Sunday, 19 January 2020

Prince Harry: 'We're not walking away from you'




'Our hope was to continue serving the Queen, the Commonwealth, and my military associations but without public funding. Unfortunately that wasn’t possible', Prince Harry has said a private dinner in London. He addressed the reasons behind his decision to step down from Royal duties. He said he had not taken the decision lightly, but there was 'no other option'. 
Prince Harry: We had 'no other option' than to stand down as royals

(...)"Under the arrangement announced on Saturday their new titles will be Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex. They will repay the £2.4m public funds used to refurbish Frogmore House, their official residence in Windsor, which will largely remain empty as they spend the majority of their time in Canada. They will no longer receive public funding through the Sovereign Grant, although will remain funded privately by the Prince of Wales.

They will retain their patronages, but Harry, a former soldier, will have to give up his honorary military titles, including that of captain general of the Royal Marines, passed on to him by Prince Philip.
Though “required” to step down from royal duties, they will still be able to attend family occasions, such as trooping the colour.
The negotiations are said to have been “friendly”, in contrast to the “hurt” and “disappointment” felt by the Queen, Charles and William over the Sussexes timing of their announcement without forewarning."(...)

Pitti Uomo 97 - Florence and Classic Menswear in 2020

Saturday, 18 January 2020

Harry and Meghan to drop HRH titles and repay £2.4m



Harry and Meghan to drop HRH titles and repay £2.4m

Duke and Duchess of Sussex will give back taxpayers’ money spent on renovating their home and withdraw from official duties

Sat 18 Jan 2020 18.51 GMTLast modified on Sat 18 Jan 2020 20.22 GMT

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are no longer to use their HRH titles and will repay £2.4m of taxpayers’ money spent on renovating their Berkshire home, the couple have announced, as talks about their future roles concluded.

The Queen said she was pleased they have “found a constructive and supportive way forward” for the family.

Buckingham Palace said under the new arrangement, Harry and Meghan are “required to step back from royal duties” and will no longer receive public funds for royal duties, adding: “This new model will take effect in the spring of 2020.”

The Queen said in a statement: “Following many months of conversations and more recent discussions, I am pleased that together we have found a constructive and supportive way forward for my grandson and his family. Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved members of my family.

“I recognise the challenges they have experienced as a result of intense scrutiny over the last two years and support their wish for a more independent life.

 “I want to thank them for all their dedicated work across this country, the Commonwealth and beyond, and am particularly proud of how Meghan has so quickly become one of the family.

“It is my whole family’s hope that today’s agreement allows them to start building a happy and peaceful new life.”

The Duke and Duchess’ new website, sussexroyal.com, has been updated following the Queen’s statement.

“In line with the statement by Her Majesty the Queen, information on the roles and work of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex will be updated on this website in due course,” the update reads.

Remembering the closure of Ducker & Son, a traditional shoe makers in Turl Street in Oxford.



 Ducker & Son was a traditional shoe makers in Turl Street in Oxford.

The business was founded by Edward Ducker in 1898. A limited company was formed following the deaths of Ducker and his wife in 1947.
The shop was featured in the 2007 film Atonement.
Ducker & Son closed at the end of November 2016. Its archives are now held in the Bodleian Library.

Customers included:

H. H. Asquith - Prime Minister
Rowan Atkinson - English actor and comedian known for Mr. Bean and Blackadder.
Jeremy Clarkson - English broadcaster and writer known for BBC TV show Top Gear.
Matt Flynn - English writer.
Eddie Jordan - Irish businessman and former Formula One team boss.
Lady Ottoline Morrell - Literary salonist
Matthew Pinsent - English Olympic rower and broadcaster.
J.R.R. Tolkien - English writer and Oxford don known for The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings.
Evelyn Waugh - English writer known for Brideshead Revisited.



Rare ledgers reveal shoe-buying habits of Tolkien and Waugh

Sales records from Ducker & Son, bespoke shoemaker to authors and prime minister Herbert Asquith, go on display in Oxford

Maev Kennedy
Wed 22 Mar 2017 13.30 GMTLast modified on Tue 28 Nov 2017 03.19 GMT

JRR Tolkien was among the well-heeled who shopped at Ducker & Son, which closed last year.

On 11 October 1913, an Oxford undergraduate bought a pair of black leather football boots for 14 shillings and sixpence and spent an extra sixpence on a pair of brown laces. It was a substantial investment for an Exeter College student but he was in good company: Ducker & Son shoe shop had princes and professors, prime ministers and maharajas in its leather-bound ledgers.

The student was JRR Tolkien, and the ledger recording his purchase has joined the largest collection in the world of original manuscripts and drawings by the creator of The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings trilogy, in the archives of the Bodleian library in Oxford.

The library has bought the archives of Ducker & Son, the Turl Street home of the Oxford brogue, which shod the great, good and relatively humble for a century, until it closed at the end of last year because the partners could not find anyone to take on the business.

A selection from the 11 impeccably kept ledgers will be on display at the library on 25 and 26 March, tracing the many connections between its customers and the library collections.

HH Asquith is one of seven prime ministers whose papers are in the library. He served a term as president of the Oxford Union in his student days, which were rather grander than Tolkien’s, and bought a pair of lambswool slippers for 10/9 in 1923. Records show they were posted to his home in Abingdon.

In contrast, the novelist Evelyn Waugh had a serious shoe habit: the ledgers record over two pages that he bought 20 pairs of boots and shoes between 1930 and 1946.

Another customer was Lady Ottoline Morrell, who kept open house for the Bloomsburies and many other literary hangers-on at her country house in Garsington – many of whom, including Aldous Huxley in Chrome Yellow and DH Lawrence in Women In Love, responded by cruelly caricaturing her in their work.

A ledger entry reveals another purchase by JRR Tolkien, when he was a fellow at Merton College.

Her many lovers included Bertrand Russell, who wrote of their first encounter: “For external and accidental reasons, I did not have full relations with Ottoline that evening but we agreed to become lovers as soon as possible.”

She was 6ft and clearly had a heavy tread. In April 1916 Ducker virtually rebuilt a pair of boots for her, replacing the soles, heels and straps and repairing the uppers, one of three pairs repaired that month at a total cost of £1.8.4d.

HH the Maharaja Holkar of India, as the ledger magnificently recorded him, who was studying at Christ Church, had a pair of shoes restored and some slippers enlarged in 1929.

There are some mysteries and poignant stories within the simple entries. Baron Wilhelm Friedrich Adam Lothar Max von Richthofen was a distant cousin of the German fighter pilot known as the Red Baron. He bought a pair of shoes from Ducker & Son in 1913, when he spent a year at Oxford as a Rhodes scholar, but his bill was not paid until 1989. The ledgers do not reveal who settled the account.

The Ponsonby Brothers, Charles and Ashley, were among many young Oxford men heading for the first world war who bought marching boots and waterproofing at Ducker & Son.

for more than a century. Photograph: Oxford University Images/Richard Lofthouse Library
Ashley was killed in action less than a year later, but Charles’s purchases continue for many years later, as he became an MP, parliamentary private secretary to the then foreign secretary Anthony Eden, honorary colonel of the Kent yeomanry, and finally the 1st Baron Ponsonby of Wootton in 1956.

Chris Fletcher, keeper of special collections at the Bodleian library, said staff were delighted to save a piece of Oxford history. “People will have fun looking at the buying habits of some familiar names, as well as taking a serious look into a sustained historical record of social and business history in Oxford.”


Oxford: Ducker & Son Ltd
Written by Nasir Hamid on June 6th, 2017
Ducker & Son Ltd, Turl Street, Oxford, traditional shoemakers since 1898. All gone now. Soon to be a wine shop, right next door to the Whiskey Shop. Just what Oxford needs. When I found out that Duckers was closing for good I felt compelled to document what was left of the shop. Over the years I have photographed the shoes in the window countless times but this was the first time I had actually set foot inside the shop. It’s a real shame to see this shop close. When I got there in my lunch break there were lots of people coming and going and it was difficult to not be in the way with a tripod set up. I wanted some nice quality pictures so I decided to take a Pentax 67 with a wide-angle lens. I knew the shop was quite dark inside so film choice was very simple – Neopan Acros 100 because it doesn’t suffer from reciprocity failure until you go past 1 minute exposures. Most of my exposures were around the 30 seconds mark. I only had enough time to finish one roll of 10 frames but that was more than enough to get these results.
Photographs by Simply Oxford photoblog Photography by Nasir Hamid: http://www.simplyoxford.com/oxford/oxford-ducker-son-ltd



Friday, 17 January 2020

Harry and Meghan, and why members of the Royal Family can’t live in Canada / Canadian newspaper The Globe and Mail slams Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's living plans in furious editorial



EDITORIAL
Harry and Meghan, and why members of the Royal Family can’t live in Canada

PUBLISHED JANUARY 13, 2020

Britain is the inventor of one of the world’s great innovations in government: a monarchy that reigns but does not rule. Canada took that system and improved it, by pushing it one step further. The Canadian monarchy is virtual; it neither rules nor resides. Our royals don’t live here. They reign from a distance. Close to our hearts, far from our hearths.

And that is why, in response to the sudden announcement of a vague and evolving plan for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex – Prince Harry and Meghan – to move to Canada while remaining part of the Royal Family, the Trudeau government’s response should be simple and succinct: No.

You are welcome to visit, but so long as you are senior royals, Canada cannot allow you to come to stay.

This isn’t about breaking up with the Crown. On the contrary, it’s about maintaining Canada’s unique and highly successful monarchy.

On Monday, the British paper the Evening Standard reported that sources had told it that Ottawa had agreed to pay for security costs for the soon-to-arrive royal couple. When asked, Finance Minister Bill Morneau told reporters that was untrue, and that his government had not even discussed the matter. The dollars and cents of supporting a royal resident might be significant, but that’s not what’s really at issue. It goes deeper than the possibility of the feds having to find a few million extra bucks.

Canadians like their monarchy, and visits by the Queen and other members of the Royal Family tend to produce outpourings of public enthusiasm. But while the people who embody the Crown pay visits from time to time, they don’t set up a home on the premises. A royal living in this country does not accord with the long-standing nature of the relationship between Canada and Britain, and Canada and the Crown.

If they were ordinary private citizens, plain old Harry and Meghan from Sussex, they would be welcome. But this country’s unique monarchy, and its delicate yet essential place in our constitutional system, means that a royal resident – the Prince is sixth in the line of succession – is not something that Canada can allow. It breaks an unspoken constitutional taboo.

The concept of the Crown is at the centre of the Canadian system of government. Bills aren’t law until they receive royal assent; crimes are prosecuted in the name of Her Majesty by lawyers known as crowns; your passport asks foreign states for protection in the name of the Queen. All of that comes out of a constitutional order, more than a century-and-a-half old, based on the British model.

But though Canada borrowed from Britain, it isn’t Britain and never was. And this country long ago took steps to make that unmistakably clear.

‘Meghan and Harry: If you are reading these comments, please take them to heart and stay in Britain!’ Readers debate: Can the royal couple live in Canada?

Canada never had a class system with hereditary aristocrats like Britain, and Canada definitively broke with the idea of aristocracy when the Nickle Resolution of 1919 asked the British government to stop conferring titles on Canadians. What’s more, with the Statute of Westminster of 1931, Canada’s relationship to Britain was spelled out as one of equal, independent nations.

However, Canada kept the monarchy, and a head of state we share with various Commonwealth countries. The head of state’s representatives here are the governor-general and the provincial lieutenant-governors, who perform essential duties from opening parliaments to deciding who gets to form a government in minority situations. They’re as close as Canada comes to having resident royalty, but they’re not royalty. Instead, they’re merely temporary avatars for a virtual monarch who remains permanently ensconced across the sea.

Furthermore, since the 1950s, governors-general have always been Canadians. Princes are not shipped over here when no useful duties can be found for them on the other side of the Atlantic.

The Sussexes are working out their own personal issues, and Canadians wish them the best of luck. Canada welcomes people of all faiths, nationalities and races, but if you’re a senior member of our Royal Family, this country cannot become your home.

The government should make that clear. There can be no Earl Sussex of Rosedale and no Prince Harry of Point Grey. Canada is not a halfway house for anyone looking to get out of Britain while remaining a royal.


Canadian newspaper The Globe and Mail slams Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's living plans in furious editorial


 JACOB JARVIS
4 hours ago

Harry and Meghan's plans to reside in Canada have been lampooned in a furious editorial from one of the country's largest newspapers.

The scathing piece mounted an all out attack on the pair's proposed North America move - encouraging the nation's prime minister Justin Trudeau to tell them they are not welcome to stay while they are royals.

The Globe and Mail critiqued the suggestion of residence as breaking an "unspoken constitutional taboo", stating: "You are welcome to visit, but so long as you are senior royals, Canada cannot allow you to come to stay."

In their bombshell announcement to stand down as senior royals, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex said they hoped to split their living between North America and the UK.

They spent the Christmas period in Canada, while Meghan has since returned there and is staying in Vancouver Island with their son Archie.

The Globe and Mail's piece however said that royalty living in the country "does not accord with the long-standing nature of the relationship between Canada and Britain, and Canada and the Crown".

It stated that while the Queen is the country's monarch, she and the monarchy "neither rules nor resides", adding: "They reign from a distance. Close to our hearts, far from our hearths."

The country appreciates the visits from royals, it said, though added it wanted their trips to the nation to be no more than that.

"Canadians like their monarchy, and visits by the Queen and other members of the Royal Family tend to produce outpourings of public enthusiasm," it added.

"But while the people who embody the Crown pay visits from time to time, they don’t set up a home on the premises. A royal living in this country does not accord with the long-standing nature of the relationship between Canada and Britain, and Canada and the Crown."

It rallied on the Canadian government to push back against the plans, concluding: "The government should make that clear. There can be no Earl Sussex of Rosedale and no Prince Harry of Point Grey. Canada is not a halfway house for anyone looking to get out of Britain while remaining a royal."

It comes as images emerged of Meghan visiting two charities during her time in Canada, while Harry is set to conduct his first public engagement since the pair announced their plans.

The duke is set to remain in the UK into next week, despite rumours claiming he was preparing to fly to Canada to be reunited with Meghan and baby son Archie, while the Queen has agreed to the couple's wish step back as senior royals.

Thursday, 16 January 2020

Dame Penelope Keith / VIDEO: Penelope Keith: Lady Of The Manor (2000)





 Dame Penelope Anne Constance Keith, DBE, DL (née Hatfield; born 2 April 1940) is an English actress, active in all genres, including radio, stage, television and film and primarily known for her roles in the British sitcoms The Good Life and To the Manor Born. She succeeded Lord Olivier as president of the Actors' Benevolent Fund after his death in 1989, and was appointed Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) in the 2014 New Year Honours for services to the arts and to charity.
Keith joined the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1963, and went on to win the 1976 Olivier Award for Best Comedy Performance for the play Donkeys' Years. She became a household name in the UK playing Margo Leadbetter in the sitcom The Good Life (1975–78), winning the 1977 BAFTA TV Award for Best Light Entertainment Performance.
In 1978, she won the BAFTA TV Award for Best Actress for The Norman Conquests. She then starred as Audrey fforbes-Hamilton in the sitcom To the Manor Born (1979–81), a show that received audiences of more than 20 million. She went on to star in another six sitcoms, including Executive Stress (1986–88), No Job for a Lady (1990–92) and Next of Kin (1995–97). Since 2000, she has worked mainly in the theatre, with her roles including Madam Arcati in Blithe Spirit (2004) and Lady Bracknell in The Importance of Being Earnest (2007).


Penelope Keith: Lady Of The Manor (2000) Part 2



Documentary about Penelope Keith.  Features clips from various roles throughout her career and interviews with Keith herself, Richard Briers, John Howard Davies and Angela Thorne among others.  Part 2 of 2.