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Chur

Chur or Coire is the capital and largest town of the Swiss canton of Grisons and lies in the Grisonian Rhine Valley, where the Rhine turns towards the north, in the northern part of the canton. The city, located on the right bank of the Rhine, is reputedly the oldest town of Switzerland; the official language of Chur is German, but the main spoken language is the local variant of the High Alemannic Swiss German dialect. On 1 January 2020 the former municipality of Maladers merged into Chur. Archaeological evidence of settlement at the site, in the Eastern Alps, goes back as far as the Pfyn culture, making Chur one of the oldest settlements in Switzerland. Remains and objects from the Bronze and Iron Ages have been found in the eastern sector of the current city's centre; these include Bronze Age Urnfield and Luco-Meluno settlements from 1300-800 BC and Iron Age settlements from the 5th to 3rd centuries BC. The Roman Empire conquered the area that came to be known as the Roman province of Raetia in 15 BC.

Under emperor Diocletian, the existing settlement of Curia Raetorum was made the capital of the newly established province of Raetia prima. In the 4th century, Chur became the seat of the first Christian bishopric north of the Alps. Despite a legend assigning its foundation to an alleged Briton king, St. Lucius, the first known bishop is one Asinio in 451 AD. After the invasion of the Ostrogoths, it was rechristened Theodoricopolis; the city suffered several invasions, by the Magyars in 925-926, when the cathedral was destroyed, by the Saracens, but afterwards it flourished thanks to its location, where the roads from several major Alpine transit routes come together and continue down the Rhine. The routes had been used under the Romans but acquired greater importance under the Ottonian dynasty of the Holy Roman Empire. Emperor Otto I granted the town the right to collect tolls in 952 and appointed his vassal Hartpert as bishop of Chur in 958, giving the bishopric numerous privileges. In 1170 the bishop became a prince-bishop and kept total control over the road between Chur and Chiavenna.

In the 13th century, the town was surrounded by a line of walls. In the 14th century, at least six fires damaged or destroyed the monasteries of St. Luzi and St. Nicolai, St. Martin's church and twice destroyed much of the town; the Gotteshausbund was formed in 1367 in Chur to resist the rising power of the Bishopric of Chur and the House of Habsburg. Chur was one of the places the Leagues' assemblies met regularly. A burgmeister of Chur is first mentioned in 1413, The bishop's residence was attacked by the inhabitants in 1418 and 1422, when a series of concessions were wrung out of him. On 27 April 1464, most of the town was destroyed in a fire, which only the bishop's estates and St. Luzi monastery survived. With the bishops' power waning as he came under the influence of the nearby Habsburg County of Tyrol, the citizens sent a delegation to Emperor Frederick III; the Emperor reconfirmed the historic rights of Chur and granted them extensive new rights which freed the city from the bishop's power.

In 1465 the citizens wrote a constitution. All government positions were restricted to guild members, allowing the guilds to regulate all aspects of life in Chur; because guild membership was the only route to political power, local patricians and nobles became guild members joining the winemakers guild. The Chur lead League of the House of God allied with the Grey League and the League of the Ten Jurisdictions in 1471 to form the Three Leagues. In 1489 Chur obtained the right to have a tribunal of its own, but never had the title of Free Imperial City. In 1497-98, concerned about Habsburg expansion and with the Bishop of Chur quarrelling with Austria, the Three Leagues formed an alliance with the Swiss Confederation. In 1499 the Swabian War broke out between the Three Leagues and Austria and expanded to include the Confederation. During the war, troops from Chur fought under the Bishop's Vogt Heinrich Ammann in the Lower Engadin, in Prättigau and near Balzers. Troops from Chur took part in the 1512 invasion of the Valtellina and the Second Musso War in 1530-31.

In 1523 Johannes Comander was appointed parish priest of St. Martin's Church and began preaching the new faith of the Protestant Reformation, it spread and by 1524-25 the bishop had fled the city and Protestant services were taking place in the churches of St. Martin and St. Regula; the Ilanz articles of 1524 and 1526 allowed each resident of the Three Leagues to choose their religion, reduced the political and secular power of the Bishop of Chur and all monasteries in League territory. By 1527 all of Chur, except the bishop's estates, had adopted the Reformation. On 1 January 1529 Abbot Theodore Schlegel was publicly beheaded. Bishop Thomas Planta, a friend of St. Charles Borromeo, but without success, to suppress Protestantism, he died poisoned, 5 May 1565. During the 16th century the German language started to prevail over Romansh. In 1479 about 300 houses and stalls burned in another fire. Nearly a century on 23 July 1574, a fire destroyed 174 houses and 114 stalls, or about half the city. Two years on 21 October 1576, another 53 houses were burned.

Two years after the 1576 fire, the perpetrator, Hauptmann Stör, was executed. After the Napoleonic Wars, the Three Leagues became the canton of Graubünden

Lower Rivington Reservoir

Lower Rivington Reservoir is at the end of the Rivington chain of reservoirs in Lancashire, with Upper Rivington Reservoir to the north, Rivington Water Treatment Works to the south. The engineer for the Rivington reservoirs was Thomas Hawksley and construction for the Liverpool Corporation Waterworks took place between 1852 and 1857; the Lower Rivington reservoir has two dams - the Millstone Embankment, 2,120 feet long and 40-foot high, the Horwich Embankment, 1,660 feet long and 61-foot high. Filter beds were constructed at the foot of the Horwich Embankment, The original sand filters were replaced by a new treatment plant from where a pipeline runs to the service reservoirs at Prescot; the River Douglas was diverted through a paved channel in deep cutting into Lower Rivington. On the Rivington bank of the reservoir is a folly, a replica of Liverpool Castle, to the south-west is the Headless Cross at Grimeford Village. Remains of buildings covered by water when the reservoir was filled can be seen when water levels are low.

There is an activity centre offering watersports and land-based activities on the Anderton bank of the reservoir

Alexis Blue

Alexis Blue is an English four-piece indie rock band, made up of one pair of brothers and two friends from the Wallasey area of Merseyside, the band was unsigned, but self-released their music through an independent record label set up by the band and associates - People vs Grass Records. Interviews saw the band cite numerous musical influences including The Libertines, Bright Eyes, Ben Folds and The Coral; the resulting sound indie guitar rock coupled with lyrics. Their fanbase consisted of Merseysiders and Welsh folk, while their bright Indie guitar sound and provocative, insightful lyrics attracted the attention of many enthusiasts of a wide range of ages, throughout the UK, the rest of Europe and America; the band was formed in September 2005 following the split of another Wirral band'The Rails', with that band's lead guitarist Andrew Stewart and drummer Mark Easton being joined by Tom McCarron to form Alexis Blue. Paul Easton, younger brother of Mark, subsequently joined the band in November.

They toured throughout 2006, gaining attention and subsequent tour support slots from Little Man Tate and Bromheads Jacket. In that summer, the band caught the eye of Southampton-based label Coercion Records who signed the band to put out a promotional release and 7-inch vinyl to be released in the year; the band caught the limelight of the local and national press, with numerous articles and radio/magazine interviews. 2007 saw the band receive a new lease of life, continue to gig around the country gaining popularity. Chris Stewart, Andy's older brother, was drafted in on bass guitar, with a new lineup and supports alongside The Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster, The Wombats and Parka saw them achieve recognition from the industry. In March the band were picked by A+R representatives for Polydor Records to be in the final 30 of O2's Undiscovered competition to play the O2 Wireless Festival in Hyde Park, London; however they failed to make the final 11. Again, in March, the band were asked to headline Club NME in Middlesbrough, playing a high-profile set at the popular Middlesbrough Empire.

Their debut single'You Won't Get Much Sleep' was released 9 July 2007 on limited edition blue vinyl along with the b-side'Break The Routine'. The single was be available on iTunes and various other online digital record stores.'You Won't Get Much Sleep' sold out within weeks in both the UK and Japan. The music video for the single was created by Tomfoolery Pictures Ltd and tells the story of an Alexis Blue fan who returns to her bedroom following a gig to find the band, who were in pictures and posters, now in the room and take her off to their'poster/picture world'. Green Screen technology was used to create key scenes, the band were also'paled down' using make up to create an eerie feel; this video was broadcast on MTV2 during September & October as well as the large BBC video screen in Liverpool City Centre. To support the release, a small tour was undertaken, including Birkenhead, Sheffield, Birmingham, Norwich and the band performing at Glastonbury Festival two weeks prior. In May the band signed a Publishing deal with Yell Music, who work with popular Columbia band Midtown.

In October, Liverpool group The Wombats asked the band to play at their Album Launch Party on the River Mersey which took place on 18 October. At that showcase on the River was local celebrity and Clairvoyant Derek Acorah, it was mentioned that Derek enjoyed the gig and went home with an Alexis Blue t-shirt. November saw the band play their largest Liverpool gig to date, where they headlined the Liverpool Barfly Theatre; this special gig was filmed for future DVD release by visual company Tomfoolery Pictures Ltd using 3 still and 3 handheld HD cameras. The year ended with a special Liverpool Xmas/New Year headline gig, held on a stage laden with Christmas trees and lights. Starting 2008 the band performed an acoustic set live on BBC Radio Merseyside and were named as one of the'Top 10 Current Bands From Liverpool'; the band set out on a mini UK tour in February which saw them headline Alan McGee's regarded Death Disco in London, West Street Live in Sheffield as well as venues in Chester, Liverpool and home town area, Liscard.

Ending the month they played alongside Liverpool band Rebbeca in the 1,200 capacity venue Liverpool Carling Academy 1. This month saw the band undertake various media interviews. In March the video for'You Won't Get Much Sleep' began further television broadcast on the'Virgin Media On Demand' channel, it was in this month that it was announced that the band planned to record and self-release an album. This month saw the band featured on a'Visit Britain: Britain Rocks' promotional compilation CD released in America. In April the band discovered they were through to the final 14 of that year's'Road to V' competition, their Carling Academy 1 gig for the final took place in early May. The Road To V final was preceded by the band performing an acoustic set and interview on BBC Radio Merseyside the same day. June saw the band announce their future date headlining Liverpool Barfly and two festival slots alongside bands including The Automatic, Parka and The Cordels. June saw the band start work on their debut album, due for release nearing the end of 2008 and will contain both past favourites and new material.

In July Channel 4 broadcast a couple of live songs and an interview with the band as part of 4Musics Road To V 2008 program. The broadcast contained live performances of Your Easy Life and Passive/Aggressive In October the band played their first gig in Italy, taking place at Teatro La Fabbri