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User / andyrousephotography / Sets / Panoramas
Andy Rouse / 13 items

N 103 B 5.6K C 29 E Apr 14, 2018 F Jul 19, 2021
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Salford Quays

I have a directory full of unstitched panoramas that I have not even bothered to label let alone process. This is an exception, but having shot it in landscape rather than portrait, there was a noticeable chunk missing off the top of the Imperial War Museum when stitched. So, it has laid dormant there for years.

Fast forward to a recent trip down to the Quays to show Paul a.k.a. shutterbug_uk2012 the sights and sounds of the area, ably supported by Eddie ‘Rainman’ Coulson. I only took a handful of shots myself, including a four frame pano, but I’ll save them for a rainy day as I’d like to see what Paul produces when he gets the chance from his busy day job.

But, back to the image… a few tips and tricks and I’ve managed to uncrop the stitched image and hey presto the top of the IWN wasn’t missing after all! A bit of filling in and clone work and it’s turned out to be a reasonable image in the end.

Tags:   MediaCityUK Blue Peter BBC Lowry Theatre L.S. Lowry Art Paintings Imperial War Museum North IWMN Manchester Ship Canal sunset

N 85 B 5.6K C 19 E May 31, 2017 F Jul 15, 2017
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South Queensferry, Scotland

A five frame panorama of all three bridges crossing the Firth of Forth at Queensferry. The Queensferry Crossing (cable-stayed bridge), Forth Road Bridge (conventional suspension bridge) and the Forth Rail Bridge (cantilever). Not the best picture you'll see of these icon bridges but I've been playing with Photoshop CC and trying out some of the functions and techniques that are lacking in my Elements 12 version.... why didn't I upgrade sooner!

Tags:   Forth Rail Bridge Forth Road Bridge Queensferry Crossing bridges cable-stayed cable-suspension cantilever Firth of Forth North Queensferry Elements 12 Photoshop CC stitching functions quicker easier why didn't I upgrade earlier? better late than never Andy Rouse Canon EOS 5D MkIII EF17-40mm f/4L

N 74 B 40.1K C 39 E May 30, 2017 F Jun 7, 2017
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South Queensferry, Scotland

For those not interested in the history or construction of this mighty bridge please look away now, leave the room or at the very least go and make yourselves a cup of tea... this could take some time!

A regular ferry operated between North and South Queensferry as far back as the 12th century. By the 18th century it was reckoned to be the busiest ferry in Scotland, linking the North East of the country with Edinburgh and the south.

The coming of the 19th century brought a major improvement in the form of ramped piers on either side of the Forth, which could be used by sailing ships at any stage of the tide. These piers, built between 1808 and 1817, were used by ferries right up until 1964, when the Forth Road Bridge opened. There were plans for an alternative crossing which was not weather dependent, with a 1806 proposal for a tunnel under the Forth and a design for a suspension bridge submitted in 1818.

It was the spreading of the railway network in the middle years of the century, however, that underlined the need for a bridge. A young engineer called Thomas Bouch arrived in 1849, determined to solve the problem of the Forth and Tay estuaries. He first devised a system where trains were floated over the water on platforms, which impressed the directors of the North British Railway enough to listen to his ideas for bridges across the two estuaries.

The Tay Bridge was begun in 1871 and the foundation stone laid for a suspension bridge across the Forth in 1873. However, this project came to an abrupt end when, three days after Christmas 1879, the Tay Bridge collapsed in a storm, with the loss of an estimated 75 train passengers. The tragedy meant an end to Bouch’s bridge plans – in fact he died the following year – but the momentum for a crossing had grown and a new design, by John Fowler and Benjamin Baker, was submitted to the Forth Bridge Company in May 1881, with construction authorised by Parliament in July 1882.

The following year, in 1883, work began on the Forth Bridge we know today, an iconic marvel of design and engineering skills known the world over.

Three men stand out in the creation of the Forth Bridge: Designer Benjamin Baker, Consulting Engineer John Fowler and Building Contractor William Arrol.

The Designer
Benjamin Baker (1840-1907) began his career at 16 as an apprentice in the South Wales Ironworks. He moved to London, where he was involved in the construction of Victoria Station, and joined the firm of John Fowler in 1862, becoming a partner in 1875. The two men were greatly involved in the creation of London’s underground railway system, which had been begun by Fowler in the early 1860s. Baker’s other achievements included designing the vessel to carry Cleopatra’s Needle from Egypt to Britain, and acting as consulting engineer on the Aswan Dam from 1894 to 1902.
Benjamin Baker was knighted in 1890 for his work on the Forth Bridge.

The Consulting Engineer
John Fowler (1817-1998) was one of the great civil engineers of the Victorian railway boom. He designed a number of bridges – including the Grosvenor Bridge, which carried the first railway across the Thames – and designed Victoria Station in London and stations in Glasgow, Sheffield, Liverpool and Manchester. Manchester Central Station’s 64m-wide train shed roof was the second widest unsupported steel arch in the country, after the roof of St Pancras Station. Some of his most memorable work, though, was as a pioneering engineer on the various lines which became the London Underground.
He was also involved in engineering and railway work abroad, with projects in Algeria, Egypt, Australia, Belgium, the United States, Germany, France and Portugal.

In 1865 he became the youngest ever president of the Institution of Civil Engineers and was active in leading the development of training for engineers. By the time he came to his work on the Forth Bridge he had passed much of the design work on to Benjamin Baker, but he remained the senior partner throughout the construction and was made a baronet on completion of the bridge in 1890.

The Contractor
William Arrol (1839-1913) was the classic Victorian ideal of the self-made man, rising from humble origins to fame and a knighthood through hard work and ingenuity. Beginning work in a cotton mill at the tender age of nine, he became a blacksmith’s apprentice at 14. He joined a Glasgow firm of builders and bridge makers in 1863 and just five years later was able to launch his own business on his life savings of £85.

He established his Dalmarnock Works in 1872 and within three years built his first major bridge, taking the North British Railway across the Clyde at Bothwell.

He won the contract to build Bouch’s planned suspension bridge across the Forth and, when that was halted, he won the contract for the successful Baker and Fowler design. In a work schedule which didn’t ease with success, he was also the contractor for the new Tay Rail Bridge, and a typical week would see him spend Monday morning at his works at Dalmarnock before going for two days to the Forth, two days to the Tay and one back at Dalmarnock – before getting on the train to London to consult with Fowler and Baker on the Saturday and sometimes the Sunday too.

By the time he was knighted for his work in 1890, he had already started work on London’s Tower Bridge (opened 1894) and future contracts would include the Wear Bridge at Sunderland and the Nile Bridge at Cairo.

Although work on the foundations of the Forth Bridge started in February 1883, work at the site had begun in 1882 with the construction of steel fabrication workshops on the south side of the river.

At the peak of work about 4,600 men were employed on the construction. It was long said that 57 died during the building of the bridge, although recent research by local historians indicated 63 would be a more accurate figure. The number of injuries is unknown, although one log book of accidents and sickness had 26,000 entries, and hundreds of workers were said to have been left crippled by serious accidents.

Efforts were made to look after the welfare of the men, however. Safety boats saved eight men from drowning. Boots and waterproofs were supplied to men working on the foundations, with thick woollen jackets, overalls and waterproof shoes given to those in superstructure work. Shelters and heated dining rooms were provided on-site and both workers and employers contributed to a sickness and accident fund. Wages on the project were also above average for all classes of worker.

During the seven years of construction, work was carried out from almost 100 feet below the surface of the water to over 300 feet above the surface.

The first three years were spent building the granite piers on which the bridge was to be supported. This was done by sinking caissons – great wrought iron cylinders – to the sea bed and pumping them out so that men could work on the floor of the Forth, creating foundations and building up the piers. This was dangerous and unpleasant work and, in two of the caissons the depth was such that water had to be kept out by filling the working chamber at the bottom with compressed air, the men going through air locks to get to their work.

Work on the superstructure got under way in 1886 and the growing structure became a site of wonder as it grew out from the piers, growing first upwards as the towers were completed, and then outwards as the cantilevers stretched out to meet one another, seemingly defying gravity as they did so.

The bridge was completed in December 1889 and the following month it underwent load testing. Two trains, each comprising three locomotives and 50 wagons loaded with coal (weighing in at a total of 1,880 tons for the two – twice the design load of the bridge) were driven slowly out onto the bridge, stopping frequently for measurements to be taken.

In February the first complete crossing of the bridge took place, with a train carrying the chairmen of the various railway companies involved. On March 4, 1890, the Forth railway bridge – known ever as simply The Forth Bridge – was officially opened by the Prince of Wales, later King Edward VII.

In 2001, Network Rail, working with principal contractor Balfour Beatty, began work to put an end to the myth of the never-ending task of ‘painting the Forth Bridge’.

In the 1990s, after over a century of punishment from Scotland’s harsh elements and following years of repainting and repair works, the bridge was suffering from exposed old paint layers flaking and detaching from the steel and encouraging corrosion. But the bridge was about to undergo a pioneering process that would last nearly a decade and would see the bridge reborn.

The first stage was to assess the safest way to do the job. Every inch of the structure had to be reached in order to fully restore the Victorian icon – without disrupting the east coast mainline rail link. To overcome this challenge, impressive scaffolding systems were tailored to sections of the bridge, with new support points fabricated and welded to the structure to support this framework. Some sections even had to be suspended below the bridge.

The next stage was to use blasting techniques to reduce a section at a time back to clean steel in preparation for the bridge’s new coat of virtually impermeable paint. Before blasting took place, inspections were made of the century-old steelwork – most of which was found to be in excellent condition with only minor repairs required. Up to twenty tonnes of debris were removed per hour by industrial vacuum extractor units, while climate-controlled, optimum conditions were created to apply the new coating system, which had previously been used in the North Sea oil industry.

The painting process began with a coat of special, anti-corrosion primer before high-build epoxy glass-flake epoxy paint was applied, by hand, to each of the 6.5 million rivets and all of the leading edges of surfaces before the same specialist coating could be applied to the whole structure. Once the correct thickness was achieved, the famous topcoat could be applied. Known as ‘Forth Bridge Red’, the final layer of paint was specifically created to emulate the original red oxide colouration the bridge had when first opened in 1890.

The restoration operation was completed in December 2011, marking the first time the entire structure had been repainted in its history. And, with an expected lifetime of 20-25 years, the myth surrounding the continual repainting the Forth Bridge has become another part of this iconic structure’s history.

Even today, more than a century after it was built, the Forth Bridge is regarded as an engineering marvel.

The steel-built cantilever bridge is 2.5 kilometres long and carries a double railway track 46 metres (151 feet) above the Forth at high tide.

The three cantilever structures are each just over 100 metres in height, with each tower resting on a massive granite pier.

The superstructure weighs in at over 50,000 tonnes and something like 6.5 million rivets were used in its construction.

It’s a feat of engineering that has been described as years ahead of its time, yet it was also exactly of its time.

The Forth Bridge was the first major structure in Britain to be constructed of steel (rather than iron) and this was only possible because of an advance in steel manufacture.

Large amounts of steel had become available after the invention of the Bessemer process in 1855 but its strength was unpredictable.

It wasn’t until the development of the Siemens-Martin process in 1875 that steel of consistent quality could be obtained. The steel used was produced by two steelworks in Scotland and one in Wales.

The cantilever design of the bridge was not new – it had been in use for centuries in the east – but the scale of the Forth Bridge was completely unprecedented, as were many of the technical challenges.

With the Tay Bridge disaster fresh in everyone’s mind, the designers and engineers had to consider calculations for wind pressures and the effects of temperature changes, yet they still created what, at the time, was the longest cantilever bridge span in the world and even yet is the second-longest single span cantilever.

If you've got this far... well done, I didn't think anyone would bother to read any of this! The first person to quote the phrase that pays "It's cool to be an Anorak!", I'll send you a tenner for your sheer minded tenacity.
It's not far to the finishing line now so carry on... you can do it!

The Forth Bridge is owned and operated by Network Rail and is a key part of the Scottish rail network
It was one of the first cantilever bridges in Britain, and Britain’s first all-steel bridge
Category A listed Victorian engineering icon
In operation since opening in 1890
Original designers – Sir John Fowler and Sir Benjamin Baker
Original contractor – Tancred, Arrol & Co
It’s a 53,000 tonne bridge
The two main spans of 521m were for 28 years the longest and second longest bridge spans in the world
It stretches to 110 metres above high water at the top of each cantilever, and is 2.5km in length
It sees 200 train movements daily

A major restoration began in 2002 and lasted 10 years, with investment of £130 million
4,000 tonnes of scaffolding were used
A total 4.5 million working hours were spent on the restoration
1,550 people were employed since 2002
At its peak up to 400 tradesmen were employed
240,000 litres of paint were used in the first ever complete repainting of the bridge
The steelwork was recoated with a high-tech three-coat system
The three-part coating system originated from the North Sea oil industry where it has been used to protect offshore structures in severe marine environments
The topcoat will last for at least 20 years and was mixed to ‘Forth Bridge Red’ to match the original red oxide colour used in 1890
Forth Bridge Red Paint – it would cost you £6 per m2 to apply the paint to a wall in your home but putting it on the bridge, due to the difficulties of access, costs around £370 per m2

All information supplied by the Forth Bridges Forum 2015... many thanks to them.

Tags:   Tay Bridge started 1871 disaster collapsed 1879 engineer Thomas Bouch Forth Rail Bridge started 1883 opened 1890 South Queensferry Firth of Forth bridge designer Sir Benjamin Baker civil engineer Sir John Fowler contractor William Arrol Tancred Arrol & Co cantilever span longest in the world steel Bessemer process Siemens-Martin process paint Forth Bridge Red hidden message Andy Rouse Canon EOS 5D MkIII 24-105mm f/4L

N 48 B 3.1K C 22 E May 27, 2017 F May 22, 2021
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St Ann’s Square, Manchester

The floral tributes, balloons and football shirts left for the victims of the Manchester bombing at the Ariana Grande concert - Manchester Arena on the 22nd May 2017. This image taken on the following Saturday on the 27th

Tags:   For the 22 Manchester St Ann’s Square Ariana Grande Concert Manchester Arena 22nd May 2017

N 909 B 59.0K C 90 E Sep 8, 2016 F Jul 20, 2017
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Lake Garda, Italy

I've previously uploaded an image from this location last October but came across a series of images on the hard drive I'd taken to form a panorama but never got around to stitching them... well here it is. A three frame stitched image in a 3:1 ratio.

Only had about 25 minutes at this spot as had to dash back into town to meet up with Mrs R for our evening meal and it's a surprisingly long walk back from here... the two blurred paddle boarders crossing the lake clearly knew the fastest route!

Tags:   Italy Lake Garda lake Malcesine town harbour lamps promenade Via Lungolago evening dusk blue hour castle illumination mountains Monte Baldo paddle boarders blurred panorama stitched Andy Rouse Canon EOS 5D MkIII EF70-300mm f4-5.6L