Wednesday, 31 December 2014

VIIIth Duke of Wellington, 1915-2014


To the illustrious memory of the Most Noble ARTHUR VALERIAN VIIIth DUKE OF WELLINGTON,
Knight Companion of the Most Noble Order of the Garter,
Lieutenant of the Royal Victorian Order,
Officer of the Military Division of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire,
Military Cross.

New KCVO

Breast star, Knight Commander of the Royal Victorian Order

Hearty congratulations to the Earl of Caledon, who has been appointed a Knight Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (KCVO) in the 2015 New Year Honours List.

Lord Caledon has served the office of Lord-Lieutenant of County Armagh since 1989.

Captain Peters

CAPTAIN DAME MARY PETERS CH DBE RNR


I have found a few photographs of Dame Mary wearing the uniform of a captain in the Royal Naval Reserve.

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Dame Mary Peters CH DBE

Neck badge, Order of the Companions of Honour

I'm very pleased indeed that Dame Mary Peters has been appointed a Member of the Order of the Companions of Honour (CH).

In the late 60s and early 70s Mary Peters trained at Buster McShane's gym and health club in Upper Arthur Street, Belfast.

My father was once a member of the club and he used to take me there as a little boy, where I remember seeing Mary train.

She became Ulster's Golden Girl when she brought us home a gold medal at the Munich Olympics in 1972.

Mary Peters was appointed Dame Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (DBE) in 2000.

Dame Mary served the office of Lord-Lieutenant of Belfast between 2009 and 2014 with great aplomb.

Dame Mary has been - and continues to be - a tremendous ambassador for Northern Ireland.

Saturday, 27 December 2014

Lock's Travel Trilby


Some time ago I watched an old episode of Poirot, entitled Murder In Mesopotamia.

That celebrated sleuth's faithful companion, Captain Arthur Hastings OBE, wore a rather fine, sand-coloured, type of fedora or trilby hat.

Now I've a confession to make: I possess a considerable of hats, including three fedoras and trilbys.

Four of my hats are made by James Lock & Company, of St James's, London.

Are any readers remotely interested in my hat collection?

After viewing the Poirot episode, I had a rummage though the drawer and unearthed one of them, a medium brim, lightweight, soft, foldable, travel felt trilby.

It is called The Voyager.

They thoughtfully supplied the hat in a white travel tube, alas impractical for my compact hand luggage:

Turn the brim down, push out the crown shape to form a dome; softly, fold your hat convex and concave; roll your hat up; put it in the travel tube, brim uppermost; on arrival at your destination always unfold your hat, then reshape the crown and brim.
 First published in March, 2013.

Thursday, 18 December 2014

Notoriety!

I was in central Belfast briefly this morning.

I visited the Central Library in Royal Avenue, one of Belfast's finer buildings. I invariably admire the domed ceiling with its intricate plasterwork on the first floor.

Today I was obtaining an image of Lord Pirrie's armorial bearings as a viscount, and his lineage.

A lovely lady approached me as I was leaving and introduced herself. Lord Belmont has achieved notoriety at last!

I passed the Great West Front of Belfast Cathedral, where the Dean's annual "sit-out" takes place at this time of year.

I spoke briefly to a lady canon (possibly the Rev Canon Denise Acheson, Canon Treasurer) beside the celebrated barrel.

The Bishop of Down & Dromore, the Right Rev Harold Miller, appeared on the steps, dressed informally in his v-neck jumper. 

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Passport Application

Commendation to Her Majesty's Passport Office.

I delivered an application for a new passport to their Belfast branch in Victoria Street exactly one week ago.

When I arrived home this afternoon, it had been delivered.

Annual Party


We all gathered at the old schoolhouse, Mount Stewart estate, County Down, this morning.

There were at least a dozen of us, National Trust Strangford Lough Group staff and volunteers.

During the morning we worked in and around the back yard and garden of the schoolhouse.

I managed to get two sacks of logs.

The main purpose of the day, however, was the annual Christmas party lunch, a very informal affair.

We all contributed to it: Tomasz brought home-made wild mushroom soup.

Phil provided his game pie.

Others brought sausage rolls, vol-au-vents, quiche, bread; Pavlova, chocolate cake, Christmas cake, and more.


I've written about the schoolhouse before. It's an historic building, some two centuries old.

Monday, 15 December 2014

The Slippers

A new pair of slippers regularly springs to mind at this time of the year.

Admittedly I've achieved a fairly good mileage from the present ones, judging by the tread.

My Number Threes are invariably from Marks & Spencer's.

It might amuse you to know that I have a Number One pair, by Church's, which are aired on Red Letter Days or special occasions.

They are made of velvet, with a kind of monogram atop, leather soled, red in colour.

The Number Twos, by Morland's, also have hard leather soles, a sheepskin fleece lining, and beige suede upper.

Friday, 12 December 2014

New DLs

Mrs Joan Christie OBE, Lord-Lieutenant of County Antrim, has been pleased to appoint
Colonel Neil SALISBURY OBE, Ballycastle, County Antrim
Mr David McCORKELL, Lisburn, County Antrim
To be Deputy Lieutenants of the County her Commission bearing the date of 8 December 2014.

Joan Christie, Lord Lieutenant of the County.

Thursday, 11 December 2014

New iPad

Mulholland arms

I ventured into town - viz. central Belfast - today. I sought one of the latest Apple iPad Air 2 tablets.

It's "Space Grey" and 64GB capacity.

Accordingly, I started the two-seater - also dark grey, as it happens - and motored to Gloucester Street, where I was fortunate enough to find a parking space.

In the Apple Store, at Victoria Square shopping centre, I was seen fairly promptly by an assistant.

It was all quite straightforward, given that I knew what I wanted.

The latest iPad is considerably lighter and slimmer than my fourth generation model.

The original intention had been to buy the new iPad at the giant Tesco store at Knocknagoney though, to my disappointment, they had none in stock (apart from the 16GB variant).

THENCE I presented my new passport application at the Home Office's passport section in Victoria Street which, as it happens, is almost opposite Gloucester Street.

AT the venerable Linenhall Library I found a 1960s Burke's peerage and baronetage and the armorial bearings of the Rt Hon Sir Henry (Harry) Mulholland Bt.

Incidentally, I'll be posting a piece about Ballyscullion Park imminently.

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

4th Earl of Bristol


The surname of HERVEY, or HARVEY, written with Fitz (i.e. son of Harvey) is derived from Robert FitzHervey (a younger son of Hervé, Duke of Orléans), one of the commanders in the invading army of WILLIAM THE CONQUEROR.

From that Robert descended

JOHN HERVEY, who, marrying Joan, daughter and heiress of John Harman, of Thurleigh, Bedfordshire, whereby he became possessed of that lordship, which he made his principal residence.

Mr Hervey died in 1292, leaving issue,

JOHN HERVEY, who wedded Margaret, daughter and heir of Sir John de Nernuytt, of Burnham, in Buckinghamshire, and therby became possessed of a large property, which descended to his son and heir.

From him we pass to his lineal descendant,

JOHN HERVEY, of Thurleigh, who wedded Alice, daughter of Nicholas Morley, of Glynde, Sussex; and had, with one daughter, two sons, viz.
GEORGE;
Thomas.
The younger son,

THOMAS HERVEY, espoused Jane, daughter and heir of Henry Drury, of Ickworth, Hawstead, etc; and with her acquired those estates.

He was succeeded at his decease by his son,

WILLIAM HERVEY, of Ickworth, Suffolk, who married Joan, daughter of John Cocket, of Ampton, Suffolk; and, dying in 1538, left, with other issue,
JOHN, his successor, of whom presently;
NICHOLAS.
Mr Hervey of Ickworth was succeeded at his decease by his eldest son,

JOHN HERVEY, of Ickworth, whi died in 1556, and was succeeded by his eldest son,

JOHN HERVEY, of Ickworth, who wedded Frances, daughter and co-heir of Edmund Bocking, of Bocking, in Essex; and dying in 1630, was succeeded by his eldest son,

SIR WILLIAM HERVEY, who married, in 1608, Susan, daughter of Sir Robert Jermyn, of Rushbrook, Suffolk; and dying in 1660, was succeeded by his eldest son,

JOHN HERVEY, of Ickworth.
This gentleman enjoyed the friendship of Robert Sidney, 2nd Earl of Leicester, and sojourned with that accomplished nobleman during his embassy at the French court. Concurring heartily with the restoration of CHARLES II, he was appointed Treasurer of the Household to the Queen Consort, CATHERINE. In parliament he was one of the leading members.
He wedded the Hon Elizabeth Hervey, only surviving child and sole heiress of William, Lord Hervey, of Kidbrook; but dying without issue, in 1679, his estates devolved upon his only surviving brother,

SIR THOMAS HERVEY MP, who espoused Isabella, daughter of Sir Humphrey May, vice-chamberlain of the household to CHARLES I; and dying in 1694, was succeeded by his eldest surviving son,

JOHN HERVEY (1665-1751), a distinguished member of the House of Commons, who was elevated to the peerage, in 1703, as Baron Hervey, of Ickworth, Suffolk.

His lordship was advanced to the dignity of an earldom, in 1714, as EARL OF BRISTOL.

This nobleman wedded firstly, in 1686, Isabella, daughter and sole heiress of the Rt Hon Sir Robert Carr Bt, and granddaughter, maternally, of James, 3rd Earl of Suffolk, by whom he had a son, CARR, Lord Hervey, who predeceased him, and two daughters.

He married secondly, in 1695, Elizabeth, onlt daughter and heiress of Sir Thomas Felton Bt, of Playford, Suffolk, by whom he had eleven sons and six daughters.

The 1st Earl's two sons both predeceased him and, following his decease in 1751, he was succeeded by his grandson,

GEORGE WILLIAM (1721-75), 2nd Earl, who, in right of his grandmother, upon the demise of Henry, 10th Earl of Suffolk, became joint heir (with Elizabeth, 2nd wife of John, 1st Earl of Portsmouth) to that nobleman's estates, and to the barony of HOWARD DE WALDEN; but dying unmarried in 1775, all devolved upon his brother,

AUGUSTUS JOHN (1724-79), 3rd Earl.
This nobleman, having adopted the naval profession, attained the rank of Vice-Admiral of the Blue. His lordship married privately, in 1744, the celebrated Miss Chudleigh, who, 25 years later, in 1769, publicly espoused Evelyn Pierrepoint, 2nd Duke of Kingston-upon-Hull; for which offence her ladyship was impeached before the House of Lords, and the marriage declared illegal. She retired subsequently to the Continent, where she died in 1788.
The 3rd Earl died in 1779, without issue, and was succeed by his brother,

FREDERICK AUGUSTUS (1730-1803), Lord Bishop of Derry,  4th Earl.
The heir presumptive is the present holder's 4th cousin once removed Alexander George Hervey (b. 1920).
Bristol arms courtesy of European Heraldry.

Sunday, 7 December 2014

Londonderry City Lieutenancy

City of Londonderry


LORD-LIEUTENANT


GARVEY, Dr Angela J,



VICE LORD-LIEUTENANT


KEYS, Mr Stuart C, DL




DEPUTY LIEUTENANTS


HILL, Mr Donald A, JP DL

McCLURE, Dr Alan, OBE DL

KEEGAN, Dame Geraldine, DBE DL

DAVIDSON, Mrs Margaret J, DL

SHARMA, Mr Naresh, DL

DAVIS, Mr David, MBE JP DL

MOORE, Mr Alan, MBE TD DL

DOHERTY, Mrs Joan, DL

CROWE, Mr Ian, DL

GUCKIAN, Mr Gerard, DL

MORTON, Very Rev William, DL

WATT, Dr Lucinda, DL

QUIGLEY, Mrs Helen, DL

Please advise me of any retirements or deaths.

Saturday, 6 December 2014

Belfast Lieutenancy

County Borough of Belfast





LORD-LIEUTENANT



JAY-O’BOYLE, Mrs Fionnuala, CBE



VICE LORD-LIEUTENANT



HAMILTON, Sir Nigel, KCB DL



DEPUTY LIEUTENANTS


MacLARAN, Mr Michael, DL

SMYTH, Mrs Anthea Linda, DL

RUSSELL, Mr Colin DL

THOMPSON, Mr Courtenay, DL

ELDER, Mr Mervyn, MBE TD JP DL

MORONEY, Mr Maurice, JP DL

DEENY, The Hon Mr Justice (Sir Donnell), DL

CAMPBELL, Mrs Jennifer, DL

COLLINS, Dr John, DL

STELFOX, Mr Dawson, MBE DL

CAMPBELL, Colonel Mark, CBE DL

CORBETT, Mr Joseph Garth, MBE DL

DONALDSON, Mr Adrian M, MBE DL

CARR, Dr Nigel J, DL

HILL, Dame Judith, DBE DL FRCN

McGARRY, Dr Philip J, DL

BRADLEY, Professor Martin E J, OBE DL FRCN

PRICE, Nicholas W N, DL

SHARMA, Mukesh, DL

MARKEN, Mrs Michelle, OBE DL

ADAIR, Professor Alastair Samuel, CBE DL

EVE, Mrs Judith Mary, CBE DL

Please advise me of any retirements or deaths.

Thursday, 4 December 2014

Tyrone Lieutenancy

County of Tyrone


LORD-LIEUTENANT
   

SCOTT, Mr Robert W L, OBE JP



VICE LORD-LIEUTENANT


KILLEN, Mr Patrick, OBE JP DL




DEPUTY LIEUTENANTS
   

SCOTT, Mr Richard T M, DL

HADDEN, Mr John R, DL

BLAKISTON-HOUSTON, Dr Lucinda, DL

RUSSELL, Dr Clive, OBE DL

SHIELS, Mr Leslie A, JP DL

PINTO, Mr Dominic, OBE DL

BUTLER, Mr W Richard C, DL

ORR, Mr Thomas Neville, DL

McCAUL, Mrs Shiela A, MBE DL

NOLAN, Mrs Frances B, MBE DL

GAMBLE, Mr Sydney, DL

EASTWOOD, Mrs Geraldine, DL

COLHOUN, Miss Angela F, DL

O’HARE, Dr Brendan J, DL

CASTLE STEWART, Rt Hon the Countess, DL

HAMILTON-STUBBER, Mr James, DL

BAXTER, Mr William James, QPM DL

BOYD, Mrs Gail Ann

BELL, Mrs Meta, MBE DL

THOMPSON, Rev Dr Isaac, TD DL

FRAZER, Mr David Iain, DL

Please advise me of any retirements or deaths.

Wednesday, 3 December 2014

Londonderry Lieutenancy


County of Londonderry



LORD-LIEUTENANT


DESMOND, Mr Denis F, CBE



VICE LORD-LIEUTENANT




BURNSIDE, Mrs Stella, OBE DL




DEPUTY LIEUTENANTS


BOYLE, Mr E A Harry, JP DL

McGINNIS, Mr William, OBE DL

MOORE, Mr W Robert L, DL

HILL, Mr J Desmond, DL

McKENNA, Professor Gerry, DL

O’DONNELL, Mrs Rosemary, DL

DAVIDSON, Mr Alastair, DL

MILLAR, Mrs Alison, DL

McKEOWN, Mr William, MBE DL

DALY, Dr John G, DL

McVEIGH, the Rev Canon Samuel, MBE TD DL

SHERIDAN, Mr Peter, OBE DL

MARK, Mrs Helen, DL

Please advise me of any retirements or deaths.

Tuesday, 2 December 2014

Fermanagh Lieutenancy



County of Fermanagh



LORD-LIEUTENANT


BROOKEBOROUGH, Rt Hon the Viscount



VICE LORD-LIEUTENANT


EADIE, Mr Roland R A, DL



DEPUTY LIEUTENANTS


FAWCETT, Mr David, DL

FAWCETT, Mr John E C, DL

PLUNKETT, Mr Charles P B, DL

SCOTT, Mr Mark R H, MBE DL

WILKINSON, Mrs Rosemary, DL

BLAKE, Mrs Mary, DL

LITTLE, Mrs Melanie, DL

STYLES, Mrs Jane, DL

McVEY, Mrs Joanna, OBE DL

WIGHAM, Mr William T A, DL

McMANUS, Ms Roisin, DL

PENDRY, Mr Shaun, DL

FISHER, Mr Ernest, DL

LOGAN, Mr Hamish, DL

ERNE, The Earl of, DL

RASDALE, Mr Anthony, DL

GRAHAM, Dr John, DL

Please advise me of any retirements or deaths.

Monday, 1 December 2014

Down Lieutenancy


COUNTY OF DOWN



LORD-LIEUTENANT


LINDSAY, Mr David C




VICE LORD-LIEUTENANT



COOK, Mrs Fionnuala, OBE DL




DEPUTY LIEUTENANTS


BLAKISTON-HOUSTON, Mr Richard, DL

BARNETT, Mr Robert, DL

GORDON, Mr Richard John, DL

OSBORNE, Brigadier Ian, OBE DL

NIXON, Mr James, DL

WORKMAN, Mrs Barbara, DL

LAMMEY, Mr Colin, DL

MURRAY, Mr Leslie, CBE DL

McCAUSLAND, Mr Duncan, OBE DL

FITZSIMONS, Mr Barry, DL

DUNLEATH, Rt Hon the Lord, DL

NICHOLSON, Lady, DL

WITCHELL, Mr John, DL

KING, Mrs Sally Louisa, DL

FLOOD, Dr Richard Derek, DL

O’HAGAN, Dr Leonard, CBE DL

KINNAIRD, Mr Nigel John, DL

ROWAN-HAMILTON, Mr Gawn, DL

O'HARE, Dr William Gerard, CBE DL

HAUGHIAN, Mrs Catherine A, DL

KELLY, Dr Thomas, OBE DL

CHAMPION, Mrs Catherine June, DL

LOGAN, Dr Robert Alexander, DL

WATT, Mr Michael Desmond, DL

BROWNLOW, Mrs Amanda Claire, DL

CONWAY, Mr Peter Campbell, DL

McCLURE, Professor Neil, DL

Please advise me of any retirements or deaths.

Sunday, 30 November 2014

Bombay Masala


I dined again with my pals, Susan and Derek from Worcestershire, at the little Indian restaurant near Music Square, Corralejo, last night.

It's called Bombay Masala. Isn't it a wonder the Political Correctness Police haven't changed that to Mumbai?

The Indian family who run it are utterly charming and courteous.

The decor is unpretentious and unsophisticated.

We ordered small glasses of beer.

Having considered the menu, I chose the Kashmiri Chicken; while the others had the lamb and chicken bhuna.

We shared two portions of pilau rice and one large piece of peschwari naan bread.

My curry was enjoyable and tasty, though I have to declare I prefer the Korma version.

The bill came to about €51 excluding the tip.

They offered us the usual brandy or liqueur and the conclusion.

Thence we ambled several yards across the Square to La Plaza café bar, where a middle-aged singer-guitarist dressed like a cowboy was playing to three boisterous young women tourists.

His rendition of Bamboléo is legendary, I gather (!).



Suitably fortified with liqueur coffees, we strolled back to base. 

Saturday, 29 November 2014

Piazza Grande: II


Alas, the weather in the Canary Islands has been poor recently, to put it mildly (!).

We have endured very strong winds, heavy rain, and local flooding.

In fact I've asked my aunt to send me a pair of Wellington boots instanter!

Nevertheless, I met my new friends from Worcestershire and we struggled against the Elements en route to the fine Italian bistro café, Piazza Grande.

Unsurprisingly they had few patrons owing to the inclement conditions outside.

The three of us took a pew inside, where we ordered a bot of red plonk and perused the menu.

We opted for a kind of daily "Special" which consisted of small, battered, hollow cushions of some sort, with a plate of cured meats and cheese.

This was all rather good.


For pudding I had the apricot and almond tart with whipped cream.

Thence we made a beeline for the so-called Music Square in Corralejo, which was totally deserted.

The restaurateurs had all succumbed to the ghastly weather.

One of the few establishments to remain open was a bar called The Blue Rock. We wandered in, had cocktails, and thereafter departed for home, as it were.

Armagh Lieutenancy

COUNTY OF ARMAGH


LORD-LIEUTENANT


CALEDON, Rt Hon the Earl of



VICE LORD-LIEUTENANT


HAMILTON-STUBBER, Mr Richard, DL



DEPUTY LIEUTENANTS


REID, Colonel Arthur, OBE TD JP DL

RYAN, Mr Patrick Anthony, JP DL

BEATTIE, Mr William James, DL

SHAW, Mr James Derek, DL

DUNCAN, Mr Thomas, DL

MAGOWAN, Mr John C K, DL

ARMSTRONG, Mrs Jill, DL

MURPHY, Mr Thomas, DL

JACKSON, Mr Antony, DL

DONNELLY, Mr Raymond, DL

McALLISTER, Colonel Hubert, OBE TD DL 

DOUGAN, Simon Thomas Alexander, DL

Please advise me of any retirements or deaths.

Friday, 28 November 2014

Antrim Lieutenancy


County of Antrim



LORD-LIEUTENANT           

CHRISTIE, Mrs Joan, OBE


VICE LORD-LIEUTENANT

READE, Mr Richard George, DL



DEPUTY LIEUTENANTS 
                               

RATHCAVAN, Rt Hon the Lord, DL

CUNNINGHAM, Mrs Carol, DL

BROOKE, Hon Christopher A, DL

CASEMENT, Mr Patrick, OBE DL

FRAZER, Mr Andrew David, DL

HILLAN, Mrs Sheelagh Elizabeth, MBE DL

KINAHAN, Mr Danny de Burgh, DL MLA

KELLY, Mr Liam Gerard, JP DL

MITCHELL, Mr Joseph, DL

MONTGOMERY, Mr Hugh Edward J, DL

RAINEY, Mr William Eric, CVO MBE DL

TISDALE, Mrs Miranda, DL

WALLACE, Mrs Patricia, DL

SHIRLEY, Mrs Julia, DL

DUNLUCE, Viscount, DL

SALISBURY, Colonel Neil, OBE DL

McCORKELL, Mr David, DL

FITZGERALD, Dr S Peter, CBE DL

Please advise me of any retirements or deaths.

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Wooster Advice

I'm presently reading Right Ho, Jeeves, written in 1934 by Sir PG Wodehouse.

Bertie Wooster hailed the spiking of Gussie Fink-Nottle's orange-juice with gin:-

"...it just shows, what any member of Parliament will tell you, that if you want real oratory, the preliminary noggin is essential. Unless pie-eyed, you cannot hope to grip."

Monday, 24 November 2014

Letter from Corralejo


At the moment I'm seated outside the little Italian café, Piazza Grande, in central Corralejo.

Instead of the usual coffee, viz. Leche Leche Largo, I'm enjoying a salubrious mixed smoothie fruit juice  drink.

Since last Wednesday we have endured heavy rain, local flooding, strong winds, and cooler temperatures.

Today, Monday, is calmer. The signs of the thunderstorm remain, however, with some large puddles.

The tennis court resembles a swimming pool!

I've encountered some interesting people during my time here; indeed I'm dining with two of them in two days' time at a Brazilian restaurant.

Tomorrow evening I look forward to a bite of dinner at a Danish establishment called The Ugly Duckling.

It has a limited menu which, to my mind, is good.

Saturday, 22 November 2014

Corralejo Sculptures


There are two sculptures at the old quay, Corralejo.

Corralejo, Fuerteventura, remains essentially a fishing town, though tourism must be its principal source of income now.


The maritime heritage is reflected in these sculptures, of families whose fathers, husbands, sons, or brothers, put to a cruel sea to earn a living.

It reminds us of the hope and despair; the relief and heartbreak of fishermen's families.

Friday, 21 November 2014

Piazza Grande


had a bite of supper at an agreeable little Italian bistro or café called Piazza Grande last night.

It's located at the children's playground in Plaza de Los Niños, Corralejo.

There was intended to be a live musician, though inclement weather called that off.

So I ambled inside, took a pew, and ordered a G&T


The menu is on a blackboard.

In the interim the bar staff placed a complimentary plate of garlic pizza slices beside me.


After some perusal I went for Granny's Raviolacci, three very large pieces of pasta with salty, though tasty, bits of bacon, or its Italian equivalent, atop.

The nosebag was quivering with anticipation, given that I had a hearty appetite on this occasion.

I overheard two other diners inquiring as to the name of the red house wine, so it must have been acceptable to them.


The bill, including two Beefeater gins and another basket of garlic bread, came to €21.

Thursday, 20 November 2014

Morning Constitutional

There have been thundery showers in Corralejo lately, I can declare! 

I find it agreeable to take a morning 'constitutional' down to the sea-front and past many of the small establishments bringing out their tables and chairs or their wares for sale.

En route for Belmont GHQ, I happened upon a small Italian café or bistro called Piazza Grande.

It's located at the town square.

They have several blackboards with the menu written in various languages.

Fresh pasta predominates; and prices are in the region of a mere €5 or €6.

Granny's cakes and Granny's ravioli with butter and Salvia (sage?) sounds tempting.

They have live musicians, too, dependant on the weather.

I think I'll try it this evening.

Sir Les!


This morning I fondly remember my old pal and associate Sir Leslie Colin Patterson.

I'd been recommended a dental supplier (!) by the former Australian Cultural Attaché to the Court of St James, Sir Les.


Sir Les and Timothy Belmont go back a long way, in fact.

I am firmly of the belief that Sir Les has been irreplaceable as Australia's cultural attaché.

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Episcopal Mischief

Frederick Hervey, 4th Earl of Bristol and 48th Lord Bishop of Derry, was renowned for spending much of his time travelling abroad and little time in his diocese.

On one such occasion, when Lord Bristol had been absent from his See for over five years, three of his fellow bishops rebuked the Earl-Bishop for this.

The Bishop's reaction was typically offensive.

He placed three peas in an inflated bladder and posted it to none other than the Archbishop of Armagh, with the following riddle, signed "Bristol and Derry":
Three large bluebottles sat upon three blown bladders; Blow, bottle-flies, blow. Burst, blown bladders, burst.

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

The Beefeater

I consumed far too many White Russians and, indeed, a few Beefeaters, last night, for my own good.

'Twas enjoyable! And I'm up and about as I type on the iPad.

I can run the blog quite satisfactorily on the iPad, provisionally at least.

 I continue to peruse The Mitred Earl.

The 1st Earl of Charlemont was somewhat less than complimentary in his judgement on the Earl-Bishop's character: Like a shallow stream: rapid, noisy; diverting but useless.

Monday, 17 November 2014

House of Rawdon

The illustrious family of Rawdon deduced its pedigree from Paulinus de Rawdon, to whom William the Conqueror granted considerable estates.

This Paulyn, or Paulinus, commanded a band of archers in the Norman invading army, and derived his surname of Rawdon, from the lands of that denomination, near Leeds, which constituted a portion of the royal grant.

From this successful soldier lineally sprang, 19th in descent, through a line of eminent ancestors,

GEORGE RAWDON, who settled in Ireland, and took an active part as a military commander during the rebellion of 1641, in that kingdom; and subsequently, until his decease, in 1684, in the general affairs of Ireland.
  
This gentleman married the Hon Dorothy Conway, daughter of 2nd Viscount Conway, in 1654 and they lived at Moira, County Down.

He was the only son and heir of Francis Rawdon, of Rawdon Hill, near Leeds in Yorkshire. Rawdon went to Court about the end of the reign of JAMES I and became private secretary to Lord Conway, Secretary of State.

After Lord Conway's death, Rawdon was attached to his son, 2nd Viscount Conway, who had large estates in County Down. 

George Rawdon became his secretary (or agent) and frequently visited the Lisburn area. He commanded a company of soldiers, and sat in the Irish Parliament of 1639 as MP for Belfast.

When the Irish Rebellion broke out on 23rd October, 1641, Rawdon was in London; but he lost no time in coming to the post of duty. He travelled at once to Scotland, and crossed to Bangor, reaching Lisburn on the 27th November. 

The account of his visit to Lisburn at this critical time is fully recorded in a most interesting and vivid contemporary note in the old Vestry Book of Lisburn Cathedral.

The towns of Moira and Ballynahinch were founded by Rawdon.

He was married in 1639 to Ursula, daughter of Sir Francis Stafford, and widow of Francis Hill, Esq., of Hillhall, by whom he had no surviving issue.

After her death he married, in 1654, Dorothy, eldest daughter of Edward, Viscount Conway. She died in 1676.

There was an only son of this marriage, Sir Arthur Rawdon, who was buried beside his father in the vault.

Rawdon was created a baronet in 1655, being denominated, of Moira, in the County of Down.

He died in 1684 and was succeeded by his eldest surviving son,  

SIR ARTHUR RAWDON, (1662-95), 2nd Baronet, MP for County Down. He was a distinguished soldier, like his father, and a leader of the "Loyalists of Ulster" and fought against the army of JAMES II.

Sir Arthur was in Londonderry during the siege, but as he was dangerously ill he had to leave the town by the advice of his doctor. His only son, 

SIR JOHN RAWDON (1720-93), 3rd Baronet, was also MP for County Down.

He married Dorothy, daughter of Sir Richard Levinge Bt, Speaker of the Irish House of Commons (she, after his death, married the Most Rev Charles Cobbe, Lord Archbishop of Dublin).

Sir John was elevated to the peerage in 1750, as Baron Rawdon, of Moira, County Down; and further ennobled as EARL OF MOIRA in 1762. 

He was married thrice: 1st to Lady Helena, daughter of the Earl of Egmont; secondly to the Hon Anna, daughter of Viscount Hillsborough; and thirdly, to Lady Elizabeth, daughter of the Earl of Huntingdon. His eldest son,  

THE MOST HON FRANCIS EDWARD [RAWDON-HASTINGS] (1754-1826), 4th Baronet, was further advanced, to a marquessate, as MARQUESS OF HASTINGS KG PC

Lord Hastings was styled the Hon Francis Rawdon from birth until 1762; and as Lord Rawdon between 1762-83; and 2nd Earl of Moira between 1793-1816.

The 1st Marquess was a distinguished soldier and scholar; and Governor-General of India; a Fellow of the Royal Society; fought in the American war; and was present at the Battle of Bunker Hill.


All of these subsidiary titles, including the baronetcy, became extinct following the death of the 4th Marquess and 8th Baronet, in 1868.
     First published in January, 2012.  Hastings arms courtesy of European Heraldry.

    Sunday, 16 November 2014

    Afternoon Refresher

    Now I do not consider myself to be a connoisseur of that noble spirit, gin, by any stretch of the imagination.

    It's true, however, that I have sampled quite a few brands since I ceased wearing short trousers on a regular basis.

    This afternoon, the sun came out at the old pier of Corralejo, Fuerteventura.

    I stopped for a look at the drinks menu in a pavement bar called Barrakuda.

    They had a fair selection of premium gins, the dearest being one I'm unfamiliar with, known as No. 209.

    This gin is distilled in California.

    Today, though, I enjoyed a beautifully served Tanqueray Ten.

    The staff brought a collapsible side-table; served the said gin, with thin slices of lemon peel and large ice-cubes.

    She poured the tonic-water on to a kind of long, thin skewer into the glass.

    This drink cost €8, including the tonic.

    The No 209 costs €11.

    Saturday, 15 November 2014

    La Taberna


    I enjoyed a very good meal at a little restaurant I occasionally frequent whilst in the resort of Corralejo, La Taberna, Hernan Cortes Street, run by 
    Mine Host, Juan, ably assisted in the kitchen by his diligent wife, Ana.

    Juan happens to be a passionate fan of the major Spanish football club, Real Madrid. 

    He is also a follower of the jazz musician, Jamie Cullum.

    La Taberna operates a unique formula which works admirably, whereby the fillet steak meals are accompanied by a moderate portion of crisp and dry saute potatoes and home-made coleslaw. 

    I ordered the steak - medium done - with a Roquefort cheese sauce. it was simply sumptuous. There was no fat at all and it was so juicy, too.


    Juan also brings diners his lovely fresh crusty rolls with his signature alioli garlic mayonnaise, the best alioli in Corralejo to my mind! I shouldn't wish for any finer.


    I sat outside La Taberna at a pavement table.

    The bill came to €27, including the tip.

    Juan brought me a tumbler of Irish Cream before I bade them Farewell.

    Friday, 14 November 2014

    Bouganville Bar


    I've returned to the stylish, bijou Bouganville cocktail bar in Corralejo several times.

    Last night I had a largish Tanqueray gin and Nordic blue tonic-water, which cost €4.50.

    The blue tonic is purely for effect though its aesthetics are undeniable.


    The decor of this little bar seems to be based on the arabesque or moorish: subtle shades of red and gold predominate.

    The owner told me that she made many of the artistic items herself.

    Thursday, 13 November 2014

    The Earl Bishop's Daughters

    I fancied a curry last night and knew of a good little Indian restaurant at Music Square, Corralejo, called Bombay Masala.

    Having enjoyed my onion bhajis, chicken korma and peshwari naan bread, I ambled round the corner, to the lovely bijou Bouganville Bar; though more about that in another article.

    For the benefit of those not following the blog regularly, I'm reading a wonderful book about Frederick Hervey, commonly known as The Earl Bishop.

    Of his lordship's daughters, Lady Mary wedded the 2nd Baron Erne (afterwards 1st Earl of Erne).

    Lady Elizabeth was married to John Thomas Foster MP, an Irish politician. 

    This turned out to be a most unhappy marriage for her. They separated in 1781.

    Lady Elizabeth was well acquainted with Georgiana Duchess of Devonshire.

    Her Grace wrote to Elizabeth, suggesting that she look after - like a sort of nanny of governess - one of her children.

    The rest is History: Lady Elizabeth and the Duke became intimate, shall we say; a kind of ménage à trois developed; and Elizabeth ultimately became Duchess of Devonshire herself.

    Wednesday, 12 November 2014

    The Mitred Earl

    I'm reading The Mitred Earl: An Eighteenth-Century Eccentric at the moment.

    It is written by Brian Fothergill for National Trust Classics.

    The Right Honourable and Right Reverend Frederick Hervey was 4th Earl of Bristol and 48th Lord Bishop of Derry.

    He was appointed to his first bishopric (Cloyne) by his brother, Lord Lieutenant of Ireland and 2nd Earl of Bristol.

    The desired See of Derry was not vacant at that time; though Hervey was almost immediately translated to the said diocese on the death of the previous bishop.

    Derry was said to be the richest and most lucrative bishopric in the established Church of Ireland.

    The Earl-Bishop's income from the bishopric was £20,000 in the 18th century.

    When he became 4th Earl of Bristol, his annual income doubled by £20,000 to £40,000, in the region of £6 million in today's money.

    Tuesday, 11 November 2014

    Casa Manolo's


    Last night I dined at a small, family-run establishment called Restaurante Casa Manolo.

    It's located at Calle Crucero Baleares.

    Avenida is closed on Mondays, hence a slightly further walk across Corralejo to Casa Manolo.

    This is actually a charming little place. I was greeted cordially and a table just inside the restaurant was suggested.

    The walls are adorned with souvenir plates and family items.

    So far (!) I have been moderating my consumption of alcohol, so I ordered a pot of tea.

    This was swiftly followed by crusty bread and alioli.

    The waitress was eager to show me their specialities, and brought out a large baking-tray with fish they called dorada (sea bream?). 

    Then another tray of individual cooked cordero (lamb) appeared.

    I opted for the fish, which duly arrived with thinly sliced potatoes and a medley of local vegetables.

    The dorada was good: delicate, mild, and easily digested. There were two fillets on the plate.

    The ancient gnashers had an evening off!


    This otherwise fine repast was marred, I felt, by an abundance of an oily sea of stock or liquid, which might have been a mixture of olive oil and butter.

    Tip One: Do not wear your best shirt!

    Nevertheless, it was a well executed dish and the dorada was the main feature.


    On settling my bill of about €17, I was offered a local liqueur which was reminiscent of Irish Cream; and a chocolate!

    Monday, 10 November 2014

    New DL




    Dr Angela Garvey, Lord-Lieutenant of the City of Londonderry, has been pleased to appoint the Very Rev William Morton, The Deanery, Londonderry, to be a Deputy Lieutenant.

    Dated the 31st October, 2014.

    Corralejo: Arrival

    I had rather a restful day yesterday, ambling about the resort and becoming familiar with old haunts.

    Despite abstaining from The Devil's Brew at the airport and on the flight, I decided to let my hair (!) down, as it were.

    Consequently, I parked myself at an establishment called El Cantante, which overlooks the isle of Los Lobos.

    I ordered a Bacardi and cola, requested the Internet password, and began to surf.

    Alas, despite the free wi-fi, it was frustratingly slow and weak.

    Nevertheless, I had a very agreeable chat with a couple beside me, who were on a day trip from the neighbouring island of Lanzarote.

    Thence I darkened the threshold of The Banana Bar, which affords a lovely rooftop terrace and beanbag seating.

    True to form, I resorted to the Tanqueray and tonic-water.

    The Internet connection was faster here; they'll receive another visit from me.

    I'm expecting to dine at Avenida this evening, if I manage to get a table.

    Sunday, 2 November 2014

    Titanic Amble


    It has been a fine day in Belfast: I drove to the city's Titanic Quarter - formerly Harland & Wolff shipyard - this morning for a brief stroll.

    Belfast Harbour Marina, beside the Odyssey Complex, had a number of yachts.

    This marina is at Abercorn Basin; as are numerous, high-rise apartments; a hotel; a convenience store; and a café.


    SS Nomadic is berthed, of course, at Hamilton Dock, which is itself at Abercorn Basin.


    Closer to Alexandra Dock, where HMS Caroline is berthed, there is wasteland on one side of the road, where a "prop" belonging to the Game Of Thrones drama series rests on scaffolding.

    Friday, 31 October 2014

    About Town

    I spent two hours in central Belfast this morning.

    I strolled through House of Fraser, emerging at Victoria Square shopping centre, where I ambled in to the Apple Store.

    I scrutinized the brand new iPad Air 2 and, I must declare, it is noticably lighter and thinner than my 4th generation model.

    I am tempted to buy one.


    Passing the Masonic Buildings  of ca 1870, at Arthur Square, I headed towards Marks & Spencer in Donegall Place.

    I photographed the fantasy castle carved near the apex of Queen's Arcade.


    My final port-of-call was the venerable Linenhall Library, where an image of the coat-of-arms of Bailie of Ringdufferin eluded me, despite searching for fifteen minutes.

    I did, however, manage to obtain a good likeness of their crest, a hand and dagger (top).

    Wednesday, 29 October 2014

    McCutcheon's Day

    Groomsport from McCutcheon's Field

    I've spent the day with other National Trust volunteers at a place known as McCutcheon's Field.

    This comprises several acres of coastline at Brigg's Rocks and close to Sandeel Bay, in north County Down.

    There's a holiday park here called Windsor Caravan Park.

    This field is close to Groomsport.

    Today we were gathering old gorse cuttings and burning them.


    There were several young Dexter cattle in the vicinity.

    We numbered about twelve today, enjoying our packed lunches at the coast-line, watching the ferries and container ships sailing up and down Belfast Lough.


    Phil treated us all to some of his wife's German biscuits.

    I visited Clandeboye estate on my way home. The walled garden no longer sells spindleberry shrubs, though they still grow some for the seeds.