Planning ideas for the pandemic: some new, some not so new! When many of the marketing gurus made great play of this year being the year of “20 20 vision”, they somewhat overestimated the optimism that would be associated with the 20 20 idea. With the benefit of hindsight, in years to come,  we will forever conjure images of 2020 as being one of chaos, death and despair, rather than associating it with clarity of vision. The Brexit debacle has even lost its place centre stage in our thoughts. It’s best not forgotten, however, that unless a deal happens in short order, we can look forward to … [Read more...]


Kevin Kiernan has been rummaging around the Museum of London archives during lockdown and has found a Saxon script depicting events exactly 1600 years ago. 420 AD. It was a freezing cold Wodensday. Typical Yuletide weather.  Alaric, the Saxon chief, was standing on Hygghgate Mound, looking down on Londinium.  The last vestiges of Roman occupation were quickly disappearing, soon the Saxons would descend down Hollow’s Way and enter the city as the new rulers. Free from the yoke of Rome, no more straight bananas and no more straight roads for that matter (although the disadvantages of the … [Read more...]


Janet Wells’ takes us online for her quarterly review of the Arts, Gallery and Museum scene As I get this together for the Editor’s deadline, we are going once more into Lockdown: However, the galleries may well be about to re – open  by the time you receive this Winter Edition of the Magazine – who knows!  Of course, the same precautions will, most certainly, apply and we will only be able to buy timed tickets; there is little that can be spontaneous in this Covid 19 world.    This morning however, I found an announcement of a programme of large scale projected public art to take place … [Read more...]

Theatre Preview

Gary Donaldson looks with optimism to end the second lockdown! As we head out of lockdown for a second time (assuming the restrictions were relaxed on December 2), I am very happy to have some news about theatre re-emerging thanks to the Barbican Centre. As always, Christmas brings a special show made just for under-fives and their families, the only difference this year being that the show is available to watch online instead of in-person. Those of you who have been working from home or watching material online will already be familiar with video platform Zoom, which is the platform … [Read more...]

Personal Finance

Further thoughts for the pandemic season In my last article I shared some observations about managing cash deposits and investments in this period of uncertainty resulting from the global pandemic. Whilst this is a worrying time as regards your health and your financial well-being, it can also be a time to take advantage of a number of planning opportunities. Let’s first of all look at what can be done with your estate planning. If you’ve done your sums and worked out that your pensions and investments are more than sufficient to take care of your needs, now might be a good time to … [Read more...]

Insight Arts Review

Janet Wells’ teases us back into the Arts, Gallery and Museum scene Easing out of Lockdown: There were exhibitions that I’d planned to see in the Spring; then we had Lockdown:   However, I have now found that with the gradual opening some were only sleeping;  many may still be in place and with a bit of  planning  you may get to see something for real after all. We are aware though, that it will be a different experience: Remember the time when we could wander in on a whim and spend hours wandering? Now it is essential to book ahead and there may be a limited viewing time.  From our … [Read more...]

Insight Arts Review

Janet Wells’ takes us online for her quarterly review of the Arts, Gallery and Museum scene As we are in an extended period of Lockdown; I have been looking around to  see what major Art Galleries and Museums have online; and what motivational art programmes on tv or google are currently out there. Chanel 4 has Greyson Perry Art Club:  I had to register into Ch 4 and then I watched on my phone.  Thankfully, this is not a “how to do” programme. Keith Tyson and Quentin Blake recently launched @isolationartschool – which you can find through Instagram BBC4 are promoting another Life … [Read more...]

Personal Finance

The New Normal In my last article I wrote about the pros and cons of about managing your own planning and investment strategy. I was aiming to return to the theme of inheritance tax planning and to share a number of ideas that would stimulate food for thought. What a difference a few months can make! Whilst the need for estate planning remains a central concern, the even larger one now is to survive the pandemic. The two are not mutually exclusive of course! In early February I watched the news like you. I was therefore aware of the  situation in Wuhan and also of the covid 19 cases in … [Read more...]

Sitting Comfortably?

Advice from Caroline Rugman at Charterhouse Physiotherapy who has a few suggestions to  help anyone who is working from home, as poor posture and inactivity can create all sorts of issues. Sit-to-Stand desks are helpful, which can benefit breathing control, posture, digestion and clearer thinking -try IKEA or Swiss balls can be fun, and most outlets would sell for under £35 (remember you will need a pump). Excellent for core workouts / exercising and can be used in place of a chair. Try Amazon or A good working chair would be one that can swivel … [Read more...]

Introducing BRIK

Thomas More Resident, Raffaella Baruzzo, introduces us to her latest venture: a chocolate company shaped and nurtured in her Barbican kitchen, and now an inspiring independent business in East London. This is handmade chocolate inspired by textured architectural surfaces, delicately crafted from natural ingredients. Aesthetics, flavours, sustainability and constant development are at the core of BRIK’s vision. Standard Tile 9x9cm (Larger Tiles 20x20 or 30x30 can be ordered) Flavours include: Caramel & Passion Fruit, Orange, Sesame & Charcoal, Ruby chocolate with  Ginger, … [Read more...]