Friday, November 15, 2013

Communication Breakdown

Boardman-Tasker chair, Steve Dean. Will his panel's decision be music to our ears?

I was supposed to be getting a call today from one of the Boardman-Tasker panel to tell me who had taken the prize this year. I promised to do a wee blog piece about it but unfortunately, the curse of BT/Open reach has struck again. As per usual, the lines are down again in the boondocks and I’ve no land line or internet until God knows when? It’s one of my pet rants- the god damn awful post privatisation service from a company which once served the people before it became a profit driven entertainment company. BT/Open reach now employ less than a third of the engineers it employed as a nationalised service, consequentially, in a far flung geographical area like North Wales, a skeleton staff of engineers find themselves covering a huge area. Of course, jobs which were once dealt with immediately are now put on hold and customers have to like it or lump it. It’s even more galling in a week when BT had proudly announced it had outbid Sky to screen European football next year. Does one have to ask, wouldn’t the three quarters of a billion pounds been better spent employing more engineers?...Rant over.

To get back to the other BT; I’ve not always been a huge fan of the Boardman-Tasker Award in that I find that in common with other mountaineering awards, it tends to play safe and go for predictable works authored by 'names' in the sport. Essentially, I find it a very conservative set up which has bestowed its glittering prize on some pretty mediocre works in its time. However, with Steve Dean in the chair this year I’m optimistic that the committee might choose something a bit more left field than the usual Boy’s Own fare. Steve has authored an excellent biography of Colin Kirkus, one of our great doomed romantics and several important biographical essays in his time. Here’s hoping?

Entries for 2013

1 SNOWDON: The Story of a Welsh Mountain
ISBN 978-1843235743
Jim Perrin Gomer
2 BOUNDLESS: An adventure beyond limits
ISBN 978-1-904207-66-5
Karen Darke Akreative
3 ECHOES One Climbers Hard Road to Freedom
ISBN 9781906148539
Nick Bullock Vertebrate Publishing
4 THE CARBON CYCLE Crossing the Great Divide
ISBN 978-1906120634
Kate Rawles Two Ravens Press Ltd
5 ALL BUT ONE: One Woman's Quest to Climb the 52 Highest Mountains in the Alps
ISBN 9781906148607
Barbara Swindin Vertebrate Publishing
6 EXPLORING GREENLAND: Twenty years of adventure mountaineering in the great Arctic wilderness
ISBN 9781906148096
Jim Gregson Vertebrate Publishing
Nick Williams e book partnership
8 COLLIDING CONTINENTS: A geological exploration of the Himalaya, Karakorum, & Tibet
ISBN 978-0-19-965300-03
Mike Searle Oxford University Press
9 ENCOUNTERS IN THE AMERICAN MOUNTAIN WEST. A Sinner Amongst the Latter-Day Saints
ISBN 978-1-906000-24-0
Ian R Mitchell Neil Wilson (Imprint: The In Pinn)
10 FROM HIGH HEELS TO HIGH HILLS. One woman walking the Lake District-in her own style
ISBN 978-1-908779-02-1
Tanya Oliver Step Beach Press Ltd
11 GOING UP: Tales Told Along the Road to El Capitan
ISBN 978-0-9830076-0-9
Joe Fitschen Whole Town Press, USA.
12 ADVENTURES IN MIND A Personal Obsession with the Mountains
ISBN 978109148690
Heather Dawe Vertebrate Publishing
ISBN 978-2-9540879-1-7
Jerome Blanc-Gras Blue Ice Press
14 SHIPTON & TILMAN The Great Decade of Himalayan Exploration
ISBN 978-0-091-79546-7
Jim Perrin Hutchinson, Cornerstone
15 THE SUMMITS OF MODERN MAN: Mountaineering after the Enlightenment
ISBN 976-0-674-04799-0
Peter H.Hansen Harvard University Press
16 CRUEL CROSSING ESCAPING: Hitler across the Pyrenees
ISBN 978-0857-52051-7
Edward Stourton Transworld Publishers
17 EVEREST, THE FIRST ASCENT The untold story of Griffith Pugh, the man who made it possible
ISBN 978-1-84604-348-2
Harriet Tuckey Rider, an imprint of Ebury Publishing (Random House Group)
ISBN 978-1-927330-70-8
Susan Oakey-Baker RMB Rocky Mountain books
ISBN 978-1-84953-393-5
Phoebe Smith Summersdale
20 LAST HOURS ON EVEREST, The Gripping Story of Mallory & Irvine's Fatal Ascent
ISBN 978-0-00-745575-1
Graham Hoyland William Collins
21 A LONG WALK WITH LORD CONWAY, An Exploration of the Alps and an English Adventurer
Simon Thompson Signal Books
22 Starry NIGHT
ISBN 978-1-937391-21-8
Isabel Suppe Romeii
23 SHORT PEAKS, 33 Brief Mountain Tales
ISBN 978-0-9918076-0-4
Jerry Auld Imaginary Mountain Surveyors
24 CHARLIE MEG AND ME, An epic 530 mile walk recreating Bonnie Prince Charlie's escape after the disaster of Culloden
ISBN 978-1-908373-61-8
Gregor Ewing Luath Press
25 CALEB'S LIST, Climbing the Scottish mountains Visible from Arthur's Seat
ISBN 1-908373-53-9
Kellan Macinnes Luath Press
ISBN 978-1-846-55670
Wu Ming-Yi Harvill Secker-Random House
27 THE SUNLIT SUMMIT, The life of W.H.Murray
ISBN 978-1-908737-38-0
Robin Lloyd-Jones Sandstone Press
28 EMPIRE ANTARCTICA, Ice, Silence & Emperor Penguins
ISBN 978-0-701-18689-0
Gavin Francis Chatto & Windus
29 THE CONQUEST OF EVEREST, Original Photographs from the Legendary First Ascent
ISBN 978-0-500-54423-5
George Lowe & Huw Lewis-Jones Thames & Hudson
30 LETTERS FROM EVEREST, A First-Hand Account from the Epic First Ascent
ISBN 978-0-9555255-3-7

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