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David Porter » Entries tagged with "East Anglia"

Old Men’s Dreams

Old Men’s Dreams when revenge must turn to forgiveness Old Men’s Dreams is my first published novel and it’s now available from Amazon. The blurb reads as follows: ‘Your old men shall dream dreams, and your young men shall see visions…’ (Joel 2:28) For ‘old men’ in this tale, read ‘old woman.’ Angel Henderson has been released from prison and treatment centre, her anger issues lengthening her original sentence by decades. Her yearning for revenge is undiminished. She has forgotten nothing, particularly the friends who did nothing to prevent the death of her sister, Poppy, in 1967. In those so-called halcyon days of the swinging 1960s, all was not entirely sweetness, light and peace. Free love came with a price. Younger half-brother Robert, after a near-death experience, has since become a Christian and … Read entire article »

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English Piers: Long Walks Into the Past, Present and Future

The Victorian/Edwardian walkways off Britain’s coasts hold enduring fascination, are historic legacies and business opportunities, mixing past and future. There’s something beyond quaint curiosity about standing on a platform, off-shore, enjoying views and bracing air. ‘Pier’ describes a raised, supported walkway over water, freely flowing around its piles and beneath its planking. Piers can be simple and short or a major structure a mile long. Warehouses and cargo functions define US and Australian piers, but the British cast-iron model became associated with the pursuit of pleasure and entertainment, although Lowestoft South doubles as harbour wall on its north side. Cromer Pier and Britannia Pier, Gt Yarmouth still sport working theatres. Piers were beloved of Victorian/Edwardian architects, town planners and citizens as they became symbols of civic pride. They are cast-iron icons … Read entire article »

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Visiting North and East Norfolk: A Taste of the Real East Anglia

Some pointers for visitors to the Norwich-Norfolk coast triangle and how to make the most of the many original attractions on offer in a limited time. To a native East Anglian, the counties of Suffolk and Norfolk make up East Anglia. Essex, Cambridgeshire and the Fens don’t come into it. A visit to Norwich and fanning out to the coast is do-able and makes for a rewarding break. In the east of this triangle, the dawn can be watched rising over the North Sea; in the west, sunset can be observed as the sun sinks into The Wash. There are beaches, museums from historical to transport, the usual mixes of wildlife, wild areas and urban interest, and it is home to one of the Royal Family’s residences. It’s where the Norfolk and … Read entire article »

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Visiting North and East Suffolk: A Sample of the Real East Anglia

Some pointers for visitors in the North Suffolk coast to Norwich triangle, and how to make the most of the many attractions on offer with limited time. Norwich is the heart of Norfolk and north Suffolk, and whether driving in or flying from within Britain or internationally via Schiphol Airport in Holland, it’s the start and end of a mini visit to the real joys of the most easterly part of the British Isles. Lowestoft houses ‘Ness Point’, that most easterly spot, bravely adjacent to a usually very busy North Sea. Windfarm off Great Yarmouth to the north, Sizewell power station on the horizon to the south, with oil and gas installations offshore between: all pay tribute to the area as an energy hub. However, the history and the culture, the wildlife, openness … Read entire article »

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Margaret Catchpole: A Case of 19th Century Rewriting of History

‘Spin’ didn’t arrive in the 20th century, as the case of the woman from Suffolk transported to Australia in 1801 shows, with history and myth intertwined. History is written and judged in hindsight. Politicians and historians always revision the past, often to suit present day agendas. Shakespeare did it with his history plays. In February 2004, The BBC published an account of the Margaret Catchpole story, which illustrates the point. She was born at Nacton, Suffolk in 1762, daughter of a farm labourer, and quickly became an accomplished horsewoman. A newspaper of 1800 described her as ‘tall and dark’ and ‘of intelligent countenance’; yet a wanted handbill said she was ‘5 feet 2 inches’. She worked in service for many families, including the respectable brewing Cobbold family in Ipswich, where she saved the … Read entire article »

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Black Shuck: Devil Dog Inspires the Arts

  A Local Folk Tale Gives Rise to All Sorts of Fiction Black Shuck shows how a myth appears in different art forms today. It all began in the wilder parts of the UK’s Suffolk, Norfolk and Essex, probably in Viking times. Sightings of a ghostly, huge black dog were frequently reported over the centuries as it roamed freely, terrorising the minds of people eking out lives that were often brutal, short and vulnerable to powers beyond their control. Black Shuck was also known as Devil or Black Dog. Dog Bogeyman Story Britain’s wartime Prime Minister Winston Churchill was prone to moods of depression that he called his ‘black dog’. But the phantom dog that featured in many creative pieces was a bogeyman story to keep children in order. It spread evil with its flaming … Read entire article »

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