The Other News From England.

6 Aug 2001.

(if you read all the way to the end, you might find out why we are three days late this week).

Index of earlier issues - click here.

(Those who like digging about will find that there are hundreds of articles on many subjects to be found on this site.)

Old issues.

There are some much earlier Other News on this site. Click below.

early Othernews - 1992, 93, 94.

Bonnington Cafe and Bonnington Square.

This Saturday - Phil singing a selection of Bert Jansch-type songs. No charge, but the hat goes round.

Bonnington Cafe is a communally owned cafe in Vauxhall, Central London. The atmosphere is somewhat Bohemian, international, friendly, educated, and much wine (bought from the corner shop across the road) gets drunk. Good quality vegetarian. Cheap. The only lighting is usually candles stuck in wine bottles, and the furniture is a collection of odds and sods that people have thrown out. The overall result is relaxed and pleasing. People tend to spend the whole evening over their meal, and engage in discussion with those on other tables, the caterer, the band, passers through......

Bonnington Cafe, Vauxhall Grove, London SW8 UK. Near Vauxhall underground and mainline station, buses 185, 36, 2, 88, 322 and others. Booking is difficult.


SUMMERHILL, that school famous for allowing it's pupils allegedly excessive freedom, celebrated it's 80th birthday this weekend by inviting ex-pupils from every year the school has existed to visit, and, as you might expect, have themselves a party.

Ex-pupils, friends, ex-staff, and staff started to arrive at the school on thursday and went on arriving all weekend. The oldest ex-pupil to arrive had left the school in 1927 and was now over 80, and the youngest was presumably someone who had only left at the end of the summer term, a few days before.

People camped out in the 'Hockey Field', in kid's rooms and vacated staff rooms, a 'school meeting' was held, possibly making those present feel slightly as though they had never left, and wondering how it is that they had suddenly become sixty (or whatever).

At the meeting the story of the school's struggle with inspectors was related, told rather in the manner of an adventure story for children by Zoe Redhead and her husband Tony. Zoe is the daughter of A. S. Neill, who started the school in 1921 in Lyme Regis.

The school may now claim to have, thanks to the stunning intelligence, power of reason and balanced attitudes of OFSTED (Office for Standards in Education), more toilets per pupil than any other school in Britain, and an entry in the Guiness Book of Records is called for - although there may not be anybody with enough energy left after the great struggle to submit this record-breaking claim. Aside from that, I am thankful to be able to say, there has been almost no change in the school's approach, with one of the main ingredients - the freedom to choose whether to go to lessons or not - remaining in place. Had compulsory lessons been conceded, as OFSTED wanted, the whole principle of freedom (not licence) would have been lost, and it is doubtful that anybody would have wanted to go on running such a school. There are plenty of mediocre schools already.

On Saturday night a lot of live music played by Summerhillians of every age was followed by a rather unusual selection of recordings which seemed to suit everybody's taste from 4 to 81 years of age, which went on playing until about 2 in the morning. Sunday breakfast on the Round Lawn and around the previous night's burnt out wood fire was followed by people sitting about all day reading Sunday newspapers and periodically moving from one place to another to chat to old (often very old) friends, and then gradually over the day and during Monday people drifted back home.

As I was leaving, Zoe told me she wanted to do the same thing again as soon as possible in London with a view to raising some funds for all those things one has to do to keep a school going - besides which, she pointed out, it was such good fun.


(Held over again, in the hope that we will get an email from a Mason giving an explanation if we wait long enough. Come on, guys, we don't want this article here forever.):

FREEMASONS, understandably, wish to be accepted as ordinary honest upright and honorable citizens.

We have written about them on several occasions (about 8). On all occasions except one, the writing has been of a negative nature, and on one occasion it was positive and quoted various things that a masonic spokesman had said in their favour.

Following the publication of the positive writings there was no difficulty connecting to the server to send and receive email during the following week, whilst on all the other occasions email was cut off for several days and only restored after phone calls to the server and further enquiries.

Are they honest? Is this not the kind of thing the public believe Freemasons do with their time and energies?

Joe Punter's Shakespeare.

King Henry the 6th. part 3.

ACT 5 .

Scene 6.

London. The Tower.

Enter King H. and Gloster, with the lieutenant, on the walls (this, I think, means walking along the top of the walls, which have a walkway along them).


Good day, my lord. What, at your book so early?


Ay, my good lord - my lord, I should really say, as it is a sin to flatter. 'Good' was little better. 'Good Gloster' and 'Good Devil' are much the same thing, and both preposterous. Therefore, not 'good lord'.

GLOSTER (to lieutenant):

Sirrah, leave us to ourselves. We must confer.

(exit lieutenant).


So runs the reckless shepherd from the wolf. The harmless sheep yields his fleece, and next his throat unto the butcher's knife - what scene of death have you now in mind?


Suspicion always haunts the guilty mind. The thief fears an officer in each bush.


The bird that has been snared in a bush will doubt every bush, and I, the hapless mate of one sweet bird, have in my sight the bush where my young was snared and killed.


What a peevish fool was that of Crete, who taught his son to be a fowl! Yet, despite his wings, he was drowned.


I, Daedalus, my poor son Icarus. Your father Minos, who blocked our course. The sun, that seared the wings of my sweet boy, your brother Edward and yourself the sea which swallowed him up. Ah, kill me with thy weapon, not thy words! My breast can withstand your dagger's point better than my ears can that tragic history. But why have you come? Is it for my life?


Do you think I am an executioner?


Certainly you are a persecutor - if murdering innocents is executing, then you are an executioner.


I killed your son for his presumption.


Had you been killed when you first presumed, you would not have lived to kill a son of mine, and now I prophesy that many a father, son, daughter, widow and orphan regretting untimely deaths shall rue that ever you were born. The owl shrieked at your birth - an evil sign. The night-crow cried, aboding luckless time, dogs howled, a hideous tempest shook down trees, chattering magpies sang in dismal discord, your mother felt more than a mother's pain and yet bore less than a mother's hope - an undigested and deformed lump, not like the fruit of a goodly tree. You had teeth in your head when you were born, to signify that you came to bite the world, and - if the rest is true, which I have heard it is, you came -


I'll hear no more. Die, prophet, in thy speech.

(stabs him.)

For this, amongst the rest, I was ordained.


Aye, and for much more slaughter after this. Oh, God forgive my sins, and pardon thee.


What, does the aspiring blood of Lancaster sink into the gound? I thought it would have risen to see how my sword weeps for the poor king's death! Oh, may such purple tears (drops of blood? - ed) be always shed by those who seek the downfall of our house! If any spark of life is yet remaining, down, down to hell, and say I sent you there.

(stabs him again)

I, who have no pity, love or fear. Indeed, it is true, that which Henry told me of. For I have often heard my mother say that I came into the world with my legs forward. Do you not think I had reason to seek to ruin he who usurpt our right? the midwife wondered, and the women cried 'Oh Jesus bless us, he is born with teeth!' And so I was, which plainly signified that I should snarl and bite and play the dog. Then, as the heavens have made my body so, let Hell make my mind crooked to equal it. I have no brother. I am like no brother, and this word 'love', which greybeards call divine, lives in men like one another, and not in me. I am myself alone.- Clarence, beware, you are keeping me from the light. But I will spread such prophesies that Edward will be fearful for his life, and then, to purge his fear I will be the cause of your death. King Henry and the prince his son are gone, Clarence your turn is next, and then the rest, counting myself bad until I am best. I'll throw your body in another room, and triumph, Henry, in your day of doom.

(exit with body.)

More next week.

Music and Arts.

I WORKED FOR TWO DAYS IN A supermarket this week, in which, as stereos were sold there, local radio was playing most of the day.

The DJ's who yelled their ceaselessly excited blab at the listeners took no notice of what they were actually talking about, presenting everything from the serious to the hilarious with exactly the same hyperbabble, so that if a plane had crashed with all 250 people on board perishing it would have been presented in the same way as if guaranteed world peace forever had been achieved. Wow! Wow! Wow!

But most of the time we had music - music with a relentless thump to it, all going at the same tempo, with DJ yelling inanities over the top of it from time to time, and, as it turned out, only three tunes ever being played right through, with these three tunes being played approximately 50 times each during the course of a day.

I wondered why these three tunes, since it seemed to me unlikely that a DJ should like something so much that they would play it 50 times a day, and concluded that the answer was purely commercial. The recordings in question consisted of a singer singing over synthesised accompaniment, and for a musician had little of any interest, but one must bear in mind that such a recording leaves the producer with no royalties to pay to musicians, very little in the way of production costs, and, if the producer wrote the 'tune' and words themselves, no composer's royalties. In fact, the whole thing, apart from the considerable selling costs, would cost them almost nothing.

And the reason they play the recording 50 times a day is that nobody would take any notice of such dull music if it were not rammed down their throat.

It's the only possible way to sell such crap.


The stuff that doesn`t often get changed now follows:

Alternet News.

Alternet News might appeal to some readers as a regular list of goings-on in the human rights/green areas of life. You can receive it by email. I have put one copy on this site so that you get an idea of what it is about and how to subscribe.

For sample Alternet email click here.


Click here for an email that arrived in January 2000 concerning a proposed reasoned approach to this tricky subject

Goforth's social justice e-zine.

This interesting email magazine comes at fairly regular intervals and is of interest to almost anybody who is interested in human rights and green issues. In November 2000 it was going out to about 10,000 addresses. Try it. It won't cost you anything, and you can reproduce the contents without paying. You can subscribe by writing to them at:, or visit: Goforth's site

This website is about accounting investigations and fiddles. If you like to look at financial scandals (both hidden and public) this might be worth a look. I have not been there myself, but the books produced by these people, although difficult to follow, cover a lot of mysterious ground.

This website is about the destruction of countryside and agriculture. Worth a visit if you want to find out about how it is thought the British countryside will fair under the ongoing creep of the multinationals.

This website is one to do with monetary reform.The British Association for Monetary Reform. If you are interested in economics it is worth a look.

This is a website about alternative currencies.Might be worth a look to those who have realised that you don't necessarily have to have money as such to be prosperous.

This is a website for something called The Green Guide. I know nothing about it, but am hoping it is something worthy. Please let me know if it is questionable.

This is a site concerned with one of the most unpopular planning decisions ever made in Greater London, the Crystal Palace Complex. It is so stunningly awful that only a handful of people who do not live near it appear to approve, whilst the rest are not entirely uninclined to mention such things as payola, name it! The site belongs to the London Borough of Bromley, but the aggro generated by it and the destruction of amenity caused by it will be almost entirely suffered by residents of adjoining boroughs and not the people of Bromley themselves.

This is a recycling site based in London, and offering materials to anybody. The organisation is a charity seeking to link suppliers of surplus materials with users. Especially good for the more ingenious designers amongst us.

The email of the people who run the above site is They are called Creative Supplies. Look them up for more info.

Here's an interesting education site - particularly for those who have young children and are not quite sure what to do to avoid the worst of what`s on offer in the mainstream of education.They are called

early Othernews - 1992, 93, 94.

Early Other News essays.

There were a few essays that went out with the early Other News as a freestanding item. You can read these by clicking below.


The Soup Designer`s Handbook.

The Soup Designer`s Handbook.

London Journey - a trip from Docklands through Beckenham and back to Docklands.

Friday Woodworkers.

(Friday Woodworkers are suffering a temporary break due to some of the episodes not having been fully edited at the time of writing. It may take some timne to fix this problem.

Episode 17.

(These articles were written in 1988, and were my first attempt at writing. Some people when shown these fell about laughing, some smiled faintly - and some yawned. I thought I was going to write a technical book, but it soon became apparent that I was much more interested in the people than the technology - and that is the main reason there are no drawings - although it might be rather good to do a couple of caricatures sometime.)

Index of Friday Woodorker articles (and a means of access).

Index of earlier issues.

Gabriele Gad on alternative therapy.

A READER COMPLAINED that it was not possible to go back more than 6 articles in Gabriele`s area. Regrettably this is because there is no index, and I have not the time to organise one yet. However, for those determined enough to find the early ones, they should be accessible by going to an early Other News and clicking through from it. This will not be fast, but I think will do the job. They started about November 1997 I think.

Cartoons and graphics.

drawings click here.

sheet music click here.



In an earlier issue I told you about my feelings regarding Tempo retailers and the Lexmark 3200 printer I bought from them.

The Lexmark 3200 printer I got from Tempo must surely be the most uneconomical printer I could possibly have bought. The black cartridge only does about 250 pages of ordinary type - for 28! That makes each sheet cost 11.2 pence plus the cost of the paper and probably another 11.2 pence more if any colour is used! - ABOUT 22.4 PENCE A SHEET! Nearly a pound for every four sheets!

I wouldn`t recommend you to buy it - but also look at my earlier article for an idea of Tempo`s service.


A person to help make up a subject index for the growing numbers of articles on The Other News From England. Email (this may now have been provided, but please email if you might like to join in in some way - ed.)

All material on this site is copyright. Contact me if you want to use it. I am quite flexible. Educational non-profit use is free - but ask for permission and print an acknowledgement. If you can`t think what to print, put:

From The Other News From England.

Even better if you print the date of the article.

That`s all this week folks