Stuff that occurs to me

All of my 'how to' posts are tagged here. The most popular posts are about blocking and private accounts on Twitter, also the science communication jobs list. None of the science or medical information I might post to this blog should be taken as medical advice (I'm not medically trained).

Think of this blog as a sort of nursery for my half-baked ideas hence 'stuff that occurs to me'.

Contact: @JoBrodie Email: jo DOT brodie AT gmail DOT com

Science in London: The 2018/19 scientific society talks in London blog post

Sunday, 24 October 2010

Abandoned Britain - half day nerd trips

Shortened link for this post is

EDIT: 13 April 2011
Nerdytrips - the making of nerdmap (the map expands what's in this post to include the rest of the UK, world... etc.) describes what happens after Ben Goldacre posted "Nerdy Day Trips - tell us about yours, we'll build an archive #nerdytrips" :)

--------------- Original post --------------

A few weeks ago, Ben G asked Twitter followers for suggestions for a weekend half-day out. The suggestions were pretty interesting, and I have a file full of collected tweets from which I'm excerpting the relevant bits and pieces, as promised here.

It's occurred to me that this post is also a showcase for Google's capacity to search historic tweets. To get the URL for the original suggestion I've used Google's updates search facility (which currently goes back as far as February 2010 but is planned to stretch to the first tweet in March 2006). Using this method I've also picked up stuff that I didn't manage to collect the first time. For that reason I wish I'd used a different name as some of these suggestions are great but don't really fit within the 'abandoned britain' headline, oh well ;)

Sites that will signpost to other suggestions

Series 4, episode 4 (Dover to Isle of Wight) of BBC's coast features a piece by Neil Oliver travelling to Dungeness on the Romney, Hythe and Dymchurch railway, and Alice Roberts at Highdown/ The Needles looking at rocket testing.

On a very small scale of mild abandonment, I love the Terma radar (for the aircraft at City Airport I believe) to be found in a lovely but lonely part of Greenwich Peninsula

All the 'suggested by' links will take you to the person's original tweet - often worth a look as there's a bit more info there. Some of the suggestions may not have been entirely serious though... I'm also not sure about Lee / Lea although there's a florists in Lee (the one that's near Blackheath) which is called Fleurs de Lee :)

Miscellaneous (ie stuff I can't quite pinpoint)

  • "undeveloped area, north of the Thames, east of Tower Bridge" suggested by @anthropith
  • "deep level shelters in south London" suggested by @nathanbroon
  • "Have you thought about a trip on the Bakerloo line?" suggested by @mhoulden
  • "best railway graveyard ever is near the Salar de Uyuni in Bolivia" suggested by @Jesssal
Previous edits
EDIT: 7 January 2011 - This morning @imaginarygf tweeted the following, which is a list of quirky museums in London, some of which I've been to. Don't think it mentioned the Hunterian in London but I am dashing out of the door....

"Oooooooo RT @aleksk: o boy o boy o boy... RT @LDN: London's quirkiest museums (via @visitlondonweb) (hey! @bengoldacre)"


  1. I can highly recommend Porthcurno Telegraph Museum ("home of the Victorian Internet"):

    A former international telegraph hub full of amazing equipment in wood, brass and glass. Also look out for the frightening WWII-era beach defence system video.

  2. Atlas Obscura might have some suggestions too:

  3. I recommend Telegraph Field, near Knightstown, Valentia Island, Ireland - first transatlantic cable laid there (to America), 1866.

  4. John Rylands Library, Manchester?

  5. Jenner Museum, Berkeley, Gloucestershire

  6. Technology Museum, Cambridge. Museum of the History of Science, Oxford.

  7. My daughter wanted to take me to a "little-known museum"; my hearing's not so good; I thought she said "little gnome museum." Could there possibly be such a thing?

    1. There is a little gnome (rather than a little gnome museum) in a 'secret' cupboard at the Museum of Witchcraft in boscastle, cornwall

    2. There is also the Gnome Reserve in North Devon.


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