I have been to two artist’s studios this week. Sir John Lavery lived at 5 Cromwell Place from 1899 – 1940. To remind, he was born in Belfast and died in Co Kilkenny in 1941, aged eighty-four. In between he was painting in London. Continue reading Every Object Tells a Story
The Riddle of the Sands portends the Great War; published in 1903, written by Erskine Childers and with Carruthers as the central character. How many Carruthers does it take to make a Foreign Office? There’s one in the Korda Bros film, The Drum, another in Sherard Cowper-Coles’s memoir, Ever The Diplomat. Continue reading In Requiem
A childhood friend lived not far away just across the Boyne in Co Meath. His parents had generously and compassionately asked a cousin to come and live with them. She was Miss Chapman, a spinster whose half-brother is TE Lawrence. Continue reading Soldiers and Spooks
Underneath that pile of unread books is what I grandly call my library steps, although it came from IKEA where it is called a step stool. The pile has grown since my trip to Wales where I went to charity shops in Pembroke and LLandeilo. Continue reading Books & Theatre
At the MP Evans AGM last week a Dutch friend reminded me of an anniversary. The Battle of the Medway took place 350 years ago this week. The Dutch navy broke through a protective barrier (the Gillingham Line, as impregnable as the Maginot Line) and attacked naval ships anchored off Chatham. Continue reading Battle of the Medway
Fear not, The Empire Trilogy has nothing to do with Star Wars but it is about three films. They were made in the 1930s, directed by Zoltán Korda and produced by his older brother, Alexander. Continue reading The Empire Trilogy
I left James Lees-Milne behind in London so was pleased to find a copy of The Diaries of Auberon Waugh, a Turbulent Decade, 1976 – 1985, when I was in a charity shop in Pembroke. Continue reading Another Diary
When I arrived in Carmarthenshire on Sunday the house was called Llwyn Piod (that’s Welsh for Magpie Grove). Yesterday the council and Royal Mail gave their consent for it to be called Fox Hall so change your Address Book. Continue reading A Tale of Two Churches.