Station exterior wall

The Train Leaving the Station is . . .

My walk this week has been around the area next to Bristol Temple Meads and at the end of this architectural walk I entered the railway station, not just to view its structure and design but talso to listen to its sounds.

Bristol Templemeads

The start of my soundscape for this walk, like the photos posted at the start of the week, provide some evidence of people – footsteps and voices – but not nearly as much as you might expect for the number of people that were actually there. Perhaps the sounds of human voices and the actions of individuals were being absorbed or muffled by the three dimensional complexity of the city’s architecture and the activities taking place, such as building construction, trains, traffic, etc.

The sounds inside the station were, as you would expect, different. Aside from the echo and reverberation of the cavernous space, the density of people and subsequently their voices and conversations rose to another level. And then the trains arrived and the background ambience changed again – until the train left.

This walk did not involve much in the way of nature and for me there is no question about which is more pleasant and relaxing (a natural environment), but I still find the urban environment of huge interest and I am just as fascinated by the textures, patterns, shapes and colours to be seen and heard around me in the city as I am in a wood or on a mountain – less relaxed but still interested.

Bristol City Soundscape

Stepping Out and Susurrus at Three Cliffs Bay

As we were stepping out across the stepping stones at Three Cliffs Bay on this Taste of Gower circular walk fro the Gower Heritage Centre, I noted the different ambient sound.

It may be expected that the sound of the sea will be different to that of a woodland but the susurration of the wind in trees is not so very different to that of a gentle sea as it washes distantly over a sandy beach. It is different though – the open space seems to me to be one of the greatest influencing factors and with eyes closed or not knowing where you are, these different ambient sounds would give you a pretty good clue as to your surroundings.

The next Taste of Gower walk will be tomorrow 26/08/17 – details here.

Stepping Stones

Stepping Stones

If you ignore the sound of footsteps in the sound clips below, perhaps you will agree that the word susurrus could be used to describe the background ambience of both soundscapes. According to the dictionary I could also have used the word to describe what I called the murmur of voices as the walking group disappeared off into the distance in previous posts on my walk this week, but personally I prefer the onomatopoeia of “murmur” for voices and “susurrus” for the wind or sea. What do you think?

Sound of the Sea

Walking in the Woods

If viewing this in an email, please click the post title to see other photos in this post, thank you.

Looking South from the Beacons

As I approached the first, (or smaller) source of the River Taff, Blaen Taf Fechan (correction – Taf Fechan, see comments on previous post), on my walk this week with the Living Taff group, I took yet another of my frequent stops to look at the view. Looking south from the slopes of Pen y Fan in the Brecon Beacons, I could see all the way to the Bristol Channel, Flat Holm island and beyond to Somerset in England.

Brecon Beacons

England can’t be seen in the shot above which concentrates on the patterns and textures on the slopes of Craig Gwaun Taf which leads up to Corn Du, but the first of the shots below gives a pretty good wider view of the scene, even though the distant atmosphere was quite hazy. In the closer surroundings of the mountains the colours and patterns of light and shade kept changing with the passing clouds.

The Blaen Taf Fechan (below) joins the Blaen Taf Fawr (correction – Taf Fawr, see comments on previous post) at Merthyr Tydfil to become the Afon Taf or River Taff which then flows on down to Wales’ capital city, Cardiff.

These photos are devoid of humans but they were there and there was the constant murmur of voices all around us. It wasn’t disturbing or even annoying really, just present.

Pen y Fan Voices