The British press – now only partly free

Echoing Freedom House‘s comparative assessment of global political rights and civil liberties, following the failure in the courts to block the UK government’s plans for a statutory press regulator, one can declare that the press in Britain is now “partly free”. The peoples of Britain have never enjoyed a constitutional right to a free press, […]

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Renovation of Greenwich and Woolwich Foot Tunnels set to resume

Issued today in the name of the Friends of Greenwich and Woolwich Foot Tunnels (Fogwoft)… On Monday 21 October 2013, representatives of the recently formed Friends of Greenwich and Woolwich Foot Tunnels held an exploratory meeting with the Royal Borough of Greenwich. The aim of this initial meeting was to introduce the community group to […]

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Farewell to a comrade-in-words

The marxian political philosopher and legendary blogger Norman Geras has died, aged 70. Norm and I never met in person, but this southern-African turned Mancunian and I corresponded by email over a number of years. In 2008, Norm interviewed me as part of a long series of profiles of political bloggers and other writers. Norm […]

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Dim light at the end of the tunnels

Issued today in the name of the Friends of Greenwich and Woolwich Foot Tunnels (Fogwoft)… The recently published Willmoth report into the renovation of the Greenwich and Woolwich Foot Tunnels is hard-hitting, both explicitly and between the lines. Much of the blame for the tunnels debacle is aimed at Hyder Consulting, which is charged with […]

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Locals to celebrate 101st anniversary of Woolwich Foot Tunnel

PRESS RELEASE On Saturday 26 October 2013, local people from both sides of the River Thames will gather in Woolwich to celebrate the 101st anniversary of the foot tunnel which links the town with its north bank namesake. The event is being organised by a recently formed community group known as the Friends of Greenwich […]

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Mapping London’s cycling revolution

Personal injury solicitors Bolt Burdon Kemp have collated data from the 2011 UK census, Transport for London and Bike Share, and produced a fascinating density map of cycle commuting in the capital. The map shows that, in some areas, rush-hour cycling is as high as 20% of all vehicle use, and the data reveal that […]

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Long live the short story

Canadian author Alice Munro has won the 2013 Nobel Prize for Literature, and for me it is a delight to see a short story writer acknowledged in this way. I am not so familiar with Munro’s work, but enough to know that the prize is well-deserved. I have long been fascinated by short stories, and […]

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Cycle ride – Tilbury & Gravesend, the industrial Thames

Where: Tilbury & Gravesend, the industrial Thames When: Saturday 12 October 2013 Meet: 10:00 @ Cutty Sark Gardens, London SE10 9LW (by the foot tunnel entrance) Brought to you by LCC’s South East London Commissariat for Social Cycle Rides Planning (aka the Dog & Bell Crew), an early autumn exploration of the industrial Thames from Greenwich to […]

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Total surveillance: the good, the bad, and the downright cringe-worthy

Whenever lawyer turned Guardian investigative journalist Glenn Greenwald has appeared on the devil’s lightbox or in print, I have tended to either switch off or endure the spectacle while gritting my teeth. It is a serious subject, total surveillance carried out by spy agencies such as America’s NSA and Britain’s GCHQ, but in the public […]

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