Tag Archives: North

Foreign Snakes Invade London

A species of foreign snakes that are said to be capable of crushing small children to death are on the loose in North London.

Over the last few weeks, 30 Aesculupian snakes, which can grow up to two metres in length, have been spotted up trees, rooftops and climbing up the drains of houses around the Regent’s Canal area.

The snakes that are thought to originate from the former Yugoslavia have been known to attack small dogs and their numbers now seem to be growing in the capital.

Tales of snakes being spotted around the Regent’s Canal area began in the 90s, but it was not until the head keeper of reptiles at London Zoo spotted one that they were confirmed as the Aesculupian.

Since then there have been a number of sightings across and these have increased in frequency over the last couple of months.

This has led to some residents fear that they could start entering houses and causing distress.

Mum-of-three Sylvia Taylor, 33, told the Daily Star: “If they are capable of killing small animals then surely they could constrict small children?”

Aesculupians are known for loving milder temperatures than most other reptiles and usually find their homes along river beds or streams, making Regent’s Canal the perfect place for them to live.

There are many theories as to how the snakes first got to living on the banks of Regent’s. One popular tale is that they were released on the quiet by the Inner London Education Authority as part of a secret scientific experiment.

Secret scientific experiment or not, since being introduced to London they have succeeded in making the capital their home and their numbers continue to grow.

While the large snakes have been known to attack small dogs and occasionally babies, they are more adept at feasting on small rodents and birds – so London’s pigeons and rats watch out.

Source – New Zealand Herald   12 May 2014


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Nelson Gate, North Yorkshire

NELSON GATE, Dunscombe Park, North Yorkshire

I’ve not visited this one, but its been in the news recently –

A 206-YEAR-OLD stone arch built to commemorate one of Britain’s great naval victories is standing proud again after a painstaking restoration project.

Nelson Gate, next to the A170 on the outskirts of Helmsley and originally an entrance to the Duncombe Park estate, is believed to be one of the earliest monuments to Lord Nelson and the Battle of Trafalgar.

A 2011 survey found parts of its stonework had severely decayed. The end of the resulting restoration scheme was marked yesterday with a ribbon-cutting ceremony attended by organisations which funded the project, including the Country Houses Foundation, the War Memorials Trust, the Yorkshire Gardens Trust and the North York Moors National Park Authority.

Nelson Gate has been a Grade II listed building since 1955, and can be found-

OS Grid Reference: SE6133281761
OS Grid Coordinates: 461332, 481761
Latitude/Longitude: 54.2279, -1.0607
Postcode: YO62 5EE

The official description is –

Gateway in form of triumphal arch for Duncombe Park. 1806.
Sandstone ashlar. Triumphal arch with impost and dated keystone and
superimposed Tuscan order.

Inscribed frieze; to front: ‘To the memory
of Lord Viscount Nelson and the unparalleled gallant achievements of the
British navy’.

To rear: ‘Lamented Hero! 0 price his conquering
country grieved to pays 0 dear bought glories of Trafalgar Day!’
Moulded cornice.

Its not mentioned in Gwyn Headley & Wim Meulenkamp’s   Follies – A Guide To Rogue Architecture [1986],  though Dunscombe Park is – apparently it also boasts Ionic and Tuscan Temple follies – although to be honest, their research seems to get sketchier the further they get from London.

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