Wednesday, 12 September 2012

The beat of the drum

 One of the annual highlights of my younger adulthood and a very occasional, very special treat as a child was the Royal Tournament.  This was staged every year at Earls Court in London and was a magnificent entertainment put on by all arms of the services.  There would be the excitement of the musical drive of the King's Troop, Royal Horse Artillery, or of the White Helmets (I think that was what they called themselves) of the Royal Signals.  We would yell ourselves hoarse encouraging the field gun crews of the Royal Navy as they raced.  And the massed bands always provided a stirring finale.  Sadly, the tournament is no more, dropped for reasons I don't recall.

However, we do still have the Edinburgh Royal Military Tattoo.  This is staged in conjunction with the Edinburgh Festival, Britain's biggest arts festival, and while concentrating on themes Scottish (such as the pipes and drums) always has other "acts", many from overseas.  The Tattoo is televised each year, albeit in severely truncated form, and as we were unable to watch on the day of the broadcast, I recorded it.  We have only just got round to watching it and I, along with the live audience, was especially taken with one of the overseas acts, the Top Secret Drum Corps from Basel, Switzerland.  Some of their display has been uplaoded to YouTube so you can see what you think.


We stay on the River Adur for today's picture but move downstream a little under a mile.  Here we see the footbridge linking Shoreham Beach with Shoreham-by-Sea.  The vehicular route from this spot to the opposite shore is well over a mile.  Not a beautiful bridge by any means, but very practical.

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