The Untold Story of Edith Cavell – BBC Sounds Documentary (spoilers)

edith cavellI wrote about Edith Cavell in May 2015 in an article about WWI Executions.

Born in 4 December 1865 in Swardeston, Norfolk, UK. Edith Cavell was a British Nurse.

In 1907 she became the Matron of the newly established L’École Belge d’Infirmières Diplômées in Ixelles, Brussels.

Executed by firing squad on12 October 1915 at Tir national , Schaerbeek, Brussels, Belgium,

She was charged with Treason, despite being neither a German or Belgian national.

Stella Rimmington, retired Director General of MI5, investigated and a few months after my article she declared evidence had been identified that proved Edith Cavell was connected to espionage. Continue reading

Fox by Adam Hardy – a 14 Book series (and my journey completing it)

20201108_173546.jpgOne Summer while I was living on an RAF base in Norfolk, fairly sure it was 1980, my father handed me a second hand book. Fox: The Press Gang.

He had picked up a few of these books recently and thought I’d enjoy them. We had similar tastes in fiction. He’d previously encouraged me to read broadly.

I was 12 in 1980, so I can’t imagine it was earlier than that year and we moved in July 1981 to Leeds, Yorkshire.

The first paragraph read:

Fox, second lieutenant of his Britannic Majesty’s twelve-pounder thirty two gun frigate Duchess, sprang up on the quarterdeck to deal with the emergency there in time to see a nine pounder shot take off Mr Midshipman’s head. The body still gripping the quarterdeck rail withwhitened fists as blood spurted upwards ten feet into the air.Fox saw four distinct dininishing pulses as the heart continued to beat. The wind caught the plume of blood and swepot it splatteringly across Fox’s uniform coat and white breeches.

Vivid description of visceral indiscriminate death. My attention was seized. For me this was also the day I realised my Father was saying ‘you are growing up’. He deemed this book suitable for me.

I read on and met George Abercrombie Fox. A man named for his Uncle, executed for being a Highwayman, who joined the Navy aged 10 in 1775. Promoted to Lieutenant at the age of 18 in 1793 at the beginning of war with France. The book was set in 1800 and the back of the book made it plain that despite 7 years of war Fox had not been promoted.

Well I had 8 books, Books 1 to 4 and 6 to 9, when my Father gave me all the books he had. I read them all more than once.

I knew there were more, not just Book 5, because at least one of the books was a repring and mentioned another book I didn’t have. My original copies are stored away so I can’t double check those details.

So sometime around 1986 I started searching for the missing books. Continue reading

Who is Greef Karga – The Mandalorian (spoilers for Season One)

greef kargaContinuing my ‘countdown’ to Season 2 of The Mandalorian – premiering on Disney+ on Friday 30th October 2020.

You can find links to all my Star Wars reviews and Character Profiles such as this one in a previous article.

Greef Karga is portrayed in the Mandalorian by Carl Weathers.

Originally he was not going to last the full Season. But, it’s Carl Weathers – you need to watch the companion series of ‘Disney Gallery: Star Wars: The Mandalorian’ to hear more about that.

I did some articles similar to this a while ago for characters from the Judge Dredd comic world as published in 2000AD and Judge Dredd Megazine and they went down fairly well.

There are Spoilers for Season 1 below. The Reviews I write are Spoiler Light. Continue reading

Judge Dredd & The Worlds of 2000AD Role Playing Game – Expansions for Rogue Trooper and Strontium Dog

dredd RPGJudge Dredd & The Worlds of Judge Dredd
A Tabletop Roleplaying Game

Published by EN Publishing.

Based on characters from the pages of the British anthology Comic – 2000AD

Judge Dredd Created by:
John Wagner and Carlos Ezquerra

New Expansions:
Rogue Trooper
Strontium Dog

A Tabletop Roleplaying game is a cooperative game for, usually, 3 or more players. One player is the Games Master (GM) who holds all the Rules and the details of the adventure. The rest of the Players take the role of a character in the story.

This blog was created for a Judge Dredd Roleplaying Game which sadly never happened. I had played in a Play by Forum game called Play Dredd, both as a Player and a GM. Despite good intentions it seemed that we were all burnt out. Lack of drive and it fizzled before it began. So I switched to using the Blog for Reviews.

I’ve played a lot of Roleplaying games round the table – and a few dressed up wielding foam-and-latex weapons – that’s another story.

Currently due to Covid-19 I’m playing a couple of games online with the friends I would usually sit around the table with.

I have not played these 2000AD games yet but I am considering starting a game – I haven’t yet decided which setting to use. 

So what are these games about?

Continue reading

Leeds Rhinos – My Relationship with Rugby League

Coming from a Yorkshire family but growing up with a Father in the RAF I was constantly reminded of my roots.

The fact we were a Yorkshire family was often mentioned. No matter where we lived my parents had local Newspapers posted to them. Sometimes random issues if something special was in them but always the Airedale & Wharfedale Observer, a weekly paper, and Monday’s Yorkshire Post which had a supplement giving a roundup of all the local Sport.

imagesource.jpeg.jpg

Lewis Jones (C Rugby League official site)

Yorkshire Cricket and Leeds RLFC (they weren’t the Rhinos yet) were very important.

Before my parents were married they would go on dates to Headingly to watch the Cricket in the Summer or Leeds in the Winter. My Dad’s favourite player was always Lewis Jones.

Leeds was always referred as ‘Home’. “We’re going Home for Summer” was a phrase we kids would dread. Our mates went to the Seaside, we went to Leeds. One year my mates went Camping in the South of France, two families and their Mums both said I could go with them – “you can’t, we’re going Home”

But one Easter, maybe two years before that fateful non-France holiday, those dreaded words were different.

“We’re going Home for Easter. We will go see Leeds play against Northern.”

Oh my… I  was going to be my first ever LIVE Rugby League match. Continue reading

Star Wars – A brief note – plus links to my Star Wars Articles

Star Wars PosterI first encountered Star Wars in 1977, I was 9, almost 10. My family and our next door neighbours went together to watch.

I’d started reading 2000AD in February of the same year and was already a fan of Doctor Who. That was pretty much all the SciFi interest I had at the time. I preferred Westerns and War movies at the time – any period.

Star Wars blew my mind.

What I saw in my opinion at the time was a Western in Space. I hadn’t yet found Kurosawa’s films, more on that another time.

I was hooked. Continue reading

What I learnt This Week – 28 June to 04 July 2020

The more Eagle-eyed reader might spot a difference this week.

Last Week I covered 22nd to 28th June. This week I’m starting on 28 June. I realised that publishing on Sunday was restricting me a little as I was including the day I published. So from now I will cover the previous Sunday to Saturday. That way if I learn something after publishing I don’t need to squeeze it in to Monday…

I’m aware no one reading this would know I had fudged it… but if it troubled me when I realised.

This article won’t double up on anything I learnt on 28th…

You may also have noticed I have dropped the ‘th’ in the date format. I am doing this as I am aware non-native English Speakers sometimes struggle with ‘st’ and ‘nd’. Dates are clear enough without them. I use Month name to avoid International/US date convention confusion.

So, what did I learn in this week? Continue reading

What I learnt This Week – 15th June to 21st June 2020

My third weekly article recording things I have learnt.

Learning is a life long journey. No matter who you are and what you do you are a sum of what you have learnt.

I learn in many ways. I read a lot and I watch Documentaries. And if I come across something that intrigues me I will research. I did this from childhood and would often sit reading Encyclopaedia entries. Now of course with a 4G Smartphone in my pocket my research can be fairly thorough quite quickly.

I often have Insomnia, it manifests in many ways and I have different Coping Mechanisms to deal with this. Watching Documentaries can distract me and afterwards I can sleep. Other times I will read; that could be a novel, News Articles, Scienticis Papers, all sorts. Continue reading

Things I learnt in the week 8th June to 14th June 2020

This is the second attempt at a weekly contest on things I learnt. I meant to keep a note of things to ensure I included a variety of things… I forgot.

I’m not a great taker of notes. At work people often comment on it, my memory is pretty good so I tend not to need notes. And I find  notes go out if date. I mentor people at work and often find they are confused about something because their detailed notes from 2014 are out of date.

But given that I must have learnt more than I remember at time of writing maybe I learnt that I sometimes need to take notes.

One topic I am certain I learnt something about was USA Culture. But darned if I can recollect what it was right now. Likely tonight I will wake yelling “that’s what it was!”

I did definitely learn done things during the week though and they include things about UK culture, Science, History and Comics.

Given my varied interests as can be seen by looking through this blog those topics aren’t much of a surprise.

So, what did I learn? Continue reading

Black2Nature – a project to encourage Minority Ethnic youth to engage with Nature

M87051_HELENA_CRAIG_DS-35 copy 2January 2015, Bristol, UK 13 year old Mya-Rose realised when she was out and about in nature she never saw anyone else who looks like her.

Mya-Rose had been actively following her hoppy of Ornithology for years and ringing wild birds for study since 9 years old. It wasn’t her age, Mya-Rose is half Bangladeshi, she wasn’t seeing other darker skinned people.

Instead of ignoring this she did something about it, she founded Black2Nature.

Mya-Rose was awarded an Honourary Doctorate of Science for her Enviromental work, including Black2Nature.

I read a thread on Twitter today from Mya-Rose and was instantly impressed by her drive and dedication.

My Twitter is fairly varied, like this Blog. I follow a lot of people involved in Science and Nature. I’m not sure who retweeted Mya-Rose or I would credit them.

I’ve recently been seeing things on Twitter such as #BlacBirdersWeek, #BlackAFinSTEM and #BlackInNature. Highlighting a shortage of POC in Nature and Science. I know the first I saw of these Hashtags – on a Tweet from Palaeontologist Yara Haridy.

Mya-Rose’s Tweet gave a lively an in depth account of Black2Nature.

Continue reading