Tuesday, September 13, 2022

The Joy of Six 1074

"These ‘final’ train journeys are part of a long tradition for major public figures such as King George V and Winston Churchill, and everything possible should have been done to maintain this rather special way of enabling people to make their farewells without travelling to London." Christian Wolmar says the Queen’s final journey should have been by train.

David Boyle considers the causes of inflation: "So much of our economy in the UK now panders to the ultra-rich that it has worn grooves where the money flows towards them. It gathers around them like great fatbergs and the inflation gathers there too. Then, hey presto! It spreads around."

Anne Perkins reviews a new biography of Harold Wilson.

"Socially, North-East Scots is of the soil. Its distinctiveness derives from the traditional work and lives of its inhabitants, in particular, farming and fishing. This means that much which made it so distinctive has faded as the world has changed." Robert McColl Millar on Doric - once the language of the Scottish court, it is now a dialect of English.

Conrad Brunstrom watches the John Lennon film How I Won the War: "The film is certainly a satire on war movies, and on how a certain kind of British war movie is constructed for propaganda purposes. But it’s clearly more ambitious than a mere genre satire effort."

South West London once had a network of trolleybuses. Roger French joins a group retracing its routes 60 years after they closed.


crewegwyn said...

Wolmar insists that trespass could be managed. The evidence of many railtours - especially those involving Flying Scotsman - suggests otherwise. There are an awful lot of bridges, crossings and platforms in 393 miles from Edinburgh to London. And not the staff to police them all. And for George V/Churchill there wasn't the obsession to photograph/video nor the inclination to throw flowers.
He also suggests a slow moving journey. How slow? I've seen a suggestion of 40mph reducing to 5/10mph at stations. Doubt Wolmar has ever timed a train, I have at similarly slow timings (moving a defective loco). It takes forever.
The railway "family" (such as still exists) would have been proud and conscientious to take the Queen on the journey but I fear it would have ended in lengthy delays and, at worst, a fatality.

brandnewguy said...

My grandmother was three years old when Queen Victoria died, and her family were then living in Leatherhead. Victoria had died in Osborne House on the Isle of Wight and her body was taken by funeral train from there to London. My grandmother’s father took her along to the railway side to see the train as it passed. He put her on his shoulders for a better view and told her to remember this moment – which clearly she did. In her old age, she was talking with my father and stepmother about it and my stepmother asked her, “Did you wave?” Without missing a beat, she replied, “Oh no, dear – she was dead…”