Faial was one of the four islands of the Azores archipelago I visited recently.

This piece of Portugal sits in the mid-Atlantic, more than 1,500km from the country’s mainland.

Memorable moments of Faial: The captivating volcanic landscape and lighthouse of Capelinhos. The volcano last erupted in 1958. The delightful port of Horta, which sits in the shadow of Mount Pico.

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Atlantic garden

This is a lush oasis grown on the rich volcanic soil of São Miguel island in Portugal’s Mid-Atlantic Azores archipelago.

Terra Nostra has curious caramel-coloured hot springs to bathe in, but I chose to tour the botanical gardens with my camera.

There was every colour of hydrangea – abundant all over the islands – and stunning flowers only enhanced by a sub-tropical shower.

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Summer hike

It’s been a long hot summer so far, and walking in the hills is a different experience.

Out go the waterproofs and thick coats and in with sunblock, light clothing and plenty of water.

This was a walk above the village of Chinley in Derbyshire’s Peak District, talking in Cracken Edge. It affords great views and signs the landscape is parched.

I slipped my lighter Fuji X100T in my rucksack for our walk, which copes admirably with a sweeping vista.

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It’s time for another island odyssey. The Azores are an autonomous part of Portugal and located in the mid-Atlantic Ocean.

I visited four of them during my stay, including Pico, sparsely populated and dominated by Portugal’s highest point.

Memorable moments: The former whaling town of Lajes with its colourful cottages. Old windmills and amazing views of neighbouring island Sao Jorge.

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Return to Television Centre

I worked in this iconic BBC building for many years until its closure in 2013.

It was sold off and underwent a lengthy redevelopment process which I witnessed first hand.

Television Centre is now open for business again, and I went to take a look on a flying visit to London.

It’s now an upmarket residential complex with smart facilities – a cafe now occupies the place I used to enter the building every day.

It was a disquieting visit, seeing the completion of such great change, contemplating memories and a past era…

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BBC Television Centre in March 2013


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