A pain in the neck

Simon AllabyAudio, Story

Flemish artist Sir Peter Paul Rubens wasn’t joking when he wrote in 1621, ‘I confess that I am better fitted to execute very large works than small curiosities.’  There is certainly nothing small about his only surviving ceiling paintings which cover nearly 2,500 square feet of the Banqueting House in London.   The only problem is that because it is … Read More

When plagiarism is OK

Simon AllabyAudio, Story

On Wednesday 21st February 2018 and at the wonderful age of 99 years, the great American evangelist Billy Graham died.  Within hours the following quote of his went viral on social media, ‘Someday you will read or hear that Billy Graham is dead. Don’t you believe a word of it. I shall be more alive than I am now. I … Read More

The Journey and the Destination

Simon AllabyAudio, Story

It’s a long way to go between drinks but on 12th February 2018 motoring adventurer Ben Coombs pulled up for a pint of beer at a bar in Tierra del Fuego, Chile.  It marked the end of a journey that had begun seven months and, 20,000 miles, 3 continents and 21 countries away, with another pint of beer on the … Read More

Who cut in on you?

Simon AllabyAudio, Story

‘You were running a good race. Who cut in on you?’ This could well have been the question asked of Elise Christie following her heart-breaking exit from the 2018 Olympic 500m short track speed-skating final. Having set a new Olympic record in the quarter finals she was poised to take the gold she missed out on in Sochi four years … Read More

Delivering on a Promise

Simon AllabyAudio, Story

With depressing regularity I watch TV adverts from companies promising superfast Broadband, only to discover that the service is not yet available in our area.  It’s one of the few downsides of living in a village that we’re low on the list when it comes to installing the necessary infrastructure to deliver new technology.  For now at least we must … Read More

Realising Potential

Simon AllabyAudio, Story

So that we could get our Christmas Tree into the lounge this year, I had to move an armchair into my study.  Since it was there I started to use it and when the Christmas Tree went, the armchair stayed.  But to make space for it I had to rearrange the whole room, including moving my desk from in front … Read More

Failure to Escape

Simon AllabyAudio, Story

In November 2017 Belgian performance artist Mikes Poppe attached himself to a chain buried deep inside an enormous block of marble and set about chiselling himself free.  For Poppe the block represented the ‘burden of history from which artists cannot escape.’  But after 19 days of eating, sleeping, drawing and chiselling he had to admit defeat and call in an … Read More

Race to the Son

Simon AllabyAudio, Story

Modern living can sometimes seem like a long succession of races in which we are always trying to beat our neighbour to some goal or other – whether it be a place for our child in the local school, a promotion at work, or a seat on the train.  And up until now the races have even continued on holiday … Read More