How nice to find oneself rubbing shoulders with Alan Bennett. On a bookshelf in a bookshop, that is. Copies of my book The Road to Civitella 1944 placed next to Bennett’s Keeping On – Keeping On. Although I have met the good man at a book signing at Bath Literature Festival a few years’ back,… Read More Font-astic!


Spring is in the air

It’s not often you have the chance, outside of London, to hear a renowned percussionist play a rare concerto for vibraphone by a Brazilian composer and percussionist. So when the programme for the Spring Concert for North Wiltshire Symphony Orchestra (NWSO) came out, I leaped at the chance to hear Sacha Johnson play Concerto No… Read More Spring is in the air


There was a

I’ve been writing the odd limerick for ages, mostly to include in people’s birthday, leaving or retirement cards.  I think the personal touch is appreciated and recipients usually laugh when they read them;  and I don’t think it’s just being polite. However, I’m not sure  how wise it is to be planning a whole book… Read More There was a


A clean sweep

It was just the right sort of day to visit a brush museum. Nothing much else going on.  A crisp,  sunny day at last, and  a trip to Mere – home of Hillbrush, seemed the right choice. I’ve been thinking of visiting Mere for ages but it’s a long way to go just to see… Read More A clean sweep


The eyes have it

The Portrait Sculpture course is drawing to a close. I shall miss it. I’m no Jacob Epstein but I am quite proud of the second head I completed this term, which is near life size, and actually bears some resemblance to the model. Last session, we spent the two and a half hours just getting… Read More The eyes have it

Blog, Short Stories

Sweet Heaven

Sunday afternoon, 1958. Between Life with the Lyons and Sing Something Simple on the Home Service, my father is in the kitchen making his special treacle toffee. Clattering and tut-tutting, he lays out everything with military precision on the daffodil yellow Formica table.  In crisp blue and white striped apron, he looks like a butcher but… Read More Sweet Heaven