WIGHT Saturday 3 January 1993 Southwesterly veering southerly 4, increasing 5 or 6. Mainly fair. Moderate or good (photography: Mark Power).
There is a certain mystical quality to the names of the 31 marine areas included in the Shipping Forecast.The sea is divided up into sections with names such as Viking, North Utsire, Humber, German Bight, Lundy and Fastnet.Radio 4 controller Mark Damazer describes the forecast as "baffling"."It scans poetically. It's got a rhythm of its own. It's eccentric, it's unique, it's English."It's slightly mysterious because nobody really knows where these places are. It takes you into a faraway place that you can't really comprehend unless you're one of these people bobbing up and down in the Channel."
From Mark Power's photo series, The Shipping Forecast:
Intangible and mysterious, familiar yet obscure, the shipping forecast is broadcast four times daily on BBC Radio 4. For those at, or about to put to sea, the forecast may mean the difference between life and death. But for millions of landlubbing radio listeners it is more than this; the enigmatic language of the forecast has entered the public conciousness, creating a landscape of the imagination and confirming romantic notions of Britain's island status.