The Taming of the Queen by Philippa Gregory.

The Taming of the Queen by Philippa Gregory

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

‘Women’s lives do not matter to anyone at this court. Before every queen stands her pretty successor, behind her a ghost.’

An historical romp through the courts of Henry VIII through the eyes of Katherine Parr- his last wife.

The research is brilliant- I have been immersed for days and googling the life out of Henry Tudor’s court!

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Mum. BBC.

Mum is a British sitcom written by Stefan Golaszewski (Marriage) centred around recently widowed, suburban 59-year-old Cathy and her family, following her husband’s death. Each episode is named after a calendar month in the year, except series three which is set over just one week.

Starring Lesley Manville and Peter Mullan. I watched this on the back of Stefan Golaszewski’s Marriage (Nicola Walker). Similar format- the comedy/ drama is in the minutia of everyday life, cleverly delivered.

I will be looking for more of this writer’s work.

Crossfire. BBC.

‘A holiday turns from heaven to hell with a gunshot – and the consequences will linger long after the final bullets are fired.’

Written by Louise Doughty and starring Keeley Hawes.

What would you do if it happened to you? (Louise Doughty)

Binged the three episodes of this last night. Reading the reviews, the ending has divided its audience. Gripping and fast moving. I liked it.

Bombay Sapphire Distillery. Lavestoke.

‘Uncover the secrets of our Bombay Sapphire gin on the site of a former paper mill in the Hampshire countryside. Learn about the rare production processes used to make our world-famous gin and discover the sustainable measures and ecology of the conservation area that we call our home.’

Had a road trip down to Lavestoke in Hampshire for a gin tasting experience the other day. Set on the site of an old paper mill (it used to manufacture all our paper money before it went over to a mainly plastic content) the location was historic.It stood beside the River Test; a chalk river bustling with flora and fauna.

We learnt about the gin making process and had a few gin cocktails throughout the tour. There were two beautiful green houses showcasing the botanicals used in the gin making; one housing tropical plants and one Mediterranean. Both were welcome for a quick warm up on a chilly autumn morning.

Pricey at £70 for two tickets but worth it for the beautiful setting and informative tour.

A Different Windsor.

Nine days ago we did a tourist visit to Windsor; Tuesday 7th September. Wednesday 8th September our Queen sadly passed away. We went back today to pay our respects and feel involved in some small way.

A very different Windsor greeted us. Somber, grand, busy. Lots of press areas with crews from all over the world. The Queen’s staff from the castle, resplendent in their uniforms, standing on guard outside and talking to the crowds paying their respects. Police mingling with the people in the crowd. Young and old all respectfully jostling to catch a glimpse of the scene. And so many flowers!

Preparations were also well underway for Queen Elizabeth to arrive back home to her final resting place at the castle. Roads cordoned off, big screens going up, scaffolding for the cameramen. Windsor is getting ready to embrace their queen for the final time.

RIP our beautiful Queen Elizabeth II.

Windsor and Eton.

Return road trip today with a stop off in Windsor and Eton.

Windsor is a town on the River Thames in southeast England and home to Windsor Castle, a residence of the British Royal Family.

As well as the castle, we took a quick look in Windsor parish church of St John The Baptist with its beautiful depiction of The Last Supper by Franz de Cleyn.

Eton is a town on the opposite bank of the River Thames to Windsor, connected to it by Windsor Bridge. It’s famous for it’s public school, Eton College.

The college was founded in 1440 by Henry VI. It has been attended by, among others, Princes Harry and William, prime ministers David Cameron and Boris Johnson and actor Eddie Redmayne.

Short break over and back home to Sussex, but nice to move inland and see a bit more of the culture and countryside that makes up the beautiful country of England.