West Midlands autumn meeting

Saturday 14th September 2019

Mike Woof organised another joint meeting of the Quekett and the Postal Microscopical Society, held again in 2 rooms at the Haling Dene Centre in Penkridge, Staffordshire. The morning was given over to exhibits and sales, with items ranging from single slides to a trinocular microscope.

James Battersby and Nicole Phillips shared a sales table.

John Judson, Spike Walker, Nicole Phillips and Derek HaworthJohn Judson, Spike Walker, Nicole Phillips and Derek Haworth

Les Franchi’s brought some live flatworms, Polycelis nigra, that we could watch under his stereomicroscope. He also had some photographs of the animals and their habitat, and a distribution map.

Jar with live flatwormsJar with live flatworms

Distribution map and habitat of Polycelis nigraDistribution map and habitat of Polycelis nigra

John Charlton with Les Franchi’s exhibitJohn Charlton with Les Franchi’s exhibit

Steve Durr, Colin Lamb and John CharltonSteve Durr, Colin Lamb and John Charlton

Lawrence Hartley, as usual, had a good assortment of interesting books, and a Cambridge Rocking Microtome, a stereomicroscope, some brass sieves and various other items.

Lawrence HartleyLawrence Hartley

Lawrence Hartley’s sales tableLawrence Hartley’s sales  table

Colin Lamb was selling a Flatters & Garnett projection micro drawing unit. He was also selling lots of slides on behalf of Les Larkman’s widow Christine Larkman.

James Battersby with Les Larkman’s slidesJames Battersby with Les Larkman’s slides

Stephen Parker showed a boxed set of histological slides by Professor F. Sigmund, who supplied several series of high-quality histological and biological slides in the 1920s. Single slides are fairly common, sets are much less common, and this was the only boxed set that Stephen has seen. The set was incomplete, and some slides were broken, but there were still plenty of interesting slides to show on a monitor via a Leica DM500 student microscope and a Chinese inspection camera.

Stephen Parker, John Judson and Les FranchiStephen Parker, John Judson and Les Franchi

Stephen Parker’s exhibitStephen Parker’s exhibit

Mike Samworth was selling a few filters and objectives, a good selection of slides (some diatom slides that he had made and others from the estates of members), books from the estates of Steve Edgar, Barry Nattrass and John Bottomley, and a trinocular American Optical AO20 (with filters for fluorescence) and a Zeiss DR stereomicroscope from an estate.

Trinocular AO20 compound and Zeiss DR stereomicroscopeTrinocular AO20 compound and Zeiss DR stereomicroscope

Books for saleBooks for sale

Mike Samworth’s slidesSome of Mike Samworth’s slides

Mike Samworth’s slidesSome of Mike Samworth’s slides

Mike Woof had several items for sale, including transformers, a Vickers illuminator and a mechanical stage.

Mike Woof’s sales tableMike Woof’s sales table

As usual, there were some interesting items “free to a good home” on the stage.

Free to a good homeFree to a good home


Our thanks to Mike Woof for organising another enjoyable day for microscopists, and to everyone who brought exhibits and items for sale.

Photographs by Robert Ratford

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