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Radio Fun

Philip Purser

27 June 1991
A Social History of British Broadcasting. Vol. I: 1922-29, Serving the Nation 
by Paddy Scannell and David Cardiff.
Blackwell, 441 pp., £30, April 1991, 0 631 17543 1
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The Collected Essays of Asa Briggs. Vol. III: Serious Pursuits, Communication and Education 
Harvester Wheatsheaf, 470 pp., £30, May 1991, 0 7450 0536 5Show More
The British Press and Broadcasting since 1945 
by Colin Seymour-Ure.
Blackwell, 269 pp., £29.95, May 1991, 9780631164432
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... social history must be to make it different from existing histories. It has to be said that for the first half of their first volume of A Social History of British Broadcasting Paddy Scannell and DavidCardiff seem scarcely to try. As they tread the well-worn path through the BBC’s approaches – first as a company, then as a corporation – to politics and international affairs and the General ...

In Cardiff

Anne Wagner: David​ Nash

15 August 2019
... The sculptor​ David Nash has lived and worked in Snowdonia for half a century, and the exhibition of his work currently on view at the National Museum of Wales in Cardiff (until 1 September) is a tribute to his time in the region. Born in Surrey in 1945, he moved to the once flourishing slate-mining town of Blaenau Ffestiniog in 1967, the year he left Kingston School ...

In Cardiff

John Barrell: Richard Wilson

24 September 2014
... of the Welsh ‘father of English landscape’, Richard Wilson, curated by Martin Postle and Robin Simon. It is a magnificent show, the first on this scale for more than thirty years. It will be at Cardiff until 26 October, and it is accompanied by a sumptuous catalogue, the fullest, most faithfully reproduced collection of colour reproductions of Wilson’s painting there will ever be in book form ...

Utterly in Awe

Jenny Turner: Lynn Barber

4 June 2014
A Curious Career 
by Lynn Barber.
Bloomsbury, 224 pp., £16.99, May 2014, 978 1 4088 3719 1
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... like Christ enthroned in a gilded Quattrocentro painting, attended by apostles, the legions of the damned at her feet: Marianne Faithfull, the ‘Fabulous Beast’ herself, doing a photo-shoot for David Bailey, ‘sprawling with her legs wide apart, her black satin crotch glinting between her scrawny 55-year-old thighs’. Melvyn Bragg, filming his reaction shots for the South Bank Show, ‘smiling ...
19 October 2006
Richard Rogers: Architecture of the Future 
by Kenneth Powell.
Birkhäuser, 520 pp., £29.90, December 2005, 3 7643 7049 1
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Richard Rogers: Complete Works, Vol. III 
by Kenneth Powell.
Phaidon, 319 pp., £59.95, July 2006, 0 7148 4429 2
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... transparency. Thus all the glass at the Bordeaux Law Courts is meant to suggest ‘the accessibility of the French judicial system’; similarly, the new National Assembly of Wales (1999-2005) on Cardiff Bay, with its glazed shed under a wavy roof, ‘seeks to embody democratic values of openness and participation’. Yet the structures that actually house the Assembly here – two curvy cones which ...

Corbyn in the Media

Paul Myerscough

21 October 2015
... have hardly been at issue so far, but on his willingness and capacity to play the role of modern political leader. Would he – could he? – perform the countless vital tasks that come naturally to David Cameron or Tony Blair: everything from how to comport yourself at the despatch box to the best way to climb out of a chauffeur-driven car, from how to use an autocue to knowing which pop band to ...

Victorian Piles

David​ Cannadine

18 March 1982
The Albert Memorial: The Monument in its Social and Architectural Context 
by Stephen Bayley.
Scholar Press, 160 pp., £18.50, September 1981, 0 85967 594 7
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Victorian and Edwardian Town Halls 
by Colin Cunningham.
Routledge, 315 pp., £25, July 1981, 9780710007230
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... but there were still some architectural thrills: the rugged mass of Glasgow, the showpiece eclecticism of Sheffield, the Wren-like grandeur of Belfast, and the Ruritanian magnificence of Cardiff. The financing, designing and building of these municipal monsters was far from easy. In some cases, an individual patron might foot the entire bill, as was the case at Todmorden. In others, a ...
8 May 1986
Parliamentary Debates: Hansard, Vol. 95, No 94 
HMSO, £2.50Show More
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... of British interests. No one feels more than I do the sentiment of affection, regard and kinship for the United States of America. I share this feeling with the right hon. Gentleman, the Member for Cardiff, South and Penarth, and with the Prime Minister herself. But sentiment cannot determine foreign policy. It was Palmerston who said – and not, I say to the right hon. Member for Old Bexley and ...

Short Cuts

Daniel Soar: Remote Killing

23 September 2015
... the first time that a British-owned drone had been deployed, outside Afghanistan and Iraq, to kill. Khan, who was 21, had a few years ago been a ‘straight-A student’, as his friends put it, in Cardiff. He was over the moon to meet Ed Balls, then shadow chancellor, and he wanted to be Britain’s first Asian prime minister. Amin, who may not have been so high up the kill list, was interviewed by ...

Perpetual Sunshine

David​ Cannadine

2 July 1981
The Gentleman’s Country House and its Plan, 1835-1914 
by Jill Franklin.
Routledge, 279 pp., £15.95, February 1981, 0 7100 0622 5
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... to build. The pompous, ponderous, baronial ‘restoration’ of Arundel for the Duke of Norfolk, the swaggering English Baroque of Bryanston for Viscount Portman, and the astonishing, fairytale Cardiff Castle for the Marquess of Bute, all come in this category. But, in the main, it was the new rich who now predominated: mustard manufacturers replaced marquesses as the prime patrons of country-house ...

Off-Screen Drama

Richard Mayne

5 March 1981
European Elections and British Politics 
by David​ Butler.
Longman, 208 pp., £9.95, February 1981, 0 582 29528 9
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Political Change in Europe: The Left and the Future of the Atlantic Alliance 
edited by Douglas Eden.
Blackwell, 163 pp., £8.95, January 1981, 0 631 12525 6
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... in the entire British press, only the Economist enabled its readers to follow the Budget story in anything approaching a full way. The Times gave it modest coverage, both through the columns of David Wood and through its reports of debates in the plenary sessions. For all practical purposes, the rest was silence.’ Something resembling silence also greeted the European Elections of 1979. These ...

Urban Humanist

Sydney Checkland

15 September 1983
Exploring the Urban Past: Essays in Urban History by H.J. Dyos 
edited by David​ Cannadine and David​ Reeder.
Cambridge, 258 pp., £20, September 1982, 0 521 24624 5
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Themes in Urban History: Patricians, Power and Politics in 19th-Century Towns 
edited by David​ Cannadine.
Leicester University Press, 224 pp., £16.50, October 1982, 9780718511937
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... history, except perhaps in his studies of speculative house-builders. These self-imposed limitations stemmed from the basic nature of his approach. He tended to begin with urban agglomeration (what David Reeder in his useful introduction calls ‘accretive growth’), seen as a process of population concentration, with resultant shifts in the national rural-urban balance, together with related ...

Diary

Alan Bennett: What I did in 2012

3 January 2013
... and jumped into the sea.’ This was in 1932. At Calverley on the outskirts of Leeds seven years previously my grandfather folded his jacket neatly too before stepping into the canal.18 March. R. to Cardiff to see his grandmother on a potentially difficult day as it’s also the day of the Grand Slam rugger match between Wales and France. The train is very crowded and he sits in Weekend First next to a ...

Reduced to Ashes and Rubbage

Jessie Childs: Civil War Traumas

3 January 2019
Battle-Scarred: Mortality, Medical Care and Military Welfare in the British Civil Wars 
edited by David​ Appleby and Andrew Hopper.
Manchester, 247 pp., £80, July 2018, 978 1 5261 2480 7
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... absent fighting, disease spread, there was swingeing taxation and slumps in trade. In Battle-Scarred, a collection of essays that examine the physical and mental injuries inflicted by the civil wars, David Appleby addresses the problem of wandering soldiers. These were disbanded veterans, deserters and escaped prisoners of war, who frequently clashed with civilian communities as they tried to make ...

Herberts & Herbertinas

Rosemary Hill: Steven Runciman

19 October 2016
Outlandish Knight: The Byzantine Life of Steven Runciman 
by Minoo Dinshaw.
Penguin, 767 pp., £30, September 2016, 978 0 241 00493 7
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... of disaffected upper-class young Englishman who might be persuaded to collaborate in the event of a German invasion and thereby gather useful information, but in the event not much was achieved. As David Abulafia put it, if ‘he was something more than a professor of Byzantine studies … it would be absurd to cast him in the role of James Bond.’ In truth the war was enormously useful to him ...

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