Monthly Archives: January 2012

Five Gifts From London

I meant to do this before Christmas, but ran late – so here’s a round-up of gifts for the new year. All of the items below can be purchased online from the Museum of London shop, and the last comes from Davenports online store. How about a waving HRH? She’s solar-powered, which means that Her […]

Re:View – ‘The Iron Lady’

The obvious, and most repeated comment about Phyllida Lloyd’s new film is that Meryl Streep gives an extraordinary performance as Margaret Thatcher. But it is a picture of Thatcher in decline, as her battle with Alzheimer’s occupies what feels like nearly half of the film’s running time. We begin in the present, with a visibly […]

Let’s Talk About The Weather

So said the schoolgirls in ‘The Pirates of Penzance’ when confronted with something more serious, but on George Monbiot’s excellent site there’s a report about how the forecasting of the British weather became politicised after the UK right-wing press began making predictions using a couple of meteorological companies, neither of whom had prediction track records. […]

Everybody Out!

If New York is The City That Never Sleeps, London has always been the City That’s Very Quiet On A Sunday Morning. Here’s an excellent blog I should have also mentioned, as Ian visits the centre of the city on Christmas morning and notes the rare eerie silence here. London is now hard to see […]

Five Of My Favourite Sites

I started this blog with the sole intention of discussing books, largely my own, but it clearly wasn’t meant to be. I wasn’t keen on the idea of too much navel-gazing and I don’t get enough work published or broadcast to fill a daily blog. Besides, there are too many other things in which I’m […]

The ‘Hell Train’ Competition

‘Hell Train’ will be published as an original paperback from Solaris in three days’ time, and to celebrate I have signed, dated and doodled on a first edition of the book, which will also be signed by the cover artist Graham Humphries. I’ll be posting this book to the first person who correctly answers a […]

The London Panoramas

English Heritage have just published what might be the mother of all London books. At £40, the immense and barely liftable volume catalogues London’s working life, its wealth, workplaces, poverty and ability to change in monochrome photographs from 1870 to 1945. Some of the photographs appear to show entirely alien landscapes. Residents peer out from […]

Unusual Holiday Destinations 1

I’m hoping 2012 allows me some further interesting peregrinations, and was looking through travel pages when I noticed that Sark, the fourth and smallest of England’s Channel Islands off the South Coast, has won the first island Dark Sky award for not having any light pollution. There are no cars or street lights on the […]