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this page was last updated on 01 January 2017


Cal's art exhibition @ NAC - Friday 13th December
Visiting Cal's work at the Netherton Arts Centre Well, A good night with live music too but I've never claimed to be artistically-sophisticated ... so when seeing a pile of of newspapers I [quite naturally!!] thought were free papers from the Express & Star, so I took a copy! People rushed at me .. it was part of the exhibition!! You judge from the photo. More photos here

Classical Spectacular @ NIA
I went with my two sisters to the National Indoor Arena on Saturday 7th December to this event which was indeed truly spectacular with wonderful music, soloists, fireworks and even canons for the 1812!! 

explaining the World Cup draw .. !!
I'm not overly sure this BBC item explained the World Cup draw made on 6th December. It's just a pity that England was drawn in such a difficult Group! watch the video clip HERE

Bluebell Wood - 5th December 2013
While most of Britain was suffering fro gale force winds we escaped the excesses!! A good walk in these woods near Clent was good .. sunny but cold!

William McBain and Ian Macrae at the Black Country Museum

Black Country Museum - 16th November 2013
A superb day out here viewing many places I remember from my youth!! My favourite bit was the fish & chips as we used to have, cooked in beef dripping!! Healthy or what. More photos here

William Mcbain, beverley Bevan, Belinda McBain, Elsie Harvey, Nicki Bainbridge at a Festival of Remembrance with VIH Choir November 2013

Festival of Remembrance - 9th November 2013
A very moving evening with a concert by my choir and the local Salvation Army band where we ended the evening with a 'festival of remembrance' attended by the mayor and local Member of Parliament. Now home watching on TV the nation's act of remembrance with all the tales of heroism and where school children from my fair city of Halesowen have featured. How lucky are we to be born British. So moving .... more photos here

Walking - 7th November 2013
a lovely walk in the sunshine through the heathland and woodland on Kinver Edge

The ceremony of 'Introduction' of Baroness Kennedy
Held on 4th November 2013 in the House of Lords, I was privileged to be invited to watch Alicia’s ‘Introduction’ as a Baroness in a ceremony that has remained unchanged since 1621. This was followed by photographs in the Royal Gallery and Afternoon Tea in the Cholmondeley Room and Lords Terrace - posh or what!!!! I don't think I'll be seeing the like of this day again!! More photos here

Getting to London - 4th November 2013
I was lucky enough to be invited to watch the ceremony in the Chamber of the House of Lords of a friend’s daughter being ‘introduced’ as Baroness Kennedy and to join in the celebrations that followed. These photos are of me and other friends getting to London. More photos here

SVR - 24th October 2013
a specially organised trip by steam-enthusiasts on the Severn Valley Railway (SVR) where went from Kidderminster - Bridgnorth and return twice and where each of us were allowed on the footplate!! My slot was from Highley to Arley. It was like being in a full-sized Hornby train set.
More photos here

Bletchley Park - 21st October 2013
A day out at Bletchley Park where one of WW2's most famous – and crucial – achievements was made: the cracking of Germany’s “Enigma” code in which its most important military communications were couched. This was home to Britain’s most brilliant mathematical brains, like Alan Turing, and the scene of immense advances in technology – indeed, the birth of modern computing. More photos here

Air Ambulance event - 17th October 2013
Walking from Kinver today along the canal towards Merry Hill, we came upon a situation where (we were told) a woman had a heart attack and fell into the water - paramedics were caring for her as we got there followed within minutes by her evacuation by the air ambulance. Ghoulish perhaps, but I snap photos at every opportunity!! More photos here

Joshua mcBain. Margot James and William McBain at PMQs on 16th October 2013

Prime Minister's Questions - 16th October 2013
My application way back in February finally paid off with 2 tickets for Prime Minister's Questions today. Meeting up with my nephew Joshua McBain we first booked in to Portcullis House and after a brief tour of that superb building we were ...taken to Parliament via the underground passageway where we met Margot James, my MP, for coffee. Notwithstanding she supports Chelsea FC she was charm personified and although this photo makes me look like a rabbit caught in the headlights we chatted about football and just a hint of politics. She was lovely. PMQs was good too with a rare question from the 'Beast of Bolsover' aka Dennis Skinner. A good day.
More photos here

Cottage at Shipton Moyne - 26/30 September 2013
for Jodie's wedding on 27/9 eleven of the family, plus five dogs!!, descended on a cottage in the sleepy village of Shipton Moyne in the Cotswolds which was just a few miles from the wedding venue. The other half of the family stayed in a nearby hotel. More photos here

Jodie & Simon's wedding - 27th September 2013
my niece Jodie Aldridge married Simon Ziff on Friday 27/9 at the Matara Centre in the depths of the gorgeous countryside of the Cotswolds. The family descended en mass and I stayed with 10 others in a cottage in the nearby sleepy village of Shipton Moyney from the Thursday to the Monday. It was my first 'al fresco' ceremony and luckily the weather was ideal for what turned out to be a lovely ceremony & celebrations. More photos here

Carl & Amelie's wedding - Saturday 3rd August 2013
My first foray into Essex [no orange tans or estuary English seen/heard at all] the magnificent wedding venue was held at Layer Marney Tower, built in the reign of Henry VIII . Layer Marney Tower is the tallest Tudor gatehouse in Great Britain. More photos here

Scotland - 14th to 16th June 2013
going with my sisters Beverly and Belinda along with my nephew Matthew to visit old friends and family in Scotland. We stayed with Lesley & Ian and spent the weekend exploring Glasgow and sharing fellowship with those we hold dear. More photos here

William McBain at Kinver canal 7 June 2013

Walking from Cookley to Kinver for lunch and back alongside the canal - which on such a beautiful day was a pleasure indeed.

Archie bevan

Remembering my sister Barbara - 2nd June 2013.
For the past 15 years we've been to Clent for mum to scatter rose petals in memory of my sister Barbara. Rather than a meal out first we decided, as the weather was so good, on Clent's famous Nimmins Cafe's sausage & bacon sandwiches!! Very nice indeed though my waistline continues to complain!

More photos here


Clent & Walton Hills - 16th May 2013
walking over the hills on a sunny but windy day.

More photos here


At Birmingham Town Hall Saturday 11th May  for a Concert which (and I quote) “Brings together some of the most exciting and diverse choral groups from Birmingham and the surrounding areas; this concert celebrates the wealth of choral talent in the city” and which included 3 local to me choirs from Lutley, Quinton and, in my view the stars of the evening, ‘Stream of Sound’ an acapella choir from Stourbridge. More photos here

William McBain in Kinver Edge woods - May 2013

Walking through the Kinver Edge woods on a windy Thursday 9th May. More photos here

William Mcbain and friends at Spittlefield MARKET IN lONDON - aPRIL 2013

At both Spitalfield & Petticoat Lane markets  - Sunday morning 28th April 2013. More photos here

After the Shard, we went by boat up the Thames to Greenwich to visit both the National Maritime Museum and the Royal Observatory and which is the home of Greenwich Mean Time and the Prime Meridian of the world - Saturday afternoon 27th April 2013. More photos here

visiting the Shard's viewing gallery and open-air observation deck - Saturday morning 27th April 2013 - The Shard is a 72-storey skyscraper opened to the public on 1 February 2013 and is the tallest building in the European Union.. More photos here

William McBain at the Ritz in London

We were in London for part of my birthday 'celebrations' (there's a misnomer!) and we had decided Afternoon Tea at the Ritz would be a good idea .. !! I'd like to say we fitted in well but hey .. !! Friday 26th April. More photos here

On Friday 26th April we had a private tour [it’s not open to the public as it's now converted in to offices!] of the original Bethlehem Hospital in Finsbury Circus, London from where, in the bowels of the building, the cells housed one of the world’s oldest hospitals for the treatment of mental illness – and from where the word Bethlehem was corrupted to Bethlem and thence to the word ‘Bedlam’ to describe chaos or madness. More photos here

At the Hawthorns on Saturday 20th April for the v Newcastle game and then straight to Stourbridge for a Concert of classical music. Eclectic or what? More photos here

walking through Wyre Forrest @ Hawk Batch and where we went to overlook the Trimpley Reservoir - Thursday 18th April. More photos here

with my nephew Alexander Joel Bevan's days as a medical student ended, his Elective approaches. He's off to Belize for 5 weeks soon so, as he was back home, mum, Belinda & I went to lunch at my sister Bev's to wish him well - Sunday 14th April More photos here

Photo: At the NEC for the Gadget Show - just love this new tv with 4 times the clarity of HD TV ... I want I want

a good day out at The Gadget Show at the National Exhibition Centre - with George - and loads of money could have been spent!! I loved the state of the art 4k TVs which were 4 times the definition of an HDTV. Even on a 60 inch TV the clarity was 'wow' - Friday th April More photos here

Halesowen St John the Baptist church taken by William McBain 3rd April 2013

Going in by bus to Halesowen (3rd April) as it stopped opposite St John's I thought what a beautiful church we have in our midst and which we take for granted!! I couldn't help but snap these on my iPhone. (Amazing to think there's been worship on that spot since 1083.)More photos here

Easter Sunday - 31st March - the morning service with mum at Short Cross Methodist and then off to Bev's for our now traditional Easter lunch, finally dropping mum at my bother's - and taking a photo of their family of course!!!! More photos here

Early morning Good Friday communion @ 7.30am at Short Cross Methodist and then my now traditional breakfast of toasted Hot-Cross buns & Easter Egg Hunt at June & John's - the snow meant we didn't sit outside for our breakfast this year!! More photos here

My great-nephew Archie with his 'Home Alone' look .. butter wouldn't melt huh? .. oh how little you know him .. bless his little cotton socks

Singing with an improvised choir at Overend Methodist as part of our Palm Sunday where we sang Roger Jones' "Pharaoh to Freedom" - and despite the snow & ice people actually braved the elements and turned up to hear us!

Walking along the embankment of the River Severn through Bewdley and along the bank beyond there - about 5.5 miles in all. Still a cold wind, when is the warmer weather going to come!! 21st March 2013. More photos here

William McBain at the Queen's diamond jubilee stained glass window in Westminster Hall

Now that’s what I call an invitation!! An unexpected invite-card to a Diamond Wedding Anniversary celebration arrived which included these events: on the Friday 15th March (1) a private tour of the Houses of Commons & Lords (2) dinner in the House of Lords and on the Saturday (3) a ‘flight’ on the London Eye (4) afternoon tea at Churchill’s War Rooms followed by a tour and finally (5) evening party at The Southwark Rooms. It seemed churlish to refuse – now back home having had a wonderful time. More photos here

William McBain / Bill McBain

walking along the River Severn towards Stourport on Thursday 14th March. More photos here

Belinda McBain & Elsie Harvey on Mothering Sunday 10th March 2013

Out for Mothering Sunday [10th March] first at Short Cross Methodist, then out for a meal ending up at mum's. More photos here


William McBain / Bill McBain & Judith Tyler on 9th March 2013

Nicki Bainbridge's 50th party at Ma Pardo's @ Netherton and where during the meal we were immersed into a 'Murder Mystery' evening of the 'goings on' at St Jude's School .. an excellent evening! More photos here


walking over Kinver Edge in the rain on Thursday 7th March - Kinver's War Memorial ...


William McBain / Bill McBain

in Torquay staying for a few days staying with Lynne & Ian - visiting Exeter & Totnes - 1st/4th March. More photos here


Bethany McBain on her 18th birthday

It was my niece Bethany's 18th birthday party on Saturday 23rd February 2013 - where 'old' met 'young' - sadly I'm in the former category!!! A family part held at her home where the young 'ens were good enough to hang on till 110pm when they left for Birmingham city centre leaving the rest of us to reminisce over the times when we were young!! More photos here


Walking along the canal @ Cookley - 21st February 2013. More photos here


Belinda McBain

Enjoying a meal in Bridgnorth after watching the superb film Les Misérables - seen here are my 2 sisters Belinda & Beverly and Shirley. Friday 1st February 2013


walking at Wyre Forest  - snowless yeh! Thursday 31st January- More photos here


walking today from home to the the Netherton Reservoir on Thursday 24th January - more
photos here


can't get off my drive as snow's still here and this is my garden @ 21st January. More photos here

  can't get the car out in all this snow, so hey lets walk to Haden Hill Park and enjoy it!! - 18th January 2013. More photos here
  at Birmingham Town Hall to hear Ex Cathedra sing Brittien's "A Boy Was Born" - Saturday 12th January. More photos here
  walking over Clent & Walton Hills on Friday 11th January - very foggy and very muddy. I took an embarrassing fall and slide down the bank! More photos here
  a few days away for the fresh sea-air of Falmouth in Cornwall, staying at the Royal Duchy Hotel - with Joy & Lynton and Lynne & Ian from 6th-9th January! More photos here


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