Saturday, February 16, 2019

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Sugar plantations, Caribbean Slavery and Cumbria Police


Britain’s first black police officer.


This piece of news demonstrates the deep multiculturalism of the British people. And it’s a tale about the son of a Caribbean slave who walked the beat as Britain’s first police officer almost 180 years ago.

Whilst studying pieces of memorabilia relevant to Cumbria Constabulary I came across an old painting: the origins and copyright of which are not known.

In a story that demonstrates the deep roots of British multiculturalism, it transpires that the... Read More

A Family Memoir of the First World War

A Family Memoir of the First World War

Pip, Squeak and Wilfred – and a couple of old brass tins

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Amongst our family heirlooms we come across the above medals belonging to my grandfather. They were awarded to him for service to his country in the First World War. Actually, the image above is how they originally looked. With the passage of time they now look like this…

The medals were affectionately referred to by service personnel of the day as Pip, Squeak and Wilfred.

From left to right the medals are: 1914-14... Read More

A guy has fallen on hard times, huddled under gentrified tenement stairs; on one side his clapped-out shopping trolley bound by trash bins and black cast iron pickets. The stairs span from streetside pavement up to an ornate doorway, moulded guardian face glowering overhead.

He seems in his 60s, but his real years are anyone’s guess. One day I ask, but my question is met with a non-committal nod of his grey face and averted blue eyes. The voice is a low cigarette-drenched rumble, sentences broken with a retching hack of a cough.

“Yeah, times are not so good buddy; rents are steep.”... Read More

I have always thought that history was a matter of fact. Past events that happened, retold in the present or documented for future reference. Of course, I was aware of the old saying...proven true through investigation, that history is written by the victors. Simply put, if you have two groups at violent odds with each other, and one wipes the other out...the surviving group can write or say anything about the other side, and there would be nobody to say differently. History, as designated by the whims of a particular group. I had never seen this actually happen...until now.

Let me be... Read More

Remembering Lockerbie: Wednesday, 21st December, 1988.


Pan Am Flight 103 was a transatlantic flight from London Heathrow Airport to John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens, New York. The aircraft was destroyed by a bomb on Wednesday, 21 December 1988, killingall 243 passengers and 16 crew members. The aircraft operating the flight was a Boeing 747 named ‘Clipper Maid of the Seas’. The flight originated in Frankfurt, West Germany, and ‘Maid of the Seas’ was to take the passengers onward from Heathrow, London, to Queens, New York.

The bomb exploded as ‘Maid of... Read More

Writing is a very personal journey but the destination is much more public if you want to be published. Commitment, imagination and determination are the lifeblood of authors. It is what drives them to succeed and describes the stuff of dreams.

Somewhere between the first tap of the keyboard and that final full stop lies a thousand unspoken questions about what one might do with the finished work, and whether you will succeed if you are ever published. In the beginning planning is a crucial element since research, mind wrestling, plotting and crafting, are key components of that piece... Read More


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This is a tale that a soldier told me many years ago when I was a younger man.

I did not think him to be a hero when he divulged an account of the battle he had fought. Neither did I consider him as special in any way. He was a chap who was always there for his family no matter what happened. As an individual, he went out to work to bring money home so that his kin might eat, drink, and enjoy the wonderful life he made for them. He was just an ordinary man really.

But as he grew older and finally declined from the evils of the war he had fought,... Read More

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