Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Denny Wood

Was looking for a photo of Greg, but it evaded me, so this one of Popsie will take it's place.

Been listening to Gary Numan play his new music on KCRW this evening which has been fun, and also a gig by the Kills which I also enjoyed.

Friday, December 22, 2017

An Oldie One

Just been chatting with Gran, and told her there was a new photo up on Facebook, then I thought she'll never find it on Facebook so better put it on the blog! This is Popsie from a recent walk near Denny Wood sensibly wearing a nice wooly hat. Gran will be pleased.

I am listening to Oded Tzur, an excellent NY based sax player with Shai Maestro on piano.


Monday, December 04, 2017

East London Group exhibition at Southampton Art Gallery

Have been talking this morning to my Dad about the exhibition at Southampton Art Gallery - "From Mile End to Mayfair"

This exhibition brings together many of the East London Group’s most iconic pieces, some of which have not been seen in public for more than eighty years plus a few which have only come to light in recent weeks, months or years since interest in the Group was rekindled by David Buckman’s book: “From Bow to Biennale”.

The genesis of the East London Group was from classes led by their inspirational teacher John Cooper at the Bow and Bromley Evening Institute in East London from the mid-twenties. The majority of the members were working East End men and women supplemented by a small contingent who were Slade School trained, as was Cooper himself. Cooper managed to get Walter Sickert to mentor the Group at the Bow classes and he even showed with them on three occasions as well as employing one member, Elwin Hawthorne as his studio assistant for three and a half years. It is this link to Sickert that the exhibition will hope explore.

The vast majority of the ELG work will be on loan from family or private collections augmented by three or four pieces from institutional collections. In their day ELG members exhibited extensively in mixed shows alongside many of their artistic peers of those times. Work from Southampton City Art Gallery’s own extensive collection of Camden Town and early London Group work will be exhibited in conjunction with the Group’s work, augmented by a few pieces from other public and private collections.

The aim of the exhibition will be to try to highlight these connections and similarities and, in so doing, hopefully go some way towards reinstating their reputation from that time which saw two Group members being deemed good enough to represent Great Britain at the Venice Biennale in 1936: the pinnacle of international artistic acclaim.

East London Group Artists
Elwin Hawthorne, Walter Steggles, Harold Steggles, Cecil Osborne, John Cooper, Phyllis Bray, Grace Oscroft, Henry Silk, Albert Turpin
Artists from Southampton City Art Gallery’s Collection
Walter Sickert, Malcolm Drummond, Spencer Gore, Duncan Grant, Paul Nash, Charles Ginner, Stanley Spencer, Robert Bevan, William Nicholson
Image detail: Poole Harbour, Elwin Hawthorne (1934)

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Autumnal Popsie

Greg has been away sailing with George at Rutland, which has left me to have fun with Posie today.

I had disappeared for a call of nature, and when I returned I found Miranda knee deep in a cloud of leaves having the time of her life.

We walked from Woodfidley through Standing Hat and up the river to "Kingfisher Stoop", stopping at the Forest Park Hotel for our lunch. They had an awesome wood burner, a discoball, and a stuffed stag on the wall. The food was great and the beer was brewed just around the corner in the stables of the Balmer Lawn Hotel!

All in all a great day out.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Catch up time.

Always nice when the old folk brighten up your day with a Facetime call! This morning I managed to remember a few screengrabs as we were chatting so I'm sharing

Monday, November 20, 2017


It's not often I get a chance to make comparisons, and this is as objective as it gets.

A point in time, a notch on a belt.


Thirty Six

Lewis on the day he was Twelve, as recorded on my blog in 2010. Seems like such a long time ago, but so much has changed in the blink of an eye.

Twelve x2

Gregory, on the day of his Twelveth birthbay.


Today has been bleak, cold, grey and wintry. Did I mention wet?

So by contrast yesterday was a lot more fun. I love these sideways looks at life - as Greg and Miranda cruise (on skates and scooters) down the pier at Boscombe with the sunshine glinting on the water

Currently she's having a tea party with some chums, and there is screeching coming from the kitchen... Game On.


Miranda's version of the day differs slightly to my own naturally, although curiously we went to the same places! This is our lunch stop although I didn't have my bike with me, otherwise I could have had it serviced.

It's quite a cool cafe, the sort of place Lewis would probably tell his friends he went to "when he grows up!"

Our supper stop was at Boffi, also in Southbourne... neapolitan style pizza ...yum!

Popsie (Takeover)

Birthdays, birthdays! November the 20th is definitely the best day of the year. OBVIOUSLY! It's my birthday. Have already opened my presents in bed. A new unicorn notebook, Inline skates and a new helmet not to mention a cute unicorn pom pom!
Yesterday we went to Hengistbury Head and Mudeford to use my skates. Then after that we went to Bournemouth to skate along the front! After we go up the piers and tried the 2 penny slots And i tried to win a PINK FLUFFY UNICORN on the claw grabby thing but failed miserably! :(
Then I got a cookies and cream ice cream! after we looked at the lights and found lewi in starbucks! i really wanted a pumpkin spiced latte but I wasn't aloud!:(Then we headed home!!!

by Miranda

Tuesday, November 07, 2017

Dad goes POP socket crazy

Pop sockets are the next big thing, and Miranda has a plan to make millions from designing, making and selling them!

Dad has been modelling the new range, and here he is wearing the blue glalaxy drip!

Monday, November 06, 2017

Sunday, November 05, 2017

Hold Up

Sunday morning romp around Denny Wood, the weather was beautiful. Leaves were tumbling in the gentle breeze... Our walk took in various touch points and quite a few trees were climbed.

Lots of funghi out.

Friday, October 27, 2017

Looking for Fishlook Island

We used to do this every lunchtime back in the day. Before school took Miranda away from me!

Before that I used to kick the ball with Greg... no wonder I took to riding my bike instead!

Lunchtime perambulation

I got talked into going with Miranda in a little mapmaking expedition


Stuck up a Gum Tree

From last weekend in Rans Wood climbing trees whilst we waited for the rain to pass! Mip is getting a bit better at climbing but still doesnt get the basics. Like don't wear wellies if you want to stay up...

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Miner's Lamp

Now this is one of my Dad's painting from 1962 I think. I really like the paintings from this period although they are quite dark in charcter, after with knives and guns and suchlike.

Something tells me this is a painting that passed to Norman, then to Martin Parker. Norman apparently collected Miner's lamps after visiting Grampy back in the day!

Johnstown CP School

Not sure where I got this photo from but I suspect a Facebook share. It's the tree laying ceremony when we moved to the new school building in Johnstown. You can see me just above the headmaster, needless to say I am not headboy planting the tree!

Various familiar faces,but Miss Pile Davies my teacher I can remember by name.

Miranda and her ClayPhone

She's an imaginative kid, and loves making things. But this one she has also played with a lot.

In Reflective Mood

Your scribe on his perambulations, had reason to wonder at the meaning of life the universe and all that. No conclusion could be drawn, but an impression was made.

Been doing this along time, and we won't be stopping any time soon...

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Miranda in Rans Wood

Having blogged using Blogger for quite a long time, I am keen to keep up the habit but I've struggled in recent years if I am honest. It's such a slow process compared to other social media. I much prefer the diarist perspective, although it sits in it's own space which has it's advantages, it's also harder to find - and since I started doing this mainly for my Mum's benefit, ease of use is a big factor! This photo is an attempt to recreate the habit.

The girl has just walked into my room and she's smiling at the photo. "At least you can see my lovely shimmering eye shadow " she says.... " Hmmmm, is got a dash between them!"

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Eiffel Tower Calling

The phone rang as I was pedaling down the road. I wasn't expecting it to be Lewis, what a nice surprise to share their exploration of Paris!

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Just like old times

I have spent many hours encouraging these guys to sail, and communicate with each other. For various reasons, mainly associated with being brothers four years apart, it hasn't always worked smoothly. Nevertheless although the boys ultimately abandoned their joint effort, we have seen a few sailing sessions this autumn. And long may it continue.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Time travels

One of the highlights of my summer was the chance to meet up with an old chum Andrew Scourfield. Andrew and I went to Johnstown Primary School together, and here's an old photo rediscovered by my bro Christian. Date is somewhere close of the sixties - the radiogram is still pride of place, and just look at those curtains. Juliet could be wearing Grammar School uniform so maybe 1969.

Anyhow whilst Gregory was sailing at Weymouth, Andrew happened to be holidaying at Poole with his wife Shirley. We spent a lovely afternoon watching the boats on the water from the cafe on the shore, catching up on old times and where life had left us. Fifty years more or less has passed since this photo, amazing isn't it?

Sunday, July 02, 2017

Round The Island 2017

Greg competed with his 29er sailing companion George Richards aboard H2 Sailing's yacht Wight Spirit on the weekend. The crew were largely youth sailors with more than half of the sailors under 17 years old.

They finished in second place in the Youth Trophy which is a fab result. Seventh fastest boat in their class against all adults.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Roads we travel

Chatting to Gregory yesterday about how we see ourselves as hip dudes, living in the present, but really we are just stuck in the past. But nothing compares with this image, when I'm guessing I was around 8-10 years old.

These two old dears lived out near our rented house near Capel Iwan, before we moved into Carmarthen. They shared their house with their animals, and the manure heap was just outside the front door. Sisters I think, but when they moved on, that was the end of the story. Reminds me very much of On The Black Hill by Chatwin. Photo taken by my father, with me peeking over the gate

Saturday, June 03, 2017

Domino fallen down

Just a few weeks ago before I went down to Wales I stood at the gate chatting to Barry about the tired state of Domino. When we moved to Hythe one of the first bonds we made was with Barry and Janis who look after a large number of waif and stray animals. We got stuck in and helped look after their animals, and the kids who were very small at the time learned to ride the donkeys.

Originally this was Domino and Jennifer, although we lost Jenny some years ago. So many happy memories of when the kids were small, playing with the donkeys, goats, chicken etc taking them on walks, cleaning up all the debris and feeding them at bedtime....

Tremendously sad to discover that Domino died whilst I was looking after Dad, so here's a fave photo of him in our garden, eating (what else would you expect) from when we still could coax him out.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

I see you

Artful composition of Father Brown circa mid sixties. This church yard seems to have provided inspiration for both Dad and Ken, the cross figuring prominently.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

The Good Life

I've been lucky enough to have a whole ten days alone with my Dad, other than an occasional visit from my brother Christian. Mum has been visiting my sister in Germany so an interesting time has been had.

Naturally a few new photos have been found and scanned which I will share over coming weeks. It's also been interesting because I have been reading my uncle Jeremy's memoirs, which has made vivid a period in my life when these things were talked about, but not necessarily taken in fully.

This photo could well have been taken by me since it relates to the seventies rather than the sixties, by which time I was the main 'tog other than Dad. The photographic line of influence roughly begins with my great uncle Dennis who was a keen photographer. He photographed my parents wedding and many other social events which give us such an interesting record of life back then. My parents subsequently had a friend in their early twenties who was a keen observer of life with his camera; his name was Ken. Ken's life came to an abrupt end late sixties, and by then my Dad had begun taking photographs.

Enter stage left....

Sunday, May 21, 2017

This is one of Ken's photographs, he had a special relationship with my parents and loved being around us a young family. I have read some lovely letters he wrote to my parents, and the photos speak for themselves of course.

He processed his photographs in a tiny space quite literally under the stairs in a little two up, two down house in the valleys. I am hoping my Mum will add some detail to the narrative of these images.

Date 1964?

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Friday, April 28, 2017

Training session

I was joking with my Dad about looking forward to coming down to play trains shortly, and it got a mischievous response.

I am indeed going down for a week fairly shortly, and I am sure it will involve some trains...

Monday, April 17, 2017

Diggers at Dawn


We passed this grimy JCB today when we were out walking. You'd hardly think that the bodywork was all made out of fibre glass, but I guess this was the time when curved body panels were for mass marked manufacture, not bespoke production. Anyhow here's a matching pic of me playing with my beloved JCB5C

His Gatekeeper!

Found this one on my desktop whilst tidying up, so had to post it whilst the thought came to me. I shall be keeping an eye on his movements shortly, whilst Gran goes AWOL...heh heh!

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Walking and Talking

Getting creative with a camera phone whilst Lewi gets a bit of a break from his revision. He was attempting to make sense of Particle Physics as we ambled along and I was trying to listen and use my visual skillset into the bargain. This photograph is the combination f art and science as I was trying to persuade him!

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Mip's Garden

 There’s been goings on in the garden outside my workroom window. Miranda and a few of her chums from time to time coming and going, and the sound of garden implements. When I ventured out she was glad to see I’d brought my reporter’s notebook. We recorded this live in one take!

I was working on the rushes when she reappeared with one of her friends wanted to add some fresh takes, but dinner needed cooking so another day maybe Popsie!

Friday, April 14, 2017

St Tibertius' Day

Being Good Friday, I've been out on my bike today for a tour around the usual haunts. I heard my first Cuckoo between Pigbush and Woodfidley, very quiet to begin amongst the noise of birdsong. Gradually it got louder and just before I moved on I saw it and then it flew away!  However I also heard it twice again in very different locations near Holmsley and Gt Linford Enclosure, which was exciting.

Comparing dates this evening I was struck by how similar my first recorded dates are each year, so I googled the subject and discovered that today is St Tibertius' Day, the day they traditionally turn up on their journey from Africa.

Sunday, April 09, 2017

Hayling Island Youth Champs 2017

Greg and George sunning themselves at Hayling just before boat measurement today. They have been out for a test sail, and tomorrow qualifiers start. Up at 5.45 ugh!

Friday, April 07, 2017


One of the best bits of this time of year is the clocks going forward and the rediscovery of a large chunk of the evening. Going for a blast after a day's toil really sets me free. The company of skylark, stonechat and various warblers but usually there is next to no-one out enjoying the near silence, which suits me just fine.

Friday, March 31, 2017

Get set for the weekend!

We're on duty at Calshot this weekend so we should get a full quotient of sea sun and sand! Team Babewatch are coming!

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Welsh Weekend

Photo taken at Llangunnor Church by Miranda, who was snapping away merrily. On the way down tom Wales she got intop the habit by doing self portraits, as I chatted to her. I will post her set separately.

The weather was great and we had a nice time. This was on the Sunday after we'd been to Carreg Cennen Castle for lunch.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Mip Selfie

On the weekend visiting Gran, here's Miranda chasing her shadow!

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

No dice!

Playing a card game with Popsie; she's trying to teach me the rules, except she's making it up as she goes along!

I have to say I like the creative approach of stringing thinks along but she doesn't seem to understand that there has to be a punch line...

Fortunately it segued perfectly with bed time!

Saturday, March 18, 2017


Sunday night and another great lineup at SMJC in Talking Heads. This is the Tom White Sextet, although technically only five of them are vaguely visible.

Also part of the sonic line-up is Sam Leake on piano.

They played a whole series of Monk tunes plus one of Tom's own compositions. All expertly delivered.

Friday, March 17, 2017

Halcyon Days

Found this photo recently, and paused long enough to think about the way life changes constantly, and why living for the moment is so important. I looked across the various frames I had taken and not a single one was just right. I used to post a picture every day of ordinary life, and since none of them had been processed, so I am to deduce none met my critical standards!!

But now looking back through rose tinted glasses, the scowl on Lewis' face as he visibly chastises Greg for his inability to get the carriage on the track, and my Dad's amusement, says it all really. Nothing would make Dad happier than playing with trains in the garden. The perfect day way to spend a day

Pictures like this are priceless, the stuff dreams are made of. And I can still taste that Boddingtons..!

Friday, March 10, 2017

Stuck up a gum tree

Old Pic!

Found this old pic, and processed it for the first time. So I thought I'd better put it on the blog now...

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Rear View Mirror

I've always liked the rear view as a means of portraying people, somehow it captures the candid moments better. Greg and Popsie caught in conversation, and no doubt it went something like .. "What's in the bag for a picnic Miranda?"
"I dunno"
"hope we eat it soon, my arm is falling off"
"Wish I'd brought my scooter"
"Yeah that would be more fun than walking in the forest!"

Saturday, February 25, 2017


I am listening to Von Freeman, and his son Chico, play with Dewey Redman and his son Josh play an arrangement of In a Sentimental Mood for saxophone choir - seems the fitting backdrop to editing a picture of Lewi looking for inspiration in the long grass at Shatterford