Menu Close

Cambridge scientists in a shop

I popped into Ted Baker’s the other day – not to browse through their garments, of course, but simply to look at the interior, and was pleasantly surprised to see some familiar Cambridge characters on the wall. There was Isaac Newton’s rough-hewn image with a piercing gaze, a strikingly young and handsome Lord Rayleigh, and a heavily bearded old Darwin deeply engrossed in his thoughts. ‘What a great idea’, I noted, ‘male scientists as role models to inspire the customers to aim high’.

Then a grand staircase leading to the women’s department caught my attention – and I was almost flying up the stairs before I knew it, in the anticipation of a close encounter with Rosalind Franklin perhaps, or Dorothy Hodgkin, or Jocelyn Bell Burnell. Guess whom or what I saw there instead? Just a couple of dead birds on the wall…

Cambridge scientists and dead birds: inside Ted baker's shop in Cambridge

Why Tangential?

Why Tangential Cambridge? Well, for many reasons! First of all, we’ll roam and meander on our tours, exploring links and allusions and often going off at tangents, which is much more fun than sticking to a single track. Secondly, it’s a reference to an iconic Cambridge site (see the picture – courtesy of Wikipedia). Also, it’s a mathematical concept close to my heart. And, finally, it somewhat resembles my own name, Tanya!

Maths Bridge Coloured 2
This is the so-called Mathematical Bridge. The straight, coloured lines together describe an arc, and each of them is a tangent to it! That way the stress is distributed lengthwise rather than perpendicular to the beams which makes the construction much more robust.