England in May

A perfect field, a tree tinged with pink blossom, brilliant yellow gorse, a stately horsechestnut, bluebells washed with rain, creamy Hawthorne. All these I saw on a rapturous walk through the Staffordshire countryside in May my heart singing all the way.

Taulellets – a History of Tile Art in El Cabanyal

Anyone who has wandered around the Poblats Maritims area of Valencia will have noticed that many of the houses are covered with the most beautiful tiles, which enrich the charm and character of this entrancing neighborhood. Of the 700 protected houses, 300 have tiled facades whose spectacular designs range from traditional, delicate and pretty to wild, abstract and surreal. When … Read More

Migrants Making Magic in Marsala

My friend David Swift is a kind of magician. He can conjure up amazing images in a few captivating words, painting mental pictures which then become reality. Forty years ago, when I first met him, he convinced me to learn a mime routine, dress up as a clown and set off on a busking tour of Britain. Together with another … Read More

All Change – Home Swaps Make a Great Holiday

Exchange your Home and off you Roam If you’re short of cash or like the idea of living like a local, exchanging homes is a great option. You don’t have to pay for accommodation and you walk straight into someone else’s world. I didn’t want to rent out my flat in Valencia. It’s a delicate period piece, with original wooden … Read More

Lemonade Floats, Penny Arcades and Pier Shows in Blackpool

My first clear holiday memories are of Blackpool and until I was eight, I went there every year with my mum and dad and my grandma and grandpa and sometimes my Aunty Margaret too. ¬†We stayed for a week, had a wonderful time and I always cried when we left. We only lived 70 miles away in the heart of … Read More

Isle of Wight – scene of my first big adventure

It was the end of June 1977. I stood on the deck of the ferry to the Isle of Wight headed across the Solent for the coastal town of Ryde. By my side was a very large case, filled with many different outfits, many pairs of shoes. How different from today, when my Trundler’s mantra is ‘always travel light.’ I … Read More