Places to Visit

The Museum of Brands – A Collector’s Masterpiece

For those of us with an abiding love of design from the mid 20th Century, it’s a swift journey from the headline items like movie posters, classic magazine adverts and record covers to the minutiae of everyday life. But even for those less obsessive, who can honestly claim that they’ve not hung onto some […]

Plywood, Yes Plywood – the MidCentury Material

Plywood. He’s writing about plywood. And he’s been to an exhibition about plywood. Surely this must be the point that the MidCentury Chap enters the anoraknosphere. But what a fantastic midcentury material plywood is, and what a superb collection of delectable midcentury goodies can be brought together to celebrate its role in 20th Century […]

High Octane Hot Rods and Rhythm’n’Soul at Santa Pod

For the vintage petrol head, there’s nothing better than watching classic motors being driven hard as they were meant to be, and for the lover of 50s and 60s sounds, it’s a treat to hear original numbers in an authentic style, so when the two come together with one of your favourite rock’n’roll DJs […]

Miniature & Mechanical Marvels in Northleach

For any lover of recorded music in all its forms, it’s worth being reminded of how it all started, and there’s no better place to get a potted education in the history of mechanical music than the aptly titled Mechanical Music Museum in Northleach, Gloucestershire. Northleach itself is just the place for a museum […]

The East Kent – Whitstable’s Own Big Beat Venue

We’ve walked past the East Kent pub in Whitstable dozens of times (for Mrs M, make that hundreds or more as she grew up there). We’ve watched it decay and close; worried as it started to be refurbished lest it turn into another ‘investment opportunity’ apartment building or, only slightly better, up market gastro […]

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    Alas the Shakespeare County Raceway – I Didn’t Know It Well Enough

Alas the Shakespeare County Raceway – I Didn’t Know It Well Enough

You know that dreadful feeling when you find out about something really great on your doorstep, just in time to wave it goodbye? Well, I guess it’s going to be that way with the Shakespeare County Raceway, just outside Stratford on Avon. I can’t believe I’ve lived in the area for over a […]

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    Space, Battlefield Medicine, but mostly Robots, at the Science Museum

Space, Battlefield Medicine, but mostly Robots, at the Science Museum

It doesn’t take much to get us heading cross to the Science Museum in South Kensington, and it takes even less to point me in the direction of a vintage robot, so an exhibition dedicated to the history of robots over the past 500 years took very little contemplation before we put it high […]

Getting American Arty at the RA

My love for popular culture of the mid 20th Century doesn’t often take me through the portals of the Royal Academy, which I always think of as the home of ‘serious’ art, but Mrs M and I found ourselves making a beeline there during an Easter break in London to catch a feast of […]

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    Roger Mayne at the Photographers’ Gallery – and then Gin

Roger Mayne at the Photographers’ Gallery – and then Gin

I’ve written before about the Photographers’ Gallery in Soho and it remains a favourite spot as the exhibitions there are invariably fascinating, whatever the theme. What’s more the cafe’s pretty good and the shop has far too many photographic goodies to be kind to anyone’s wallet. However, when their lens turns to one of […]

When I Grow Up I Want My Own Record Shop

For any collector of recorded music, on whatever format, being given the keys to your own record shop sounds like a dream come true. But what’s it actually like when that dream drops in your lap, and how do you set about making a record shop work without compromising every principle that made the […]