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  • Queen's Silver Jubilee
    There was a real party atmosphere that summer, flags everywhere, the excitement of spotting a Jubilee bus - they painted 25 of the old Routemaster buses silver. We did Jubilee projects at junior school, the Girl Guide camp I went to had a Jubilee theme, there was a jubilee song contest on tv. Seems like the whole summer was bright and sunny, and there was a wonderful sense of community.
  • Moorgate Tube Crash
    The reason the verdict is still open, is that it was impossible to determine *why* the driver did not brake the train. An autopsy was performed, and he was found to be in good health - no evidence of heart attack, stroke, etc, with no traces of drugs in his system, and only trace amounts of alcohol in his stomach - and it was thought that even that could have been the result of fermentation after death. His family reported that he had shown no signs of being suicidal - yet he apparently made no attempt to brake, and he was still holding the 'dead-man's handle' when his body was found. There is no way of knowing what was in his mind in the last few seconds. Was it deliberate - i.e., did he commit suicide? Did he suffer some kind of mental seizure that made him unable to act? It took more than four days to retrieve his body, so chemical changes could have taken place making test results (performed in the 70s when the science was not as advanced as today) unreliable. Sorry to go on at such length, but I felt that I should point out the difficulties in coming to a conclusion. Short of posthumous mind-reading, it seems unlikely that it is possible to determine why it happened. The open verdict, however, did not stop new safety measures being put in place that physically stop a train if the driver fails to brake for whatever reason. The system is known by some as the Moorgate Control.
  • Chemistry Sets
    It looks like I never grew out of my love of playing with chemistry sets. I spent last summer working in the pharmacy of a local hospital, and my favourite part was definitely compounding - making some of the more complex compounds was just as much fun. To this day, whenever I see chemistry sets in a store, I gaze at them longingly and try to persuade myself that I really, really need one!

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