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    Collecting 78s – The Strangely Addictive Properties of Shellac

Collecting 78s – The Strangely Addictive Properties of Shellac

No matter how hard I try to persuade myself that they’re a very demanding way of collecting recorded music, 78s have a strange hold over me. Perhaps it’s their direct link to the 40s and 50s – a magical thing for a youth obsessed with the period when 45s were still very much the […]

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    Pilot Officer Prune – Forgotten Comic Strip Hero of the Battle of Britain

Pilot Officer Prune – Forgotten Comic Strip Hero of the Battle of Britain

‘This bloody station’s a right bloody cuss, no bloody pubs and no bloody bus;
Nobody cares for poor old bloody us. Oh, bloody bloody bloody bloody bloody!

For a MidCentury boy like me, brought up on a steady diet of 1950s war movies, Airfix kits, Action Man and War Picture Library comics – all of which […]

By |September 22nd, 2020|Collecting|0 Comments|

Sixty Four Pages of Wartime Grit


If sometimes I give the impression that my boyhood was characterised by an obsession with the Second World War, that’s because it’s largely true. I have a theory that, for any boy of the immediate post war generation (the baby boomers as sociologists would categorize us), you could place each one of us firmly […]

A Thing about Dansettes (and the odd Philips)

If I wrote that I’d first lost my heart to a Dansette in my early teens, you might well imagine some schoolboy crush on some baton-twirling cutie. If I added that she was a present from my great-aunt, and was covered in slightly scuffed red and grey leatherette, you’d start to wonder if you’d […]

Ah the Irony – An Blog about Vintage Typewriters

Vintage typewriters seem to have become all the rage, these days. After years gathering dust amongst the bric a brac on the shelves of bad theme pubs, they’ve joined the ranks of the items of analogue technology much beloved of the hipster crowd (are they still a thing?), and a quick on line search […]

Stuff from the Vintage Magazine Store

When I wrote about the untimely demise of the Vintage Magazine Store in Soho (which you can find here), it was very much done in the heat of the moment, which didn’t give me much of a chance to dig out any of the things I’d bought there over the years. We’ll, as I’m […]

Forty Years on the Forbidden Planet

Is it a paradox that the rapid passage of time, combined with nostalgia for one’s youth makes it seem that some shops have been there forever, and yet forever just seems like a few years? Perhaps that kind of timewarp feeling is quite appropriate when it comes to a place like the Forbidden Planet […]

In Search of Giant Fleas – the Joy of the Flea Market

It was all so easy when I first started collecting ‘old stuff’. For one thing, it wasn’t that old – in the late 70s and early 80s, stuff from the 50s and 60s was at most 30 years old and much of it was simply classed as secondhand, rather than collectable. Charity shops were […]

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    Typewriters, Radios, Cameras – and they all work! Nirvana in Exeter

Typewriters, Radios, Cameras – and they all work! Nirvana in Exeter

After a week touring south Devon, from Exeter as far down as Plymouth, it would be easy to fill an article with a blow by blow account of the antiques, vintage and collectibles shops we found and the purchases we did or didn’t make in each but, frankly, you could get the former from […]

Confessions of an Occasional DJ Part Two- Going Vinyl

WARNING: this article contains material that non-vinyl devotees may find incomprehensible, or just plain weird.

When I made my first attempt at capturing the world of the rock’n’roll DJ, I’d just embarked on my own quest to bring the cornucopia of music from the Big Beat era to the ears of my unsuspecting neighbours. With […]