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Colourful Folkestone

By 23 March 2014 Folkestone, Lifestyle, Photography

Firstly, apologies for the lack of Friday Photo this week. I didn’t get home until late on Friday as we had a charity games night, which involved me eating about 5 slices of pizza and later feeling incredibly bloated!

This last week has been busy as usual. What with my exciting news on Monday, and having Wednesday off, the week swept by once again. On my day off I spent about 6 hours on a photographic mission, which was a vain attempt to find the perfect red, white and blue photograph for the #Blog4Trek competition being run by Trek America. The rubbish, overcast sky meant that all my photos were pretty flat and my hopes for using the sky as the ‘blue’, were dashed.  Luckily, I have tonnes of photos from my travels, so I was able to choose a classic from my collection.

Despite the grey day, I managed to explore colourful Folkestone. It was windy but with my cosy earmuffs on it was like I was in my own little world; they block out a surprising amount of noise! I had a lovely, quiet walk around and still took plenty of photos. If you click on any of the photographs in the revolving gallery above, they’ll expand so you can see them in full. No one wants to see half a fox!

I love living in Folkestone, so it gets me down when I hear people complaining about the town. There is a lot of negativity, especially on social media about Folkestone, mostly from the people who live here. I don’t understand why they don’t go and live somewhere else if they hate it so much! We have a great number of festivals, the airshow returning this year and the Triennial, which is very exciting and will be the topic of another blog post 🙂 Actual Yoko Ono is coming to Folkestone! I know, right?!

The creative side of the town means that there are lots of projects and cool things happening, such as the Noel’s Yard community project (pictured above). This forgotten part of town has been transformed into a bright and exciting space. Take a look at this article on the local council’s website for the before and after photos.

I hope there are more projects like this, and particularly, I hope that no one messes them up by scrawling on the walls or stealing the flower pots. Fingers crossed.

I hope you enjoy my photographs of colourful Folkestone. Does your town have any colourful artworks or buildings? If you’ve written about them, I’d love for you to leave your links in the comments.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Rachel x

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Friday Photo #4

By 14 March 2014 Australia, Photography
Friday Photo series of blog posts. RachelBirchley.com

This week’s Friday photo is influenced by today’s #FriFotos tag on Twitter: edge. This is me in 2008 up the Sydney Tower Eye (was called the Sky Tower) on the Skywalk experience.

I donned this fetching jumpsuit, attached myself to the safety wire and walked around the outside of the building, 268m above the streets below. The best bit is walking out onto the glass platform, which when the guide presses the button, extends out over the edge of the building! There’s nothing between you, the platform and the floor a long way below. It was brilliant!

Check out the stunning view!

This is me on the Sydney Tower Eye Skywalk. Rachelbirchley.com
This is me on the Sydney Tower Eye Skywalk. I'm high above the city streets with Sydney harbour behind me. RachelBirchley.com

For more pics, etc, take a look at my post all about the Sydney Sky Tower.

What’s everyone up to this weekend? A friend and colleague is celebrating his 40th birthday so hubby and I will be going out for a drink or two to help him drown his sorrows!

Rachel x

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Friday Photo #3

By 7 March 2014 New Zealand, Photography
Friday Photo series of blog posts. RachelBirchley.com

It’s time for another Friday Photo.  I swear the weeks are getting shorter and shorter.  My life seems to be disappearing before my eyes!

Wai O Tapu Champagne Pool Rotorua, New Zealand. RachelBirchley.com

This is the Champagne Pool at Wai-O-Tapu Geothermal Wonderland near Rotorua in New Zealand.

The name is derived from the abundance of CO2 gas, just like a glass of bubbly.  The water is pretty damn hot, you can see the steam rising.  The pool is filled from a geothermal hot spring.  It may look lovely, but the smell was not as nice!  The geothermal activity emits a lot of sulphur so the whole area smells like less than fresh eggs.  Even in the town of Rotorua itself it’s pretty stinky; it took some getting used to.

Have a good weekend!  What have you got planned?

Rachel x

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Instagram Photo Tour of Folkestone Harbour

By 3 March 2014 Folkestone, Kent, Life, Lifestyle, Photography
Photo tour of Folkestone harbour, Kent. RachelBirchley.com

On Saturday there was this strange yellow ball in the sky!  Being sat indoors at work all day and then coming home in the dark, I’ve felt like I’ve not really been out.  So come the weekend I was desperate to get out and get some fresh air. And the sunshine meant there really was no excuse.

It’s really daft living by the sea. Sometimes you can go for weeks not actually seeing it in the flesh. At work, I’m really lucky because we have a panoramic sea view, unless it’s foggy, then we can’t see anything! But it starts to seem a little unreal. I love to go down to the sea and actually smell and see it for real. I hope that doesn’t sound weird! I feel a strange affinity with the sea. It makes me feel happy and home. <3

Folkestone harbour is still a working harbour with fishing boats bringing in their catch every morning. The town started as a fishing village before transforming into a bustling seaside resort in the 19th century once the railway from London came. For more, take a look at this brief history of Folkestone from the local history society.

So to show you around the harbour and beach area, here’s my little Instagram photo tour.


Yes, there are actual people in the sea! I was wearing my coat, scarf and ear muffs. I’m sure these people were insane.


Grrr!! This makes me angry. All this rubbish washed up because it’s been thrown in the harbour or thrown on the floor before being blown into the harbour. It’s not like there aren’t any bins.

Did anyone watch The Tunnel on Sky Atlantic last year? It was a brilliant crime series. It was set in Folkestone and Calais with loads of filming actually done in Folkestone. I was thinking of taking some photos of the real life locations but didn’t know if anyone would be interested. What do you think?

This week’s going to be pretty busy but I hope to be able to post again before it’s time for Friday Photo once more.

Have a good week!

Rachel x

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Friday Photo #2

By 28 February 2014 New Zealand, Photography
Friday Photo series of blog posts. RachelBirchley.com

In the second of my Friday Photo series, I wanted to share one of my favourite photographs.  I realised while in New Zealand that I was starting to turn into my father and enjoy taking photos of flowers.  This gorgeous light purple water lily was floating of the surface of a pond inside the hot house of Wellington’s Botanic Gardens, where I took A LOT of pictures.

Water lily. Photograph taken at Wellington Botanic Garden hot house, New Zealand 2008

I love the striking colours.  One day, I’ll get this made up onto a canvas.  I can’t believe I took this photo six years ago.  In some ways it seems like just a year or so ago and in others it feels like a lifetime ago.  So much has happened since I came home from travelling.

Have a great weekend!

Rachel x

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