Category Archives: Wales

To Harrods for Satin Pantaloons

Every November, when I was a child, my parents had anxious communication with cousins in a remote Pembrokeshire village. We needed to know what to buy my great aunt for Christmas. Every Christmas the answer was the same and it … Continue reading

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Ex-library books. How bad do they have to be before we decide they are unsaleable?

This one is pretty bad. I’ll show you the worst bits first. Library stamps, felt-tip pricing, folded corners, foxing, staining, ink-written Dewey and accession numbers, manilla library card pockets and a hole where library documentation has been removed. Oh dear! … Continue reading

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Are you a trig-point logger?

I’m not a trig-point logger, but when I’ve climbed to the highest point of the Preseli mountains at Rosebush or walked to the tip of Dinas Head it is immensely satisfying to find a triangulation station to confirm that you’ve … Continue reading

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Ordnance Survey Landranger maps 1:50,000 (various)

One year, when I was a student, I rented a room in an architect’s house . The long wall in his beautiful study was papered with Ordnance Survey maps, so that the whole of East Anglia bulged out elegantly towards the door. … Continue reading

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Tales of a Rat-Hunting Man by D. Brian Plummer

Brian Plummer is self-consciously and proudly eccentric and his passion is hunting rats with ferrets or terriers. There’s a lot in this book about killing rodents but along the way we learn a great deal about rats and I learnt enough about the … Continue reading

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The Oxford Book of Oxford edited by Jan Morris

The editor of this anthology started life as James Morris and was stationed in Trieste (my mother’s town) at the end of the second world war. After a lifetime of travel, writing and incident Jan Morris now lives in Wales … Continue reading

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Central London Map published by the AA (Late 1930s)

This undated map of central London was published by the AA while Sir Stenson Cooke was still secretary of the organisation. The map itself, showing the War Office, a temporary bridge at Waterloo allowing occasional 2-way traffic, underground stations, garages … Continue reading

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Soldiers Died in the Great War 1914-1919 – Part 28. The Royal Welsh Fusiliers

Despite the unpromising exterior, this book contains a poignant reminder of one of the major tragedies of the 20th century. Here we have a record of 10,000 young men dying on the battlefields of the First World War: 10,000, young lives, recruited … Continue reading

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Soft Kites and Windsocks by Jim Rowlands

This is a perfect summer holiday project book. Jim Rowlands, a well known kite-maker, author and trainer whose frog and whale kites were pioneering designs, helps the reader start from scratch. The book deals only with soft kites, so there … Continue reading

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The Perfect Stranger by P J Kavanagh

I picked this book because of its cover. From visits to the Courtauld Gallery I’ve grown to love Jawlensky’s paintings, and the painting on this cover just grabbed my attention, as I know it was supposed to. Cynthia Krupat, ‘the greatest designer … Continue reading

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