Welcome.

I am a complicated conservative and a Civilised Right-winger. I am a bit hippy and arty. I am currently working on poems, a memoir, and cultural essays. I nurture hopes of doing a one man show. And I am interested in the spiritual.

Page 2 of all posts

RDN’s environmental backstory, 1965-2019

This long PDF is a slightly cleaned-up transcript of an interview with RDN by the academic researcher, Richard Douglas of the Centre for the Understanding of Sustainable Prosperity. Richard is especially focussing on "the meanings and moral framings of the good life."

The interview was exciting for me because it was the first time anyone had asked me to explain the background for my environmental - and later my revisionist - thinking. What's more, and even better, it was the first time anyone had inquired as to the spiritual background to my thinking. Read more...

Published

09 September 2019

Filed in

Mind & body, Politics & campaigns

Hunston Convent’s French back-story

In 1871 an expatriate English community of Carmelite nuns returned to England to their new Chichester Carmel, at Hunston just outside the Sussex city. The origins of the community were in 17th Century England, but they had escaped anti-Catholic measures by migrating abroad to the Low Countries and thence, eventually, in the 19th Century to Valognes, in Normandy, France. Here's a snippet about the Normandy part of that story. Read more...

Published

14 August 2019

Filed in

Mind & body

“Seven Up!”, “63 Up” and D-Day +75

They did rather well didn’t they? The Granada TV company, often a trail-blazer, wittily turned its 1964 World in Action special Seven UP! into a seven-yearly snapshot of a cohort of kids who were seven year-olds in the phoney revolution of the Beetles, lifestyle Sunday colour supplements, and Swingin’ London. Read more...

Published

08 June 2019

Filed in

Civilised Right-wing, Mind & body, On TV & Radio

Tim Lawson-Cruttenden: A memoir

A personal account of Timothy Lawson-Cruttenden, 23 January 1955 - 17 April 2019 : A fine Christian, civil liberties lawyer, cavalryman, charity worker, and sportsman. (2000+ words) Read more...

Published

06 June 2019

Filed in

Handling protest, Mind & body, Politics & campaigns

Who’s Tory or Right-wing now?

Within a few days of each other there has been a very good trio of newspaper articles on how one defines a Conservative, not least in contrast to or comparison with one's being a Right-winger. I am taking the opportunity to locate my idea of a Civilised Right-winger in this picture.

Read more...

Published

05 June 2019

Filed in

Civilised Right-wing, Politics & campaigns

Cribsheet: Relativism vs Expertise

This is a longish (1,700 word) cribsheet on how one can judge gardens – and fashion, art and much else - almost objectively. It aims to counter the relativism and populism of the argument which suggests that all opinions are subjective and thus purely a matter of personal taste. Read more...

Published

26 May 2019

Filed in

Mind & body, On art

“Liberty” (2018)

This is a remarkable TV meditation on whether the African can be like, or even understand, the European, or vice versa. It makes a rather good and very sad case that they can't, or anyway that the aid system wasn't doing so in the 1980s. Both sides were too busy exploiting each other's many weaknesses. I write the following not least in case it tempts others to pitch in with their reading of the show. Read more...

Published

19 May 2019

Filed in

On TV & Radio, Politics & campaigns

500 years of businesswomen

Royal and aristocratic women often wielded considerable power as mothers and widows. It is curious how other women, formally unable to own or control assets in their own right, did often inherit their late husband’s stake in the wider world, and run it. They had other routes to control as well. Read more...

Published

19 May 2019

Filed in

Mind & body, On books, Politics & campaigns

Anne Lister & “Shirley” in business

There is a long tradition of women being successfull in farming, landowning and business. Here I look at Anne Lister (Gentleman Jack) and Charlotte Brontë's Shirley in that light.
Read more...

Published

19 May 2019

Filed in

Mind & body, On books, On TV & Radio

Poem: For Ken, 7 April 2019

I wrote this a few days after the death of Ken Uprichard (and have changed it slightly since). His family and mine have been friends for decades. He was latterly Head of Conservation at the British Museum but never seemed remotely grand to me - rather he was a countryman loving London. Read more...

Published

19 May 2019

Filed in

RDN's poems
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