Speakers’ Corner

Public access to London’s 350-acre Hyde Park was granted in 1637. In the 1800s its proximity to Buckingham Palace‘s fashionable district added to its attraction for rallies by social reform groups, such as the Chartists. […]

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The VC and GC awards for heroism

The Victoria Cross (VC), named after Queen Victoria (1819-1901), was instituted in 1856. It is a decoration given to military personnel who have exhibited extreme bravery in the face of a wartime enemy. The first […]

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Table manners

“In Europe, people eat good food. In England people think that good manners at the table are more important than the food you get to eat.” ~ So wrote Hungarian émigré author George Mikes (1912-87) […]

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Individual liberty

London-born philosopher and social reformer John Stuart Mill (1806-73) published his most famous work, ‘On Liberty’ in 1859, in which he defined individual liberty by using what was subsequently named the ‘harm principle’. Every citizen […]

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Family values

Any Briton who has looked into their family tree will know that until WW2 it was common for families to consist of ten or more children and for the parents to have married in their […]

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The Queen’s Honours List

The honours system recognises long-term service to the nation in the fields of charity, industry, the professions, entertainment, sport or science; or for gallantry, usually in the Armed Forces; or for careers in the Civil […]

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The R.S.P.B.

British concern for our fellow creatures extends not only to the furry kind but also the feathered and the eminence of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) bears this out. The head […]

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Private & Confidential

Putting ‘Private & Confidential‘ on an envelope indicates the nature of its contents ~ usually legal, financial or medical ~ and covers the sender’s responsibility to communicate this information for the recipient’s eyes only. However, […]

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Fair trial

The right to a fair trial is one which applies not just in the courts but in everyday life. There is no point in accusing someone of a misdeed unless there is supporting evidence and […]

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The News

News of the events of conflicts and natural disasters, as well as noteworthy deeds of royalty, politicians, criminals and celebrities is naturally of interest to most people. Before the invention of printing, town criers would […]

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Equality

Britain is traditionally known for having an upper-middle-working class system, but during the two World Wars everyone worked side-by-side in a common cause, resulting in the twentieth century seeing the rise of equality as a […]

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Donating to charity

Charities are big business in the UK today, with over 186,500 of them registered with the three national charity regulators and around two-thirds of all adults making regular and/or one-off donations of money and goods. […]

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