2020 started with death and trauma. Then there was a pandemic. So, clearly civil disobedience was an entirely reasonable reaction. Yet my rebellion never strayed far from the path of a radical ancestor.
We had a complicated relationship but she was also a unique and fascinating character.
Once, London was a city of horses. Humans lived cheek by jowl with the 300,000 horses of cabmen, traders, laundrymen, grocers and rag-and-bone men. You can see the traces of that time everywhere: old stone drinking troughs, hidden cobbled mews, mounting blocks, slips and ramps.
A republican watches the royal wedding with the ultimate royal watcher, fact checker, sharp-tongued etiquette stickler. It’s all washed down with booze.
Submarine commander, sailor, governor of Burma, prisoner of war camp escapee and politician – my grandfather served a fascinating public life yet remains an elusive family figure.