Severn Valley Railway Spring Diesel Gala

The Severn Valley Railway Spring Diesel Gala takes place between 18 May and 20 May. The event, and theme, will mark the 30th anniversary of the first Severn Valley Railway Diesel Gala. Additionally, the festival will celebrate two other milestones: the 40th anniversary of the last Class 52 runs on British Railways, and the 25th anniversary of the first Class 50 runs on the SVR.The Severn Valley Railway held its first diesel gala in May 1987. Over the years an impressive and diverse array of visiting diesel locomotives have appeared at the SVR including class 14, class 88, class 50, class 52, class 55, class 45, class 37, class 47, class 20 and class 33. To mark 30 years of Diesel Galas on the Severn Valley Railway, a 100 minute DVD featuring 90 different locos in action is being released to coincide with this years Spring Diesel Gala.

Visiting Locomotives appearing at the event will include Class 14 No. D9551 diesel-hydraulic locomotive. These received the nickname “Teddy Bear” following a comment by Swindon Works’ foreman George Cole who quipped “We’ve built the Great Bear, now we’re going to build a Teddy Bear!”. heritage diesel locomotives Class 20s No. 20189 & No. 20205 With thanks to Michael Owen. Class 31 No. 31271 courtesy A1A Locomotives Ltd. Class 33 No. 33035 courtesy of The Pioneer Diesel Group. Class 33 No. 33108 courtesy of Class 33/1 Preservation Company. Class 45 No. 45041 Royal Tank Regiment courtesy of Peak Locomotive Co Ltd. Class 45 No. 45060 Sherwood Forester courtesy of The Pioneer Diesel Group. Class 47 No. 47192 courtesy of Crewe Heritage Trust. Class 47 No. 47828 Courtesy of D05 Preservation Ltd & Dartmoor Railway. Class 50 No. 50008 Thunderer courtesy of Garcia Hanson. Class 55 No. 55022 Royal Scots Grey Courtesy of Martin Walker. Class 60 No. 60xxx courtesy ofDB Cargo UK. Class 66 No. 667xx, Class 73 No. 73107 and Class 73 No. 73965 courtesy of GBRf and Class 88 Diesel Electric Locomotive No. 88xxx courtesy of DRS which will be making the first ever public passenger runs.

The visiting locomotives will be supported by the home fleet, including: No. D2961, No. D3586, No. D4100 or No. 12099, Class 14 No. D9551, Class 50s No. 50031 Hood, No. 50035 Ark Royal and No. 50049 Defiance, Class 52s No. D1015 Western Champion and No. D1062 Western Courier. and There is also a Mixed traction day on 21 May.

Chris Cornell (Soundgarden, Audioslave)

Chris Cornell, the lead singer of the Seattle-based bands Soundgarden, and Audioslave suddenly died 17 May 2017, aged 52. Born Christopher Boyle in Seattle, to Ed Boyle, a pharmacist, and Karen (nee Cornell), an accountant, Chris had three younger sisters and two older brothers. After his parents’ divorce, when Chris was a teenager, he and his siblings took their mother’s maiden name. He attended a Catholic elementary school, Christ the King, then Shorewood high school, but left education at 16, and worked various jobs (including sous-chef at Ray’s Boathouse restaurant).

He eventually found his feet as a musician, when he joined a covers band called The Shemps, and it was while performing with the Shemps, that he met Kim Thayil and Hiro Yamamoto, with whom he subsequently formed Soundgarden. Soundgarden were one of the trailblazers of the city’s grunge movement in the late 1980s and 90s. Soundgarden were started in 1984 by Cornell, along with guitarist Kim Thayil and bass player Hiro Yamamoto, with Matt Cameron becoming their full-time drummer in 1986. After releasing a single, Hunted Down (1987) on the Seattle-based Sub Pop label, and a debut album, Ultramega OK (1988), for the independent SST, Yamamoto left the band, and was briefly replaced by Jason Everman, formerly of Nirvana, before Ben Shepherd joined on bass. Soundgarden signed to A&M records, and their second release for that label, Badmotorfinger (1991), became a multi-platinum seller in the US, also reaching the Top 40 in the UK. The singles from that album, Outshined and Rusty Cage, received heavy play on alternative radio stations and MTV, and Badmotorfinger earned a Grammy nomination in 1992.

Soundgarden opened for Guns N’ Roses on their Use Your Illusion tour (1991-93) and Skid Row, this introduced them to huge new audiences in both the US and Europe. They also appeared on the 1992 Lollapalooza tour alongside Ministry, the Red Hot Chili Peppers and fellow Seattleites Pearl Jam. This solidified Soundgarden as one of the rising names in American alternative rock. (In 1990 Cornell had joined with members of Pearl Jam to form Temple of the Dog, in tribute to the late Andy Wood of another Seattle band, Mother Love Bone. They released an eponymous album in 1991, and last year reunited for a 25th-anniversary tour.) Cornell also had a solo cameo performance in Cameron Crowe’s 1992 Seattle-based romcom Singles, with his gentle acoustic track Seasons.

Soundgarden’s next album, Superunknown (1994), topped the US chart (and reached No 4 in the UK), and went on to sell 5m copies in the States alone. After extensive international touring, Soundgarden started work on their fifth album, Down on the Upside, though Cornell’s desire to lighten the group’s dark, metallic sound with acoustic instruments triggered arguments with his bandmates. Down the Upside was released in 1996, and After a further marathon bout of touring, the group announced they were splitting in April 1997.

Having achieved stardom with Soundgarden, he went on to further great success with Audioslave in the new millennium, while also developing a flourishing solo career and his first solo album, Euphoria Morning, in 1999. This found him exploring a mix of rock, pop and psychedelia, allowing him to use different facets of his impressive vocal range beyond a heavy-rock roar, though again critical enthusiasm did not translate into huge sales. But his solo career was put on hold when he formed Audioslave in 2001, with former Rage Against the Machine members Tom Morello, Brad Wilk and Tim Commerford, who had been recommended Cornell by the producer Rick Rubin.

Between 2002 & 2006 Audioslave recorded three albums, Audioslave (2002), Out of Exile (2005) and Revelations (2006). Audioslave was by far the most successful, selling 3m albums in the States and spinning off five hit singles including Cochise, Like a Stone and I Am the Highway. The release of Revelations (which reached No 2 on the US charts and 12 in Britain) was preceded by the appearance of two of its tracks, Wide Awake and Shape of Things to Come, in Michael Mann’s film Miami Vice (2006).

In 2006, Cornell composed and recorded You Know My Name, the theme song for the James Bond movie Casino Royale. He put out his second solo effort, Carry On, in 2007, and promoted it with a campaign of touring, both in his own right and as a support act to Aerosmith. Cornell quit Audioslave in early 2007. This was a significant period in his career, since he had been suffering from problems with drug and alcohol abuse during his later years with Soundgarden, and had made a strenuous effort to overcome them. “It was really hard to recover from, just mentally,” he recalled. “I think Audioslave suffered from that because my feet hadn’t hit the ground yet. I was sober but I don’t think my brain was clear … It took me five years of sobriety to even get certain memories back.”

In 2009 he released his next album, Scream, on which he collaborated with the producer Timbaland. It reached No 10 on the US album chart, Cornell’s highest solo chart placing. In 2011 he released the live album Songbook, a document of his solo acoustic Songbook tour on which he played songs from all phases of his career as well as versions of Led Zeppelin’s Thank You and John Lennon’s Imagine. He also began working with the reformed Soundgarden, who released the compilation Telephantasm: A Retrospective (2010). Their first new song to go public was Live to Rise, which featured in the 2012 movie The Avengers, and later that year they followed up with an album of new material, King Animal (it reached No 5 in the US and 21 in Britain). Cornell’s most recent solo album was Higher Truth (2015), a mellow, melodic work, which entered the US Top 20.

He is survived by his wife, Vicky Karayiannis, whom he married in 2004, their son, Christopher Nicholas, their daughter, Toni, and by a daughter, Lillian, from his first marriage, to Susan Silver, which ended in divorce. At the time of his death, Cornell was in the middle of a tour with Soundgarden, who had re-formed in 2010 after a 13-year hiatus, and had just performed at the Fox theatre in Detroit.

World AIDS Vaccine Day

World AIDS Vaccine Day, also known as HIV Vaccine Awareness Day, is observed annually on May 18. HIV vaccine advocates mark the day by promoting the continued urgent need for a vaccine to prevent HIV infection and AIDS. They acknowledge and thank the thousands of volunteers, community members, health professionals, supporters and scientists who are working together to find a safe and effective AIDS vaccine and urge the international community to recognize the importance of investing in new technologies as a critical element of a comprehensive response to the HIV/AIDS epidemic.

AIDS/HIV  (Human immunodeficiency virus infection and acquired immune deficiency syndrome)  is a spectrum of conditions caused by infection with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Following initial infection, a person may not notice any symptoms or may experience a brief period of influenza-like illness.  Typically, this is followed by a prolonged period with no symptoms. As the infection progresses, it interferes more with the immune system, increasing the risk of common infections like tuberculosis, as well as other opportunistic infections, and tumors that rarely affect people who have working immune systems. These late symptoms of infection are referred to as AIDS. This stage is often also associated with weight loss.

HIV is spread primarily by unprotected sex (including anal and oral sex), contaminated blood transfusions, hypodermic needles, and from mother to child during pregnancy, delivery, or breastfeeding. Some bodily fluids, such as saliva and tears, do not transmit HIV. Methods of prevention include safe sex, needle exchange programs, treating those who are infected, and male circumcision. Disease in a baby can often be prevented by giving both the mother and child antiretroviral medication. There is no cure or vaccine; however, antiretroviral treatment can slow the course of the disease and may lead to a near-normal life expectancy. Treatment is recommended as soon as the diagnosis is made. Without treatment, the average survival time after infection is 11 years.

In 2015 about 37.3 million people were living with HIV and it resulted in 1.2 million deaths. Most of those infected live in sub-Saharan Africa.  Between its discovery and 2014 AIDS has caused an estimated 39 million deaths worldwide.HIV/AIDS is considered a pandemic—a disease outbreak which is present over a large area and is actively spreading. HIV is believed to have originated in west-central Africa during the late 19th or early 20th century. AIDS was first recognized by the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in 1981 and its cause—HIV infection—was identified in the early part of the decade.

HIV/AIDS has had a great impact on society, both as an illness and as a source of discrimination.  The disease also has large economic impacts. There are many misconceptions about HIV/AIDS such as the belief that it can be transmitted by casual non-sexual contact.The disease has become subject to many controversies involving religion including the Catholic Church’s decision not to support condom use as prevention. It has attracted international medical and political attention as well as large-scale funding since it was identified in the 1980s.

The concept of World AIDS Vaccine Day is rooted in a May 18, 1997 commencement speech at Morgan State University made by then-President Bill Clinton. Clinton challenged the world to set new goals in the emerging age of science and technology and develop an AIDS vaccine within the next decade stating, “Only a truly effective, preventive HIV vaccine can limit and eventually eliminate the threat of AIDS.” The first World AIDS Vaccine Day was observed on May 18, 1998 to commemorate the anniversary of Clinton’s speech, and the tradition continues today. Each year communities around the globe hold a variety of activities on World AIDS Vaccine Day to raise awareness for AIDS vaccines, educate communities about HIV prevention and research for an AIDS vaccine and bring attention to the ways in which ordinary people can be a part of the international effort to stem the pandemic.

International Museum Day

International Museum Day takes place annually around May 18 and serves as a platform to raise public awareness on the important role museums play in the development of society at an international level. Museums are non-profit, permanent institution in the service of society which are open to the public, and acquire, conserve, research, communicate and exhibit the tangible and intangible heritage of humanity and its environment for the purposes of education, study and enjoyment. The International Council of Museums created International Museum Day 18 May 1977 to raise public awareness of the important role museums play in in educating the public and conserving and exhibiting items which have played an important role in the development, education and improvement of societies worldwide.

International Museum Day is coordinated by the International Council of Museums (ICOM) and it provides the opportunity for museum professionals to meet the public and alert them as to the challenges that museums face. The ICOM, (The International Council of Museum) are the main organisation of museums and museum professionals and have a global scope, and are committed to the promotion and protection of natural and cultural heritage, present and future, tangible and intangible.

The event is coordinated by the ICOM and highlights a different theme each year which is of importance to the international museum community, and museums around the world are invited to participate in IMD to promote the role of museums, creating unique, enjoyable and free activities around a different theme each year Which is chosen by the ICOM. Since its creation in 1977, International Museum Day has gained increasing attention. In 2009, International Museum Day attracted the participation of 20,000 museums hosting events in more than 90 countries. In 2010, 98 countries participated in the celebration, with 100 in 2011, and 30,000 museums in 129 countries in 2012. By 2012, the official IMD poster had been translated into twelve different languages.

ICOM’s commitment to culture and knowledge promotion is reinforced by its 31 International Committees dedicated to a wide range of museum specialities, who conduct advanced research in their respective fields for the benefit of the museum community. The organisation is also involved in fighting illicit trafficking, assisting museums in emergency situations, and more.