'As a seaman, no, because he didn't obey orders. He wasn't a team player. But people would say they would follow Dickie anywhere, to get away from any problem – even though Dickie had probably got them into the problem in the first place. He was a real Marmite figure. People either loved or hated him.' … [Read more...] about Extraordinary new documentary explores life of Prince Philip’s beloved uncle Lord Mountbatten and his glamorous heiress wife – who both had bisexual affairs and branded were ‘persons of extremely low morals’ by the FBI
Explore new places
"Well, I am happy to tell you we have made strong progress and these reports are hugely important. This is a significant step in transforming an amazing and ambitious dream into reality." … [Read more...] about New details for £3.5bn London Resort theme park nicknamed ‘UK Disney World’ revealed
To the extent that nature writing has a common spring, it is defiantly anti-pastoral. It emerged not out of a desire to return to some ruralist golden age, but to repudiate such fantasies – the tweeness of "country lifestyle" magazines, the soulless, technically obsessed imperiousness of natural history television, the belief that agriculture and its colonial embodiment, "the countryside") are unimpeachable sources of moral value. Hence the passion for the unfarmed wild, for the small, the particular and the local, and the affirmation that "new" nature writing was not new at all, but embedded in a long tradition. And though distant walking is currently the favoured mode to revelations about the self and the land, for much of the past two centuries it was rootedness, staying put, which was regarded as the key. The Rev Gilbert White, whose The Natural History of Selborne (1789) was the first work of literary nature writing, spent almost his whole life in that small Hampshire … [Read more...] about Richard Mabey: in defence of nature writing
That's about it for jokes in a novella where there really is no such thing as community, or direct experience, and it is impossible to get away from the constant hum of the machine without asking the Central Committee for an Egression-permit to go outside. At which point you strap on a respirator and take your chances in the real world. … [Read more...] about The Machine Stops: Will Gompertz reviews EM Forster’s work ★★★★★
I told the children and they couldn’t believe it. I went to see my bank manager and he asked me where I shopped, so I told him Lidl. “You can shop in Marks & Spencer now, Margaret,” he said, which made me smile. I invested some, and gave a bit to the children. It was all so new to me, having money. I had to learn how to write cheques with so many words and numbers. I paid off my mortgage and started travelling, on cruises and tours. I’ve been to Sri Lanka and along the Panama Canal, to the United States and the Caribbean and Costa Rica. … [Read more...] about Pennies from heaven: what’s it like to suddenly become rich?