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Rebreather Divers Grateful For Henderson’s List

Gordon Henderson, CCR, Inspiration List, Martin Parker, Nicky Finn, AP Diving, Geraint Ffoulkes-Jones, Sally Cartwright, Rosemary E Lunn, Roz Lunn, The Underwater Marketing Company, closed circuit rebreather safety

At the end of May 2017 AP Diving’s Managing Director – Martin Parker – issued a statement on the Inspiration List.

“Gordon Henderson is retiring his Inspiration Users List after 19 years. I don’t think this milestone should pass without acknowledging the role of Gordon’s Inspiration List for CCRs generally: It has been a fundamental part of the way the sport diving world has learned about closed circuit rebreathers, procedures and rebreather safety.”

Gordon Henderson was an early adopter of the Inspiration Rebreather and a gifted IT specialist. When he placed an order for the “just launched” Inspo in 1998, Henderson immediately recognised the need for Inspiration owners to be able to communicate freely, and set up the Inspiration List using his Drogon email system. (Social media didn’t exist at the time and forums were pretty basic).

The resulting Inspiration List provided certified AP rebreather users with immediate multi-way communication and the ability to discuss issues, and share experiences with other CCR divers because “no knowledge or a little knowledge can kill you”.

“Why we don’t use Lithium Hydroxide, …..the idea for monitoring the thermal process in the scrubber came from list member discussions, ….understanding the effect of depth on the scrubber, …best decompression practices, ….best gas choices are just some of the topics that were put to bed.”
Martin Parker

Gordon Henderson, CCR, Inspiration List, Martin Parker, Nicky Finn, AP Diving, Geraint Ffoulkes-Jones, Rosemary E Lunn, Roz Lunn, The Underwater Marketing Company, closed circuit rebreather safety, Sally Cartwright, SAA Chairman, Bluebird Project

Early Inspiration adopter and wreck explorer Sally Cartwright checks her handsets

“As a new Inspo diver (15 months now), lemme [sic] register my regards and gratitude to Gordon for doing this good work. A list like this is critical to safe, independent customer development and education, and it’s good to see that the factory agrees.”
Ken Blakely

This forum has proven to be the single most valuable education tool for the both of us to learn to dive more safely and knowledgeably. Time and again real nuggets of information from many contributors have enable us to learn more about our breathers and diving in general that we would not have otherwise learned.”
M
arc & Phyllis Dennis

Martin Parker also stated that if it wasn’t for Gordon’s involvement, the Inspiration List would have been dropped.

“I realised that quite a few of the subscribers enjoy this form of communication and if there is something important for the factory to say, it’s a good way of reaching people quickly.” Martin Parker

The Inspiration List also inspired other divers to set up valuable resources, including Jan Willem Bech’s “The Rebreather Site.

We are pleased to report that Andrew Last has kindly taken up the Inspiration List mantle.

Thank you Gordon for your exceptional service. It has been appreciated by so many CCR divers.

I’ll leave the last word to wreck explorer Geraint Ffoulkes-Jones.

“The true legacy of all your excellent work just cannot be measured, because it is the number of lives your valuable Inspo and general CCR information sharing source has saved over countless years, and thankfully we will never know the true extent.”

 

 

Aqua Lung Shot FX Fins

Aqua Lung state their Shot FX fins are an innovative design that helps provide a powerful, yet comfortable kick.

There are definite physiological differences between men and women when it comes to key pieces of equipment – suits, BCD’s, gloves – but does this also include fins? In writing this piece we have not been able to find any formal research into male and female fins and how each sex kicks during scuba diving. (Perhaps this might make a good PHd research project?).

Aqua Lung, Aqualung, Rosemary E Lunn, Roz Lunn, XRay Mag, X-Ray Magazine, Shot FX Fins, Twilight, scuba diving fins, female diving equipment, girls scuba kit

The Shot FX fins are part of the new ‘Details’ collection from Aqua Lung. This equipment range was specifically designed for females by an international team of female divers and water enthusiasts.

What we do know is that women have wider hips and these affect the centre of gravity, it is lower in women. We generally have shorter legs and shorter stride lengths. In the main women enjoy a greater range of joint movement and flexibility than men.

So where does that leave us when it comes to buying fins? We need something that works efficiently, but surely that is the wish of all divers?

Aqua Lung state the Shot FX Fin foot pocket has a customised inner sole designed to anchor the foot, preventing power from the boot moving laterally during the power stroke, resulting in maximum energy transmission.

The blade is shorter and softer when compared with other fins, making it easier to kick. And performance has been enhanced by adding an elastic blade insert. Apparently this creates a “spoon effect” that pushes more water with each down stroke.

Thought has also been given to the straps and Aqua Lung have realised just how popular technical spring straps are proving with the majority of divers. The Shot FX fins are fitted with metal spring straps and a soft heel lug, that help make donning and doffing much easier.

This visually attractive fin is proving to be popular with both sexes, and is available in Twilight and Arctic White.

Link to manufacturer or source: Aqua Lung

First Published: X-Ray MagazineSeptember 2013, Issue 56, Page 58

Earth Day 2017: Dive Point’s Plastic Pledge

Matthias Breit, Regina Rinkenburger, Dive Point, Red Sea Diving, scuba diving Hurghada, Rosemary E Lunn, Roz Lunn, The Underwater Marketing Company, scuba diving stories, diving PR, Earth Day

A Dive Point day-boat heading home following a day’s diving in the Red Sea

Dive Point, a recreational and technical diving centre based in Hurghada, Egypt has made a plastic pledge to coincide with this year’s Earth Day, by permanently reducing their onboard plastic waste.

UNESCO, John McConnell, Matthias Breit, Regina Rinkenburger, Dive Point, Red Sea Diving, scuba diving Hurghada, Rosemary E Lunn, Roz Lunn, The Underwater Marketing Company, scuba diving stories, diving PR, Earth Day

Dive Point’s new water drinking fountain contains 19 litres of water, ensuring that the guests don’t use 31 small plastic bottles

In 1969 at a UNESCO conference John McConnell proposed that an annual day be put in place to support and promote environmental protection. The first ‘Earth Day’ was held on the first day of spring (in the northern hemisphere) on 21st March 1970. The date later moved to 22nd April.

“We are always looking at ways to recycle and we wanted to mark Earth Day in a positive manner”, stated Regina Rinkenburger, Dive Point’s Operation Manager. In some countries, such as Germany and Canada it is really easy to recycle. In Egypt it can be more challenging, therefore we need to be cleverer with our waste.

We have found that recycling plastic is not a simple process; hence we must put in place as many ways as we can to reduce our plastic use. This week we have installed 19 litre water fountains on our dive boats. Each fountain is the equivalent of 31 small plastic bottles of water. Guests are welcome to fill their water containers as many times as they like. These fountains have already made a huge difference to the amount of plastic waste coming off our boats.”

 

Better Balloon Release News

What a great way to start the week. We have three pieces of positive #BalloonRelease news!

As March drew to a close we talked to the British magazine Horse & Hound about the Marine Conservation Society‘s online pledge. The MCS is actively urging people to sign their pledge to help the charity create an interactive map, to show support for balloon release bans around the UK.

As you can see in the news cutting below, we are delighted that news of the MCS #BalloonRelease Pledge made it into Horse & Hound.

“The Marine Conservation Society launched a campaign on 22 March, calling on people to lobby the councils to ban balloon and lantern releases, as it has seen the harm they cause to sea and shore life.”

TUMC’s Roz Lunn was also quoted in this article.

‘Rosemary Lunn, who works in communications in the diving industry, pointed out that Helium is a finite resource and is needed for vital work in medicine. “Times have moved on and ideas need to change”, she said.’ 

Compassionate-Friends, Australia, Marine-Conservation-Society, Poundbakery, Bolton Bakery, mass balloon release, Keely Palin, young-horse-panicked-by-helium-balloon-suffers-broken-neck, environmental littering, MCS, Rosemary E Lunn, Roz Lunn, The Underwater Marketing Company, Horse-and-Hound-Magazine,

An Australian bereavement support group – the ‘Compassionate Friends’ – releasing balloons on 1 February 2016 at Kingston Park Coastal Reserve

The second piece of good news comes from Australia and concerns a support group called ‘The Compassionate Friends‘. This group helps bereaved parents and siblings by providing opportunities for families to come together. One of TCF SA’s key events is an annual balloon release. This year’s event was due to be held on Sunday 23rd April.

It should be stated that TCF SA did not understand the impact of ‘environmentally friendly’ latex balloons until No Balloon Release Australia advised them according.

After learning the facts, a committee member of TCF SA and an organiser of the balloon release event confirmed that the group would immediately look into an environmentally friendly alternative event to replace the balloon release.

“Our information previously had been that by using supposedly biodegradable balloons, our event was safe for the environment. We’re saddened to know this is not the case.

It seems we are harming the environment by releasing balloons – this is certainly not our intention – so the committee will revise the plans for the event and come up with another way to acknowledge our precious children.”

Well done to all concerned.

Compassionate-Friends, Australia, Marine-Conservation-Society, Poundbakery, Bolton Bakery, mass balloon release, Keely Palin, young-horse-panicked-by-helium-balloon-suffers-broken-neck, environmental littering, MCS, Rosemary E Lunn, Roz Lunn, The Underwater Marketing Company

And finally an update on last week’s Poundbakery balloon release.

Earlier today Poundbakery released the following statement via social media.

“We at Poundbakery are incredibly sorry for last week’s balloon release PR stunt. Whilst we did use biodegradable materials, we did not realise that these materials could still have such a negative impact on the environment and wildlife. We were both naive and ignorant of the devastation this can cause, which is why we would like to donate £1000 to an environmental charity. We are currently in the process of looking for a local north west based charity and will update you all when we have found the right one.”

Thank you Poundbakery for listening.

Bolton’s ‘Poundbakery’ PR Balloon Blunder

Did you hear the one about Poundbakery, who thought it would be a fab idea to potentially maim and kill wildlife, whilst wantonly littering the Greater Manchester area?

Probably not.

It is quite possible however that you read about the bakery releasing 500 helium balloons, containing free sandwich vouchers in Bolton, as a PR stunt.

Poundbakery, Bolton Bakery, mass balloon release, Keely Palin, young-horse-panicked-by-helium-balloon-suffers-broken-neck, environmental littering, MCS, Rosemary E Lunn, Roz Lunn, The Underwater Marketing Company

“The sky is the limit with this campaign and we can’t wait to see where the balloons end up.” Keely Palin, Marketing Manager, Poundbakery Bolton

This ill conceived stunt, along with Poundbakery’s Marketing Manager, Keely Palin, certainly both deserve an entry in this year’s PR Hall of Shame.

Barely 20 days ago, on 20th March, Horse and Hound reported that a young horse ran through a gate, broke two of her legs and then her neck after choking on a helium balloon that had landed in her field.

Keely Palin told The Bolton News on 7th March 2017, “The sky is the limit with this campaign and we can’t wait to see where the balloons end up.”

Whilst Bolton and Greater Manchester are not known for their turtle population, it is a shame that Ms Palin seems to have not yet grasped that the environment needs to be positively accounted for when planning and executing every piece of PR.

At present the Marine Conservation Society is urging the public to back the banning of all balloon releases.

Currently over 50 UK local authorities including Cornwall County, Durham, Monmouthshire, Worcestershire etc, have agreed to implement a ban on balloon and lantern releases on their land.

Poundbakery, Bolton Bakery, mass balloon release, Keely Palin, young-horse-panicked-by-helium-balloon-suffers-broken-neck, environmental littering, MCS, Rosemary E Lunn, Roz Lunn, The Underwater Marketing Company, Richard Gilbert, dead guillemot

A dead Guillemot entangled in a fence by a balloon

After releasing the 500 balloons, Poundbakery proudly posted the following statement on their Facebook page.

“As promised, here’s the video of the balloon release…we can confirm that the balloons (complete with FREE LUNCH vouchers) headed South East, towards Yorkshire and Manchester. However, with the British weather, they could be anywhere by now. Keep a lookout and post any pictures of the balloons in the sky…happy hunting!”

Poundbakery is encouraging everyone to tweet a photo of themselves with their Poundbakery voucher to @poundbakery with the hashtag #FreeLunch and #GoLarge. Alternatively you could always email Poundbakery with your views on balloon releases.

The hashtags for the campaign to stop balloon releases include #Pollution, #Litter, #BalloonsBlow, #Wildlife and #DontLetGo

So Ms Keely Palin. Here’s a piece of advice. A bad publicity stunt is memorable for all the wrong reasons, so here is a chance to make it right.

  • Organise a Poundbakery sponsored beach clean
  • Donate funds to the Marine Conservation Society to help them educate others who don’t understand just how damaging balloon releases can be
  • Sign the MCS’s pledge to help the charity ban balloon releases
  • And how about feeding 500 homeless people? One for every balloon you released!

Now has anyone got Bolton Council’s telephone number to get them to ban balloon releases?

MV Halton Needs Seasonal Crew

MV Halton, Huddersfield BSAC, Bob Anderson, Rosemary E Lunn, Roz Lunn, The Underwater Marketing Company, scuba diving jobs, Scottish Diving

Huddersfield BSAC diving from the MV Halton

The skipper of the MV Halton (Bob Anderson) is seeking new boat crew for the 2017 season.

The sturdy Halton is 21 mt /70 ft former Danish trawler providing day-boat and liveaboard charters to divers in Scapa Flow and beyond.

She is primarily based in Scapa Flow and dives from Trondheim in Norway to the Hebrides and Malin Head.

The job includes filling cylinders, keeping the dive deck tidy, rope work and looking after the divers.

DOWNSIDES

The hours can be punishing, the time away wearing and living on the boat claustrophobic.

UPSIDES

This is not a long-term diving holiday. However time is allowed for the crew to get into the water and dive some remarkable places. You’ll be part of a strong supportive team and receive training in areas you are unsure.

MV Halton, Bob Anderson, Rosemary E Lunn, Roz Lunn, The Underwater Marketing Company, scuba diving jobs, Scottish Diving, diving liveaboards, diving Scapa Flow

Bob Anderson has traditionally employed a diver because they understand the customers.

“Please be very aware you will be ‘front of house’ and be facing clients daily: a good manner with people is of prime importance! 

Having said all that, this is a rare and valuable opportunity. Your predecessors have laid a high standard and allowed to boat to cover an itinerary that is second to none. I have relied on some of the best people you can imagine and the Halton has absorbed their hard work into her oak.”

MV Halton, Bob Anderson, Rosemary E Lunn, Roz Lunn, The Underwater Marketing Company, scuba diving jobs, Scottish Diving, diving liveaboards, Pascal van Erp, Peter Verhoog, Ghost Fishing Foundation

MV Halton has been involved with the Ghost Fishing initiative – helping clear Orkney waters of abandoned and lost fishing gear

You will receive a wage, all food etc and accommodation aboard the boat and any training needed. If you can step up to that challenge, get in touch.

Marine Life Rescue Course Comes To Brixham

Ever wondered how you can get involved to safely rescue stranded Whales, Dolphins, Porpoises and seals?

The British Divers Marine Life Rescue team run a one day course. It includes practical sessions in the sea using life sized and weighted models of a whale, a dolphin and a seal.

British Divers Marine Life Rescue, BDMLR, Doug Allan, Monty Halls, Rosemary E Lunn, Roz Lunn, The Underwater Marketing Company, Brixham, stranded seal, stranded whale, stranded porpoise, stranded dolphin

There are currently spaces available on the course running on Sunday 9th April 2017 in Brixham, Devon.

To book your place, click here. Don’t forget your drysuit!