Region Archives: England

Photo of the day – (LEGO) men at work

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I visited Durham Cathedral yesterday. While the Cathedral is very grand and imposing, I was more interested in the LEGO recreation they are building. They are building a model of the Cathedral in LEGO as a fundraiser. You buy a LEGO brick for £1 and you can even add it yourself. The model will be more…

Celebrating Louis MacNeice in Carrickfergus

macneice flyer

The anniversary of the birth of the poet and playwright Louis MacNeice was marked on 12 September with a celebratory event in Carrickfergus Museum and Civic Centre. The event was titled ‘Beyond the Hawthorn Hedge, the Sound of Bugles,’ and was hosted by local historian and author Philip Orr. It included an engaging lecture by more…

Bruton calls for Redmond Home Rule monument (‘Living for Ireland is preferable to dying for Ireland’)

John Bruton, An Taoiseach, 1994-7

As predicted, the war is continuing, and shows no sign of abating.  By “war”, I mean the ongoing battle over interpretation of Ireland’s  past, and how and whether certain historical figures deserve particular attention and commemoration.  The latest campaign in this conflict unfolded at the Royal Irish Academy on Dublin’s Dawson Street.  A quartet of speakers, more…

#IndyRef: Dublin silent, an insouciant NI and an abrupt resumption of British constitutional history

So this morning I joined an Irish Times Inside Politics panel to talk about the implications of a decision next week in favour of Scottish independence for Ireland and Northern Ireland… Some of the highlights include… – ‘Neo unionist’ silence of Dublin and the unspoken fear of unintended consequences, particularly within Europe… – The dream more…

Party Conference Speeches – if only they were a chance to scrutinise & refresh arguments & messages!

An August Economist magazine featured a timely article [PAYWALL] looking forward to the Autumn party conference speeches. Focussed on the main English conferences the unnamed writer noted: The process can begin as soon as June. An early task is to cook up one or two big policy announcements, without which no conference is complete (an more…

Gove, Cameron and the old four year Switcheroo…

Here’s a classic case of where the polling mechanism breaks down. The question presumes there’s a meaningful difference in interest between Michael Gove and his boss, the British Prime Minister. I’m not convinced there is any such difference. I saw the Indy going to town on the salary loss, but to be frank, career progression more…

Friday thread: Flags make a difference to how we think and feel…

Via Peter Curran with a h/t to Phil Mac Giolla Bhain. Fascinating piece of quick and dirty research on the Scottish Sunday Politics Show regarding the effect of flag displays during a detailed online questionnaire from last week… It’s well worth watching the whole way through, but the findings themselves are at the beginning and more…

Irish and English election results so different, so much the same

Similar trends and outcomes are apparent when the British and Irish elections results are compared. They are of course part of a common European picture. But the immediate effect on the coalition governments  at Westminster and in Leinster House differs. The Irish coalition is rocking. The Irish Times is even speculating that pressure from Labour may more…

The Tory Press? It’s complicated…

Daily Mail 24 May 2014

The local elections in England provide a fascinating glimpse into the way that newspapers interact with electoral politics. Take a look at today’s the front pages; “The Savaging of Red Ed” says the Mail. “Surge by UKIP throws Labour into poll crisis” says the Telegraph. UKIP’s share of the vote actually fell this year. We more…

Theresa May’s political earthquake

This week has already seen a political earthquake nothing to do with UKIP or elections. On Wednesday Theresa May addressed the Police Federation annual conference in Bournemouth. Frequently Home Secretaries have received a tough time form the Police Federation: heckling, laughter, slow hand claps and other forms of open scorn have all been inflicted on more…

#EP14 campaign squeezing the Labour vote in Britain?

Mike Smithson at PoliticalBetting…  My reading is that EdM and his team are paying the price for not having a clear message for the Euro elections. Their campaign has almost totally avoided any mention of the EU unlike the other three parties competing for votes which each have specific and relevant positions.