Filed under open spaces

Leprosy in Red Squirrels

Here’s an odd story from last week’s i paper: “Red squirrels in the UK and Ireland carry strains of leprosy similar to those that have afflicted disability and disfigurement on humans for centuries, a study has shown. Experts stress the chances of catching the disease from a squirrel are extremely low. Scientists tested DNA samples … Continue reading

Tireless Swifts

Tireless Swifts

Swifts are fascinating animals.I used to  go to a patch of open parkland where the birds would swoop down from the trees and dart across the grass catching insects. I loved lying on my back and watching them streak past a few feet above me. Here’s an article on recent discoveries from Thursday’s i paper: … Continue reading

Liverpool Anglican Cathedral

Liverpool Anglican Cathedral

Most cities have a cathedral, you can expect it to be biggish, ancient and full of dead worthies and their memorials. But Liverpool was a small town until the 18th century when  it became a major port, and since then there have been a lot of Irish immigrants, so they have a catholic cathedral, so … Continue reading

Street Art, Cardiff

Street Art, Cardiff

The annual Made in Roath festival is again upon us in Cardiff, and some fences have been decorated by a bunch of cross stitchers. I love them because the y make you stop and look at your local environment. Sometimes you have a brief encounter with others who have likewise paused to look and admire … Continue reading

Executions on Newcastle Moor

Newcastle had a temporary gallows built on the Town Moor, near the barracks of This is a list of the people who were despatched there. It is a varied and pretty comprehensive list of the types of crime that were designated capital offences at the time. It is also interesting how few there were for … Continue reading

Women in Sport

Women in Sport

Sport is one of the last areas where men earn more than women, but I had no idea how big is the gap, despite their jobs being just as hard – more so if you take in the lack of sponsorship and prize money for us fragile creatures. This is from Friday’s i paper, by … Continue reading

Messing with Hogarth

The Royal Society for Public Health has commissioned an update of Hogarth’s famous cartoon ‘Gin Lane’ to publicise the problems of public health. This is from the I paper: Hogarth’s satirical cartoon, published in 1751, blamed excessive consumption of gin for child neglect, disease, prostitution and debauchery. Thomas Moore’s Gin Lane 2016, commissioned by the … Continue reading

Black is More than a Colour

Black is More than a Colour

Many years ago I visited a Steiner Community for people with learning difficulties. Their bedrooms were different colours, and they moved each week, but the yellow room had to be repainted as it was found to cause sleep and behavioural disturbances. We are all affected by colours, and some colours have negative connotations, none more … Continue reading

Curious English Laws

This is some more from Thomas Platter’s Travels in England 1599. Not sure about this first law. A handless man may be able to read, but can’t turn the pages.  There are many curious laws and customs in England which fill up many volumes, for my part I will only relate what was told me. If … Continue reading