coffeehouse

No one should mourn a coffee shop

No one should mourn a coffee shop. We have enough. Round my way, in West Norwood and uphill in Crystal Palace, news of another one turning up can be greeted with suspicion – another chain killing off the locals, more gentrification, another pointless hipsterish place in which to consume frothy beverages, whilst staring meaningfully out of the window in…

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A time for shelf analysis: New Year reading resolutions

It’s dark. It’s raining. January is upon us and the season of reflection, projection and resolve is underway. For voracious readers, this means that the perennial question: what to read next will be nagging at their shoulders more urgently than ever. This matter doesn’t simply concern the next book, but the next year of books.…

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Up Brandon Hill

Going for a walk in Bristol almost inevitably means a walk up a hill. Start in the centre, say by the Neptune Statue in the docks, head off in pretty much any direction and you’ll quickly find yourself on a hill of some variety, sloping up and out of there. Some of Bristol’s hills – typical of the character of…

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On the listening ridge

We think, then as the sun shines or does not. We think as wind skitters on a pond in a field Or we put mantles on our words because The same wind, rising and rising, makes a sound Like the last muting of winter as it ends. Wallace Stevens – from Looking across the Fields…

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A Stray Field in South London

At the bottom of Gipsy Hill in South East London there is a small field, just about the size of two football pitches. To the casual observer It is a fairly anonymous looking, unremarkable patch of ground. But like many such places, when looked at more closely it reveals layers of hidden depths. The field is…