Blog

On Robert FitzRoy and misremembering history

5th May 2015

On Robert FitzRoy and misremembering history

(Cloudscape over the Thames, 04-05-15) I’ve been listening to George Orwell’s The Road to Wigan Pier on my daily walks recently. Something that he wrote reminded me of the tendency of big events to overshadow everyday history. He was, he pointed out, visiting Yorkshire in 1936 when Adolf Hitler ordered his troops into the...

more

The Woman in White – #1 of my #tbr20

17th Apr 2015

The Woman in White - #1 of my #tbr20

This post is part of this reading project. (Plot spoilers ahoy) At last I’m writing up the first book in this project. At 700 pages long Wilkie Collins’ The Woman in White is the kind of sprawling Victorian novel that I rarely get around to. But it was on the reading list of an evening course I recently did at the Bishopsgate...

more

The Curious Case of the Devil’s Foot-Prints (or the Great Devon Mystery of 1855)

9th Feb 2015

The Curious Case of the Devil’s Foot-Prints (or the Great Devon Mystery of 1855)

Devon, 8/9 February 1855 Of all the strange weather stories I have read about over the last few years, I remember that of the Devil’s Footprints above all. It happened exactly 160 years ago, on the night of 8 February 1855. It is a mystery of Sherlockian proportions. It remains unsolved to this day. The start of 1855 was...

more

Historical Miscellany #36 – A Roast Dinner Cooked on the Ice over the River Exe [1855]

7th Feb 2015

Historical Miscellany #36  - A Roast Dinner Cooked on the Ice over the River Exe [1855]

(From The Royal Cornwall Gazette, Falmouth Packet, and General Advertiser, 23 February 1855) A singular occurrence in gastronomic science was tried on Tuesday week, on the ice in the centre of the River Exe, at St Thomas. The severity of the frost having coated the surface of the river with a thick crust of ice, capable of...

more

Filey Bay: Rain shower over Flamborough Head

5th Feb 2015

Filey Bay: Rain shower over Flamborough Head

I spent every other childhood holiday on the east Yorkshire coast visiting family. I've long wanted to go back and take a decent photograph of Filey Bay - the syrupy morning light, the vast skies reflecting in puddles on the sand (which is especially suited for cricket) - and I was happy to get this on Tuesday morning. It's been...

more