Buried Alive – Abyss of Communist Crimes – Croatia, the War, and the Future


The enormity of communist crimes against Croatian people, part of the former Yugoslavia (WWII and post-WWII), is staggering, overwhelming, astonishing… utterly cruel and bestial. These crimes on the whole still go unpunished, ignored and…

via Buried Alive – Abyss of Communist Crimes – Croatia, the War, and the Future


Grete Schütte-Lihotzky: House Maker, Not Homemaker | A R T L▼R K

51yoyzpijvlOn the 18th of January 2000, Austria’s first female architect, Nazi resistance, as well as Marxist activist Margarete Schütte-Lihotzky died in Vienna five days before her 103rd birthday. Lihotzky became the first female student at the Kunstgewerbeschule, Vienna, where important modern artists such as…

via Grete Schütte-Lihotzky: House Maker, Not Homemaker | A R T L▼R K

All in the details – A visit to Haddon Hall II | Sue Vincent’s Daily Echo


Other than the Elizabethan connection, we really had, at that point, no idea why we had felt the need to visit Haddon Hall. We knew little about the place, apart from the legend of the romantic elopement of Dorothy Vernon…

via All in the details – A visit to Haddon Hall II | Sue Vincent’s Daily Echo

High Buildings, Low Morals by Rob Baker | The Great Wen


I wrote about Rob Baker’s last book – Beautiful Idiots, Brilliant Lunatics – a couple of years ago. It’s a collection of London-based short histories inspired by Rob’s superb blog, Another Nickel In The Machine. Rob’s now written a follow-up, High Buildings, Low Morals, which again explores a dozen London stories from the 20th century, some entirely forgotten and others…

via High Buildings, Low Morals by Rob Baker | The Great Wen

A visit to Haddon Hall | Sue Vincent’s Daily Echo

The Vernons mentioned are my forbears! haddonhall

Every time we had driven past Haddon Hall, I had the feeling we needed to go there. The feeling bugged me a bit, as stately homes have not really been part of our research. We tend to be drawn to the landscape and sites things five thousand years old, rather than five hundred, so I could not see why…

via A visit to Haddon Hall | Sue Vincent’s Daily Echo

Military morality: the problem of scruples. – SeanMunger.com

One of the blogs I read, day in and day out, is Padre Steve’s. Steve is a military chaplain with 30+ years experience who has served in Iraq and knows the real face of war inside and out. He is also a historian who has studied and written extensively on Germany in the Weimar and Nazi periods, especially about its military establishment. Very often–in fact, in almost every article–Padre Steve sounds a clear historical warning that the United States is going down exactly the same road of totalitarianism that Germany experienced in the 1920s and 1930s. Steve appears to be a voice in the wilderness, sounding…

via Military morality: the problem of scruples. – SeanMunger.com

Aharon Appelfeld, Holocaust survivor who chronicled its traumas, dies at 85 – The Washington Post

Aharon Appelfeld, who leaped out a window, embedded with a criminal gang and found refuge with a prostitute to survive the Holocaust — all before turning 14 — and who later drew on his childhood experiences to craft lean, dreamlike novels that made him one of Israel’s most acclaimed writers, died Jan. 4 at a…

via Aharon Appelfeld, Holocaust survivor who chronicled its traumas, dies at 85 – The Washington Post

Government admits ‘losing’ thousands of papers from National Archives | UK news | The Guardian

The hoard came to light during high court proceedings brought by a group of elderly Kenyans who were detained and abused during the Mau Mau insurgency in 1950s Kenya. Photograph: Popperfoto/Getty Images

Thousands of government papers detailing some of the most controversial episodes in 20th-century British history have vanished after civil servants removed them from the country’s National Archives and then reported them as lost.

Documents concerning the Falklands war, Northern Ireland’s Troubles and the infamous Zinoviev letter – in which MI6 officers plotted to bring about the downfall of the first…

via Government admits ‘losing’ thousands of papers from National Archives | UK news | The Guardian

Untold Stories of England’s Militant Suffragettes – Atlas Obscura

Emmeline Pankhurst’s hunger-strike medal. © MUSEUM OF LONDON

Emmeline Pankhurst’s hunger-strike medal. © MUSEUM OF LONDON

Almost a hundred years ago, in February 1918, English women were granted the right to vote. To celebrate…

via Untold Stories of England’s Militant Suffragettes – Atlas Obscura

Ireland’s Alcatraz | historywithatwist

Spike Island, outside Cork Harbour

They sat clothed from head to toe in black, a veil covering their faces, leaving only their eyes visible to look out at the cold limestone walls around them. Their bones ached and their flesh was r…

Source: Ireland’s Alcatraz | historywithatwist

The Borstal Boy, The Can-Can Dancer and The Stolen Auster Aircraft

You couldn’t possibly make it up.  A borstal boy, Windmill can-can dancer and stolen Auster aircraft make headlines for Bembridge on the Isle of Wight around the world.

On the 30th May 1949, an 18-year-old serial absconder from borstal institutions all across England broke into a hanger at Bembridge Airfield and although never having piloted a plane before took off and attempted to fly to Southern Ireland. This story made newspaper headlines around the world and put Bembridge on front pages from Hobart to Honolulu.

Brynley Fussell was a young miscreant who had spent many years in various borstals and had previously escaped from one such Island institution, Camp Hill at Yarmouth, and attempted to sail a small boat to the Mainland. On that occasion, he was caught and sent to Rochester, Kent before escaping yet again. He made his way back to the Island,  stole some cash from houses in Ryde and paid for two short duration flights as a passenger at Somerton Airfield, Cowes, quizzing the pilots on their instruments as they flew along.

He then made his way to Bembridge and having broken into the Sailing Club and stolen money and a pair of binoculars he arranged another half hour joy ride as a passenger in an Auster carefully watching every action the pilot made. Having then stayed around until nightfall he broke into the hanger moved two other aircraft and a crash tender out of the way before pushing an Auster Autocrat registration G-AGVL out onto the airfield. Climbing in, he started the engine and roared off into the early evening.

The flight lasted an hour but running low on fuel he was forced to land just outside Cheltenham close to the Severn Estuary. After again going on the run he was finally arrested at Whitchurch Airfield, Bristol whilst attempting to find another aircraft to continue his flight.

Meanwhile, the stolen Auster was hurriedly flown back to Bembridge and as had been the original intention was prepared for an upcoming Island air race. The pilot was to be Anita D’Ray (born Dorothy Poore) who was a featured dancer at the world-renowned Windmill Theatre, London. At just nineteen she was an accomplished pilot with over one hundred solo flights and had entered the Air Race piloting this privately owned aircraft. Over the Whitsun weekend not only does she enter the international race as one of the very few female entrants but pitted against many well-known international pilots goes on to win it.

Brynley Fussell went on to commit many further crimes including stealing another aircraft and flying to France before eventually settling down and becoming a world-renowned microlight aviation expert gaining his full pilots licence in 1988 some forty years after that first maiden solo fight out of Bembridge airport. Anita D’Ray become an accomplished actress and dance advisor to the film and television industries.

© Peter Chick 2017 (Facebook)

Britain is no country for a very old Second World War Submariner called Jim Booth

jimJim, who is 96 years old, was born in 1921 and joined the Navy in the second year of the Second World War in 1940, when he was 18. He served on the North Sea convoys before he became part of the Combined Operations Pilotage and Reconnaissance Parties : ‘COPP,’ which had a wartime military base on Hayling Island in Hampshire in 1943 under the instruction of Lord Mountbatten. It was here that he became part of a small team of sailors and soldiers trained as frogmen and canoeists for covert beach explorations prior to landings on enemy

via Britain is no country for old men: Britain is no country for a very old Second World War Submariner called Jim Booth

The Downfall of Rosewater, Once America’s Favorite Flavor – Atlas Obscura

Vanilla, once an expensive ingredient, usurped rosewater as a pantry staple.

Source: The Downfall of Rosewater, Once America’s Favorite Flavor – Atlas Obscura

The battle of Stockton, 1933

These days, Sunday afternoons in Stockton are relatively quiet. In the High Street few shops are open, and with the loss of the Cinema, the only signs of life are to be found in those pubs that are still open.

But this was not the case some 58 years ago when Stockton, for a few hours, suddenly found itself playing…

Source: The battle of Stockton, 1933

“The Ideal German Soldier” | toritto

“The Ideal German Soldier” –  appearing on the front page of Berliner Tagsblatt newspaper, Sunday edition during the invasion of Poland – 1939. Our soldier’s picture w…

Source: “The Ideal German Soldier” | toritto