Items 11 to 20 of 114 total

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watching_tennis-250x189

This week I expect that many of you have seen the television coverage of the Wimbledon tennis championships. If you’re anything like me, then the action on the glorious green courts of SW19 is a highlight on your summer viewing schedule. I have to confess that it is the only sporting event which I make a point of sitting down to watch. This year’s championships are the 140th and I discovered the other day that their impressive heritage is linked with another more colourful moment in British social history. Any ideas what it is?

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fudge-250x189

Are you still crossing off the days until your holiday this year, or are you an early bird who escapes at the earliest opportunity? And, when it comes to travelling, do you prefer to fly, set sail, or remain rooted to terra firma? What about holiday planning: are you one of those spur-of-the-moment holidaymakers, who books at the last minute, or are you a meticulous planner who starts organising the trip many months in advance?

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celebrations-250x189

There are certain events that characterise and capture the spirit of the British summer. Some have a history going back hundreds of years whereas others are rather more recent additions to the seasonal calendar. Many of them focus upon sporting endeavours at such hallowed places as Wimbledon, Ascot, Henley and Lord’s; while others, most notably Trooping the Colour, are an exceptional display of pageantry and a celebration of our monarchical heritage.

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inventions-250x189

Throughout the centuries Britain has been a cradle of invention, enterprise and discovery. Whether inspired by the desire to cure disease, improve safety, reduce domestic drudgery or enhance our everyday lives, there are countless examples of individuals who have applied their expertise and ingenuity to ways of improving our existence and enabling our progress. From gadgets to ground-breaking discoveries, technological marvels to time-saving devices and industrial achievements to enterprising innovations, these visionary men and women have made their mark on British history.

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ev-sum-17-250x189

Are you ready to dip your toes into summer yet? Well, I can appreciate that the good old British weather might not be doing its best to summon up the spirit of the season, but I promise that the sun is most definitely shining within the pages of the summer issue of Evergreen, which is now on sale (click here for subscriptions).

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watching-detectives-250x189

Growing up in the 1970s one of my favourite films was the 1974 adaptation of Agatha Christie’s classic crime novel “Murder on the Orient Express”. Have you seen it? Starring Albert Finney as the Belgian detective Hercule Poirot – he of the sharply sculpted moustache and equally sharp “little grey cells” – it also featured Ingrid Bergman, Wendy Hiller, Lauren Bacall, Vanessa Redgrave, Sean Connery, Sir John Gielgud, Rachel Roberts and Richard Widmark. It was an impressive cast merging Hollywood legends and renowned British talent in an ingeniously plotted whodunnit set on this most glamorous of trains in the 1930s. Added to the superb setting and storyline was the marvellous theme tune, composed by Richard Rodney Bennett, which evokes the thrill of travelling on a steam train, echoing the rhythm of the rails, as it rapidly gathers pace.

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heart-of-manchester-250x189

In the days since Monday night's despicable terror attack in Manchester, I am sure that, like me, your thoughts and prayers have been for the innocent victims, their bereaved families and friends, as well as the many casualties who remain in hospital. As the first reports and details emerged, everyone - regardless of whether we had a connection with those at the concert - was left shocked and stunned. We were all affected by the tragedy.

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record-player-250x189

The shop was called “Collectables and Curiosities” and I couldn’t resist venturing inside to have a rummage through the stock that was piled high and seemed to spill invitingly across the interior. Along with oddments of shabby furniture, there were cabinets of trinkets, shelves filled with china, and a table laden with a panoply of memories: dusty typewriters, cameras, dial telephones and colourful trimphones (Remember those?). Over in one corner I spotted several boxes containing old LPs and singles. These had also caught the eye of a mother who had clearly dragged her young son into the shop with her. As she flipped through the collection, gazing wistfully at the covers and titles, her son looked bored and mystified. I then overheard her say to him: "This is my music. These are what we used to listen to on a record player, not those downloads like you have." Her son was nonplussed, but as she looked at me, we smiled with the joy of shared recollections.

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sandcastle-250x189

It always gets to this time of year, when a familiar refrain starts playing in my mind: “Oh! I do like to be beside the seaside…” Yes, it’s the prospect of the great British holiday shimmering invitingly in the distance like the golden sun in an azure sky. Can you hear those waves crashing ashore and smell the salty air?

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testing-times-250x189

Do you remember taking your driving test? Were you one of those who passed first time, or did it take several attempts before your life on the open road really began?

It was nerve-racking stuff as you carefully navigated the test route, gripping the steering wheel for dear life, with your eyes fixed firmly on the road. Meanwhile, your every manoeuvre (all preceded by the regulation mirror and signal routine, of course) was scrutinised by the grim-faced examiner sitting beside you. Clutching their clipboards and making the occasional note, these shadowy figures remained tight-lipped throughout your ordeal except when they issued you with instructions or directions.

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