English governance is a canker at the heart of our crumbling constitution. The UK is broken, but the political class won’t talk about it.
I’ve produced a lot of words over the last two decades. This is not an archive of all of them, but you might call it the edited highlights.
It includes reportage from Britain and the wider world, book reviews, interviews, debates, talks and other ephemera, culled from Fleet Street papers, magazines, books, the programmes of plays, websites and more.
Some time ago I also put together some advice for writers, and thoughts on the writing life.
A historical fancy commissioned for the programme of the play Jerusalem, written by Jez Butterworth and performed in the West End in 2010 and on Broadway in 2011.
How many more National Trust tea rooms will have to be submerged under eight feet of water before we can grasp that the future is not behaving in the way it was supposed to?
A review of a book by Tristram Stuart which lays bare our wasteful culture.
A short journey through the secrets and wonders of the upper Thames.
English history is too often represented, even today, as a pageant of lords and nobles, wars and conquests. But there is another history.
Time for the English to dig into their history and find some new heroes.
Three men are walking the length and breadth of Britain, singing as they go.
Renewable mega-projects that trash landscapes may be low-carbon – but they’re not green.
My ‘book of a lifetime’ – the work of a long-neglected poet.