BY DR STEVE CARVER Steve Carver replies to Dominic Wightman’s review of Ian Coghill’s book “Moorland Matters”: It matters for a whole host of reasons including carbon storage, water supply, flood mitigation, biodiversity and wildlife habitats. For Ian Coghill it matters for grouse, and though he rarely shoots them himself (he’s not a rich man and is at pains to point this out) he has … Continue reading Moorland DOES Matter
BY STEVE GRANT The League Against Cruel Sports has had very little – well, nothing – to boast about over recent months but its coffers have to be filled. How else will they pay those hefty salaries for the top men? So, as usual, it’s stepped up its propaganda war against dog fighting, badger baiting and illegal coursing. Oops, silly me. Of course they haven’t … Continue reading LACS Continues to Put the Fake in Fake News
BY ALEX STORY Rowing usually brings the nation good news. Over the last 40 years, even in dark times, such as the 1996 Atlanta Games, when Great Britain ranked 36th behind North Korea, Algeria and Ethiopia, the sport could be counted on to give us moments of intense pride. We have to go back to the 1980 Olympics to find a failure to win Gold … Continue reading Learning from Defeats
BY EFFIE DEANS They joy of being a civil servant in Scotland has just increased. The Scottish Government is backing proposals to encourage eight thousand of them to take a pronoun pledge. Fortunately, this will not involve abstaining from alcohol as previous pledges once did, nor will it involve polishing wooden furniture. Rather it will merely involve adding a few lines to the end of … Continue reading Pick Your Pronouns Wisely
VICAR Dear Readers of Country Squire Magazine, I trust that You are well and that You are enjoying the summer so far. This week I would like to consider the unemployed, especially those coming out of the pandemic and off furlough who are now surplus to their companies’ requirements. People who have never been unemployed before. It is easy to look at all the job … Continue reading A Prayer for the Unemployed
BY NIGEL BEAN The All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Banning Trophy Hunting which meets at the Palace of Westminster sounds official and authoritative. It even has cross party support. But don’t be fooled. Those parliamentarians supporting this group are the animal rights extremists from across various political spectra. (Even the Tamil Tigers had an APPG before they were routed. So did Irish extremists and other … Continue reading APPG on Trophy Hunting
BY JAMES BEMBRIDGE I can’t help but notice these days that some so-called freedom warriors aren’t so free minded themselves. There’s a strain of libertarianism that has strayed into slavish group-think: purity tests, routine denouncements and sensationalised exaggerations. Who are these people fooling, apart from the fools who fund their fledgling Patreon accounts? So ineffably idiotic have some Covid measures been that anyone wishing to … Continue reading Folly for Lolly
BY STEPHEN PAX LEONARD Mr Ambiguous-de-Spode sat in the Fellows’ Common Room at All Souls College or The Warden and the College of the Souls of all Faithful People deceased in the University of Oxford for short, browsing the photographs of the Country Life débutantes, feeling rather pleased and upbeat about things. He was trying to bring to an end an extended coffee break after … Continue reading The Speech Code That Aims To Silence Us
BY JIM WEBSTER Every so often you realise you’ve missed a trick! I was chatting to another church warden and she commented that she cannot wait for somebody to demand her church be decolonised. She’d point out that the parish isn’t worthy and she could gift the church building to those protesting. Then the church itself could meet in the local community centre where it’s … Continue reading Decolonise Your Diet!
BY DOMINIC WIGHTMAN In 2018 Mark Carney, then Governor of the Bank of England, warned that inescapable automation and AI are to blame for wage stagnation that is like that of the nineteenth century, which helped give birth to Communism in the twentieth: “If you substitute platforms for textile mills, machine learning for steam engines, Twitter for the telegraph, you have exactly the same dynamics as … Continue reading Doom on the Horizon?
BY EFFIE DEANS About a year ago I described a trip to the Highlands and my difficulties with Gaelic road signs. Faced with a roundabout with multiple place names in a language I could neither understand nor pronounce I unjustly blamed my getting lost on the signs rather than on my own poor ability at navigation. I received some sympathetic responses from other road users, … Continue reading Gaelic Road Signs: Atonement
VICAR Dear Readers of Country Squire Magazine I trust that You are well. As the heatwave cools I trust that You are having a good summer and I wish You a peaceful Sunday this day. This week I would ask that You consider rural communities in Your prayers. These communities have come under attack from all sides recently. Many parish churches have been closed or … Continue reading A Prayer for the Countryside
BY IAN MITCHELL Democracy, as the mad moaner Malcom Muggeridge once remarked, can work only in societies that are essentially unified. He was thinking at the time of communist regimes, but the point is still valid. We are beginning to understand that Scotland, which was tolerably unified before Nicola Sturgeon started to foment social division for political advantage, is no longer in that category. Neither … Continue reading South Africa & Tribalism
BY ANDREW MOODY It is time to finally exorcise the demons that haunted a ten-year old’s dreams all those years ago in the shape of a caravan that burned ferociously in the forest of the night for reasons unfathomable, by imagining a murder long forgotten which occurred once upon a moonlit Provence night… True crime is a popular genre for budding writers to put their … Continue reading Imagining a Murder
BY JIM WEBSTER There is a lot of discussion about food waste. I came across an article with the snappy title, “The UK wastes millions of tonnes of food every year: here’s how we can change that.” The article makes some useful points: “In the case of pig farmers in the UK, this system is causing an industry-wide crisis. UK pig farms are governed by … Continue reading Piggies Off the Market