Yesterday I burnt down the Commons’ Library, and today I’m doing the same with the Lords. Actually, I’ve been on leave for the last five days (of nine), determined to get the first draft of the book ready for checking by the beginning of September. I’ve been working about ten hours a day, and now have […]
I’m on leave now for over a week, and so therefore have a really good opportunity to crack on with the book. The wide-ranging snippets written up in this stint include: thefts and pickpocketing among the crowd; the marble mantelpieces of the Speaker’s House and damage thereto; cottaging in St Margaret’s Churchyard; and beer rations given out to the soldiers.
Transcribed a hilarious verse broadsheet today on the fire, which includes the deathless couplet: Oh dear, oh dear, what a consternation / This affair will cause throughout the nation. Must work the pome into the book somehow…
Popped into the St Stephen’s cloisters by Westminster Hall today, which were half destroyed by the fire in 1834 (then again by the Blitz) but half survive. They were built just over a decade before the dissolution of the monasteries, so weren’t used as intended for very long. They are marvellous, and an incredible survival right in the middle […]
Tallies were responsible for the fire of 1834 at Parliament. Or rather: the idiocy of people disposing of them was responsible. One of the tallies on display at work had split into pieces, so our collection care manager took on the task of repairing a seven-hundred year old stick of hazel-wood. But before she did that, she needed […]
As most people at work are on holiday today, my email box is deliciously quiet. This enables me to head out at noon, rather than working through my lunch hour as usual, to go to the British Library to renew my reader’s ticket in anticipation of a research visit next week. It’s twenty years since […]