The Last dinner

Gavan was dying.  We knew it, Patricia and I, and James, his brother, all three of us knew it.   He was struggling with life itself.  But Gavan, he wouldn’t accept it.  He remained confident that the experimental drugs would work, that he would recover, that he would return to college, see his friends, that this... Continue Reading →

School Dancing

I was taught to dance at my secondary School.  In the gymnasium.   It was during P.T. sessions, when it was too wet or too cold outside to go across to the fields. The girls would form up on one side of the gym and the boys on the other.   We would be taught how to... Continue Reading →

Four Prosecution Lawyers

Four lawyers from the Roger Casement prosecution team.   In 1916 Sir Roger Casement, for his role in the Easter Rising, was prosecuted for High Treason and was found guilty and sentenced to death.   This portrait of the four lawyers is taken from the great canvas by Sir John Lavery depicting the appeal hearing of Casement... Continue Reading →

Roger Casement.

This is my first attempt at making a YouTube video.   It is on a subject I know well and ofter lecture upon, but embarking on the making of a video was quite a challenge.   First I had to master Powerpoint.   I would be pretending if I was to say that I have done that. Then... Continue Reading →

The Potato field Icon.

It is just perfect, perfectly appropriate, that this important 12th-century reliquary, an Irish Crucifixion plaque, should have been found, in of all places, an Irish potato field. But so it was.   And according to the notes of the archaeologist who found it, it was in the year 1844. I check my notes. Yes, 1844.   Just... Continue Reading →

Surviving the lockdown (1)

Gorgeous spring morning. Decided to take a late breakfast in the garden. Nothing special just a cup of tea, croissant, and a glass of orange juice.  Relaxing, reading the morning paper on my tablet, musing on life under lockdown. It lasted but a half hour before I was driven inside by the incessant unremitting cacophony... Continue Reading →

The Matron of Sherwood Rise

Across from the Union office, on Nottingham’s Sherwood Rise, was this nursing home for the elderly.  Privately owned it employed some twenty or so care staff in a very large old Victorian rather splendid house with extensive gardens.      The care staff were, as is nearly always the case, underpaid and called upon to work excessive... Continue Reading →

The Rabbit Manifesto

There is an element of despair in remaining a member of the Labour Party.   The leadership campaign is utter vanilla, entirely without life.   The Tories always have more exciting and contested leadership battles, that’s a given, but this is tediously vanilla. I have been a party member for donkey’s years.  Always on the left.  I... Continue Reading →

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