Places to Visit

The East Kent – Whitstable’s Own Big Beat Venue

Sadly, Stix and family moved on from the East Kent at the end of 2017. Clearly, a pub full of happy drinkers wasn’t enough for the brewery! Passing the East Kent now, it’s hard to believe that for a few months, you could catch fantastic live acts for free there at least once a […]

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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 […]

Timewarp Below Euston

For our last Hidden London tour of 2016, we headed for Euston – hardly where you would expect to find ‘lost’ stations given how central it is to the rail network both above and below ground. However, it’s Euston’s key role in the growth of transport both in and out of, and within, London […]

A Small Town Underground – Hidden London Again

I’ve known about the wartime ‘deep shelters’ beneath London’s tube network, but I’ve always doubted that I’d ever get the chance to explore one. Now, thanks to the London Transport Museum’s Hidden London programme, that’s another experience ticked off my somewhat bizarre bucket list.

As ever, let’s start with a bit of history. By late […]

A Couple of Gems from the Lake District

Much as it’s redolent of classic British holidays from the 20th Century and before, it would be disloyal to the thrust of this blog if I turned it into a catalogue of tea shops, waterfalls and nice walks that we’d encountered during our week there. Nevertheless, our wanderings took us to a couple of […]

Meanderings in Morecambe

A journey north, far beyond our usual patch, and an unusually free-flowing M6, recently gave us the chance to drop in on Morecambe, a town I’ve long wanted to visit for two reasons, both embedded firmly in mid 20th Century culture but in very different ways.

First stop was the Midland Hotel, a moderne […]