Just a quick one while I work on a bigger post. The following image was posted by the wonderful Distinctly Black Country local history site on their Facebook page and twitter account yesterday, and shows Brownhills and Walsall at night, as photographed from space by Canadian astronaut Chris Hatfield on the recent mission aboard the International Space Station.
This crop came from a larger image of the black country and Birmingham area. I initially misunderstood it; it’s not north-up.
Great to see the Black Country & Birmingham from space (Chris Hadfield, who took the snap on 8 April, described it as ‘overwhelming’). But it’s also a nice illustration of how the Black Country differs from its (bolder, brasher?) neighbour. Birmingham city centre (on the right) is lit up like a beacon but its surrounding suburbs fade. Meanwhile the close-knit, multi-centred constellation of the Black Country bristles with smaller commercial hubs.
I think you’ll agree, this is a remarkable thing indeed. I thank Distinctly Black Country for posting it, and helping me orientate the image – I was having a rather dull moment.