Susan Travers

Susan Travers was an Englishwoman from a wealthy, privileged background who became a heroine of World War Two and the only woman to join the famed French Foreign Legion.

Travers was born in London in 1909, the daughter of Francis Travers, an admiral in the Royal Navy and wealthy heiress Eleanor Turnbull. Read more ›››

Tameside Offices

The photo on the left looks an awful lot like Hashima, the abandoned Japanese island where important bits of the James Bond movie, Skyfall, was filmed.

In fact it shows the demolition of the civic offices for Tameside where I grew up and is yet another example of how we seem incapable of building anything worthy to stand the test of time these days. Read more ›››

Morris Men and fan

Having checked that our inoculations were up to date and our visas still valid, we ventured across the Pennines to Yorkshire yesterday for a day at the Shepley Spring Festival. Hard to credit that it's three years since we were last there.

If you wondered whatever happened to the beautiful people from the 1960s, I can tell you that they are alive and well and still attending events like these. Read more ›››

Dead Writers Perfume

Smell of the week: For the librarian in your life, perfumier Christopher Brosius brings you In the Library, a scent that promise ‘a whisper of the frayed cloth and the wisp of wood polish from the shelves’. Alternatively, you could try Dead Writers which ‘evokes the feeling of sitting in an old library chair paging through yellowed copies of Hemingway, Shakespeare, Fitzgerald and Poe’. Read more ›››

Racial Stereotyping

We were chatting with Ms P via the wonder of FaceTime™ and got onto the subject of national stereotypes for the places we've visited. Not in a nasty, xenophobic way I hasten to add, but rather the cultural differences and idiosyncrasies that are fond and abiding memories.

For example, in South Africa it was the Capetonians notions of time and the concept of ‘now’. Read more ›››

Windows 1

I had a phone from a non-computer savvy friend yesterday saying that her laptop had begun to install Windows 10 without any word of warning. She wanted to stick with Windows 7 because she had heard about the program compatibility problems others have had.

I haven't experienced any major issues since I voluntarily upgraded to Windows 10 last year, but that aside, I couldn't understand why my friends laptop should take it upon itself to do this without so much as a by your leave. Read more ›››

Dr Seuss

There can't be many people unaware of Dr Seuss as the author and illustrator of some of the most popular children's books, but what is less well known is his role as a political cartoonist and propagandist during World War Two.

He was born Theodor Seuss Geisel in Springfield, Massachusetts, in 1904, the grandson of German immigrants. Read more ›››