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Pyestock Diaries

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Tom disappeared to the testing area whilst I tried to open a window to get some elevated shots of the Power Station and Battle Test House. Eventually I coaxed a dusty, grimy window open to get an unimpeded shot of the Battle Test House. Unfortunately I was so fixated on composing the shot that I failed to see securityís car approaching until it was too late.

I doubt he saw me, but pointing a camera lens through a window in the direction of the security car is not the best idea in the world. I decided to freeze, thinking movement would give me away and a static alien object would be overlooked. I watched him slow, and then swing around Battle Test House to return to his lonely hut. Relieved, I slowly closed the window, deciding Iíd pushed my luck with that shot already.

I moved out into the testing area, climbing out onto a gantry from the control room. It instantly felt "wrong"; either there were minute oscillations or an imperceptible amount of sway, but the walkway felt unsecure. I made it to the end, but decided against climbing onto another gantry and hurried back. I was relieved when I finally stepped back into the control room and found Tom waiting for me.

"Letís have a go," he said as he disappeared out onto the gantry. Halfway along he stopped and called back: "Did this feel OK to you?" "No." Likewise Tom made it to the end but elected not to go further. This was a first for Pyestock: a gantry walkway that felt unsafe.

Viewing window of the control room and the "dodgy" gantry above it. Looking south-west standing on the ground floor of the Admiralty Test House.
23|05|07 © Simon Cornwell 2007