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Miscellaneous

Looking for dialogue – Part 1

What drives me to want to use dialogue in non-fiction writing project? One year, two months and three days late I finally manage to post a blog about my efforts to find sources for real dialogue that can be used in non-fiction writing.     Action novels and deliciously trashy domestic stories have lots of dialogue that … Continue reading »

Categories: How we write, Miscellaneous | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

A writing class with Michael Arditti

As part of the Ilkley literary festival, I attended a Fiction writing class run by the author and critic Michael Arditti. Although the emphasis was on fiction, there were still useful ideas and exercises that can be applied to family history writing. Michael emphasised how lonely a writer’s life can be, and the importance of … Continue reading »

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A visit to the Somme

We recently visited the Somme area for the first time. My husband’s maternal grandfather was killed there during the First World War and as the centenary of his death approaches, it felt appropriate to  see where he is buried and pay our respects. In a sense he was fortunate in that he has a named resting … Continue reading »

Categories: Miscellaneous, World War One | Tags: , | Leave a comment

A Change of Fortune

  After the photograph of the Slaughter family taken on the steps of the loggia at White Ness ca. 1906, as far as I know they were never together again – at least, there is no extant group photo of them from a later date. Mihill [Mac] and Connie were married in 1906,and in the … Continue reading »

Categories: 20th Century, Before 1st World War, Men of God, and of Commerce, Miscellaneous, World War One | Tags: | Leave a comment

William’s ‘other’ family

During the early 1980s, my mother saw an advertisement in the Times requesting any descendants of William Capel Slaughter to contact a box number. This my mother duly did, and through subsequent enquiries discovered that her grandfather had had an affair with a governess after the death of his first wife and that a son … Continue reading »

Categories: 19th Century, Before 1st World War, Men of God, and of Commerce, Miscellaneous | Tags: | 2 Comments

William Slaughter and The Home and Colonial Stores

In November 1882, William Slaughter’s sister Elizabeth married Reginald Drew ,older brother of Julius Drew,the co-founder of The Home and Colonial Stores which was later to become one of the most flourishing food retailing companies of that era. My mother remembers her great aunt Lizzie and her husband [known as Reggie]. Though described in the … Continue reading »

Categories: 19th Century, Men of God, and of Commerce, Miscellaneous | Tags: , , | 2 Comments

William Capel Slaughter – family origins and early life

 My great-grandfather was a significant figure in the city of London as one of the founder members of the law firm, Slaughter and May. It still bears his name, though no family members have been associated with the running of it  since William died in 1917. Born on May 11th 1857, William was the youngest … Continue reading »

Categories: 19th Century, Men of God, and of Commerce, Miscellaneous | Tags: , | 6 Comments

Testament of Youth by Vera Brittain – a review

The red flower for this Valentine’s Day piece is the scarlet poppy on the front of the Virago anniversary edition of Testament of Youth. First published in 1933 by Victor Gollancz, it became a great success both in the UK and the USA, and  familiar to a later generation when reissued in 1978 and a … Continue reading »

Categories: Books we've read, How we write, Miscellaneous, Strong Women, World War One | Leave a comment

Different perspectives

My youngest sister, in her retirement, has set off on a round-the-world tour on which one of the stops is Singapore.  She has been asking me and our other sister for our memories of the place in the mid-1960s when our father was stationed there for three years with the RAF.  While my other sister … Continue reading »

Categories: 20th Century, After the 2nd World War, Miscellaneous | 3 Comments

The era before roll on – roll off

I have previously written a blog about my father’s love affair with cars and in particular the Jowett Javelin which I remember well.  One reader helpfully pointed out that it seemed to be left-hand drive and another added that buying it in Germany around 1952 had probably avoided the punitive purchase tax on new cars … Continue reading »

Categories: Miscellaneous | 2 Comments