14. Richard III: Leicester's Cash Cow

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

When I logged on to Twitter moments ago I was not expecting to see the news that the Judicial Review over the re-internment of Richard III to be postponed until next year.
Are you kidding me? I simply can't believe they are going to drag this out even more than it has been. 

My own feelings remain the same - the main reason I oppose Leicester for the burial site is because they intend to dig him back up and carry out further tests on his bones. Don't even get me started on the fact that they kept him in a cardboard box under a disused kettle either. Or that Leicester Cathedral won't consider working with the plans drawn up by the Richard III Society to create a tomb fitting for Richard. 

13. Richard III Grave Site: A Theory

Thursday, 24 October 2013

I'm going to propose an idea that might be a little bit crackpot crazy, but what the hey! It's a thought I've been thinking for a while, ever since they announced that they had found a mystery lead coffin close to where Richard III's remains were found, and now I simply can't get the idea out of my head.

Maybe I've been reading too much historical fiction, and have become completely wrapped up in the idea. Maybe I'm right. We will only know if they DNA test the remains...

12. The Breakfast Club, St Paul's & Shake Shack

Thursday, 29 August 2013

Like any history lover, I love spontaneous historic days out! Recently fella and I took a jaunt to London for a day of good food, and a random trip to St Paul's Cathedral. I've been once before when I was in my early teens, but I had never been all the way to the top of it before.

Beforehand we stopped off in Spitalfields, and had breakfast at 'The Breakfast Club' - which I would highly recommend. I swear it gets better every time we go! 

If you haven't either I would highly recommend it, although take some water with you and do not wear impractical clothing like I did (just to note I was wearing a gorgeous pleated skirt which was a nightmare when climbing up the metal spiral staircase of death as we went deep into the bowels of the Cathedral dome!), I spent the majority of the climb up and down in a deep paranoia I was going to fall to my doom due to my choice of skirt that very morning. 

The view was phenomenal!

We also tried out the new Shake Shack in Covent Garden. We both agreed it wasn't the most amazing burger we've ever had, but the cheesy fries could be enough of a reason to go back. I don't really like the concept they have for service though. It was a bit too busy for my tastes.

Things have been a bit quieter on the blog front lately, due to the fact that I will be starting a new job in September! That's right lovelies! While I'm not completely sure what I'm going to do without my staff discount to keep my wardrobe bountiful I am very excited about the new challenges awaiting me in my new company.

It has come at the perfect timing for me, I am ready for a change of scene, and while I am still managing a team my new role offers so many opportunities and takes me away from the shop floor. Not to mention that the company is steeped in history, but I will reveal more in time!

11. Richard III: The University of Leicester has no shame

Monday, 19 August 2013

So today I had an interesting tweet waiting for me from the University of Leicester Twitter account in response to one of my tweets regarding the whole issue of the reburial of Richard III.
My original tweet.. 
Followed by the response I received earlier today and my reply..

10. St Albans Catherdral

Sunday, 28 July 2013

I'm going to be posting about my favourite site in Saint Albans. I am of course talking about the Cathedral! 

9. The White Queen Adaptation: My Thoughts

Sunday, 23 June 2013

With episode two of 'The White Queen' airing tonight I find myself hoping it steps up a notch from the cringe inducing moments in episode one.

Now, here's the thing. I have had my issues with adaptations of Gregory's books before, namely 'The Other Boleyn Girl', both versions. Heck I had issues with the book in the first place. It took me a while to pick up one of her books again, and yes - reading her 'Cousin's War' series has needed me to take it with a very large pinch of salt due to the mythological elements. Surprisingly I have enjoyed them - especially the 'links' between Jacquetta's bloodline and the water goddess Melusina. I enjoy it purely as fiction, and was concerned about how well that element of the story would translate to screen.

Once I got over my initial excitement that it was being adapted I started to worry about how it would come across. Areas of the book that I thought would make me cringe certainly did make me squirm in my seam, namely Edward declaring to Elizabeth:
Now, Rebecca Ferguson is a very attractive woman, but she's not playing Elizabeth Woodville at all how I imagine her to be. So far she is very drippy, with not a lot really going on up there it seems. She seems to show little thought to her deceased husband, whom in the book she describes as being very much in love with, and little thought to the fact she is going to win the eye of Edward to help her reclaim her lost lands. She seems so airy fairy, and that is not how I expected Elizabeth to be. I was so sick of seeing the 'I'm so grateful you love me' Elizabeth on screen. Where is my strong minded, willful, ''I'm going to take control of my own destiny" Elizabeth Woodville? I do not see the character that sprung up from the pages of Gregory's book in the character being portrayed on screen. All in all, disappointed in her portrayal to say the least. But still, it's only the first episode. I can hope it gets better. I believe she was very calculating from the get go, but this doesn't come across in episode one.

Max Iron's 'I'm too sexy for my shirt' (because he never seems to be able to keep it on) Edward IV seems to be the spoilt golden child who is used to getting what he likes, and I suppose this is spot on in terms of how I expected Edward to be. However, Max? Less of the cringey emphasis on the LONGING, and generally lecherous creepiness okay? Also I don't believe Edward would be mooning over Elizabeth and putting his head to her forehead in front of her family and his soldiers at the roadside, romantic license to blame there. Way to let the cat out of the bag! But no, everyone is oblivious to what was unfolding mere steps away from them. Apart from Jacquetta, who sees everything don't you know!

I'm really hoping that there will be more to the portrayal of Edward and Elizabeth's relationship than the Mills and Boon scenes we've been treated to so far. I understand they are supposed to be madly in love with each other and all that, but there are other ways of showing that. I guess they thought hyping up the sex would sell it - not working for me though. It's like compensating for substance.

Other initial thoughts:
  • Zips did not exist in Medieval times. So WHY are they on costumes in this drama? Are the producers stupid enough to think this won't irk period drama fans/history obsessives!? I know.. blah blah blah adaptation blah blah blah.. at least try to conceal them better! Other costume issues in general, but I think they're being obsessed enough in fan communities without me needing to list them here...
  • Enough with the pink dress. It's overly feminine and I'm not digging it for Elizabeth.
  • Loved Lord Warwick, can't really go wrong with James Frain.
  • Jacquetta was not how I imagined she would be, although Janet McTeer is winning me over gradually. Some of the lines the writers have her saying are pretty ridiculous though.
  • Amanda Hale gave a brief appearance as Margaret Beaufort. Still don't dig her, but this is an adaptation so I'm allowed to be biased. 
  • I feel that they should have cast the actor playing John Woodville as Anthony Woodille, and vice versa. Just my impression from the first episode. Anthony Woodville is one of my favourite historical figures so I really hope Ben Lamb can bring him to life, but I'm not convinced right now. 
  • Scene with Duchess Cecily and Jacquetta  was probably my favourite of the whole thing. Also when Elizabeth forced Cecily to bow to her as queen. In yo' face Cecily!
  • I thought that when Edward married Elizabeth in 1464, Richard was around the age of 12, and that Elizabeth in the book thought he would make a great friend for her two young Grey sons? He seems VERY grown up and man like in the first episode compared to the two very childlike sons of Elizabeth and her husband Sir John Grey. I understand that writers will take a lot of creative license in adaptations but this is quite a big deviation from the book, and from the general time line of things. If they do touch on the alleged relationship between Richard and Elizabeth of York later in the series there is going to be an even larger gap that the actual age gap between his age of 31, and her age of 17 in 1483 when the rumors were circulating. 

Gearing up for episode two tonight. What are your thoughts? Do you agree with anything I've said, or am I horribly wrong?

FYI - If I see any zips, or pink dresses in tonight's episode I may implode. 

8. The White Queen & The Red Queen by Philippa Gregory

Wednesday, 27 February 2013

This past two weeks have been one of those weeks where I constantly told myself to update, but I never actually got round to it. I enlisted Fella to tell me I had to blog too, and even that failed!

February has been a busy month at work, and I'm still between Fella's and Papa G's (which explains the lack of blogging lately). I love my room at my dads. I may do a picture post on it next just because I love it so much.

Fella and I will be moving to Saint Albans at the end of April, it's scary how quickly time is creeping up on us. We're starting to look for flats to view and I'm so excited to hopefully find a lovely place to live where we can put our own stamp on it. And no more traveling to work for me, which is a massive bonus!

I've started to get back into Philippa Gregory's novels on my commute to and from work. I read 'The Other Boleyn Girl' and 'Constant Princess' years ago and didn't think much of them to be honest. The film adaptation of TOBG has gone down as one of my most loathed films of all time too. I'm not too fond of the TV drama that was made before hand either. Lets not even go there.

7. Richard III: Confirmed

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

What an exciting, significant week this has been! As we all know, the skeleton found underneath the car park in Leicester has been identified as the remains of Richard III, last Plantagenet King of England. The wonderful thing that this discovery has brought (other than being able to provide the burial for the only King without a tomb - though I should add, it should not be in Leicester Cathedral) has been that people are not just accepting Tudor propaganda fact anymore.

6. Richard III: Result

Monday, 4 February 2013

This is where I found out that the bones found in Leicester Council car park were that of Richard III. Up bright eyed and busy tailed with two different streams running, and Louis to keep me calm(ish). Not very glamourous, hey?

This is such a significant day in history. I got chills as they showed the images from the dig and how he was found.

A proper, more coherent post will follow tomorrow evening, once I've watched everything related to this glorious moment.

Time for Richard to occupy centre stage and erase the myths and lies spun by Tudor propagandists.. 

5. Richard III: Really?

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Last week the word circulating the news was that the results of the dig to find and identify the remains of Richard III would be forthcoming shortly.

I've been keeping an eye out for anything related to this with great interest - I mean, I am a complete fangirl for him, and completely anti Shakespeare's portrayal.

I am curious about one thing though. I keep reading that along with a curvature of the spine, his remains were identified by an arrow in his shoulder..

4. 2012 Roundup & 2015 Hopes

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

2012 was a good year.. 
  • I graduated university with a 2:1 - I was desperate to come out of university with this grade. I felt if I had come out of it with a 2:2 ultimately it would have meant I had spent too much time having 'a good time' (i.e. nights out etc). I'm really proud of myself for achieving what I did. 
  • I went up the career ladder - having spent so long running things but not being recognised for it I decided to take a chance and apply for roles I was essentially doing. I'm proud of myself for that, and for achieving everything I have in the year that I have been at my job. I now know how confident and competent I am, and to trust my own judgement. There's nothing wrong with being thrown in the deep end, right? (But watch out for the sharks!) 
  • Things got better and better with Fella. I honestly didn't think I could be this happy and content. He's made me grow as a person so much, and encouraged me in every way possible - especially in embracing my inner raging history geek. I have absolutely loved spending this year with him, and I can't wait to see what 2013 holds for us. Simply put, I adore him. 
  • The other love of my life for 2012 was Richard III. Yes, that Richard. I know, I know! Wasn't he the hunchbacked, long haired, crooked teeth cripple who murdered his nephews to usurp the throne and seize power for himself? I don't necessarily believe he was a hunchback in the traditional form.. there's no way he could have fought the battles he did, and of been such a successful soldier with that sort of disability. Scoliosis really does not mean you are a Quasimodo hunchback. I'm still reading up on this enigmatic figure.. and he has completely sparked a re-interest in the Plantagenets - I can't wait for Alison Weir's up and coming biography of Elizabeth of York! I haven't decided if I'm what Weir would call a 'revisionist' or not yet, but I'm trying to keep an open mind.. 

I hope 2013 will..
  • Bring happiness and health for all my loved ones. 
  • Sees me break into a career relating to history, and communicating this passion every single day. I believe it is so, so important to understand the past history of your country. We are blessed with having someone of the most interesting characters to have walked this land, and I want everyone to know it! It's so fascinating! 
  • My love of history will be translated across this blog more than it ever was before because I very luckily have a Fella who is turning out to be as much as a history geek as me! How lucky! 
  • I will finish writing what I hope will become my first book (Uhoh.. it's on the blog, out on the interweb now! I have to do it!)
  • See me travel more. Scandinavia, Germany, France - I want to explore more of Europe. Places I've already been, places I've never been before!  
  • I want to shop less. Working in retail has seen me part with a lot more money on clothes than I normally would have. Someone take my debit card away from me! 
  • This will mean being more creative with my outfit choices - which means I will still blog about that too for all you fashonistas still hanging in there for me.
  • Fella and I will have another amazing year together.

And lastly.. I am going to do the above! I can't wait to read back on this year, and all that will have happened. 

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas, and a fantastic New Years. Thank you so much to those of you that have stuck with me through my inconsistent phases, life sometimes gets in the way! I am learning to find a blogging timetable that works for me.. baby steps and all that. I hope you can be patient with me a little while longer?

That's all for now. 

Happy New Year Cherubs! 
All photos from

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