feline-wear-purple-with-red-hat February 15

February Blogging Challenge: Modern Fairy Tales

This month’s challenge stumped me. I’m not one for fairy tales. Indeed when it comes to the faerie folk, I’m with Captain Hook. They’re not all nice and fluffy. Some of them are downright evil. So I put my thinking cap on and remembered a challenge I’d set a group of kids years ago. Re […]

wp-1486971977080.jpg February 13

Cee’s Which Way Photo Challenge: Week 7

I took this at Turnham Green Tube station on the District line. Many thanks to the lady who turned so serediptiously into shot. You can never stage things like this … For other takes on the challenge click here Save

50 b4 February 11

50 before 50: #6 (London)

Sometimes you come across a blue plaque that makes you want to learn more about the person or building to which it refers. For me this is one of them. I was intrigued. Who the devil was Montague Pyke? It turns out he was for the time the cinema king. The most important man in […]

50 b4 February 01

50 before 50: #5 (Chester)

We nearly missed this one. It was tucked down a little side alley. Taken during the summer 2016

DSCN1049 January 29

Weekly Photo Challenge: Repurpose/ Discover Challenge: Conventional Wisdom

I’ll be honest, I found this challenge a tad difficult  until I remembered this set of photos, taken one Christmas. Meet Abbey-Kat, now 19 and grumpy. These were taken when she was younger and grumpy. I decided I’d also tag this for extra credit in conventional wisdom category. I’m sure you’ll agree, she’s defying conventional […]

50 b4 January 25

50 before 50: blue plaque #4 (Chester)

Again, another blue plaque from our summer’s adventures. This one taken in Chester is not far from the main thoroughfare.

50 b4 January 24

50 before 50: blue plaque #3 (Holmfirth)

We found this one during our tour of Holmfirth in the Summer 2016.

50 b4 January 23

50 before 50: blue plaque #2 (Holmfirth Flood)

Taken in Holmforth – home to Last of the Summer Wine – Summer 2016

20170118_072019 January 22

Cee’s Which Way photo challenge (week 3)

We’ve had some unusual skies in the South East of England. Very much the stuff of folklore. You know the one- Red sky at night, shepherd’s delight, Red sky at morning, Shepherd’s warning. These photos were shot on my commute to work. I was on the slip lane at Boreham Services, Chelmsford – going nowhere […]

wp-1484990940160.jpg January 21

Weekly Photo Challenge: Graceful

I bumped into this chap, resting in Wrexham, this summer. He seemed so peaceful; so graceful. I couldn’t pass by without taking a snap. For further takes on this challenge Graceful

wp-1484410872999.jpg January 14

Weekly photo challenge: Ambience

This week has been a week of real pathetic fallacy as we built up to the Great Snow Storm and Surge Tides of 2017; only to find that here in the South East of England, they were little more than a damp squib. For your delectation, here a little bit of the ambience I found […]

Featured Image -- 2439 January 12

Verdict!

Symington Byrd makes a convincing ‘gentleman detective’

dscn1301 January 07

Cee’s Which Way Photo Challenge (Week 1, 2017)

I took this picture of Southend Pier a couple of years ago. As you can see it’s a bit of a stormy day, and I’m walking back towards the land. For those of you not au fait with Southend Pier, it’s the longest pleasure pier in the world – 1.34 miles long to be precise. […]

Burning question

Six people give an account of a dinner party. One member of the party doesn’t mention one of the guests at all during his account. Why not?

blog-image January 04

January Blogging Challenge: Imaginary Friend

“If Sarah  wasn’t a writer,” OH said over dinner, “I’m sure she’d be schizophrenic.” As you can imagine, Mother was horrified. A brussel sprout clattered back onto her plate. A dead ringer for Her Majesty in a younger day, she called on that to deliver a stinging retort. It involved the words “bloody” and “idiot”. […]

50 b4 December 11

50 before 50: blue plaque #1 (Violet Szabo)

We were in Brixton and its environs yesterday. Opening the blue plaque app – as you do – we made our way to 18 Burnley Road, Stockwell to see the memorial to this very brave war hero. I shall let her citation speak far more effectively than I ever could on the subject. For more […]

Cowardice of Crows

My debut Crime Fiction Novel is out on 1st November in ebook and paperback form.  Published by KGHH it sees Symington Earl Byrd determined to find the killer of a good time girl with potential links to the Houses of Parliament.

cowardice1 July 25

Emily: A Metamorphosis

I have been having a look at this blog in the last few days, making a few changes here – tweaking there; preparing for the summmer when I can blog and post to my heart’s content. Doing so, I came across an old post – It’s all in the clothes. This post contained my initial […]

commenting-bootcamp March 23

Blogging 101 Boot Camp – Commenting

Those of you who know these things will be aware that I’ve not been doing a lot of blogging recently. Actually who am I kidding? I’ve been doing NO blogging recently. So I decided I needed to do something about that. To “sort it!” as they say in Essex. So, I signed up for bootcamp […]

20150831_142947 March 16

Weekly Photo Challenge: One Love

I haven’t done this challenge for a while. Actually I haven’t been blogging for awhile. My excuse: life got in the way. The reality: life got in the way. But this seemed such an appropriate one to do. And here is the picture I have chosen… One day I might blog about the last few […]

Featured Image -- 2439 November 03

latest 5 * review

Originally posted on The Secret of Aldwych Strand:
Found this and a couple of other cracking reviews on Amazon this morning. 5.0 out of 5 stars As I love historical fiction 30 Oct. 2015 By Amazon Customer Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase As I love historical fiction, I bought all three books of Sarah E.Smith in the…

wpid-20150810_185031.jpg August 10

Weekly photo challenge: Beneath Your Feet

I took these shots in Penryhndeudraeth, North Wales as we were walking back from the car park to our holiday cottage.  The view of Penryhndeudraeth is taken from just outside the door. It is beneath our feet, though not as literally as the other three shots. For further takes on the challenge Beneath Your Feet

DSCN1868 August 05

weekly photo challenge: Inspiration

I am always inspired by Wales. This shot was taken outside at my parents place last Christmas. It snowed enough to keep us inside and at the bottom of the drive for three days. During which I also snapped these beauties on camera For further takes on this challenge click here: Inspiration

DSCN2081 August 05

Weekly photo challenge 2: Inspiration

I rarely do two of these postings. But this man has been a political hero of mine since school. And no it’s not Lloyd George ( for those of you who thought you knew what my answer was going to be). Getting a chance to visit his memorial garden on our trip to Washington was […]

whitechapel affair book cover August 03

Time to say Goodbye to Lucy and Mark

The moment I have been dreading arrives this month. Lucy and Mark – my erstwhile Canvey duo – take their final bows in the final book of the Aldwych Strand Trilogy: The Whitechapel Affair. It is a moment of mixed emotions. Not only have they occupied my free hours for the last four years, but […]

DSCN2087 July 25

Weekly photo challenge: Up close

This was taken during our visit to Washington in May. It’s taken over the shoulder of the last man standing in the  soup kitchen line at the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial Garden. If you’re in Washington – do go. It’s an amazing garden and memorial – very peaceful. Very moving. For more takes on this […]

H3607-L74829011 July 24

Langley Bradley – clockmaker

Langley Bradley was a clockmaker born in 1663. At the age of 23 he was apprenticed to Joseph Wise, and after being freed in 1694, he worked in Fenchurch Street at the Minute Dial. In 1720 he was appointed Assistant of the Clockmakers company and was master in1726. From 1748 he was working as a […]

5ddbb5f184a8035b5b01ece1dd3b2052 July 23

My Year So far…

Whilst I have been lurking around the edges of the blogsphere since January, I have been very quiet. I blame work. It has been busy. A new job in the same organisation, a return to subjects I haven’t taught in 4 years; a house under renovation; and book three of the Aldwych Strand trilogy clamouring […]

2b2eeee January 23

Dear Future Godchild

Dear Future Godchild, I was pleased to make your acquaintance today when your Mum sent a picture of your 12 week scan. I look forward to meeting you properly later this year and getting to know you over the years. Today, I would like to promise you several things. Firstly I would like to promise […]

wpid-20141109_093811.jpg November 09

Annual Wash your Toy Dog Day – Day 2

It’s a long process – drip drying.  

wpid-20141108_091200.jpg November 08

Annual wash your Cuddly Toy Dog Day

In our house, it’s annual wash your cuddly toy dog day. The toy dog in question is Lankey. He’s 45. Some would say we should let it be. He’s made of fabric; his ears need changing. And despite a restuffing earlier in the year, another one is required – post haste. This is why he […]

GetInline October 27

Another Interview – The podcast

As always a trip to the studios of Phoenix FM (a community radio station) based in Brentwood was fun. Scott, who’d interviewed me at Easter, had invited me back to talk about the second book in the Aldwych Strand Trilogy. This time – taking me as a seasoned interviewee – he threw some curve ball […]

wpid-20141003_075721.jpg October 04

Weekly Photo Challenge: Signs

I’m not of a literal mind as you know; but this is such a classic sign that I felt compelled to share it 🙂   for other takes on this challenge  click here

DSCN1516 August 27

Weekly Photo Challenge: Fray

When you think of the word “fray” it tends to involve thread and clothing coming apart. It’s not something you normally associate with iron or metal. They rust. But looking at the way the paint is fraying on these metal structures made me change my mind Taken at Beamish. For other takes on Fray click […]

DSCN1246 August 20

Weekly Photo Challenge: Silhouette

I’m not sure if these really qualify as silhouettes. They were taken  from Riverside studios across to Hammersmith Bridge at about 10.30pm.       For other takes on this challenge click here

What has Lucy got herself into this time?

Originally posted on The Secret of Aldwych Strand:
“– although all the men you meet in this time zone will lie to you, only Mark will betray you.” *** The 1949 Affair is here – out on kindle ahead of its paperback release Monday… ? Mark was hoping to go home. Not that home was…

20140418_091055 April 18

The New kitchen – purchase 1

In January OH knocked through from the kitchen into the dining room, put a wall up and created me a study/writing room/place to be pretentious 🙂 The aim is to turn the old kitchen into a dining room, and create a new kitchen out of the spare space. So yesterday we went to Norwich to […]

RB 2014 -ty April 15

A big THANK YOU

Your support for this blog, as I reach the 100 followers mark, overwhelms me.  Thanks guys!!  

cyberman tube April 13

A Journey around WordPress – wander two

As the second week of the holidays arrives, I find my journey taking a road down to some blogs I haven’t visited for a while. The first: readfulthings is a blog I always recommend to students and their parents for its reviews section – written by teens for teens. Well what (sometimes) do we adults […]

symington crow April 12

It’s all in the Clothes

OH and I have been thinking a lot about Emily and her relationship with Symington. She’s an East End girl of genteel stock; he was part of the late King Edward’s crowd. . He has been asked to look after her, she has contacts in the East End that are vital to a criminologist; but […]

DSCN1080 March 16

Scarecrows 2014

It’s strange how on your commute to work you tend to mark your seasons by the changing landmarks.  And after spotting the very unusual scarecrows for the first time last year, I’ve been looking out for the Family (as Doctor Who fans know they are called). I was prepared this year, with the Nikon in […]

Mark and Lucy’s London

Uncovered recently by the BFI, this footage was taken in 1927. 18 years earlier the dresses were longer; and probably less cars. But this was the London, Lucy Pevensea and Mark Birch (two 21st kids) found themselves in. Different isn’t it? Find out more of a world of danger, intrigue and timetravelling teenagers….. http://myBook.to/EndOfThePierAffair

DSCN0820-001 September 15

Weekly Photo Challenge: Inside (Leytonstone Underground)

Inside Leytonstone Underground station is a series of mosaics celebrating the films of its most famous son (and one of him as a young boy outside the family shop.)  I won’t insult your intelligence by labelling them. What I will say, is that for those interested in such things, one of the films depicted in […]

50 b4 February 14

50 before 50:#12 (Barons Court Road)

50 b4 February 14

50 before 50: #13 (Barons Court Road)

This one needs no introduction 

50 b4 February 14

50 before 50: #9, 10 & 11 (Chiswick)

Some people you find just like that Others need no introduction While this one needs a bit of research

50 b4 February 13

50 before 50: #8 (Feltham)

Considering he was such a flamboyant man, this is such a simple memorial 

50 b4 February 13

50 before 50: #7 (Chiswick)

And sometimes a blue plaque sends you scurrying back to one of your favourite movies