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Alan Machin: Tourism As Education
Home page: blogs, introductions, links to main pages
Berlin: Editing a Townscape
... and reading a city that has had many rebuilders
Making Sense of The Travel Learning Experience- 1
1 Information Streams
Making Sense of the Travel Learning Experience - 2
Some basic theories
Back to Basics: Presentation given at the Cuba EduTourism Conference
The CETA Conference in Havana, Cuba, 8/9 November 2010
About the author
Comments - CV - photos
At the heart of the tourist experience
Learning through Landscapes
Exploring Oxfordshire (and a bit of Gloucestershire!)
The Environment As Data: Building New Theories For Tourism
How tourists relate to places
Sail Gives Way to Steam
A return visit discovers just how much has been achieved in this iconic restoration
Richard III and the Battle of Bosworth Reenactment
Visits to Leicester and the battlefield event, 2013
Along The Way
Recollections and Reflections of 60+ Years' Learning about the World and its Ways
On the Edge of the New World
Shaping New England
Exploring Holderness in East Yorkshire; October 2012
Past Historic
Graf Zepplin, Spain 1968, OS History, Much Wenlock Olympics, Chatham Dockyard, Hawes Tourism, Colonial Williamsburg,
A Summer of Travelling / Matthew Starr
Three months' backpacking in Africa, Asia and Australia
East Anglia
The Broads, Pensthorpe natural history, Radar Museum, Caister Lifeboat Service and more!
A Richer Earth
Discoveries in the landscape and attractions of Shropshire
Blog Index Page
Blog pages from 2009 listed
From Strip Map to Sat Nav
'Finding the way' aids to exploration
Showcasing the World
How the Tourist Microcosm took centre stage
Doing A Dissertation
Notes to help students preparing their proposals
The Japanese Tsunami Destruction at First Hand
Sarah and Tom Wadsworth saw for themselves
Showcases: Examples
The range and variety of tourism's focal points examined
Jigsaw: Frameworks of Knowledge
The tourist jigsaw puzzle of - knowledge
Books and other works useful in studying tourism as education
Tourism's Educational Origins: Part 2
The development of tourism as education, 1845 -
Tourism's Educational Origins: Part 1
Tourism's educational origins and management
Impressions of Tourism in Cuba
Thoughts on having seen some of the country myself
Captain James Cook: North Yorkshire Days
Tracing the early life of Britain's greatest maritime explorer
Hunting the Hound of the Baskervilles
Tracking down places that inspired the famous detective story and moulded Dartmoor's image
Exploring the Idea of Dark Tourism
What is it? Is it a useful idea?
Talking to Tourists
Visitor interpretation - guide books, visitor centres and other media
Shades of Light and Dark in the Garden of England
An exploration in East Sussex and Kent, June/July 2010
Hunting the Gladiator and the Gecko
A thirteen-year search for a wartime adventure
Steam Up For A Famous Film's Birthday Party
The Railway Children weekend on the Worth Valley line raises questions about heritage presentations
Anne-Marie Rhodes: Making a Difference in South East Asia
Leeds Met graduate of '07 describes her activities
Discoveries in Northumberland, April 2010
Alnwick Gardens; Winter's Gibbet; Holy Island, Cragside, Wallington Hall
Discoveries in the Midlands, March 2010
Bletchley Park National Codes and Cipher Centre; and the Rollright Stones
Alan Machin's Blog - April 2010
The development of tourism as education continued
Jigsaw Puzzle!
The Adventure of the Timely Tourist
Leaders Into The Field
People who inspired everyone to explore
Alan Machin's blogs - February and March 2010
Postings on the history tourism as education - redirection
Alan Machin's Blog - January 2010
Tourist photography and souvenirs
Earlier front-page blog postings - January 2010 onwards
Archived after being on the Home Page
News from higher education and - beyond
The Development of Educational Tourism
Key dates in the development of educational tourism
Alan Machin's Blog - December 2009
Christmas Quiz and other postings
Analysing Heritage Tourism
Ideas and perspectives on a hugely important sector
Alan Machin's Blog - November 2009
Visitors' Views of Stonehenge, West Sussex - and other Postings
Are Universities Losing Their Way?
Reflections having retired
Teaching Tourism At Leeds Met
Remembering the Best
Alan Machin's Blog - October 2009
Thoughts about university life and discovery by travel
Alan Machin's Blog - September 2009
Further postings about a trip last month to the USA, and about higher education
Alan Machin's Blog - August 2009
Postings about a trip this month to the USA
Alan Machin's Blog - July 2009
The Story So Far reaches the summer
Alan Machin's Blog - June 2009
The Story So Far looks back on seventeen years at Leeds Met
Alan Machin's Blog - May 2009
Another month of The Story So Far
Alan Machin's blog - April 2009
Yet more of the Story So Far
Alan Machin's blog - March 2009
More of The Story So Far
Alan Machin's Blog - February 2009
The Story So Far - pioneers, people and places
Alan Machin's Blog: January 2009
The Story So Far .... first postings of '09
Alan Machin's Blog: December 2008
The Story So Far .... latest postings
Alan Machin's Blog - November '08
The Story So Far.... continued
Alan Machin's Blog: October 2008
The Story So Far....
No Place Like Rome
The eternal city with the eternal tourists
Charleston, South Carolina
A photo essay about a fine historic city
Idealog - December 2007
Ideas, notes and comments
Idealog - November 2007
Ideas, notes and comments
The Educational Origins of Tourism
Discussion paper
Idealog - October 2007
Coton Military Cemetery; Education and Tourism; Chatham Maritime; Dickens World; Quiz Answers; Tourist Guides; Mediation In Tourism
Idealog - September 2007
Plane Paradox;Tour Guiding; Where in the World?; Do Tourism Students Know Where They Are?; Leeds Met's Wow!; Sea Harrier; Scarborough and Tourism As Education; Doing A Dissertation; Types of Tourist; A Media Lens; Cost of Travelling Alone; Risk of Bias?
Idealog - August 2007
A People Industry; Heritage Interpretation; Lud's Church; Tourists Go Home!; Stone Gappe YHA; Insight Guides; Eyewitness Guides; Bramhope Tunnel; Elizabethan Progress; Information Quality Matrix
Idealog - July 2007
Hidden Heroes, Health Tourism, Holme Fen Posts; Harrogate (again); Whitby Abbey; Dramatic Interpretation; Harrogate Interpretation, Attractions and Royal Hall
Idealog - June 2007
Christian Pilgrimage; Cincinnati Museums Centre; The Coming of the Guide Book; Talking to Tourists - Media, Stages of the Visit, The Service Journey; Tourism's Missing Link; The Final Call; SATuration level; Halifax's Edwardian Window on the World
Idealog - May 2007
Martin and Osa Johnson, Wensleydale Creamery, Malham Tarn, Thomas Cook, Northern Ireland's Tourism Rebuild, Jamestown Festival Park, Cite des Sciences
Idealog - April 2007
The Promenade Plantee, The Jardin des Plantes, Environmental Data, Victorian Beauty Spot Rediscovered, Jamestown, The Anglers' Country Park, Children's Museums, Fairburn Ings
Idealog - March 2007
A Sense of the Past- The 'Amsterdam', The Outdoor Classroom, Film-Induced Tourism, Making Tracks for the Coast and Country, Pictures, Context and Meaning, Classics-on-Sea, Hi Hi Everyone!, Dark Side of the Dream, Holodyne - The Action Cycle
Idealog - February 2007
Don't Go There!, Space Tourism, The Crystal Cathedral, New Books on Tourism, Dark Tourism - Undercliffe Cemetery, Showcase - The Louvre, A Class Act, First Impressions Count, Postal Pleasures, Canaletto in Venice, Serpent Mound, Capsule Culture etc
Idealog - January 2007
Capsule Culture,Seaside Style, Poble Espanyol, Mallorca, Edgar Dale, Children's Holiday Homes, Representations of Reality, Outdoor Education in Germany, Baedeker Guides, Geography Textbooks, Environmental Data Theory etc
Idealog - December 2006
Writers on Landscape, Story Books, The Deep, Flour Power and the Archers,Showcases: Grand Tour, Halifax Piece Hall, Books of Concern about Tourism, Tourist Traces, Tourist Typologies, The Growth of Educational Tourism, The Field Studies Council, etc
Idealog - November 2006
A blog of ideas, comments and notes
Travel To Understand: Belfast
Telling the stories of troubled times
World Quiz 2010
Geography with a tourism angle
The Monterey Bay Aquarium
An outstanding educational facility in California
Chicago: Tourism Re-Imaging
A closer view of an iconic city
Colonial Williamsburg
A Virginia history showcase
A Social Club Outing By Train, 1935
How to do Scotland in 30 hours flat
Going Dutch
Presenting the past in the Netherlands
Keukenhof: Business is Blooming
Using tourism to promote an industry
A View of Italy for the City
Trentham Gardens Revived
A Case Study in Heritage Management
A curious tale of misleading publicity
Old Rice Farm
The story of the house in the 'holler'
Perfection in Paradise: The Eden Project
New page being added: The Eden Project's design for success
Escaping From Slavery: Facing Our Past
The US National Underground Railroad Freedom Center
Prague Tourist Shows
Outstanding showcase attractions in the city
Retracing the Steps: Tourism as Education
ATLAS Conference paper given in Finland, 2000
Tourism and Historic Towns: The Cultural Key
A background paper for a Council of Europe Conference
The Social Helix
Visitor Interpretation as a Tool for Social Development, 1989
Malta Residential, 14-21 Feb 2006 - Page 1
Reports and Pictures
Malta Residential, 14-21 Feb 2006 - Page 2
Photos and reports of Friday 17 Feb onwards
Malta Residential, 14-21 February 2006 - Page 3
Reports and pictures from Sunday, 19 February onwards
Tourism Alumni Reunion, 8 March 2003
Leeds tourism students reunion 2003
World Geography Quiz 1
A test of your knowledge
The Adventure of the Timely Tourist
The answers
Tall Ships Race 2010 Converged on Hartlepool
A major event-based boost for tourism in the town
Plymouth: From the Tamar to the Sea
Starting point for explorations round the globe
Plimoth Plantation
A reconstruction of the Mayflower settlers' village of the 1620s on the north east coast of North America
World Geography Quiz 2010 - Answers
Geography with a tourism angle
World Geography Quiz - Answers
Christmas Quiz 2009 - Answers
A day in the city including the Botanic Garden
Tourist Showcases
Examples from around the world

Idealog - May 2007

Idealog header - May 07
I Married Adventure

Martin and Osa Johnson


It might be nice to go to see the world for ourselves, but we can only manage at best a fraction (unless you're David Attenborough). So we rely on TV, movies, books and newspapers. What we discover about the world is therefore heavily mediated by someone else's adventures and opinions. But they are also shaped in turn by the people and pressures exerted on them. It's always fascinating to see how changing cultures and societies have altered the way the world is judged - and used - in the past.

During the 1920s and 30s here was no television and the cinema was the venue for travel films, backed up by shows to societies and schools. The format was developing into a distinctive genre in those years. The work of Burton Holmes was the subject of an earlier posting - he in fact began just before World War I along with people like John L Stoddard from the USA and Cherry Kearton from Britain. Foreign travel was always an adventure, the destinations were exotic and film audiences thrilled to spectacle and the unusual.

Martin Johnson was an American adventurer who had travelled the Pacific with Jack London between 1907 and 1909 and made a film of the trip called "Cannibals of the South Seas". In 1910 he met Osa Leighty in Chanute, Kansas: the married, and became partners in traveling and moviemaking, an enterprise that lasted until 1937 when Martin Johnson was killed in a plane crash that Osa only just survived.

Osa Johnson wrote a lively, readable account of their lives together in 1940. Like the films it is bright and breezy, in a style of storytelling that went down well with the public. The couple were attractive as star characters in their own films. As with Armand and Michaela Denis and Jacques Cousteau in later years they inspired many people to go see for themselves what the world was like - and gave a picture of the world to millions more who never strayed quite so far from their local cinema or TV set. The style of the films was of their time, reflecting social mores as well as shaping them further. One of them, "Congorilla" of an African trek in 1932 is available on videotape, although only in NTSC format. Much of it is still attractive, and sympathetic to Africa and its peoples. Some of it is not. A shot of a hippopotamus, mouth yawning wide open, is accompanied by a comment that it is a great place to dispose of used razor blades. Another shows natives listening to a wind-up gramophone playing a jazz record. Mrs Johnson is enjoying her status as some kind of superior being and is delighted when the Africans show what she sees as their simple delight in the rhythm: the tourist is presented as the teacher, not a student, of the people she had met. David Attenborough she was not.

Johnson, O (1940/1997) "I Married Adventure", New York, Kodansha International
ISBN 1 56836 128 9

In Chanute, Kansas, there is also the Martin and Osa Johnson Safari Museum opened in 1960 by Osa.

Wensleydale Creamery

Wensleydale Creamery


The Yorkshire Dales town of Hawes contains two small industrial units which have used tourism to improve their earnings. One is Ropemakers which expanded from a previous one-man workshop up to a small factory unit. The other is the Wensleydale Creamery.

This dairy is in a line of production going back to the middle ages, making a distinctive cheese relying on the character of the milk produced by farms within the dale. In 1992 it was owned by Dairycrest who decided they could do better to close the unit, make 59 people redundant and move production to another creamery. Local people had other ideas, and November '92 they bought the business from Dairycrest. At first production was hampered by slow sales, until the Wallace and Gromit short "A Grand Day Out" (which, it must be pointed out, was about space tourism) mentioned the cheese as a favourite. A deal was struck with Aardman Animations in which a specially-branded Wensleydale cheese and allied publicity proved a great success. The Creamery, which attracted visitors on factory tours, built a restaurant and had opened a shop, expanded to a point where it employs almost two hundred people and takes milk from some three dozen Wensleydale farms. New products include Wensleydale with cranberries, Wensleydale with apricot, smoked Wensleydale, and, of course, Wensleydale with tourists.

Malham Tarn and House

Malham Tarn


A beautiful day in the Yorkshire Dales at the start of the Spring Bank Holiday weekend was well timed. Rail would spread the next night to dampen down the spirit of exploration. At Malham Tarn there were relatively few cars parked and most of the occupants appeared to have headed towards the top of Malham Cove (photo below). Going in the opposite direction a short walk leads to the Tarn, a natural lake which looks as though it flows out into a stream disappearing underground and resurfacing at the Cove. It doesn't, and a different subterranean channel supplies the water there. After the last ice age a melting glacier formed the Tarn and the flow probably did thunder over the cliff of the Cove, a sight now lost for ever.

The house at the head of the Tarn is one of the original centres of the UK Field Studies Council, formed in 1946. There are now 17 centres in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. The group of people in front of the house were presumably those on a bird-watching course over this weekend being run at Malham Tarn. The FCS operates an extensive programme now, of schools, university and family courses on all kinds of environmental subjects. The Council and Thomas Cook (see the previous posting) had much in common!

Malham Cove


Thomas Cook grave and Loughborough park

Thomas Cook


Looking forward in the anniversaries business to next year, 2008 will be the bicentenary of Thomas Cook's birth. The founder of the most famour and influential travel firm of all is buried in Leicester where Cook lived from his retirement until his death in 1892.

Cook's story is well known but worth recapping.
A Baptist minister and publisher of religious pamphlets in the East Midlands, Cook was firmly in the education business without being in education. He famously devised an excursion from Leicester to Loughborough on 5 July 1841 in which 570 temperance supporters paid a shilling (5 new pence but a fair amount in those days) to travel by the new steam railway. In fields in the town there were speeches and entertainment for the excursionists. A park now occupies the site (middle photo).

Cook went into business organising travel around the world, but for him it was always a means of bringing people together and closer to an understanding of God's works on Earth. The pulpit, the printed word and the activity of travel were to help people discover the significance of their very existence. Perhaps he thought that the final resting place of his body would only be a stop on the journey of his soul.

Belfast tourism images

Northern Ireland's Tourism Rebuild


Who would have thought it? Northern Ireland as one of the high-prosperity areas of Britain with one of the fastest-growing tourism industries? Decades of bombs, bullets and belligerance seem to be coming to a real end as Ian Paisley and Martin McGuinness become peaceful leaders of the province, sharing each others' jokes as power-sharing returns.

So the images above - none of them traditional sun-and-sand tourism photos - show some elements of the tourism which is beginning to showcase Belfast. The new Hilton hotel on Donegal quay does a roaring trade. Japanese tourists see for themselves the reality of a sectarian divide. A Belfast tour guide shows a plastic baton-round used by the British Army to force rioters to disperse at the height of the 'troubles'. A dry dock where the Titanic was fitted out for before that infamous voyage. All of them are part of 'brand Belfast' which is now undergoing a considerable re-assessment by both its people and its visitors. What will "Belfast" mean to us in the future?

Jamestown Festival Site

The Jamestown Festival Park


Close to the site of the original Jamestown is the Festival Park, named for the 350th anniversary celebrations of the settlement in 1957. The festival held then established reconstructions of the colonists' ships in a harbour close to a reconstruction of their stockade.

Inevitably this kind of replication can only be partly successful. It is not possible to 'step back in time', merely to dip a toe into the running waters of history. Compromises have to be made while many aspects and artefacts have to be omitted. The reconstructors and the visitors are not people of centuries ago. There is no potentially hostile environment to be feared and health and safety regulations must be observed.

The replication has been carried out within a mile or two of the original site, however, so the landscape and climate are fairly close in general terms to that of 1607. The stockade fence, the houses within and the patches of growing food can be seen, touched and smelled. Some of the sounds - an axe chopping wood, birds calling - are to be heard, all in glorious surround-sound, for this is a three dimensional world in which the visitor is moving with all the fresh perspectives that are brought to every sense. There are people looking and sounding much as they might in the early years of the seventeenth century: the clothing might be the product of modern production and the language spoken that of the twenty-first century, but neither cinema nor TV, book or classroom lesson can get near to this immersion in a sense of place and a sense of time. On a scale of 1 to 10, this approach to understanding history must be around 7 or 8.

Cite des Sciences, Paris

Cite des Sciences at de l'Industrie, Paris


Between 1867 and 1974 the slaughterhouses of Paris stood here in La Villette, near the Peripherique or motorway circling central Paris. Canals bisect the site. During the 1980s the 55-hectare site (135 acres) was transformed into a huge cultural complex, one of many stemming from the era of left-wing President Francois Mitterand's 'Grand Travaux'. Bernard Tschumi was the architect who designed what became the Parc de la Villette.

One of the abbatoir halls was refurbished into the Grand Halle, a concert and trade show venue. A vast new construction by Adrien Fainsilber took the place of another hall. Built of glass, steel and concrete and surrounded by a wide moat full of water, it is the Cite des Sciences et l'Industrie. Numerous exhibitions, a planetarium and an aquarium, along with public services and souvenir shops occupy the building and educate and entertain visitors of all ages. Just outside stands the Geode, a shining globe of a structure housing a huge cinema. Near to the Science and Industry hall can be found a 1950s submarine, a ride-simulation cinema (Cineaxe) and the Cite de la Musique, a museum of almost a thousand different instruments, the music of which is heard playing as visitors walk past them.

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