support proposals to relocate the station, as part of the wider Tees Valley Metro development, to better serve the needs of passengers.

“We are already working with partners involved on initial stages of the scheme including the opening of a new station at The James Cook University Hospital and improvements at other stations on the route.”

Source – Middlesbrough Evening Gazette  10 May 2014

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