A lecture: Industrialisation – Why Britain got there first

I know there are those that read this blog are far more erudite and informed than me. I have therefore no fear in posting the Legatum Institute’s final 2014 lecture in their History of Capitalism series, by Professor Nicholas Crafts on Wednesday, 26th November.

As the Legatum Institute’s Stephen Clarke points out, there’s no clear answer to the question - The Industrial Revolution: Why Britain got there first.

Brent Crude price fall isn’t the end of the North Sea oil industry

I’m no seer into oil prices or geo-political forces affecting them. I do however, happen to think the doom-mongering descriptions of the collapse of the North Sea oil industry is somewhat overdone.

brent_crude_smallI worked on a Southern North Sea gas platform [not offshore I should add] project in the early 1980’s. My contract, like many others, was terminated with speed, when the price for Brent Crude dropped, and caused Shell Expro to cancel the expensive Gannet Northern North Sea oil platform, which was the next project for many of us.

I wrote about the price per barrel of Brent Crude ages ago HERE, and attached this chart [click to expand]. Note, that the oil industry in the North Sea didn’t collapse – even when the price dropped to just over $10 a barrel. What happened was frantic innovation, as described in Wikipedia,

“The exploration of the North Sea has been a story of continually pushing the edges of the technology of exploitation (in terms of what can be produced) and later the technologies of discovery and evaluation (2-D seismic, followed by 3-D and 4-D seismic; sub-salt seismic; immersive display and analysis suites and supercomputing to handle the flood of computation required).”

Sure, there’ll be project cancellations and layoffs, which will spur exploration companies to find new ways to exploit the oil and gas reserves.

Surrey Police’s Six Villages Team needs our help

Or villages Neighbourhood Policing team have requested our help. Seems despicable dog owners have let their dogs attack sheep.

logoOn Wed 10th Dec 2014 between 12:00 & 16:00 hrs, & probably just before 15:00hrs, a herd of sheep were attacked in a field off Priest Lane, West End.  4 sheep were killed, and 2 were badly injured and may not survive. Other sheep have been severely traumatised. This occurred on private land and the animals were secured by an electric fence.

If you have any information that may help us with our investigation or saw anything suspicious which might connect around these dates please call 101 quoting 45140104406

Dog owners should be aware that they are required by law to keep their dogs under proper control when in public places, and we are receiving reports of instances where this has not been happening

If you need to contact us in the meantime, you can reach us on

Email: 14253@surrey.pnn.police.uk

Surrey Heath Museum: Temporary closure for re-organisation

Here’s the announcement by Surrey Heath Council of the details of the temporary closure of Surrey Heath Museum,

dykdisplay“Surrey Heath Museum will be closed to the public in January 2015 due to work taking place in the museum’s storage area.

The museum will reopen in February 2015 ahead of next year’s events and exhibition programme.

Despite the closure, children can still enjoy two exciting one-off activities at the museum in the New Year.

A free Toddler Tuesdays craft session, Animal Madness, will run on Tuesday, 13 January 2015 from 10.30am to 12pm, with a donation of 50p suggested.

Children will also be able to create their own woodland animal disguise on Saturday, 24 January 2015 from 10.30am to 12pm. The cost of the event is £2.50 per child.

You can still contact the museum during January’s closure by emailing museum@surreyheath.gov.uk or by calling 01276 707284.

To find out more about the museum, visit www.surreyheath.gov.uk/museum