Alderney, a tiny island

September 13, 2009

We flew this weekend to Alderney, one of the Channel Islands, for my cousin Alice’s wedding.

The plane that took us there from Southampton seated 16, and was the smallest plane I’ve ever been in.

IMG_0872

IMG_0880

This is actually take off from Alderney – as you can see it’s very picturesque and I was strapped to the underbelly of the aircraft in order to take these pictures.

IMG_0739

I lie. This is the interior. The air stewardesses had a hell of a time getting the trolly down the aisle.

It’s ok though, the airport authority of the States of the Channel Islands are a totally professional outfit.

IMG_0866

They only had the one lampost on the island, but it was massive!

IMG_0766

Even better, they’d mounted a foghorn on the top of the rental cottage under the giant lampost. Couldn’t see where to plug my ipod in unfortunately, so the islanders were denied a 500kw preview of the new Cassette Electrik album.

IMG_0770

This picture doesn’t do justice to the incongruous combination of:
a) a 1938 Northern Line tube, taken out of service in 1996
b) a WWII look-out post
c) a Dr Who style abandoned quarry
d) a rusting quarry machine (in distance, not really visible)

IMG_0853

One of the things I didn’t know much about before arriving was the fact of the German occupation of the island between 1940-5. However, there is evidence of it everywhere. This is actually just a water tower built during that time, but it just exudes a sense of dread. (check those evil spikes – for long since disappeared cladding? Or just to enhance the Nazi evil?)

IMG_0774

Some of the islanders haven’t really let go of that part of their history…

IMG_0791

On wall above the bar: “DON’T MENTION THE WAR”

Detail below of three Hitlers flying up the wall (and newspaper headline ‘The Herd Reich’)

IMG_0791_2

Which is ‘fine’ – except for the fact the small group of us who went in there included a family member who happens to be German…

Still, that was only a small part of the weekend. The wedding itself was fantastic and we had a great time walking around the three by 1.5 mile island. It’s extremely picturesque, and the wildlife was quite friendly too.

IMG_0790

Advertisements