April 1986 – I remember the sensation very well. Newly commissioned, as confident as any human being can be at 19 years old, and about to fly to Northern Ireland, the scene of over 25 years of armed conflict, for my first tour of duty. Apart from an exercise on a training area in the […]
HM Queen Elizabeth II – my memories
Like many millions of people, this week has been one of profound sadness. The sense of loss – akin to losing a family member – is acute. However, unlike the loss of a parent or grandparent, when it’s possible to get together as a family, to share stories, to remember those personal moments, the passing […]
Under A Feathered Sky – two years on…
When I started out on the journey of writing about my experiences in Kosovo over the Winter of 2008 and 2009, I really had little comprehension about the effect it would have on me. That was 2015 and now, 7 years later, I am about to celebrate the second anniversary of the publication of Under […]
Inching Closer To Conflict
At the beginning of the war in Ukraine, like most fair-minded people, untouched by Putin’s Hitler-esque internal propaganda campaign denigrating the entire Ukrainian nation, I would decry NATO’s lack of concrete action. The absence of strong, deterrent language from NATO was at odds with the fierce defence and courageous leadership shown by so many ordinary […]
Not Quite An Ordinary Sunday Morning
What happened on Sunday morning was in many respects just another day for the Police who joined us at the roadside. But for us, and for the two lads we stumbled across on the A303 last Sunday morning, it was a very unique experience. My partner and I set off on a normal journey along […]
Is Bedford in terminal decline?
I first drafted this article in 2018 when I was living away from Bedford for a year and had returned for a visit. I have decided to publish it now as so little has changed. (All photos bar one were taken in 2019, although they could just as easily have been taken last weekend.) I […]
First night review **** Liverpool, England – 3rd November 2021 The Young Everyman Playhouse’s performance of Soapbox is not for the faint hearted: for those whose political persuasion is more blue than red, or for those of a certain generation who struggle to understand the importance of inequality in all its forms, this is a […]
Ransomware: are we doing enough?
Revised 28/1/2022 – On the face of it, Somali piracy, which dominated the headlines between 2009-2012, has very little to do with today’s ransomware epidemic. One took place at sea, involving groups of young men, armed with AK47s and RPGs, operating from skiffs, targeting poorly defended international commercial shipping and ocean-going private yachts, at random […]
It’s been a year already!
When my book was published last summer, the emotions I felt were a mix of relief and excitement. The former because anyone who has written a long thesis, or even a book, knows how challenging it is and how much it consumes your life. The latter because when something you have written is suddenly out […]
Hearing the shouts, differing volumes, guessing which side they belong to. Waiting for the horns, Watching the roads fill up, Wondering who would prevail. Then the silence, No more cheers. The horns start up again And that’s it. Another defeat, another victory Who knows? The cheers are loud, The echo shapes across the leaden sky. […]