It’s a tricky one. What’s the best known poem in the English language? And how do we prove it? Does it depend on what you were taught at school, or something else? And are we talking about an entire poem, … Continue reading Paths of glory: the best known poem?
“The name’s Bond, Basildon Bond. I’ve got letters after my name,” was the quip Russ Abbot used to introduce his 007-parodying character on TV in the 1980s. But the real reason for this brand’s choice of name involves opposite ends … Continue reading Licensed to… print?
Reality TV regularly shows us the results when competitions challenge people to be creative against the clock, whether that means implementing a business plan or baking a cake. Along West Street at the top end of Marlow, heading towards Henley-on-Thames, … Continue reading Poetry… it’s the word on the street
A few years ago, in a book which wasn’t really about Sherlock Holmes, I read an assertion that (to paraphrase slightly) The Hound of the Baskervilles was commonly believed to be set in the 1870s. As there are clear indications in … Continue reading Careless writing and an Eton mess – UPDATE
Before we go any further… if you’re a Shakin’ Stevens fan who has stumbled on this post by chance, I’m sorry it isn’t meant for you. If you want to find out what was behind the green door Shaky sang … Continue reading Behind the green(e) door…
Some years ago, in a little market town on the cusp of Berkshire and Oxfordshire, a lady used to go shopping. Her house was set back from a road just outside the town, and she used to take that road … Continue reading Wallingford: why they didn’t ask Agatha
“Would you like any damsons?” It wasn’t what I was expecting to hear as we walked through a water meadow at Streatley on a typical November day in August. Our plan had been to do a circular walk from Goring, … Continue reading When life gives you damsons…
One of the themes which runs through the Chilterns and Thames Valley is that of power and dissent. You can find Chequers, Dorneywood and Windsor Castle on one hand; the Amersham Martyrs, the Jordans Quakers and John Hampden on the … Continue reading 1984 Live: a doubleplusgood production
For some pubs, ninety years is barely a snap of the fingers – they’ve been around a lot longer than that. For the Bell at Aston Clinton, it might be an eternity for all that the casual visitor would know. … Continue reading Evelyn Waugh drank here, often