Jonathan: Just back from 8 Askernish to look at a couple of problems the guests have reported: TV not working – turns out to be that the remote control has packed in (batteries good); and the immersison heater timer is permanently ‘on’ regardless of programme or what it says on the digital display. I seem to recall that in the early days of electronic consumer goods (the first I can think of would be transistor radios from the late 1960s) it was said of them that there were ‘solid state’ with ‘no moving parts’ and ‘nothing to go wrong’. So how is it that plug-in electro-mechanical time-switches (the ones with the tiny levers or pins all around the circular clock dial) are not only still made, but are actually available in more designs than are the electronic/digital models? Over the past 30 years or so I can recall many ‘electronic’ timers we’ve had going haywire or stuck permanently on or off, or just giving up the ghost entirely, but the ‘analogue’ type just keep going. A case in point are the clocks for opening/closing the hen-house pop-holes. Although enclosed in a ‘weather-proof’ box, the holes in it for pulley cord and cables mean they are exposed to a lot of damp and dust, yet they have kept going reliably through thick and thin. Anyway, I’ve just ordered a replacement remote control, and I shall have to remove the timer for the immersion heater until we can replace the timer and entire hot water cylinder (latter as planned) at the end of the year: until then the immersion will have to be worked on manual.