blueprint media

Month: November, 2013

Red All Over

The most red-headed part of Britain and Ireland is the South East of Scotland with Edinburgh as a red-hotspot.

40 per cent of people in the region carry one of the three most common red hair gene variants.

In England as a whole 32.4 per cent of the population are carriers, skewed significantly to the North of England and Yorkshire / Humberside with 34.4 per cent.

This is very similar to the proportion of red hair gene carriers in Ireland at 34.7 per cent.

The percentage of actual red heads is around 6 per cent of Scots – some 300,000 people, and 4 per cent of English people, around 2.1 million.

Blueprint brief – 28th November 2013
Source: Britain’s DNA November 2013 Newsletter


The Lincs Effect

150 years ago yesterday, 19th November 1863, President Abraham Lincoln gave the celebrated Gettysburg Address at the Soldier’s National Cemetery, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, four and a half months after the decisive three-day battle on 1-3 July 1863 in which around 50,000 participants were casualties.

It took him just three minutes to deliver the 270 words’ dedication to the fallen of the Union side.

He wrote the address on the train from Washington and delivered it while suffering from the early stages of mild smallpox.

From its opening lines: “Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal…”, to its final lines: “government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth”, its succinct, powerful message secured its place as one of the most famous political speeches ever.

Blueprint Brief – 20th November 2013
Source: Wikipedia

Think ‘tanks’

Ninety-six years ago this week 476 British tanks, the largest assembly until then, were massing for the Battle of Cambrai in Flanders.

While the English-speaking world refers to them as “tanks” because of an order that they were to be described as “water tanks” while they were being shipped to France, the French called them “chars (as in chariots ) de combat”.

More practically, perhaps, the Germans called them panzerkampfwagens, literally “armoured fighting vehicles”, later known simply as “panzers”.

Blueprint Brief – 13th November 2013
Source: Fight the Good Fight, Britain, the Army and the Coming of the First World War
by Allan Mallinson, Bantam Press, 2013 and Wikipedia.

You’re Fired!

The number of Britons dying in fires in the home has fallen by 60 per cent compared to the 1980s.

Car fires fell from 77,000 in 2001-02 to 17,000 in 2010-2011, while deliberate fires in buildings have more than halved in the period.

Employment in the fire and rescue services has dropped by six per cent while incidents have decreased by 40 per cent.

Blueprint Brief – 6th November 2013
Source: Matt Ridley, The Times, 4 November 2013.

The only way is up

Stairway to heaven? Blueprint pal Stephen Tennent may find that a world record bid puts him on the stairway to hell.

Between 14-16 November 2013 he plans to run a vertical marathon – 26.2 miles high – by burning his way up the 21 storeys of the Hilton Hotel in Glasgow 677 times, ascending 14,217 storeys and a total of 240,335 stairs.

He expects it will take him 67 hours and will consume 70,000 calories – compared to the normal daily burn of 2500.

Stephen, (47) aims to raise £50,000 for the Prince and Princess of Wales Glasgow Hospice “Brick by Brick Appeal”.

Anyone wishing to accompany Stephen in one or more of his 677 ascents can register to do so at

A minimum donation of £25 is required to secure a place.

Blueprint Brief – 30th October 2013

Double vision

Many etymologists – harmless drudges who are obsessed by words – have long believed that the only word in English with three consecutive double letters is “bookkeeper”.

This has always been debatable since “bookkeeper” is really a compound word comprising “book” and “keeper”.

Today’s fashion for inscribed body art has thrown up, however, “tattooee”, one who has a tattoo, as a worthy contender for the three consecutive double letters accolade.

Unless of course you know differently…

Blueprint Brief – 23rd October 2013
Source: My Tattoo Addiction, Channel 4, 18 October 2013.