back to article I discovered the world's last video rental kiosk and it would make a great spaceship

I wish to be recycled. Not out of environmental guilt, mind. It's just that I find that crusty old stuff that's been recycled tends to be considered cool – certainly much trendier and in-demand than it was beforehand. Just think: tedious old fart + recycling = next-gen retro fashion icon. Take, for example, these products …

  1. Alister Silver badge

    They'd be illegal these days but he looks forward to their nationwide revival after Brexit, once we stop the reviled bureaucrats of Europe undemocratically preventing us from torching our own infants

    <Snigger>

    1. Dan 55 Silver badge

      My parents have admitted to me that they sometimes used an open drawer as a makeshift cot.

      Never did me any harm. (twitch)

      1. Tigra 07 Silver badge
        Coat

        RE: Dan 55

        Sleeping in a drawer eh?

        Best way to avoid Cradle Rash and Cot Death!

        1. John G Imrie Silver badge
          Joke

          Re: RE: Dan 55

          Open drawer, luxury

      2. Blackjack

        My parents used an old and big suitcase with pillows and sheets as a portable baby bed.

        It was actually quite comfortable for me if you believe them.

        Heck I think I might even had a temper tantrum when I didn't fit there anymore.

      3. Danny 2 Silver badge

        In Finland they put their babies in cardboard boxes and leave them outdoors so their crying doesn't wake you.

        I know this is going to prompt a flurry of, "We never had cardboard boxes when I were young" responses, but it's true. Apparently. Finns claim it is true but now I think back on it I never actually saw any babies in boxes in Helsinki.

        1. dajames Silver badge

          I know this is going to prompt a flurry of, "We never had cardboard boxes when I were young" responses ...

          Quite the contrary ... we had loads of cardboard boxes when we were young. Decent, strong, cardboard boxes held together with stout metal staples that were closed well enough that there were no sharp edges ... and these paragons of cardboard container engineering could be had at no cost from numerous grocers and supermarkets across the realm.

          You try getting a cardboard box anywhere, these days! It'll cost a fortune from a specialist stationer or packaging company and be as flimsy as a flimsy thing with added flim.

          1. H in The Hague Silver badge

            "... these paragons of cardboard container engineering could be had at no cost from numerous grocers and supermarkets across the realm."

            Yup, always annoys me when in the UK and they won't even give you an empty wine bottle box to put the wine in you just bought from them. Have been tempted to ask why but refrained from doing so as the answer would probably put me in supergrump mode. May have to do with recycling under VALPAK but then they forget that reuse is higher in the waste hierarchy than recycling.

            Fortunately don't have that problem in NL where we're currently living - banana boxes are particularly sturdy and v handy for storing and transporting all manner of things.

          2. werdsmith Silver badge

            You try getting a cardboard box anywhere, these days! It'll cost a fortune from a specialist stationer or packaging company and be as flimsy as a flimsy thing with added flim.

            Waitrose. Have a big pile of them for customers to take and carry shopping away in.

            1. H in The Hague Silver badge

              "Waitrose. Have a big pile of them for customers to take and carry shopping away in."

              Ah, that suggests their policy depends on the store. The local one is difficult about providing boxes. Thanks.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Baby boxes

          If you want a cardboard box for your newborn baby, you could always move to Scotland (which copied the idea from Finland).

          Only if you are desperately poor (which some in Finland were, when the scheme was first introduced) are you supposed to use the box as a baby cot; its main purpose is really to hold all the other baby paraphernalia that is helpful for new parents.

          (I realise that the idea of the state actually trying to help its population is regrettably alien to some in England, sadly.)

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maternity_package

          1. Danny 2 Silver badge

            Re: Baby boxes

            I know the Scottish Government has introduced baby boxes full of goodies such as a soft toy, a onesie, and a wee bottle of Buckie,

            My main point was Finnish parents are alleged to leave their babies in their boxes outdoors or on window sills.

            The babies who nap in sub-zero temperatures

            "Babies clearly slept longer outdoors than indoors," says Marjo Tourula. While indoor naps lasted between one and two hours, outdoor naps lasted from 1.5 to three hours.

            "Probably the restriction of movements by clothing could increase the length of sleep, and a cold environment makes swaddling possible without overheating," she says.

            According to her research, -5C is the best temperature for an outdoor nap - though some parents she spoke to even put their children out at -30C.

            WARNING! If a Scottish parent puts their baby outside in a box even in above zero temperatures then you will likely face arrest and lose your child.

    2. Allan George Dyer Silver badge
      Flame

      You didn't have to get past the grille to get too hot. Once, I came home from school in the rain, knelt down in front of the bar heater and leaned in close to get dry. I only stopped when I realised that my shorts were no longer giving off steam, it was smoke.

      Very educational. I learnt not to do that again.

      1. Franco Silver badge

        My sister went one step further, she was getting changed in to her pyjamas on a cold winter night in front of one, got too close and has a grill shaped scar on her bottom as a momento of the occasion. Think she was about 8 or 9 at the time.

        Cue a bit of Snow Patrol and Martha Wainwright, as my parents would NEVER have allowed the fire to be set to the third bar.

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bfa9yxCpWoA

        1. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge
          Childcatcher

          They'd be illegal these days

          They were also "Live" as I found out as a child even when turned off.

          A valuable lesson in using DPST switches to totally isolate the heating element when switching off, that the designers of that IIRC Belling electric fire never learned.

          1. Stoneshop Silver badge

            Re: They'd be illegal these days

            They were also "Live" as I found out as a child even when turned off.

            Aren't the UK plugs and sockets designed to have correct polarity so that you indeed only need a SPST switch to interrupt the live wire, leaving neutral (and earth) connected?

            1. Mage Silver badge
              Windows

              Re: plugs and sockets designed to have correct polarity

              Even in 1960s people plugged mad stuff into the two pin bayonet lamp socket.

              People wire plugs wrong, hence law now to have a pre-fitted plug

              People add and wire sockets wrong

              I've even seen supply at meter wrong polarity.

              UK & Ireland earth of neutral historically was substation in UK (so neutral might not be 0V at home) and at meter + earth spike in Ireland.

              Also while the 13A rectangular pin shuttered socket system cam in maybe 1947, plenty of older UK houses in 1970s still had 2A, 5A, 15A round pins and mix of 2 pin and 3 pin plugs and sockets.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          As an inquisitive 6 year old I decided the best thing I could do to the bar fire was cut it in half. Cue pair of scissors squeezing through the grill and snip . . . . BANG!!!

          Mum comes rushing in.

          It just exploded mummy!!!

          I told her years later.

          Anon for legal reasons :)

  2. cosymart
    Pint

    Lost For words

    I am lost for words. An entire article about an ancient video kiosk in the depths of rural France. Journalism at it's finest, take a bow Dabbsy :-)

    1. macjules Silver badge

      Re: Lost For words

      And I know where there is another one! 'Video Futur' is a retro store in Cannes La Bocca which has a video dispenser.

      Not sure if they offer Betamax though, or would that be going too far?

      1. MJI Silver badge

        Re: Lost For words

        I hope so as 2 of mine still work.

    2. Alistair Dabbs

      Re: Lost For words

      « Depths of rural France »  indeed! Harrumph. I am such a townie, I’d be one of those twerps who’d be complaining about being woken up by the cock’s crow and asking the church to turn down the volume on their bells.

      1. Teiwaz Silver badge

        Re: Lost For words

        asking the church to turn down the volume on their bells.

        There's you mistake. You need to complain loudly, after you get your cap and blazer badge back from the league of Agnostics. If they don't respond, launch the No. 14 to St. John the somewhat divine on the hill ballistic missile.

        Or just do this

  3. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    A brilliant start of the week-end !

    Thanks for that, as always Dabbsy.

    1. JClouseau

      Re: A brilliant start of the week-end !

      Indeed, and for once not too sarcastic/sardonic (except perhaps the nice "Brexit/torched infants" touch in the bootnotes).

      Don't get me wrong, I always read this column eagerly looking for the odd ferocious and hilarious jab at some poor administration or urban habit, and this time I sense a whiff of melancholy and nostalgia. Perhaps it's Autumn coming ? A little mellow are we ?

      Thanks for mentioning VLB cards, reminds me of my Orchid Fahrenheit graphics card from a looong time ago. My first PC I believe (386DX ?)

      That guy from ArtJL seems a decent bloke. A bio-geek, he left his company as it grew from 3 to 150 people ("the more the company grows, the less the scientific passion") and found his way putting the motto "to know what you want to do you must know what you don't want to do" into practice.

      I wish I was that brave. Sigh.

      Oops, is this "Autumn" striking again ?

      1. Alistair Dabbs

        Re: A brilliant start of the week-end !

        Actually, I did write a bit of social commentary stuff but the Reg sub-editors chose (correctly) to cut it because it was neither amusing nor interesting. Without such quality control every week, my column would be unreadable.

        1. Mage Silver badge
          Coat

          Re: cut it because it was neither amusing nor interesting.

          I wish I had a good editor like that for my books, though gradually after over 25 years I'm learning. Still need other people to at least beta read.

          Also while I have strong views, perhaps an adventure story is the wrong place to preach.

      2. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

        Re: A brilliant start of the week-end !

        is this "Autumn" striking again

        Isn't it Forever Autumn?

        Doo-ee-do-ee-doo-tum-tum-tum-tum..

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Fail ... A VHS Video Kiosk article with a Betamax Cassette as a hero image.

    Or was it a mistake...ohhh, I think I might have fallen into the trap.

    1. MJI Silver badge
      Go

      I would rent that!

      But not an unspooled one, never had an issue like that.

      My VCR collection is now a Sanyo VTC-M40, a Sony F1 portable and a faulty Super deck

      1. Prst. V.Jeltz Silver badge

        Re: I would rent that!

        i once took the tape from a betamax and put it in a VHS cassette .

        it kinda worked , believe it or not

        1. MJI Silver badge

          Re: I would rent that!

          The tape formations are similar except the end bits, clear on Vhs and metallic on Beta, Vhs used little lamps that burnt out, Beta magnetic sensors.

          No chance on recordings though not when the field track lengths were so much longer on Beta.

          1. Zarno
            Alien

            Re: I would rent that!

            I know, for a fact, that there were "adapters" that you shoved a Beta into to run them in a full-size VHS player/recorder.

            Not sure if it needed a special dual-format option on the VCR, or was machine specific, or if it just allowed recording using existing tapes.

            Icon because it was either magic or advanced (as in age) alien tech.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: I would rent that!

              Are you sure that was for Betamax? There were adapters for VHS-C (compact for camcorders) to VHS but I never remember a Betamax to VHS converter. It would seem a littl pointless as well as you wouldn't be able to play any Betamax tapes just (potentially) record poorly onto them. It would be cheaper to have just bought new VHS tapes instead.

              1. Zarno
                Thumb Up

                Re: I would rent that!

                I stand corrected, it would indeed be VHS-C!

                And now, I must go back and adjust all my old wetware database entries to differentiate between the two...

                1. MJI Silver badge

                  Re: I would rent that!

                  VhsC

                  I remember it too, quite small but not that much smaller than my Sony portable, but picture quality, it was shocking, even the camera was not great compared to mine, which was known to be a bit average.

                  Back in those days the portable VCR market had about 4 or 5 main entrants. 3 most well known were, Jvc did a VhsC portable, Panasonic the NV180 which was reckoned to be the second best domestic portable. Sony the SL-F1 portable, which was the best, by a long way.

                  Others were from Hitachi, a full size Jvc and Sanyo/NEC.

                  Cameras, the best early camera was a top end Jvc*, best late a CCD Panasonic. There was some not very good cameras. But the Sony I had was basic but good, colour rendition was good, low light usable but not good, however it kept colour unlike early CCD chip cameras.

                  Done some digging GX-N70E, and Panasonic F10 I think.

                  People often mixed and matched which meant that running a top end camera from company A with recorder from company B, most common mix was JVC camera with Sony recorder. There was never a market for Sony cameras away from their recorders.

                  Kit differences were surprising, a cheap Jvc camera I have seen in use always ended up green tinged. Beta third generation were similar to Vhs edit masters. So the final product was better.

                  Raw footage -> Edit master -> final copies. Each one has generational loss.

                  Just ended up with Beta being so much better for this than Vhs some many little differences ending up making it a much better format for the job.

            2. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

              Re: I would rent that!

              special dual-format option on the VCR

              Many years ago (and before NHK did the Sumo Basho highlights programme) we used to get tapes of the Sumo Basho sent to us from Japan (narrated in English by an Australian - the same guy is one of the presenters on the NHK highligths show).

              The problem was that they were NTSC format tapes. So we had to hie ourselves off to Richer Sounds and find a VCR that would play NTSC as well as PAL.

              After a while they stopped doing the tapes - which was understandable since they cost a pittance and I suspect that they were losing money on each one that they sent out. Good quality tapes though (except from the aforementioned NTSC)

              Next tournament is November 10th. Will Tochinoshin regain his ozeki rank?

              1. Wandering Reader

                Re: I would rent that!

                "The problem was that they were NTSC format tapes."

                NTSC: Never Twice Same Colo(u)r

            3. MJI Silver badge

              Re: I would rent that!

              Never existed the formats were too different.

              Tape speed, drum or disc diameter, track angle, leader material, all different.

        2. Mage Silver badge
          Pint

          Re: I would rent that!

          Only to record, never to to play an existing recording.

          When VHS & Beta was new I had an EIAJ 1/2" VTR. Some versions had a colour under adaptor. The surplus 1/2" spools of computer tape sort of worked transferred to empty reels. The late 1970s and early 1980s saw a mad variety of video machines on sale and in our service dept. A 1/4" colour reel to reel Akai, 1/2" EIAJ Panasonic cartridges, stacked spools in N1500 (a chassis that looked like made of meccanno) and N1700. The 3/4" Umatic. VHS and Betamax. The security machines based on VHS with a stepper motor to advance the tape slowly on record. The oft promised but never available Video 2000. The V2000 was a good idea but too hard to mass produce. Arrived too late.

          Then ever so much later the S-VHS with more horizontal resolution. The last attempt was Digital VHS, but unlike the two main digital tapes on camcorders it never took off.

          There was digital archive based on Video tape, hence 44.1KHz sampling for CD. Then the later helical based made for audio and computer archive machines.

          The Digital 8mm camcorder than can play analogue 8mm via firewire is handy, but the Philips audio equivalent, the DCC that could play regular cassette tapes, like the Analogue Elcasette (1/4" audio cassette), was too late and too expensive. RCA did actually have a 1/4" audio cassette before the 1962 compact cassette, which predated the Lear Jet 8 track cartridge, only really popular in USA because of inclusion as standard on some cars.

          Ah, memories!

          1. MJI Silver badge

            Re: I would rent that!

            I bought a N1502 but the heads were shot, ended up selling it for a very small profit (like £5).

            1. werdsmith Silver badge

              Re: I would rent that!

              The first video plater I ever saw was in school. Huge great big thing with piano keys on a wheeled trolley.

              Played into the big TV on a high stand with doors across the front that folded out into anti-glare hood.

              Watch those dots disappear.

  5. Neal L

    I don't think I've ever seen anything like that in Britain.

    Oh, and I suspect the spray paint was not someone's attempt at recycling.

    1. Alister Silver badge
      Holmes

      Oh, and I suspect the spray paint was not someone's attempt at recycling.

      Well done. ==========>>>

    2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      "I don't think I've ever seen anything like that in Britain."

      Really? It's called up-cycling and all the rage. Stick a bulb-holder on any self-respecting by-gone and turn it into a lamp. IIRC The first place I saw doing that had what was claimed to be a circuit board from a Harrier as the donor. They moved on from chianti and Bulmer's bottles a long time ago. Give them half a chance and they'll turn lamps into lamps.

      In much the same vein you cam make candelabra out of copper pipe and Imps fittings.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I live in Germany and know the location of at least two automatic DVD rental machines that are still working still for the prive of 1.50 Euro which is cheaper than 'renting' the movie on amazon. Additonally you can see a movie without leaving a history in the amazon profile

    1. caffeine addict Silver badge

      Oh. that kind of movie...

    2. Patrician

      "Additonally you can see a movie without leaving a history in the amazon profile"

      And leave one with the company that owns the kiosk instead

      1. Stoneshop Silver badge
        Big Brother

        And leave one with the company that owns the kiosk instead

        Unless that rental shop also offers a wide selection of household goods, computers and parts, car accessories, in short close to everything including a kitchen sink, and keeps shoving ads at you for items, ahem, related to your rental history, I see that as a very minor problem.

      2. Mage Silver badge

        Re: leave one with the company that owns the kiosk

        Some use coins!

    3. Mage Silver badge
      Alien

      DVD rental

      Inexplicably here in Ireland the local mall has recently acquired a DVD rental kiosk.

      I do still have a S-VHS machine and recently found a VHS version of Metropolis for 30c. I doubt a DVD or download would be any better quality.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metropolis_(1927_film)

      I do wish the 42" HDR 4K TV had a Shrink or inverse Zoom for poor content such as 640 x 480 video games, VHS and early badly encoded CDi video.

      1. MJI Silver badge

        Re: DVD rental

        Tape on big screens

        Well I have digital converted around 50 hours of video, from Beta to DV, then encoded to MPEG2 and burnt to DVD.

        And it looks OK on my 46" LCD panel.

        I even reedited some, much easier to do on PC than VCR to VCR and no 2 hour duplications.

      2. holmegm Bronze badge

        Re: DVD rental

        Yes, VHS tapes can be had for essentially nothing now.

        As an environmental apostate, I very occasionally pick one up as an (in practice) "rental".

      3. Uncle Slacky Silver badge
        Stop

        Re: DVD rental

        They've discovered a further half hour or so of Metropolis since then, though.

        1. Mage Silver badge

          Re: DVD rental

          I read that.

          Is there a DVD release?

          It would be worth getting.

      4. Monty Cantsin

        Re: DVD rental

        Yeah, there's one in the Shannon Town Centre too.

        Of course, Shannon is only in the process of getting its first cinema, so I suspect the DVD vending machine is seen as space-aged future technology there, rather than a quaint throwback to simpler times.

        1. Mage Silver badge
          Coat

          Re: DVD rental

          Yes, I remember draughty Shannon Centre before they discovered that malls have roofs. The ones in Limerick had roofs then. The architect claimed it was a feature rather than admit the budget was too small. The DVD rental kiosk I saw in Limerick was still there and working today. CEX though is often much cheaper and a bigger stock!

          Icon, cos we know what Ireland is like this time of year.

          1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

            Re: DVD rental

            before they discovered that malls have roofs

            Not all of them - I've been in malls in California that didn't. However, there is a considerable difference between the climate in SoCal and Ireland. Sort of an inverse ratio of rain/sun..

      5. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: DVD rental

        "I do wish the 42" HDR 4K TV had a Shrink or inverse Zoom for poor content such as 640 x 480 video games, VHS and early badly encoded CDi video."

        It does. Sadly, it's an analogue function, not a digital one. It's called moving further away :-)

    4. First Light

      Huh?

      Dear AC:

      I do enjoy your comments. However, I am confused because today you live in Germany, a month ago Arizona, another time France etc. You seem to live everywhere.

      Are there multiple users posting from one account or just one user with multiple personalities :-)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Huh?

        I live in a sub-orbital nuclear scramjet, circumnavigating the globe.

        I'm passing through the Walla Walla Walaby farm now.

      2. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge
        Alien

        Re: Huh?

        It's all in the headline.....

        "I discovered the world's last video rental kiosk and it would make a great spaceship."

        It's clearly a TARDIS with a working chameleon circuit.

    5. Michele.x

      https://goo.gl/maps/rgxY3eiGnm8zBvwA9

      I live in Italy ant there are some DVD rental kiosks still in operation. The place is a photo shop that still has 135 format film and if you ask they could order 120 format, and of course develop it.

  7. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

    ArtJl - old fires

    Jolly fun, and nice to see old stuff being 'up-cycled' (as I believe the term is)

    Pity the artist isn't aware of the latest way to save the environment - use LED bulbs not incandescent! Although I suppose it is a way of heating the room...

    1. BeachBoy

      Re: ArtJl - old fires

      Those bulbs look like the Edison style bulbs made from the mico LED's which are quite fashionable and easily available now.

    2. caffeine addict Silver badge

      Re: ArtJl - old fires

      Those lamps are rather impressive. I can see myself spending way too long on eBay this afternoon...

    3. GlenP Silver badge

      Re: ArtJl - old fires

      To quote from the description of one of the lamps:

      Munie d’une ampoule Edison LED

      Which Google tells me means

      Equipped with an Edison LED bulb

      1. Alistair Dabbs

        Re: ArtJl - old fires

        Just to confirm, they are LEDs but bright enough to send you blind. One drawback of using an old bar heater as a lamp shade is that they don’t provide any shade.

        1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

          Re: ArtJl - old fires

          They must do things differently in France. The typical ones here are dim enough to send you blind if you tried to read by them. Think of the brightness and colour temperature of a 240V bulb run on 110V mains.

          1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

            Re: ArtJl - old fires

            end you blind if you tried to read by them

            Your e-reader doesn't have a backlight?

            (I switched to e-readers yonks ago. When you get though 20-30 books a week, buying/renting physical books will result in you quickly running out of room. We still have boxes and boxes of books (sci-fi and fantasy) from before e-readers were around.. I used to buy physical books on Amazon (US - Amazon UK wasn't around at this point) which would get shipped by surface mail and take about 6 weeks to arrive. So I'd do regular orders so that I had books arriving every week or so. Reading is probably my only real addiction - we didn't have a TV until I was about 16 so I learnt to read very. very early. And I speed-read..)

    4. Stoneshop Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: ArtJl - old fires

      Pity the artist isn't aware of the latest way to save the environment

      In a couple of years we'll be all going back, eh, forward to electrical heating to augment our heat pumps and geothermal, ditching oil and gas powered central heating systems and boilers.

      And those vintage incandescents will make a glorious comeback.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: ArtJl - old fires

        "electrical heating to augment our heat pumps and geothermal"

        No way. We'll get issued with hair shirts to keep ourselves warm.

        1. Stoneshop Silver badge
          Trollface

          Re: ArtJl - old fires

          Plus one sheep per UK household for wool plus generic warmth, while also trying to keep the Welsh economy from keeling over.

          1. Martin an gof Silver badge
            Happy

            Re: ArtJl - old fires

            Speaking as a Welshman with a new house being built, I am quite happy with that idea.

            M.

        2. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

          Re: ArtJl - old fires

          We'll get issued with hair shirts to keep ourselves warm

          Keeping warm was certainly not the USP of hair shirts.. (apparently, they caused suck itching and soreness that people would get inflamed and infected wounds - both from the constant scratching and the hairs getting embedded in your skin after long wear..).

          1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

            Re: ArtJl - old fires

            @CatMan: upvoted, but I think a "whoooosh!" is required :-)

  8. Warm Braw Silver badge

    location of cultural interest

    I see what you did there.

    It's the first retro tape-related item I've seen from France that wasn't emblazoned with the letters "K7".

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Where is this thing?

    1. Alistair Dabbs

      >> Where is this thing?

      Here:

      https://www.google.com/maps/place/43.623555,+3.899037/@43.6234803,3.8990655,21z/data=!3m1!1e3

      1. A.P. Veening Silver badge

        And now as a link.

      2. Stoneshop Silver badge
        WTF?

        Eh?

        Which appears to be listed as a Station de Lavage.

  10. Nick Kew
    Thumb Up

    Recycling

    We Brits just love recycling old houses.

    My new house is a recycled industrial building, complete with weir in the river that provided power before there was electricity. And that was itself recycled from earlier use. And what's nice about this house is precisely the riverside location and the exposed features inside, including big thick stone walls, huge heavy beams, and cast iron supports. And a great heavy chain whose purpose eludes me.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: And a great heavy chain whose purpose eludes me.

      It's to give your ghost something to play with, after you tragically drown in the weir... :-)

    2. Prst. V.Jeltz Silver badge

      Re: Recycling

      it saddens me to see all these relics of our industrial history lost to ... houses

      Warehouse = houses

      textile Mills = houses

      Barns = houses

      Docks = houses

      why do we need so many fking houses??

      surely enough people die and leave one behind , that after a while there'd be a roughly sufficient amount?

      also where are we going to work when all buldings are houses?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: also where are we going to work when all buldings are houses?

        From home, obviously.

        1. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge
          Coat

          Re: also where are we going to work when all buldings are houses?

          I think the idea is for us not to have homes to go to...

          Icon - Seems a bit pointless to get me coat..

      2. lglethal Silver badge
        Trollface

        Re: Recycling

        Work? After Brexit? That's a good one...

      3. Nick Kew

        Re: Recycling

        This one was disused for some time before being converted to houses.

        Elsewhere nearby are others that were converted when an old business owner died and his son saw more gold in houses than in his late dad's business (a very much bigger site). One of them features as house 2 in this rant.

      4. First Light

        Re: Recycling

        You can try having fewer people . . .

      5. Teiwaz Silver badge

        Re: Recycling

        surely enough people die and leave one behind , that after a while there'd be a roughly sufficient amount?

        also where are we going to work when all buldings are houses?

        I always thought Britain was aiming to become Europes Cul-de-sac. But of course now, they've shifted to become a gated community, and probably at some point sold to Disney.

      6. Stoneshop Silver badge
        Childcatcher

        Re: Recycling

        surely enough people die and leave one behind

        They clearly don't do so in a timely enough manner. In addition to that, even if they had just two kids those will have gotten shacked up, had kids of their own and then divorced, which seems a most common scenario. That divorce means you now need one extra house.

      7. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: Recycling

        "also where are we going to work when all buldings are houses?"

        This is a big problem. I think planning policy for the entire post-war period has been to separate housing an work places and the use of so called brown-field sites has aided* this.

        When I wor nobbut a lad there were about 3 mills to the mile in a typical Pennine valley. Anyone who chose to work int e nearest didn't have far to walk and there were enough buses to make commuting by bus feasible to a mill further up or down the valley. Note the inclusion of "up" because it made the bus service more efficient than having full buses in one direction and empty buses in t'other. For some, of course, their bus stop might be further away than their nearest mill.

        Once the mills started to close instead of getting new businesses to take them over developers bought them up, knocked them down, built houses and then started kicking themselves when the next wave of developers discovered they could make bigger profits by leaving the buildings up and converting them to flats. The buses are also long gone; a straight run up and down the valley doesn't cut it when residents are going to jobs spread over umpteen towns and cities in four different counties.

        Now we have the double whammy of more people and far less jobs. We also have planners ranting about traffic**, completely blind to the fact that it's the consequence of their own policies over the years. You also have teenagers like by granddaughter being terribly environmentally concious by joining this strike and being taken to a demo 25 miles away by electric car and ignoring the fact that their parents commute large distances each day because their homes are so far away from their jobs.

        Here endeth my standard rant on the subject.

        * If that's the right word, which it obviously is in the planners' minds.

        ** My eyes were really opened to this years ago by someone from Sheffield City Council appearing on the news one night bragging about getting some project to locate in the city and all the jobs it would bring followed a couple of weeks later by a colleague bemoaning the city's traffic problems.

        1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

          Re: Recycling

          Anyone who chose to work int e nearest didn't have far to walk

          Large parts of central Swindon are rows of terraced houses for the people who used to work at the old Railway Works. I think the main factor for how far away the houses could be was whether they were close enough so that people could hear the factory steam whistle that sounded a coule of times before shift-change.

          A lot of those houses are still there. The Railway works is now a shopping centre plus museum.

      8. Stork Silver badge

        Re: Recycling

        First, by modern standards a lot of those buildings are no longer usable for their original purpose.

        Second, the combination of a slightly rising population and significantly less persons per household require more homes

      9. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

        Re: Recycling

        surely enough people die and leave one behind , that after a while there'd be a roughly sufficient amount?

        If your average family has 2.2 children then, while the parents are alive, that's 2.2 more houses needed for the spawn. And, unless said spawn want to carry on living with the parents or SO, they'll need somewhere to live.

        1. Martin an gof Silver badge

          Re: Recycling

          If your average family has 2.2 children

          This may surprise you, but the average fertility of women in the UK is now just 1.70 children.

          The overall population is growing however, so more housing in general is required and yes, with divorce rates rising, there will be more 'families' who live in two houses rather than one.

          I think there is also a rise in the number of people who have a 'family home' in the suburbs or country but also maintain a flat in the city to avoid a difficult commute.

          It must also have some bearing on the matter that people are living healthy lives for longer and therefore staying in their homes well beyond the age when generations past would have moved to a retirement / nursing home. These houses - often large family houses - are therefore being kept off the market for longer.

          Just some thoughts.

          M.

      10. MonkeyCee Silver badge

        Re: Recycling

        "why do we need so many fking houses??"

        Residential land is worth massively more than any other. A lot of what was a walking distance industrial site on the outskirts of town a century or two ago is now part of the town itself.

        New industrial sites are built on farmland (lowest value land), and the workers commute there.

        Even running an office, it's probably not going to be allowed in certain residential areas.

        The cost of rent or mortgage drives the demand for housing.

    3. MJI Silver badge

      Re: Recycling

      We need pictures!

    4. Antron Argaiv Silver badge
      Boffin

      Re: Recycling

      Chain might be to regulate the water flow over the wheel/turbine by raising and lowering a gate.

      I had a friend who lived in a similar situation (old mill pond behind his house). He rigged a turbine at the dam and generated (some) of his own electricity.

      1. Nick Kew

        Re: Recycling

        Chain is high up (stairs to attic), and on the far side of the house from the river.

        I expect it used to support something heavy (it looks like it would hold a few tonnes), and was kept as decorative in the conversion to houses.

        I can't see myself or neighbours getting planning permission to generate from the river, but I've tried to get anyone to quote me for installing a heat pump using the water. Could put a great big hot tank in the underground area notionally designated for parking.

        1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

          Re: Recycling

          Sacks of grain. The SoP for corn milling is to heave the grain up to the top of the building by a chain hoist powered by the water wheel or sails and let gravity take over from there.

        2. a_builder

          Re: Recycling

          I’d be more surprised if you couldn’t get permission for a community hydro project.

          Obviously depends on who owns the rights etc

          *Probably* the rights belong to whoever owns where the mill wheel or they might be demised to the whole parcel of land.

          You could then use the electricity to power the heat pump and store the hot water for heating or DHW.

          Anyway it is exactly the sort of project that should be encouraged.

        3. a_builder

          Re: Recycling

          https://www.renewablesfirst.co.uk/

          These guys do both the things you want maybe worth a look?

    5. Scott 53

      Re: Recycling

      And a great heavy chain whose purpose eludes me.

      Have you not read about the Battle of the Blackwater?

      1. Nick Kew

        Re: Recycling

        Heh. Just googled it. Nope, the best suggestion, and the cultural one that had occurred to me, was the kind-of-Dickensian one about my ghost suggested in the first reply to my post.

    6. ashdav

      Re: Recycling

      You may want to back off the smugness of self agrandissement.

      Just saying.

    7. Jos V

      Re: Recycling

      My house was build on a swamp. Then it sank into the swap. Then we build a house on top, and that sank into the swamp. So we build our 3rd house on top of that, and one day, you will inherit it all!

    8. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

      Re: Recycling

      We Brits just love recycling old houses

      We (mostly) only have two choices - give up green land to build brick boxes on or repurpose old building or land into housing.

      Doing the latter is often more expensive but avoids tearing up even more of the countryside.

      big thick stone walls, huge heavy beams, and cast iron supports

      Good thermal mass..

      And a great heavy chain whose purpose eludes me

      For hoisting big lumps of machinery probably. Or keeping the workers chained up at their benches..

  11. tiggity Silver badge

    Old electric bar heaters

    Parents still have one of those that works (caveat worked when last tested - its stashed away in loft for emergency use with a few other (newer & safer) electric heaters in case their central heating fails)

    They did the job of heating very well - but admittedly not great on safety.

    1. ibmalone Silver badge

      Re: Old electric bar heaters

      I can still smell the burning dust!

    2. Stoneshop Silver badge
      Flame

      Re: Old electric bar heaters

      We have one that's not actually a bar heater; rather a casing of chamotte stones with a bunch of heater elements inside. Dimensions are roughly those of a tower case, a bit lower and wider. It heats really nicely, much more convection and less radiation than bar heaters. It's a holdover from when we lived in a building that had a broken central heating system and no other option to keep us from freezing than electrical. Other holdovers are two 1950's/1960's Magicoal heaters and an UFO-like ventilator heater.

    3. GruntyMcPugh Silver badge

      Re: Old electric bar heaters

      .. a friend of mine still uses them, he's gone for quite a retro vibe in his house, and scours the country for tat, I mean, retro furniture and antiques to adorn it with. Some of the stuff (Old B&O music centre) are quite nice, ... the 'Avocado Green' microwave and matching kettle etc, I'm not so sure.

  12. Uncle Slacky Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    There's another near me

    There's a (clearly abandoned) one outside my local Carrefour Contact. They were common in France because automation was cheaper than renting a shop and hiring someone to run it, even 25 years ago. I suspect there is one keypad for your bank card (carte bleue) PIN and the other is for selecting your videotape.

    1. First Light

      Re: There's another near me

      I remember studying in France 30 years ago, and being blown away by the usefulness of the Carte Bleue. Cant believe it took the world almost that much time to catch up with the chip card idea.

      1. FrogsAndChips Silver badge
        Trollface

        Re: There's another near me

        True, and I can't believe that the whole world still hasn't caught up with the Minitel!

        1. Ken 16 Silver badge
          Trollface

          Re: There's another near me

          I know, right?

  13. KittenHuffer

    The much better version of the same song .....

    The much better version of the same song .....

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y2JNFzsNscU

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Kiosks live in the States

    And red IS the color--specifically "Redbox", the company/kiosk/app. About USD $1.50 + state sales tax for a DVD for one night.

    And yes, they DO keep a history.

    (Redbox also does games and Blu-Ray.)

    1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: Kiosks live in the States

      Yes. I've never used them myself, but they seem to be very common - I know of some in both of the places where I have homes (Michigan and New Mexico), and I've seen them elsewhere on my travels.

      The history is a bit curious. Redbox was originally funded by McDonalds to sell a variety of products, but when McDonalds discontinued that business the company switched to DVD and video-game rental. Redbox tried to interest Blockbuster and Netflix in their business, but ended up being acquired by Coinstar, which runs change-collecting kiosks in grocery stores. Redbox eventually picked up Blockbuster's kiosk business.

      Apparently they tried to expand into Canada, but demand was too low. It seems the US market is unusually strong for physical movie / game rental. According to Wikipedia, rental sales did drop significantly over the past few years due to streaming, but are still reasonably robust.

      1. whitepines Silver badge
        Mushroom

        Re: Kiosks live in the States

        It seems the US market is unusually strong for physical movie / game rental.

        Maybe that's what happens when you have media cartels running your country? And they'd love to do the same to the EU, but at least there are some basic rights in the way there (GDPR for anti-spying, right to decrypt owned media, a basic willingness to read a book, play a game, or do something other than watch a film, etc.).

        Of course in Blighty, it'll probably end up more like the USA. Except that you won't be able to rent the media either, you'll only be able to stream select channels to select devices and thank the company for selling your data while you pay to both view the stream and "own" the cheaply made, guaranteed to break and become obsolete spying player.

  15. MJI Silver badge

    Video Rental

    I used to back in the 80s, then suddenly they stopped. Arguments with the tossers which ran the places.

    Didn't help that I moved from a place with good rental to one with crap rental.

    Then on next visit home found my favourite place shut.

    Started renting again I think in 1999 or 2000 after bullying some rental places to get with the times.

    I think it was 8 years with no rental options. Just waited for TV to show them.

    And yes I did blow £800 on a VCR and £500 a few years later on a DVD player.

    1. Kubla Cant Silver badge

      Re: Video Rental

      I remember the Video Rental Shop Experience. You sign up, and spend a few weeks in movie heaven, watching all the great films you missed at the cinema. Then you spend a few weeks watching some quite good films you've never heard of followed by a few more weeks watching increasingly crappy films you've never heard of. Sadly, this experience seems to be replicated over a slightly longer timescale by Netflix and Amazon.

      And why do both these services fill the screen with suggestions for films I have no desire to see? I suspect that their recommendations system takes no account of the many films I switch off after the first 10 minutes.

      1. MJI Silver badge

        Re: Video Rental

        I remember renting some great films.

        Did cause an upset at a film night once, I supplied the hardware and the film.

        I arrived with my TV strapped onto the pillion seat, my video recorder in the tank bag, and a copy of Robo Cop.

        Well I liked it!

        Was surprising in late 80s how many people did not have a video or TV then.

  16. xeroks

    Love Film?

    I'd always assumed the demise of video rental shops was down to postal services like Love Film. That one was killed off by Amazon a few years back, presumably because it was far superior to their streaming service.

    Luckily www.cinemaparadiso.co.uk is still on the go, and has a way better selection of films than any of the streaming services I've seen.

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Re: Love Film?

      The other thing that didn't help them was the advent of the £5 DVD. OK when something was just released you were probably looking at more like £8-£10 - but within the year most had dropped to the magic number, and I bought plenty of DVDs for £3 on Amazon sales or supermarket bargain bins.

      At which point it rental had to be very cheap, or it just wasn't financially worth it.

      1. irrelevant

        Re: Love Film?

        I noticed the local Sainsbury's had a display "DVDs from £2" the other day.. Those will be new, too. Poundland has refurbs at £1. And the local charity mega-store sells all media at 2-for-£1. (even video games.. They have a massive direction of Fifa games..)

        Paying to rent now just seems too expensive at any price!

        (I'd love one of those old kiosks to play with, though, but my wife would kill me!)

    2. MJI Silver badge

      Re: Love Film?

      I was happy to see the rental shops here go under, if they stop the product they can lose my custom. Also slow to take on DVD, just go bust you pricks!

      Was better at my parents area.

      Oh and I have NEVER used a Blockbusters, they never met my requirements.

      Now renting a film is as easy as selecting a film on a programming running on a games console made by the same company as my old Video Recorders, watched on a TV of the same brand.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Love Film?

        Why so angry?

        1. MJI Silver badge

          Re: Love Film?

          >> Why so angry?

          Because the tossers stopped renting films before the production of them stopped. They just dumped the whole lot.

          My favourite place shut down on the end of production. But was too far from where I was living at the time.

    3. Ogi

      Re: Love Film?

      > I'd always assumed the demise of video rental shops was down to postal services like Love Film.

      I always thought it was due to rampent piracy. When CSS was cracked DVDs could be ripped easily. So people could "rent, rip and return". This resulted in a short term boost for the rental companies.

      Thing is, while the internet was (relatively) slow back then, CD-burners were pretty common, and DivX came out, allowing you to recompress a DVD so that it fits on a CD. "DivX CDs" became a thing, which you could get cheaply (if you didn't have the ability to do it yourself).

      I remember some DVD players (usually Chinese) who could play DivX CDs (and would advertise as such). So once the initial DVD was rented and ripped, it would then be copied from CD to CD without quality loss, reducing demand for the original.

      For many people, the choice between renting a DVD for £4 a night vs buying the DivX CD for 50p to £1 was a no brainer (assuming they paid at all). Those with money and who wanted the full quality (or didn't want to wait for it to first hit the video rental store) would just buy the original DVD.

      As a result the rental modal stopped being profitable, and things only got worse as internet speeds picked up (along with P2P traffic).

      1. Ogi

        Re: Love Film?

        Also forgot to mention the headache of getting a scratched DVD, polishing it, hoping it won't skip, then giving up, accepting the "movie night" you were looking forward to won't happen, then returning it to try to get a refund, or another DVD instead.

        Even worse if, once you bring it to them and complain its scratched, they claim you were the one who scratched it, and refuse the refund.

        Tapes, by virtue of being enclosed in a case, were far better for the video rental model. Their downside was the wear due to repeat plays. DVDs didn't have that problem, but being without a case were far more fragile when being handled.

        I don't miss video rental, even though I still remember my old video rental store customer ID number (despite it being about 20 years since they went out of business, primarily due to a blockbusters chain opening nearby). Having to wait for someone to return a new/popular film because they only had 2 copies, to the aforementioned damage on DVDs, to forgetting to return it on the day and getting fined, etc... Things are better now.

    4. d3vy Silver badge

      Re: Love Film?

      "I'd always assumed the demise of video rental shops was down to postal services like Love Film"

      Ill never forget the look on my colleagues face when he realised that He'd accidentally unthinkingly posted back *copies* of several movies instead of the originals after he had *cough* watched them.

      1. Muscleguy Silver badge

        Re: Love Film?

        I volunteer in a charity shop and when sorting donated DVD's we have to open the cases and check them as not infrequently the cases are either empty or contain a DVR which we cannot of course sell. They must be binned. So your tale is not at all surprising to me.

        Some time ago after the spawn finally flew the coop (each one boomeranged back before) I was looking through boxes in the attic and came across one filled with DVDs, just the cases, every one empty. I recycled them.

        1. irrelevant

          Re: Love Film?

          I always check the discs when buying in charity shops. Found a DVDR with porn on it in a pc game box in the kiddies section once.. Grainy image on a label made it obvious. The staff were suitably horrified, as they passed it about among themselves..

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "It's not enough to blame the internet"

    "It's not enough to blame the internet, given that Blockbuster started on its tits-up death spiral in the mid-2000s – when most people's connection was [slow]"

    Yes... and no. I've made much the same complaint myself about the lazy assumption that Blockbuster was killed by streaming, because it isn't borne out by the facts. Streaming had been around a while, but didn't start becoming a serious player in the mass market until circa the early part of this decade.

    By that point Blockbuster was already in the final stages of its death spiral in the US (and the by-then spun-off UK operation too).

    OTOH, you *can* probably blame "the Internet" if you count online DVD-by-mail services like Netflix's earlier incarnation, LoveFilm, and so on- which were big in the mid-2000s and apparently peaked as late as 2009-10- for eating into Blockbuster's service.

    Other factors cited for the decline of rental include the availability of cheap DVDs that made it almost as cheap just to buy as to rent.

    Not to mention the shrinking or complete killing off of the "rental-only" window. This had previously ensured a delay between rental copies on videotape and priced-for-home-use versions becoming available in the shops. During the DVD era, it became possible to buy a home copy at much the same time as it came out on rental, and nowadays this tends to happen surprisingly quickly after the cinema release.

    There are other factors as well, but these are likely what killed Blockbuster, not streaming.

    1. MJI Silver badge

      Re: "It's not enough to blame the internet"

      Blockbuster were killed off by being rubbish.

      I used to use a small shop a couple of miles from home (parents) then a big one in the local city who was a specialist in Beta rental, used them until I moved, had quite a few HiFi sound rentals as well.

      Early 90s, moved quite a few miles for work, managed ONE rental at new place before the big argument and card destruction in store.

      Was VERY early DVD adopter had to buy them, couple of small rental places, then a chap started up doing door to door, used them for a few years, was also part of LoveFilm DVD trial.

      All this time Blockbusters were open, but never took on DVD, and never rented any of the decent cassette formats.

      The gap between end of Beta rental and the release of DVD was not that big!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "It's not enough to blame the internet"

        Do tell us more of this card destruction incident.

        1. MJI Silver badge

          Re: "It's not enough to blame the internet"

          Big argument at the rental shop about how shit they were and ripped up membership card and dumped it.

          Happily they went bump not too long afterwards.

    2. Danny 2 Silver badge

      Re: "It's not enough to blame the internet"

      "until circa the early part of this decade"

      Referee! Is he allowed to use 'circa' that way?

      I mean, he is maybe not technically wrong but surely it's puffery.

      "until ABOUT the early part of this decade"

      I had a pretentious acquaintance who was an OCD film buff but hated foreign languages who learned the word 'denouement' from Empire Magazine. After that, every conversation included him using the word. Circa 1990.

  18. Daedalus Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    Sounds familiar

    Is JL a tall slim chap smoking a pipe, wearing a trilby hat and with a funny way of walking? Does he make coffee with boiling water from the front of his Renault?

  19. Chris G Silver badge

    Quelle surprise!

    I didn't know the French used infra red to cook smurfs, I would have thought they would lightly fry them with garlic and a sprinkling of herbes Provencal.

    I live in a rural part of Spain and my nearest village has a DVD machine that might work, I have driven past it at night and seen lights on in the machine but that means very little here.

    1. herman Silver badge

      Re: Quelle surprise!

      "Lights on" - there is a homeless person living inside the kiosk?

  20. ilookha
    Big Brother

    What are the odds

    Of Alistair discovering this artefact next to a Super-U on the outskirts of Montpellier? Or at least it looks exactly like the one which I once misinterpreted to be a car wash token dispenser. Need to pay it a visit today, now with my eyes open.

    * the icon because it can't be a coincidence

  21. Petrea Mitchell
    Happy

    Blockbuster lives!

    One store, anyway. And it is indeed benefitting from all things retro becoming hip...

    https://roadtrippers.com/magazine/last-blockbuster/

  22. Danny 2 Silver badge

    We Set Sail From Disaster

    My mum and I had planned to go see 'Official Secrets' at the cinema today but it's not on anywhere near her. Instead I suggested buying 'Chernobyl' on Amazon Prime since she doesn't have Sky Atlantic, and it's meant to be good. She instead bought it on DVD so her sister could borrow it. I had to point out we no longer have a DVD player, we are going to have to watch it at my aunties flat. We still have a VHS player, my dad bought one we've never used 'just in case', but we forgot to keep an emergency DVD player.

    My dad was never overly fond of his in-laws, and he warned me once that I was being talked about in the same breathe as bad Uncle Davie and mad Aunty Iris. He meant it as a rebuke for being too weird. "Cool, they are my two favourite relatives."

    People who read books are regarded with suspicion in my family. Some sort of witchcraft going on.

    1. MJI Silver badge

      Re: We Set Sail From Disaster

      No DVD player?

      We still have 3, 1 in use, 1 worn out and a car one we were given.

      The in use one is also my CD, DVD-A, and SACD player.

      My BD player is an older console (got the BD remote for it), and my streaming box is its successor.

  23. herman Silver badge
    Black Helicopters

    Maybe is was a Tardis?

    You should have tried the door of the kiosk. It may have been much bigger on the inside.

  24. martinusher Silver badge

    They're called "Red Box"

    You see video rental kiosks in stores in our area, they rent DVDs. I've even seen early models that rented VHS tapes but they were huge because the tapes were so bulky.

    What killed Blockbuster wasn't the rise of streaming, it was the late fees. The typical consumer business model in the US is built around bait and switch (I think its the same in the UK). You reel the punter in using a decent value for money proposition and once you've got 'em hooked you squeeze them. Blockbuster used to rent a video for a reasonable sum but if you didn't return it by some arbitrary time -- or even if you did since they were the arbiters of when videos were returned -- they reamed you for late fees. This pretty much turned off the customer base so that when alternatives presented themselves they lost their customer base practically overnight.

  25. Muscleguy Silver badge

    Only Just

    My old stamping ground of Dunedin, New Zealand had until only a few short months ago a video rental shop. Yes indeed it managed to hang on into the teens of the 21st Century.

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I have a horrible feeling

    that I was there when that Sweet recording was done, in the audience..

    anonymous coward of course

  27. Conundrum1885 Bronze badge

    Re. Atompunk

    Have heard of folks using old valves for this, seems "Faux Valve" DAB radios are the latest thing with a few carefully installed orange LEDs where the heater used to go. Also a modification I came up with is to 3D print the valve base as real ones are harder to get hold of than the tubes.

    Often wonder why old CRTs aren't similarly modified, bit of glass repair and adding a suitably ornate cap on the old heater/cathode assembly and you have something that at least resembles a valve though is non functional: colour tubes are best for this as there is more to be seen.

    1. H in The Hague Silver badge

      Re: Re. Atompunk

      " ... seems "Faux Valve" DAB radios are the latest thing with a few carefully installed orange LEDs where the heater used to go"

      Hmm, may have to resort to this - just sorting through my late father in law's stuff (radio ham and boffin) and need to find a good home for some vintage electronics (1940s-50s radios, scope and loads of components such as valves and TTL ICs).

      Any suggestions for a place in the South of England which might be interested in that sort of kit? (Just found a dealer in Selsey but would like to have more options.)

    2. Michele.x

      Re: Re. Atompunk

      Because, I suppose "true valve" DAB radio is too expensive?

      http://www.dared.com.hk/index.php?route=product/product&product_id=170

      http://www.dared.com.hk/index.php?route=product/product&path=96&product_id=166

      The latter costs over 360 euros. I have listened to it and sounds exacly like a 1960s bakelite tube radio.

  28. TeeCee Gold badge
    Facepalm

    ...why and how the video rental business went out of business so rapidly.

    In their heyday, a recent release film on VHS cost about 70 quid to buy outright. A tenner to rent made sense to everyone. Once DVD prices dropped to 30 quid (which is about said tenner in eighties money), renting moved all the way downmarket to become the exclusive province of those rather less likely to take care of what they'd rented. Costs spiralled and income dropped like a stone.

    1. Hugo Rune

      I remember the first VHS tape below £20 was Complete Madness. The only one I ever bought.

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