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Why not to retire

August 30th 2019

I am a keen supporter of Next-Up, an organisation created by the talented Victoria Tomlinson. Next-Up encourages retired professional and business folk to put their ‘parked’ experience to good use with voluntary organisations, charities and SMEs. It is a fact that too many highly experienced executives hit the retirement button and head for sunnier climes […]


Is there anyone listening at Yorkshire Water?

October 28th 2015

The Monkey and the Organ Grinder Further to my lengthy post of 27th October cataloguing the saga of my blocked drain at 7 Alexandra Road, Harrogate. YW were quick to make contact with me via Twitter. However, the operative dealing with the project has to refer everything back to YW’s contractors, AMEY. It would appear […]


Yorkshire Water Shambles

October 27th 2015

I don’t normally use my blogposts to complain about the world but I have been so shabbily treated and inconvenienced by Yorshire Water’s incompetent handling of what should be a simple procedure that I have been driven to share the story on my blog.  A dread to think of the money being wasted by YW […]


The North South Chasm

July 06th 2015

I have just spent the last few days in London attending my son and daughter-in-law’s wonderful wedding. But that’s another story. As a traveled but die-hard Yorkshireman I have spent plenty of time visiting London over the last forty or so years of my business life. We knew back then that London was never England, […]


Moving On (or nostalgia ain’t what it used to be)

February 03rd 2015

  Sometimes it is difficult not to be nostalgic. At the end of February I will give up my post with the Friends of Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. I was one of the original founders of this charity and have held various posts including chairman and latterly as a fund raiser. The Friends […]


A Different Way of Life

November 08th 2014

If any of my readers have visited the Indian subcontinent you’ll have witnessed many of the experiences I am about to relate; but for me a 66 year old virgin on my first passage to Northern India, I found the visit an unforgettable experience, best described as an assault to all my senses. Lavatories, or […]


An Irish Author

July 18th 2014

Yesterday I met Gemma. A fellow writer, Irish, garrulous and full of life stories. Dublin born, once an Iranian air hostess, married to a wealthy Oklahoma cowboy who killed himself in his own plane; lived in New Orleans and worked in Paris for Disney; she speaks seven languages. One of seven children she now writes […]


Taking Mesopotamia by Jenny Lewis

May 08th 2014

My rating: 4 of 5 stars This is a wonderful, and as always with Jenny Lewis, a thought-provoking, sensitive book of prose, poetry, interviews and pictures. Jenny’s loving search for her late father during his time serving in WW1 Mesopotamia and the contextualisation of modern day war in Iraq make this an evocative and timeless […]


Gathering Lost Teddy Bear Stories

April 25th 2014

During a recent family lunch party the subject of childhood teddy bears and favourite soft toys popped into the conversation. Nearly everyone around the table had a story of a much-loved and still cherished companion of old. So much so that two of the story-tellers (age 50 plus) had a tear in their eye when […]