Good King Wenceslas

BY MARGARET ASHWORTH I have always thought that Good King Wenceslas was about a benevolent old gent trying to spread a little happiness. Wrong. According to the Guardian ‘it glorifies a patriarchal definition of charitable giving that belittles the value of a properly funded welfare state’. In the spirit of Christmas I will admit that the writer seems to have been joking (funny, isn’t it?) but it … Continue reading Good King Wenceslas

The Rabbit Pandemic

BY MARGARET ASHWORTH I find it surprising how few rabbits I see round here in Lancashire – I think I have seen more hares. I am old enough (just) to remember seeing masses of rabbits on lawns nibbling the grass down to the roots. Then came rabbit Armageddon. I have been reading a book enticingly titled Myxamatosis by Peter Bartrip. This was a pandemic if ever there was … Continue reading The Rabbit Pandemic

Farewell to the Edge of the World

BY MARGARET ASHWORTH Early in the morning of August 29, 1930, 92 years ago yesterday, a way of life came to an end after at least 2,000 years. The last 36 residents of St Kilda, an isolated group of granite islands 100 miles off the west coast of Scotland sometimes called ‘the edge of the world’, were evacuated to the mainland at their own request … Continue reading Farewell to the Edge of the World