The Farr Family

This Is the Blog of the Farr family, Sam and Wendy Farr and their Daughters Nichola and Helen plus their husbands Andy Higby and David Mattock. They all live in the Bath Area. Sam works as a freelance photographer after taking voluntary redundancy from The Bath Chronicle after 20 years, Andy is a freelance Manager for various Charities and David a Computer programmer. David and Helen have our two Granddaughters, Tabitha and Lottie they can be seen at

Saturday, December 31, 2005

Is that really my mum!

Is that really where I got these eyes from!
Lottie and a very old picture of her mum Helen.

Friday, December 30, 2005

A Years end story of gluttony

When I was working for the old Central Electricity Generating Board, the canteen ladies were very friendly, if you smiled at the lady dishing up the sweet she would put an extra lump of sponge in the dish and cover it in chocolate sauce.

Well to cut a long story short I smiled she dished up the extra sponge and I gobbled it.

Returning to the department feeling, gosh I shouldn’t have eaten that, I was told that Michael Faraday the board’s helicopter was waiting outside.

I was soon a many hundred feet over Blagdon Lake in a helicopter with the whole side removed in a rainstorm.

I was trying to photograph the technician testing an infrared heat sensing camera mounted behind me, but having to do it over my shoulder, as I couldn’t undo my safety belt for obvious reasons.

The pictures below show Peter Gibson one of the boards pilots, and me looking like I had eaten too much sponge pudding.

I have been unable to look a chocolate sponge in the eye since the day.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Sindy makes toast

This is Tabitha with her new dolls house, which reminded me of this little story about her Mother and Aunt.
We bought our first computer a BBC model B in 1983, unfortunately it was launched with a faulty ROM.
The best magazine at the time was Micro User Magazine (often referred to as Micro Abuser).
They had a contest with the prize of a modem and a years subscription to Micro Net an early BT internet.

You had to suggest a good use for a useless old ROM, at the time Nicky and Helen were keen on Sindy, so a picture of Sindy serving toast from a Microchip Toast Rack was entered.
For the technically minded to modem sent at 75 and received at 1200 baud.
Someone has archived the Micro User and the page of the March 1984 issue is HERE.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Have the Chinese taken over this famous store in Wells High Street?

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

This is a good example of the paint eating into the rust work.
But to be fair the van does live next to the sea at Swanage.

Monday, December 26, 2005

Sam failing miserably to control a group of carol singers in Argyle Street.
Picture by the late Joan Wakelin.
Her Guardian Obituary is here.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Fireworks over Bath Abbey.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Tabitha and Lottie ready for Christmas.

Friday, December 23, 2005

Don't drop it!

I don't think that this would comply with the Heath and Safety at Work Act now.
It's a demonstration of how to move a pool table out of the first floor of this Widcombe pub, with the aid of a bent ladder and lots of manpower.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Bishop Jim

The late Revd Dr Jim Thompson, former Bishop of Bath and Wells, Photographed by Sam at his enthronement in 1991.
Telegraph Obituary here

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Old Fireman's Funeral

I know little about this picture of a fireman’s funeral, that was sent in by a reader about ten years ago.
I am sure the driver of the engine was my father, who was a fireman during the Second World War, rising to station officer before injuring himself while using a hook ladder.
The ladder allowed them to climb tall buildings by sitting in a widow ledge, pulling the ladder up and using the hook to smash the widow on the next floor before climbing and repeating the operation.
I remember my father who died over 40 years ago saying they were told they could keep the old brass helmets when the new style was adopted but he didn't bother.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Santa splits the difference

No it's not Santa limbo dancing; it's an unusual draught excluder.
I wonder what they do for the rest of the year.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Interesting citizens of Bath Number one, driving through Larkhall today I spotted Stephen Venables.
Stephen is one of the most renowned mountain climbers in the world today. In 1988 he was part of an expedition which pioneered a new route up Everest and was the only member of the team to reach the summit. Caught by darkness at 8,600 metres, without oxygen, exposed to the elements and with no shelter, Stephen survived a harrowing night on the mountain.
In fact he was the first Britain to climb Everest without Oxygen, the pictures shows Stephen, putting up his Christmas lights (without the help of oxygen)


Sunday, December 18, 2005

Give your birds a Christmas Treat.

Do your garden birds deserve a treat; why not buy this de luxe bird house spotted in Wiltshire.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

One for the picture album

A group of student from Brunei, studying in Cardiff,
pose for a friend in Abbey Green.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Bath From the South
Click picture to enlarge
Four frame join up with Autostitch
Free here

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Not King Kong

This sleeping gorilla at Bristol Zoo looks like me on Christmas day.
Full of turkey and sleeping in front of the television, right through the Queens speech.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Best Eggs

We buy all our eggs from Paxcroft Farm at Hilperton on the A361 near Trowbridge; it's good to see the chickens out in the fields.
When we visited today I spotted this fork-lift with 4320 eggs on it.
Just a drop in the ocean compared to the 15 million eggs those hard-working free-range chickens produce every year.


Tuesday, December 13, 2005

The residents of houses in North and South Parade own Baths Parade Gardens.
They rent it to Bath and North-East Somerset Council who run and maintain it.
But the owners have a separate entrance and key, and have access at any time.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Sir Jimmy Savile in Bath

When I was a freelance in the mid 80s Mars asked me to photograph the Bath Half-Marathon.
Now Sir Jimmy Savile wasn't one of my favourite celebrities, but after spending a day with him (not the running bit) I just couldn't believe that anyone could be so nice to everybody all the time.
When not running he was smoking a large cigar, and when he was running he had time for everyone, stopping to be photographed with kids and grannies, signing everything shoved in front of him.
When he finished the half-marathon, his schedule was to go to the hotel to shower and change before making the presentations.
But he went straight to the Pavilion, and when he was offered the chance of a quiet cup of tea behind the scenes he opted to sit out in the front signing yet more autographs.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

My attempt to kill Terry Pratchett

When I was working for the Central Electricity Generating Board with Terry Pratchett, we went to Gloucester to photograph a staff member who had built a car.
Then there was a three-lane section on the main Bristol to Gloucester road, and we decided to photograph the car there.
Terry had a top of the range Ford Escort that had a sunshine roof, and as it was years before compulsory seat belts, I hung out of the sunshine roof snapping away while Terry drove down the central overtaking lane.
I remember him saying "there's another car coming I must get back in to the inside lane" while I kept saying "No the lights just right stay out".
We both survived despite my efforts to kill the highest selling living author in Britain.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

The Theatre Royal Bath is one of the oldest working theatres in the country, right in the heart of the Georgian City of Bath.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Bath Christmas Market

Bath Christmas Market.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Autumn leaves in Southgate.

Autumn leaves in Southgate.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

David Bailey

So I was sitting in the office and they said "could you pop up to the RPS and photograph David Bailey".
When I arrived he was in the middle of a TV interview and I started to photograph him through a small widow in the door.
He heard the camera click and turned to give me this look, Amanda Neville, now the Head of Museum at the National Museum of Photography in Bradford who was organising the exhibition said "He's seen you" and then left at speed, leaving me to face the great man.
He couldn't have been more helpful despite his reputation, but the first picture was best.
Picture Copyright Sam Farr/The Bath Chronicle

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Tabitha has found that a blanket over Lottie's baby gym makes a great little tent.
It's still good to see how a simple idea can make a new toy to play with for hours of fun.

Monday, December 05, 2005

We went to visit Steve Bransgrove in the shop that time forgot!
His shop at 6 Catherine hill Frome is full of collectables, and well worth a visit.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Pulteney Weir at dusk today.
Nikon D2hs 3200asa.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Spot the Monkey

Some of my regular readers may wonder why I've been putting such a mixed bag of pictures up lately.

You must have noticed the Google Adverts on the site, Google claim to use adverts that match the blog content.

So when I mention the nuclear industry, you get adverts for jobs in the nuclear industry and demolition companies.

Should interesting to see what adverts we get with this spot the monkey competition?

That right it's Wendy in the back of her dads old Vauxhall, the only sort of car you should drive around the monkey section of Longleat safari park.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Acid Rain

In 1986 I spent a weekend at Loch Fleet in Galloway, to photograph acid rain experiments.
CEGB helicopters were delivering limestone powder to be dug into the surrounding soil to see the effect onto the acidity of the lake.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

With nuclear power in the news at the moment this is Berkley Nuclear Power Station.
The first commercial station in the UK, commissioned in 1962, and I was in the control room taking pictures when they shut it down in 1989.

This is an unusual picture, as overflying a power station is forbidden; I think we got away with it as we were in an Airship.